SPRINGFIELD, Ill.  – State Rep. Emanuel “Chris” Welch, D-Hillside, is calling on his colleagues in the General Assembly to override Gov. Rauner’s veto of legislation that would provide taxpayers with greater insight into Illinois’ unpaid bills and state debt.

“When Bruce Rauner became governor, Illinois was on a path to paying off its massive backlog of outstanding bills,” said Welch. “As a result of Rauner’s three-year budget crisis, unpaid bills have more than tripled, and some are still sitting in state agencies unaccounted for. Taxpayers will now have a better understanding of Illinois’ outstanding debt obligations.”

A recent report by the Associated Press found that state agencies failed to submit $7.5 billion in bills for payment, incurring additional late-payment penalties. This is half of the over $15 billion in unpaid bills the comptroller is trying to pay.

Welch is a sponsor House Bill 3649, and worked with Democratic and Republican colleagues to unanimously override Rauner’s veto. State agencies are now required to report to the Illinois comptroller’s office on their monthly unpaid bill amount, along with additional interest that would be owed on those bills. Welch’s legislation is designed to provide a more accurate account of Illinois’ finances and begin to reign in the costs of state government and provide accountability to taxpayers.

“This will make Illinois government more accountable to its taxpayers, and it is my hope the Senate quickly votes on this to become law,” said Welch. “This is common-sense, bipartisan measure and I applaud members on both sides of the aisle for transcending partisan divides to pass this bill.”

Rep Emanuel Chris WelchRep Emanuel Chris Welch

7th District

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