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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 2, 2002

Governor Commends General Assembly for Working Together in a Bi-Partisan Effort to Pass State Budget
$54 Billion Dollar Spending Bill Will Allow State Government to Continue Providing Essential Services

SPRINGFIELD -- Governor George H. Ryan today congratulated the Illinois General Assembly for passing a Fiscal Year 2003 budget that reduces appropriations by $600 million from Fiscal Year 2002. The $54 Billion FY ‘03 budget is a compromise agreement that includes a mixture of spending cuts and new revenues.

“I want to thank all of the members of both houses on both sides of the aisle for taking up the challenge I laid out for them a week ago,” Governor Ryan said. “For the first time in almost a half-century our revenues are less than the year before. Tough choices had to be made and the members of the General Assembly made a good faith effort to work in a bi-partisan manner and put a budget on my desk.”

This budget includes General Revenue Fund spending of about $22.8 billion. It includes restored funding for healthcare and social service programs as well as an investment in children which includes a $1 billion school construction program. The legislature also passed additional revenues totaling $810 million.

  • $365 million will be raised through new taxes on tobacco and gaming. A 40-cent increase on cigarettes will generate $235 million new dollars. Increasing taxes at riverboat casinos and boosting the admission fee for riverboat casinos from its current level of $2 to $3 will generate $130 million.

  • The Governor has been granted the authority to raise up to $750 million by issuing general obligation bonds repaid by future payments for the tobacco settlement, building cash balances in the general funds and budget stabilization fund.

  • Decoupling from the federal depreciation provisions and maintaining the current depreciation allowances for state taxes, saving Illinois $240 million and local governments $150 million

  • Reallocating $205 million of existing revenue. This will involve keeping the state sales tax on photo processing in the State Treasury (generating $25 million); reallocating a portion of the Real Estate Transfer Tax (generating $15 million); and transferring approximately $165 million of surplus balances in other state funds to general funds.

Governor Ryan will thoroughly review all of the components of the compromise budget when it reaches his desk and he will use his executive powers to ensure it is balanced.

“After I review the budget bill, we will be able to continue providing important funding for educating our children, providing critical healthcare services to the poor and expanding pharmaceutical assistance for senior citizens in the next fiscal year,” Governor Ryan added.



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