SCHIMPF WEEK IN REVIEW MAY 29 - JUNE 2
MURPHYSBORO, IL – As Illinois is prepared to begin its third consecutive year without a fiscal plan, State Sen. Paul Schimpf (R-Waterloo) is concerned about the lasting impacts of the impasse and a lack of urgency shown by some Springfield leaders.
Senate Republicans took a strong stance against the unbalanced, potentially unconstitutional budget measures that were advanced on a "party-line" vote on May 23. Senator Schimpf was disheartened by the lack of budget and is ready to return to Springfield to settle the budget impasse to achieve much-needed fiscal stability in Illinois.
After a series of May 23 votes by the Illinois Senate on a package of bills dealing with Fiscal Years 2017 and 2018 budgets, the Illinois House of Representatives failed to take any final budget action during the final week of session. “This lack of urgency on the part of House and Senate leadership is the best argument I’ve seen so far for term limits,” Schimpf stated.
The Senator and his Senate Republican colleagues had been engaged in meaningful talks on fiscal and business reforms to make Illinois more competitive, when the Senate majority broke off talks more than a week ago. In order for Illinois to once again prosper, the state needs both a balanced budget and job-creating reforms.
Senator Schimpf expressed his hope that the legislative majorities would return to the negotiating table during the upcoming "continuous" sessions that will occur throughout the summer.
Faulty School-funding Formula Passes
Senate Bill 1 passed the General Assembly late on May 31. The measure is a short-sighted attempt to fix Illinois' nearly 20-year-old school funding formula, widely considered the most inequitable in the nation. The latest attempt to fix the funding formula is nothing more than a thinly-veiled bailout for the mismanaged Chicago Public Schools.
CPS students would receive $1,333 more per student, while many school districts in Southern Illinois would receive tiny fractions of that proposed funding level. A whopping 70 percent of new education dollars would be pumped into the Chicago schools, which contain less than 20 percent of the state's students.