With the state’s budget impasse about to enter its sixth month, a budget meeting between the four legislative leaders and Gov. Bruce Rauner is set to take place Dec. 1 in Springfield.
In addition to the challenges of coming to an agreement on spending and revenue levels for Fiscal Year 2016, there is also the difficult task of getting lawmakers back to Springfield during the holiday season, as well as getting the support of individual lawmakers who are concerned about constituent backlash over tough fiscal decisions.
Waiting another month, however, would ease the pressure to forge a compromise. Illinois’ constitution states that after May 31, a three-fifths vote, not a simple majority vote, is required in both chambers to pass a bill that will take effect prior to July 1 of the next year. In January, a budget agreement would require fewer votes, a simple majority – 60 in the House and 30 in the Senate.
Senate Republican members are hoping the Democrat legislative majorities will negotiate in good faith, so Illinois can achieve progress on structural reforms needed to right the state’s fiscal ship, create jobs, boost the economy, and move Illinois forward.