BudgetWatch: $3.8 billion spending bill authorized by Senate

March 18, 2016

by Ramon Gardenhire, Vice President of Policy and Advocacy

Yesterday, the Illinois Senate passed a bill designed to get billions of dollars to universities, college students and a variety of human-services programs. The Democrat-dominated Senate approved the bill SB2059 on a 39-18 vote, with Democrats in favor and Republicans opposed. Two Republicans did not vote.

The bill authorizes more than $3.8 billion in spending, including $1.8 billion for university operations and grants to needy students under the Monetary Award Program (MAP grants), and another $472 million for various human services dealing with things like HIV/AIDS, autism, sexual assault, addiction services, mental health and after-school programs.

HIV/AIDS and related critical services and programs include the following:

  • HIV Lump Sum — $23 million
  • African-American AIDS Response Act (AAARA) — $1.25 million
  • Supportive Housing — $11 million

For reference, Governor Bruce Rauner’s proposed FY17 budget allocated only $18 million for the HIV lump sum (28% cut from FY15), reduction in the AAARA by 66% to $500,000 (from FY15) and just $4 million in supportive housing funds (from $13.7 million in FY15).

The bill now moves to the Illinois House, and it is expected to pass. The House previously passed a similar measure. Unfortunately, the governor has indicated he plans to veto the bill upon its arrival on his desk.

Both the House and Senate are now off for the next two weeks for their usual Easter break. They are scheduled to return the first week of April.

As you can see, we remain in a constant state of uncertainty related to the budget. To help bring more certainty and ensure we adequately fund essential public services and programs, please join us for one of our upcoming advocacy events. Your voice is needed and impactful — more than you know!

Please register for virtual advocacy days on March 23 , the March 31 South Side Budget Town Hall (6-8 p.m.), or Advocacy Days in Springfield on April 13 or May 10.

About the blog

BudgetWatch is a weekly update from the AIDS Foundation of Chicago's on-the-ground team in Springfield about the state's longstanding budget impasse. Follow along at

Categorized under BudgetWatch.

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