Righter: Budget lives within its means, includes no tax increase
State Sen. Dale Righter (R-Mattoon) issued the following statement after the Senate passed a state budget May 30. Righter voted in favor of the budget bills.
“When we began this year’s budget negotiations, my Republican colleagues and I made it clear to the Democratic majority that there would be no tax increase, and it must be a workable, balanced budget. This budget agreement meets those criteria.”
Righter served as a budget negotiator for the Senate Republican caucus. Fiscal Year 2019 begins July 1.
The budget passed by the Senate cuts more than $1 billion in spending; delivers $350 million more in K-12 school funding through the evidence-based model; boosts early childhood education by $50 million; cuts $445 million in pension liability through a voluntary pension buy out and capping end-of-career salary increases that cause pension spiking; and rejects a proposed pay increase for lawmakers.
This budget also includes needed capital:
- Fully-funds the Governor’s Fiscal Year 2019 capital program.
- Includes $2.5 billion for IDOT’s road program, which will create jobs and improve roads.
- Provides $500 million for the University of Illinois Discovery Partners’ Institute (DPI).
- Includes $53 million for first-year costs to construct a new Quincy Veterans Home.
- Allocates $600 million for statewide deferred maintenance, with $100 million of this amount going toward needs at institutions of Higher Education.
- Provides $1 million to start a port redevelopment effort in Cairo.
A supplemental spending bill for Fiscal Year 2018 will also fund agency operations, including $405 million for the Department of Corrections. It also includes $63 million for AFSCME back pay.