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New Illinois Budget Signed Into Law

Jun 30, 2014

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn made a bit of a change to the state budget that goes into effect Tuesday—a change meant to play well with voters.

The Democratic governor used his veto power to take out a small fraction of the billions of dollars Illinois is continually spending on construction projects.  The $250 million he removed was supposed to pay for renovations to the Statehouse.

Governor Quinn criticized legislators for not doing their jobs, yet he left their spending plan largely untouched.
Credit Rich Egger

Construction at the Capitol caused a controversy last year. Among other things, $670,000 was spent on copper doors.

In a statement, Quinn's office wrote that Illinois "cannot afford to move forward with additional renovations."

Much of the rest of the budget approved by the legislature remained intact even though it’s not the budget Quinn wanted.

The governor advocated for making permanent Illinois' 5% income tax rate rather than allowing it to roll back in January.  But the budget allows the rate to drop, which means the state will see an approximately $2 billion drop-off in revenue.

Legislators paved that over with short-term solutions in order to prevent drastic cuts in an election year.

Though Quinn has called the budget "incomplete," he's going along with it.  He didn't cut a single penny from the operating budget.