Good afternoon, everyone! This week in Springfield was the last of the House’s session days before the March 15 primary and an elongated spring break. While there was some movement surrounding an appropriations bill for human services and higher education, ultimately it appears that we are no closer to a resolution to our current fiasco than at the beginning of the week.
While the air of tension and mistrust still permeated the proceedings, House Democrats were able to pass HB 2990, an appropriations bill that funds for FY 16 the human services and higher education budgets at the levels passed in the GA’s budget last May. House Republicans were vehemently opposed to the legislation, equating passage with providing only “false hope,” calling attention to the fact that the appropriations were not fully funded. In regard to line items that most affect the HIV sector, the bill includes:
The bill now moves to the Senate, who are in session the next two weeks, where it is expected to pass. The governor, however, is expected to veto the legislation. Unfortunately, this appears to bring us no closer to an end to the FY 16 budget impasse (now in its ninth month), and does not seem to bode well for the process surrounding the FY 17 budget.
Hearings on the Governor’s proposed budget have yet to be set in either house of the legislature, but we will provide that information when it becomes available. Stay tuned.
AFC is hosting Advocacy Days! We have a Virtual Advocacy Day set for March 23 and Springfield Advocacy Days on April 13 and May 10. Please click here to register and make your voice heard as we tell Governor Rauner and the General Assembly that we need to Pass a Positive Budget!
Please be sure to pass along that the Illinois Primary election is Tuesday, March 15. Click here to register to vote. Elections matter, and votes have consequences. Please be sure to register and get to the polls on Election Day.
The House is scheduled to be in session next on Tuesday, April 6. The Senate reconvenes next Tuesday, March 8.
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 aidschicago.org/budgetwatch.