Durkin: Gov. Restores $26 Million in Grants to Autism and other State Services

Burr Ridge, IL…House Republican Leader Jim Durkin says that a better than expected increase in new state revenues for April allowed Governor Rauner some flexibility to rescind $26 million in cuts to programs and services announced earlier in the month.  

The Governor’s office of Management and Budget this week announced that preliminary revenues were coming in $300 to $500 million higher than expected in April. 

“The spike in new revenues is good news for the FY 15 budget. Governor Rauner is a compassionate man and I am pleased he decided to use a portion of this new revenue to restore funding for programs that help with Autism, indigent burials, Epilepsy, compulsive gaming and drug addiction prevention to name a few,” said Durkin. “The remainder of the new funds will also be used to prevent further budget cuts through the end of the fiscal year. Finally, the FY15 budget is balanced.”     

According to Durkin, Governor Rauner inherited a FY 15 state budget that included a $1.6 billion shortfall when he was inaugurated on January 12, 2015. Difficult choices had to be made to fill the shortfall without raising taxes on families and employers.   

“Democrats have accused the Governor and Republicans in the General Assembly of being heartless and cruel.  Nothing could be further from the truth. What is heartless and cruel are the false promises that have been made year after year by the majority party when they passed unbalanced budgets that the state could not afford. These bad budgets put us in the position we are in today and are the reason cuts have to be made,” said Durkin. 

Durkin warned that more difficult choices lie ahead for the FY 16 budget which is currently under discussion in Springfield, and cuts will be a part of the equation.

“Many of these groups were caught by surprise by the grant suspensions because they came so late in the fiscal year. I hope that these groups take this opportunity to look at ways to reduce their own spending, because difficult decisions still lie ahead for FY 16,” Durkin concluded.