SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – In response to statements that the Senate’s work was finished and they don’t need to return to the bargaining table, state Rep. Mike Halpin, D-Rock Island, released the following statement:
“We are now well over 700 days into this disastrous budget impasse, and all we keep seeing is more accusations through the media and empty rhetoric. Recently there have been public comments inferring the Senate considers their job done. That response is not productive, especially while our universities and social service providers continue to hold their breath.
“When the Senate passed their budget plan back in May, it passed with only Democratic votes. Any measure that will promote real, impactful reform needs to be a bipartisan effort. The Senate’s plan was also not a true balanced budget, relying on one-time revenue, and unjustified assumptions about cost-savings. Moreover, the Senate plan contains only a portion of the funding needed to sustain MAP grants, which help 130,000 Illinois students attend college.
“We need real reform that reaches across the aisle and does right by people in Illinois. I am urging the Senate and the governor to join us back at the negotiating table. We all need to keep working until we have a budget passed by both chambers and the governor.”