$26 million in State Grants Restored

The State of Illinois has faced continuous challenges in “keeping the lights on” during the final months of FY15. When the Governor’s office changed hands in January, Governor Bruce Rauner found that the FY15 budget passed by Democrat majorities and signed by former Governor Pat Quinn was drastically unbalanced. The General Assembly and the Rauner administration have worked together since that time to shift funds around to cover shortfalls. In some cases, additional cuts were imposed on some agencies and their spending programs.

Citing an improving economy, Governor Rauner announced Thursday that he would restore $26 million to social service and public health grants that were frozen earlier this year because of budget constraints. Grants for autism, addiction prevention, assistance for homeless, teen REACH and other programs were impacted by the freeze. The Governor was able to restore funding to these programs because of better than expected revenues projections. The bipartisan Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability expects an additional $300 million to $500 million in tax revenue because of an improving economy in Illinois.

It must be noted that this restoration is only for the current fiscal year that ends June 30, 2015. Appropriation hearings have just begun for fiscal year 2016.

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