Gov. JB Pritzker

Senate Democrats begin budget talks

SPRINGFIELD – Members of the Illinois Senate Democratic Caucus heard the governor’s state budget proposal Wednesday and will immediately begin bipartisan, bicameral conversations to bring forth a balanced budget that prioritizes Illinoisans in all corners of the state.

"We have labored for years to build a solid, stable fiscal foundation for the state of Illinois. Because of those responsible decisions, we find ourselves in the position to be able to invest in our future and do so in a way that can make a real difference," said Senate President Don Harmon (D-Oak Park). "I applaud the governor for starting this conversation and for setting priorities that hopefully can bring people together in bipartisan support."

A few highlights of the proposed budget include:

  • A $250 million investment toward a multi-year Early Childhood Program to increase preschool availability and promote equality in the childcare system
  • A continued commitment of a $350 million increase toward the evidence based funding model for K-12 education
  • A $350 million investment to target the prevention of homelessness and increase job opportunities for the homeless
  • An additional $200 million pension payment, on top of the $500 million added in the previous two fiscal years
  • An investment of $400 million to support job creation and business development
  • Members of the Illinois Senate Democratic Caucus will now spend the following weeks negotiating the budget.

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ILBC Budget React

Black Caucus outlines vision for upcoming session

SPRINGFIELD – History was made Wednesday, as it was the first time in Illinois history that a Black Speaker of the House and a Black female Majority Leader - Kimberly A. Lightford - presented a governor at the State of the State Address.

Following the monumental moment, members of the Illinois Legislative Black Caucus held a press conference to outline their agenda for the upcoming legislative session. They will focus on passing a balanced budget that uplifts low-income and working families and enhances classroom and early childhood education.

"The governor’s proposed budget showcases a continual dedication to fund programs that promote public safety and equity for all Illinois residents," said State Senator Robert Peters (D-Chicago). "A budget proposal that contains investments in schools, small businesses, working families and our environment reframes key investments that have traditionally left out Black and Brown communities and is a step toward progress."

After the governor outlined his legislative priorities, the Black Caucus highlighted the importance of putting the voices and needs of Illinois’ Black communities at the forefront of upcoming budget negotiations.

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ILLC Budget React

Latino Caucus reacts to governor's budget address

SPRINGFIELD – Members of the Illinois Legislative Latino Caucus expressed support for a number of proposals outlined in the governor’s budget address Wednesday.

"We need a budget that addresses the lack of immigration rights, health and education equity, economic justice for workers, and proper representation for Latino communities," said State Senator Celina Villanueva (D-Chicago). "One of our top priorities in this year’s budget is to ensure that equitable opportunities are created for Latino communities in Illinois to live a healthy and sustainable life."

In their budget response, the caucus’ leadership emphasized the need to work with the governor to address racial inequities and disparities in Latino communities. The caucus strives to set goals that combat the lack of access to quality health care, affordable housing, sustainable job opportunities, quality education resources and the lack of representation in Latino communities.

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