CHICAGO – July 1, 2010. After a thorough review of the state’s operating budget for the coming fiscal year, Governor Pat Quinn today announced major reductions to state spending while prioritizing the tools needed to keep the Illinois economy moving forward. Governor Quinn also issued an Executive Order to place additional restrictions on government spending.
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Governor Quinn reduced the fiscal year 2011 budget by $1.4 billion, while preserving core services of education, health care and public safety.
“We have further tightened our belt by reducing state spending, enabling us to keep vital services intact, teachers employed and children learning,” said Governor Quinn. “We have been in a national recession and this is an economic recovery budget. Today I’m making the tough decisions necessary to keep Illinois’ economy moving in the right direction.”
Governor Quinn has reduced appropriations in the general funds by nearly $3 billion since taking office in January 2009, a 10.5 percent reduction.
During his tenure, Governor Quinn has implemented major budget and spending reforms and reductions by:
- Historic pension reform saving taxpayers more than $200 billion over 35 years
- Headcount reduction of 1,102 state employees, resulting in Illinois having the lowest state employee headcount per capita in the nation
- State employee furlough days resulting in $25 million in savings
- Union concessions resulting in $200 million in savings from deferred pay increases and health insurance savings
- Consolidation of unneeded office space resulting in $20 million in savings
- Elimination of unnecessary government spending, such as the $500,000 General Revenue Fund purse for the World Trotting Derby horse race
- Rebidding or reducing all contracts over $1 million
Governor Quinn has also worked to create and retain jobs for Illinois workers. Spurred by the Illinois Jobs Now! capital plan and new tax credits that support increased business activity, Illinois has had five straight months job growth and has added 70,000 jobs this year, more than any other state in the Midwest.
Governor Quinn today acted on the following bills:
- House Bill 859: Appropriations: Reduction vetoed
- Senate Bill 1215: Technical Appropriation Changes: Signed into law
- Senate Bill 3660: Emergency Budget Act: Signed into law
- Senate Bill 3662: Budget Implementation Act: Signed into law
For the second year in a row, the General Assembly refused to deal with the realities of the state’s economic crisis. Instead, legislators approved an underfunded state budget, which passed the tough decisions along to Governor Quinn.
Under the Emergency Budget Act, the Governor has powers to reduce and reserve funds throughout state government. These new laws also allow the Governor to address Illinois’ backlog of bills by providing the state with $2 billion from tobacco settlement revenue and available balances of other state funds.
“This budget cuts inefficiencies and holds state agencies accountable for their spending,” said David Vaught, Director of the Governor’s Office of Management and Budget. “Creating jobs, cutting spending, and increased revenues will restore fiscal health to our state and provide the best economic outcome for the people of Illinois.”
The Governor also allocated funds for several high-priority programs, including:
- $206 million to maintain early childhood education programs throughout the state
- $26.7 million to fund adult education programs at community colleges, which in turn qualifies for an additional $48 million in federal matching dollars
- $55 million to fund community mental health programs to maintain funding for community mental health residential programs
- $325 million to maintain funding that allows eligible seniors to remain in their homes, rather than moving into nursing home, through the Department on Aging’s Community Care Program
The Executive Order Governor Quinn signed today requires spending reductions such as: travel expenses, vehicle use, printing, telecommunications, overtime pay, leasing of office space, contractual spending, energy efficiency, managed care for Medicaid and sale of surplus equipment and property.
The fiscal year 2011 budget takes effect today.
For more information on spending reduction progress by agency go to Budget.Illinois.gov.