WBEZ | House Speaker Mike Madigan http://www.wbez.org/tags/house-speaker-mike-madigan Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Madigan open to state budget talks http://www.wbez.org/story/madigan-open-state-budget-talks-91860 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2011-September/2011-09-12/RS2798_AP080109029993-madigan-scr.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>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.</p><p><em>The Chicago Tribune </em><a href="http://trib.in/p22Dk0">reports</a> 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.</p><p>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.</p><p>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.</p></p> Mon, 12 Sep 2011 15:10:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/madigan-open-state-budget-talks-91860 Quinn floats idea to cut state money to local governments http://www.wbez.org/story/quinn-floats-idea-cut-state-money-local-governments-85861 <p><p>Illinois Governor Pat Quinn is floating an idea to suspend a billion dollars in state financial aid to local governments around the state.</p><p>Budget negotiations have been ongoing in Springfield. Quinn has proposed borrowing more than $4 billion to help pay the state's bills. But that plan has received the cold shoulder from a lot of legislators, since it's coming on the heels of increases to personal and corporate taxes.</p><p>So to drum up support for the borrowing plan, Quinn is banking on local government leaders to oppose his call to suspend state aid to municipalities. In turn, that would push City Halls around the state to lobby their local state legislators to approve the borrowing plan.</p><p>A spokesman for House Speaker Michael Madigan says he wouldn't call the idea holding legislators hostage, but more of a way for Quinn to gain leverage.</p><p>Roger Huebner, the deputy executive director of the Illinois Municipal League, said the state can't fix its deficit by creating a "financial crisis" in 1,300 cities across the state. City of Springfield spokesman Ernie Slottag said the city gets $2.7 million a year and losing it could mean 35 layoffs in the police, fire and public works departments.</p><p>Earlier this week, Illinois' comptroller said the state still faces an $8 billion budget hole despite the tax increases.</p></p> Fri, 29 Apr 2011 18:08:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/quinn-floats-idea-cut-state-money-local-governments-85861 Illinois pols weigh in on state budget address http://www.wbez.org/story/budget-address/illinois-pols-weigh-state-budget-address <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/IMG_7188_0.JPG" alt="" /><p><p>Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn did not bring up changing state employee benefits in his budget address, but that doesn't mean the idea is dead.</p><p>Even if Quinn wants to spare current and retiree benefits, he stayed away from the issue entirely during his speech Wednesday, but Democratic House Speaker Mike Madigan said a change is necessary based on the state's financial condition.</p><p>&quot;I'm not saying we're going to go back to the public employee and say OK there was a promise and we're going to take that away from you,&quot;&nbsp;Madigan said. &quot;What I am saying is there is a benefit plan in place until today. Starting tomorrow there's going to be a new benefit plan that's not going to be as rich as the old.&quot;</p><p>Madigan said along with those who work for the state, public school teachers and those in higher education could be affected. But there is still plenty of disagreement in the legislature over changing benefits.</p><p>Madigan, speaking on the public TV program <em>Illinois Lawmakers</em>, again made a call for changes in education. Ideas under discussion include basing a teacher's pay on performance, restricting teacher tenure and changing the collective bargaining process.</p><p>Quinn said Wednesday he wants to borrow almost $9 billion and increase spending by $2 billion.</p><p>Some Republican legislators have said they would not support more borrowing.</p><p>But Republican Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford said he's not opposed to borrowing billions of dollars to help the state pay its bills.</p><p>Treasurer Rutherford said without the borrowing plan, the state wouldn't have money to pay its vendors.</p><p>&quot;Yes, there is increased spending here. Some of it - there is reasons to it,&quot;&nbsp;Rutherford said. &quot;Yes, there is further borrowing that the governor's called to, but, under the right configuration, it may be somewhat appropriate or configured to be appropriate.&quot;</p><p>Legislators recently approved some tax increases. Rutherford says that new money hasn't come in yet, so a borrowing plan would allow the state to pay its bills now and not put them off.</p></p> Thu, 17 Feb 2011 13:42:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/story/budget-address/illinois-pols-weigh-state-budget-address