From the campaign to re-elect State Rep Kent Gaffney (52nd District)…
Springfield, IL… Following Governor Pat Quinn’s annual budget address to the Illinois General Assembly, State Representative Kent Gaffney (R-Lake Barrington) claims the Governor’s budget spends $550 million more than the previous fiscal year while offering outlandish ideas for cuts in state spending.
“We have heard for days that the Governor will roll back spending to FY08 levels, but this budget spends $3.5 billion more than in FY08,” stated Gaffney.
The Governor is proposing to shift pension costs on the local school districts. “This plan does nothing to reduce the $83 billion in unfunded pension liability and shifts that State’s burden onto local schools. This plan would ensure layoffs and property tax increases. This proposal is unacceptable.” Gaffney says we need substantial pension reform and the Governor needs to implement the Medicaid reforms already passed.
“Last General Assembly we passed a series of Medicaid reforms that would save the State hundreds of millions of dollars each year,” said Gaffney. “All I am asking is that the Governor implements the reforms we have already passed, such as requiring individuals to prove Illinois residency and income eligibility. That’s common sense, it’s the law, but it’s not being done.”
In addition, the Governor did not mention the historic tax increase and its destructive effects. “Last January, the largest tax increase in Illinois history was passed. Since that tax increase, businesses and individuals have been fleeing the State,” says Gaffney. “According to the Commission on Government Forecasting & Accountability, the national unemployment average will be 7.9% in FY14 while Illinois’ will be fortunate to be down to 9.2%. Employers will continue to leave this State, unemployment will remain high, and the economic recovery in Illinois will continue to struggle. We need to spend less and reduce taxes. It’s that simple. And the Governor’s budget proposal does not guide us in that direction.”
Gaffney says he looks forward to tackling the budget problems, and will work with the Governor and other legislators to move Illinois in the right direction.
For more information, see: http://www.kentgaffney.com/