As the 2016 Fiscal Year began July 1 without a state budget, many have questions regarding what state services and programs will be impacted if the budget stalemate continues.
Schools will start on time, as Gov. Rauner did sign the education funding portion of the budget. The education appropriation was the lone piece of the Democrats’ budget proposal that he signed into law. Rauner vetoed the majority of the budget, saying it was $4 billion out of balance.
Emergency services will remain intact and function fully, such as the Illinois State Police and emergency management personnel. Prisons will remain open and prison guards will be on duty like normal. Local governments will continue to receive their normal funding transfers from state income taxes, sales taxes, and motor-fuel taxes.
Current state employees’ health, dental, or life insurance will not be affected, even if paychecks are delayed. As long as the employee continues to work, insurance premiums will be taken accordingly. An employee’s workers’ compensation will also not be affected. Also, if an employee is enrolled in the Deferred Compensation Program, as long as the employee continues to work and earn a paycheck, payroll deductions for Deferred Compensation should be taken accordingly. Employees enrolled in the Commuter Savings Program will also continue to receive the benefit under this program.
Benefits for retirees will not be impacted by the budget stalemate. All retired state employees will continue receiving their pension checks and health benefits, as these are considered continuing appropriations and do not need to be appropriated every year.