The Illinois Senate passed a $50 billion budget that includes nearly $5,000 a year in raises for lawmakers, $50 million for new offices for themselves but nothing for the low-income students depending on Illinois’ only school choice program.
PRESS RELEASE from the
ILLINOIS POLICY INSTITUTE
CONTACT: Melanie Krakauer (312) 607-4977
Budget is a travesty for working families:
Statement from the Illinois Policy institute
Springfield, Ill. (May 26, 2023) – The Illinois Senate passed a $50 billion budget that includes nearly $5,000 a year in raises for lawmakers, $50 million for new offices for themselves but nothing for the low-income students depending on Illinois’ only school choice program.
State senators approved the fiscal year 2024 budget package (Senate Bill 250 and House Bill 3817) late Thursday night, with the Illinois House of Representatives poised to approve it by early Saturday morning. It heads to Gov. J.B. Pritzker for his signature afterwards.
Among the line items leaders are set to approve is a lawmaker pay hike to $89,675 a year salary from $85,000, and $50 million toward demolition and redesign of the Stratton Office Building. Notably absent in the package is any sort of extension of the Invest in Kids Tax Credit Scholarship Act, which is set expire Dec. 31, 2023.
Matt Paprocki, president and CEO at the Illinois Policy Institute, offered the following statement:
“This budget is a travesty for thousands of working families who wanted better opportunities for their children. More than 9,000 kids rely on the Invest in Kids program to attend a school that best fits their needs and thousands more are still on a waiting list.
“With this budget, state leaders missed a huge opportunity to give relief and certainty to a vitally important, yet modest scholarship program supported by most Illinois voters.
“Harmon, Pritzker and Welch all sent their kids to private schools. But they left low-income Illinoisans on the chopping block because they care more about the political support of radical teachers union leadership than Illinois’ working families.
“We should be talking about extending this program and making it permanent in the fall.”
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