The state budget impasse has brought many people in the capitol to rally for one cause…the passing of a state budget.
“[We’re] trying to invest in kids with our after school programs,” Ford County Sheriff Mark Doran said. Sheriff Doran has sent a few young people to jail, but he’ll be the first to tell you incarceration isn’t what they need.
“Putting a child through the juvenile justice system in Illinois generally cost around $30 million,” he adds.
But the after school programs rely on state dollars.
“Not only are these programs [suffering from a] lack of funding, [they] actually need more funding,” Sheriff Doran said.
Now Governor Rauner is using the power of his pen to send a message to his colleagues. He wants to meet to get a deal done, writing an open letter to lawmakers saying he’s ready to meet and find a solution.
“We met with the Governor today and we also met with all the legislative leaders,” Grundy County District Attorney Jason Helland said. “We’re confident that a budget will be passed and passed soon.”
The governor used his letter to reach to all people across the state, and people hope his words don’t fall on deaf ears.
“They understand the significance of the budget impasse is having on counties that are unable to render adequate services,” Helland said.
“They’ve expressed that they want to do that but it’s time to quit talking about it and have some action,” Sheriff Doran added.
In that letter, Rauner touched on key areas where he wants to see legislation passed. He wants to enact procurement reform to pay for higher education and pension reform for social services. Rauner wants lawmakers to consider what he calls bipartisan proposals so that universities like Eastern Illinois don’t lay off employees.
Lawmakers canceled session for Friday, April 8th, but will return on Tuesday April 12th.