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Illinois Budget

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For those downstate Illinois residents who want to breakaway from Chicagoland and form their own state, two Southern Illinois University Carbondale researchers have an emphatic caution: do not do it.

In a whitepaper released earlier this year by the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute, a think tank at the university, political scientists John Foster and John Jackson said analysis of Illinois state revenue and budgeting over recent years shows downstate Illinoisans would be worse off without Chicago than they are with their northeastern neighbors.

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Illinois budget officials said Thursday that revenues are flowing into state coffers at a faster pace than previously estimated, meaning lawmakers will have more money to work with as they try to finalize a new budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1

Illinois lawmakers are in the final weeks of their spring session, when they slice the fiscal pie amid a cacophony of cries from state-funded service providers. Few can lean on the kind of spending-boost argument that this year, advocates of the intellectually and developmentally disabled have: A federal judge said so.

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The spending plan Pritzker presented last month eats up a projected $2.6 billion deficit in part by curtailing spending by $400 million and raising $1 billion in taxes through eliminating what he calls "unaffordable" corporate loopholes — several of which weren't loopholes two years ago when he signed them into law.

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General Assembly Democrats expressed their support for Pritzker's proposal even while hoping for increases to fund state programs. Across the aisle, Republicans said the governor's budget takes Illinois in the wrong direction as lawmakers work to rebuild the economy this spring.

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Gov. J.B. Pritzker outlined a $41.6 billion budget proposal Wednesday that would hold most state agencies at flat funding levels but which relies heavily on increased federal funds as well as changes to the state’s corporate tax structure that lawmakers have not yet approved.

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CARBONDALE — Short-term federal funds will allow Southern Illinois University’s Small Business Development Center to stay open longer than ant…

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CARBONDALE — In an effort to lobby lawmakers to end budget stalemate in Springfield, Southern Illinois University President Randy Dunn is turn…

SPRINGFIELD — Illinois lawmakers return to the Capitol on Tuesday hoping to achieve what they failed to get done the last time they were in town.

SPRINGFIELD — State and national labor unions are cranking up the fundraising in an attempt to kill a proposed change to the Illinois Constitution.

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