Rep. Spain lauds bipartisan, balanced State Budget

State Representative Ryan Spain joined colleagues on both sides of the aisle, in both chambers, in voting YES on an FY 19 State Budget that is balanced and relies on “no new taxes”.

This full-year budget funds many of our priorities, like mental health and addiction treatment services, restores some funding cut previously to local governments, and offers new pension reform measures including voluntary buyouts and other measures to help local districts control costs,” said Rep. Spain.  “I am proud to support this budget, recognizing much work remains to put Illinois on a better fiscal footing and make critical reforms to control our costs long-term.”

The FY 19 State Budget fully funds the new bipartisan K-12 education funding formula to local schools, funds the MAP grant program as well as providing a four-year commitment for MAP recipients, creates a new merit-based scholarship program to keep students in Illinois, provides a 2% operations funding increase for universities and community colleges (including Illinois Central College and Illinois Valley Community College), includes funding for Medicaid Adult Dental Preventative Services and projects $445 million in budget savings through pension reform measures.

“We know this budget is not perfect but is rather the result of compromise and good-faith negotiations,” said Rep. Spain.  “However, we must focus our efforts now on serious, long-term changes to our state’s pension systems and other state funding.  We cannot continue to limp along and pretend major policy changes are not needed, but rather must put Illinois on a new path toward a better outcome.”

The State Budget and Budget Implementation Bills received strong, bipartisan rollcalls in the Illinois House and Senate and will now go to the Governor.