Illinois’ Financial House
Illinois Comptroller Leslie Munger recently testified that in the absence of a budget, the Comptroller is paying bills under more than a dozen court orders, consent decrees and continuing appropriations. This is resulting in additional debt being incurred by the state.
According to Munger, the state holds more than $7 billion in overdue bills. This is in addition to the current $6 billion budget hole. She said the lack of a FY2016 budget means state government continues to dig a deeper financial hole. Illinois has about $100 million in its account to meet its obligations, which Munger likened to a family having only $100 in the bank to pay bills of $7,000.
The financial disaster of today took years to manifest, but it worsened under former Governors Rod Blagojevich and Pat Quinn. Meanwhile, legislative hearings are underway on a state budget for Fiscal Year 2017, which begins July 1, 2016.