SPRINGFIELD -- An already long wait for money they are owed could stretch even longer for Illinois State Police troopers.

Among the myriad funding woes facing state government is a lack of cash for state troopers, sergeants and investigators, who won salary increases through arbitration last year.

But, parts of those raises remain unpaid.

Steve Clemente, president of Troopers Lodge 41, which represents 1,434 Illinois State Police employees, said some troopers are owed as much as $10,000 each for back pay, unpaid step raises and unpaid uniform allowances.

"We're hoping it comes through," Clemente said.

Clemente was in the Capitol earlier this month lobbying lawmakers to get the money included in the latest round of budget negotiations.

But, he's not the only one standing in line.

The agency is among dozens in the state facing the possibility of running short of the cash needed to operate because of the expiration of the state's temporary income tax increase on Jan. 1.

Lawmakers built a budget plan last May based on the tax being extended. Without the added revenue, state programs face a combined shortfall of about $1.5 billion this fiscal year. Childcare programs, prison payrolls and court reporters are among those affected.

The gap grows even wider in the next fiscal year. After July 1, the shortfall could total more than $5.7 billion.

Negotiations between lawmakers and the governor's budget office to deal with the childcare funding issue and other budget problems are under way. At issue for legislative leaders is how much flexibility they should give the rookie governor to juggle existing dollars in this year's budget.

A Rauner spokesman had no comment on the state police issue, saying the new governor will offer up more specifics when he delivers his first budget speech next week.

kurt.erickson@lee.net

217-782-4043

On Twitter: @Illinois_Stage

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