Friday, May 26, 2017

Alliance Legislative Report (100-20)

Earlier this week, the Illinois Senate Democrats passed their own spending plan for next fiscal year. The Senate Democrat spending plan would raise revenues and at the same time cut spending. A similar approach was a part of the “Grand Bargain” earlier in the session, but without support from Senate Republicans, the Senate majority took steps to pass a budget that their members would support. For more details on the spending plan passed by the Senate, click here.

The question now becomes whether or not the House of Representatives will take up the budget passed by the Senate. The House has scheduled committee hearings for those budget bills for the beginning of next week. It appears that the House is not putting forward their own spending plan, as procedurally there wouldn’t be time to have any newly adopted provisions acted on in time to meet the May 31 constitutional deadline. As always, at this time in the legislative cycle that is subject to change hour by hour. Any legislation needing an immediate effective date, as budget items would, have to pass both houses prior to midnight on May 31. If they aren’t acted upon by that time, they’d need 71 votes in the House and 36 votes in the Senate making it more difficult to get the requisite votes for passage.

Beyond a budget, there has probably been no bigger issue this session than school funding reform. The conversation on school funding reform is ongoing with the Senate version of the evidence based funding concept, Senate Bill 1, being the main vehicle. On Wednesday of this week, the House Appropriation-Elementary and Secondary Education committee passed SB 1 (Manar, D-Bunker Hill) to the House floor on a 16-3 vote.

With many complicated issues still before the legislature, be sure to keep an eye out for further Alliance legislative updates as issues of importance emerge. Your assistance contacting your lawmakers will be critical for success in last few days of legislative action.

Click here to read the complete Alliance Legislative Report (100-20), including information on bills that passed both chambers, bills passed in the House and in the Senate, committee action from the past week, and committees scheduled for next week.