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With no new taxes, Gov. signs FY19 budget into law

6/4/2018, 7:13 p.m.
Gov. Bruce Rauner signed into law a $38.5 billion bipartisan budget that holds the line on taxes, increases funding for ...

Gov. Bruce Rauner signed into law a $38.5 billion bipartisan budget that holds the line on taxes, increases funding for education, curbs spending, and creates a new adoption tax credit that will make it less costly for Illinois parents to adopt children.

"For the first time in years, we have an opportunity to manage our way into balance, and we don't have to dip into the pockets of overtaxed Illinoisans to do it," Rauner

said. "Balance is in reach because we were able to accomplish $445 million of

pension reform and the economy is stronger thanks to federal tax reform, and we are benefiting from an unexpected boost in tax receipts."

"I'm signing this legislation because it is a step in the right direction, but it is not perfect," he said. "We have a lot of work to do before we fully restore the state's fiscal integrity. We still need to enact reforms that bring down the cost of government, make the state friendlier to job creators, and ignite our state economy so it grows faster than government spending."

"This balanced budget was a bipartisan compromise that contains no new taxes and includes full year funding with appropriations for those who rely upon us - schools,

universities, corrections, seniors, families, children and the underprivileged," House Republican Leader Jim Durkin said. "I have always said we can achieve great

things when we respect the priorities and principles of our counterparts, and with this new framework I look forward to accomplishing more reforms for the state of

Illinois."

"While not a perfect budget, the bipartisan, bicameral process led to a truly balanced budget that can help restore confidence and a foundation for greater fiscal

stability," said Sen. Heather Steans (D-Chicago).

The General Assembly adopted many of the Governor's key agenda items. He listed some of them during a press conference attended by legislative leaders, sponsors and budget negotiators.

  • Blocked New Spending. Rauner and the Republican leaders staved off $1 billion in spending increases by managing agency budgets and tabling

$500 million in spending increase proposals.

  • Education Funding. The budget fully funds the new evidence-based formula the administration introduced in 2015 and signed into law last summer. There's $350

million in new K-12 dollars, which is up $1.4 billion since 2015, and $50 million for Early Childhood Education, which is up $200 million since 2015. AIM HIGH scholarships get $50 million to encourage Illinois high grads to attend Illinois universities. The MAP grant program is funded for four years. Colleges get $25

million of new money and the tuition tax credit program stays intact.

  • Pension Reform. The legislature addressed pension costs by making some modest reforms that will reduce long-term liabilities and save $445 million this year.

  • Adoption Tax Credit. Rauner said he was "particularly proud" of the work on his measure to create tax credits to encourage more adoptions by Illinois

parents. Parents who can provide stable, loving homes for needy children can qualify for tax credits up to $5000 per child.