SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – After 700 days without a full state budget under Gov. Bruce Rauner, state Rep. Larry Walsh, D-Joliet, issued the following statement Wednesday:
“Governor Rauner’s two-year budget crisis has proved devastating for residents all across the state. Social service agencies and higher education institutions have been decimated and our schools are running the risk of being unable to open during the fall. This is unacceptable.
“Clearly, there remains a lot of work for Governor Rauner and the Legislature to do. Over the course of the summer, we will continue our work to close the Rauner budget deficit, while making sure that middle-class taxpayers are getting a fair deal.
“We also cannot stand by as our state’s most vulnerable residents—who have been hit hardest—suffer due to the impasse. That is why, as we continue to urge the governor to come back to the table, House Democrats passed a lifeline budget using funds that are sitting unused for essential services like meals on wheels, services for domestic abuse victims, breast cancer screenings and funding for state colleges and universities. While this lifeline budget would provide serious relief to critical services, it is not a substitute for the full budget our state needs.
“Our ultimate goal is to pass a full, balanced budget. The only way we can do this is through compromise and good-faith negotiations. That’s why I, along with every other House Democrat, signed a letter asking the governor to return to the table so we can find common ground.
“To this date, the governor has refused to take us up on our offer and has refused to meet with House negotiators. It’s time for us to come together and pass a full, balanced budget that will bring this painful impasse to an end.”