As I forecasted in my May President’s Message, both chambers of the Illinois General Assembly and first-term Republican Governor Bruce Rauner failed to reach a “Grand Bargain” on a state budget plan by the 100th Spring Session’s May 31 conclusion, so now it will require a three-fifths majority to pass bills for an extended session this summer.
Instead of a simple majority, a budget plan will now require Republican support to reach the 71 votes needed to pass out of the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives, which adopted a resolution to remain in “continuous session” to work on a budget deal.
Stop-gap funding for social service agencies and state universities ran out January 1 and the state’s backlog of unpaid bills has grown to $14.5 billion.
Last week, the Democratic-controlled Senate passed three budget-related bills negotiated with their Republicans counterparts that stalled in the House, although a revenue bill featuring an income tax hike and a new sale tax on business services meant to generate $5 billion in additional income cleared a House Committee earlier this week.
Without any tax increases, state revenues projected at $31.5 billion versus the $37 billion spending proposal passed by the Senate.
Illinois has now “operated” without a budget in place for more than 700 days.
Six members are celebrating Chamber anniversaries in June, as follows: 40 years—Tree Towns Reprographics, Inc., and Verlare Cleaners of Elmhurst; 20 years—The David Agency Insurance, Inc.; 15 years—Lexington Health Care & Rehabilitation Center Elmhurst and People for Elmhurst Parks Foundation; and 5 years—Pinstripes.
The Chamber welcomed six new members in May, as follows: ACCU-TAX and Accounting CO., Bema, Incorporated, Berkshire Hathaway Starck Real Estates (Gil Edgerton), Fresh Pals Pet Spa, Morgan Stanley (Taso and Gus) and VNA Health Care.
Barnhart Investment Advisory, SPECIAL T UNLIMITED and Val-Matic Valve and Manufacturing Corp. reactivated their Chamber memberships in May.
No Longer Members
The Chamber said goodbye to the following five members in May: Glenbard Uniform, Natural Awakenings Magazine, Railings and Things, Top Dog Retreat and Venuz Med Spa.
John Quigley is president and CEO of the Elmhurst Chamber of Commerce and Industry