State Senate Democrats Pass Own Budget Plan Over Republicans’ Objections

Illinois Senate Budget_1495582513879.png

Senate Democrats are taking matters into their own hands on the budget,  and called more bills in the ‘Grand Bargain’ Tuesday.  And again Repubilcans say it’s not good enough.

A $37 billion budget bill passed the Senate without a single Republican vote.  A bill to implement the spending, which failed last week, also passed.

The bill contains about a 5% cut to nearly all state programs and also relies on big tax increases, including permanently raising the state’s income tax from 3.75% to 4.95%.

Republicans say they were blindsided.  In a committee meeting Republicans accused Democrats of crafting a new budget plan last minute that had multiple errors in it. GOP members also argue it’s not a balanced budget, and Democrats are rushing their own plan.

Sen. Dave Syverson issued a statement saying, “It’s extremely disappointing that Democrats have decided to walk away from budget negotiations and pass a partisan budget with no reforms, along with a large tax increase that is retroactive to January 1st and includes new sales taxes. Their budget eliminates the cuts that were agreed to in bipartisan negotiations, and can only remotely be called ‘balanced’ because it completely ignores existing bills.”

Reaction from local Democrats was not immediately available, although Senators are clearly frustrated with demands from the Republican minority when it comes to worker’s comp reform and a property tax freeze.

Other tax increases include extending the state’s sale tax to some services like laundry, dry cleaning and storage units, but not other services like car maintenance, home repairs and landscaping services.

Should it pass the House, the Governor is expected to veto it, which would then both parties in a stalement since Democrats do not have the votes to override it.

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