SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – In response to reports that Gov. Bruce Rauner’s state agencies are waiting months to report debt obligations to the Illinois Comptroller’s office, state Reps. Stephanie Kifowit, D-Oswego, and Linda Chapa LaVia, D-Aurora, voted on Wednesday to override the governor’s veto of legislation designed to increase transparency and ensure that bills are paid on time.

“As a Chief Co-sponsor of the Debt Transparency Act, I know it will help us shine a light on our state’s outstanding debt and prevent government bureaucrats from hiding bills for months,” said Kifowit, Vice Chairperson of a key budget committee. “Gov. Rauner vetoed this measure because he’s misleading the public about the damage his budget crisis has done to our state. Sound financial policy like this, which received overwhelming bi-partisan and public support, is how the State of Illinois should work.”

Kifowit was a Chief Co-sponsor and Chapa LaVia co-sponsored House Bill 3649 and supported its initial passage out of the House, which requires state agencies to report monthly to the comptroller the liabilities they are holding, plus an estimate of the amount of late interest penalties that will be paid on those bills. According to the comptroller’s office, liabilities are not being reported quickly enough, and as a result, millions of dollars in penalty fees are accruing on the state’s overdue bills. By reforming how state agencies report their liabilities, this legislation would ensure that taxpayers do not end up paying more than they already have because of financial mismanagement.

“With this law in place, the governor and his allies will no longer be able to withhold important state financial information, relying on outdated annual reporting data,” Chapa LaVia said. “He should have signed this into law to begin with for the sake of honesty and accountability to taxpayers.”

Rep Stephanie KifowitRep Stephanie Kifowit

84th District

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