Madigan open to state budget talks

September 12, 2011

The Associated Press

(AP/file)

Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan said he has told the governor he is open to discussing shifting state budget money to avoid numerous layoffs and closing state facilities.

The Chicago Tribune reports that Madigan said the House intends to keep the spending limits it adopted for the budget and any changes won't result in an overall spending increase.

Gov. Pat Quinn has proposed more than 1,900 layoffs and the closure of seven state facilities. The Democrat said both moves are necessary to live within the reduced budget passed by lawmakers unless they reallocate money.

The cuts are estimated to save $54.8 million, still leaving a gap of nearly $183 million between the spending lawmakers authorized and what Quinn said is the minimum needed to operate Illinois government for a year.