(SPRINGFIELD) Governor Bruce Rauner is preparing to ask lawmakers for a $1.1 billion supplemental allocation to address unappropriated spending from fiscal 2017. This could be a big part of the Governor’s Budget Address to be given to lawmakers this Wednesday in Springfield. While Democrats put the blame of the current unbalanced budget on the Governor, Republicans say the other side knew the budget they passed over his veto last year was unbalanced, despite a $5 billion tax increase that was also approved over the Governor’s veto. The bulk of the passed-along deficit from last year, 85%, is for overspending from the Department of Corrections and Medicaid. The issue will be up for debate over the next several weeks.
(SPRINGFIELD) Some Illinois lawmakers are looking to find solutions for higher education, declining enrollment, and financial concerns as more graduating high school students are enrolling in out of state colleges and universities. Figures from the Illinois State Board of Education show 46% of 2016 Illinois high school graduates who enrolled in a four-year university went out of state. That’s compared to 2012, when 29% enrolled in another state. State Board of Education officials indicate that Illinois has had a history of out-of-state-migration for many, many years. Many lawmakers are looking for some answers.
(CHICAGO) The Illinois Department of Public Health has appealed a decision of adding “severe pain” as a qualifying condition for medical marijuana use. Filed last week in Cook County, the paperwork comes a few weeks after a judge ordered “intractable pain,” or “severe & constant pain with no cure” be added to over 40 qualifying medical conditions. State officials have argued there is not enough evidence to add pain to the list. Such a ruling in favor could greatly expand access to medical marijuana throughout Illinois.