Speak Out Against Harmful Cuts
The current FY 2015 budget crisis has been resolved. Last summer the General Assembly passed a budget without any cuts – even though the temporary income tax hike expired January 1st of this calendar year – leaving a budget hole for the current fiscal year. Immediately we saw child care subsidies issued through the Illinois Department of Human Services and state prisons running out of operating funds.
Last week the Governor and legislative leaders compromised on a solution to the funding crisis. The solution relied on a 2.5 percent across-the-board spending cut for the rest of the fiscal year and a sweep of special funds equaling $1.3 billion. The most notable was a $500 million sweep of the Road Fund, which is often spared when sweeps are enacted. A few areas were spared from major cuts including:
- Services for people with developmental disabilities and mental health services (receiving a slight increase)
- Education (receiving only minor cuts)
- Hospitals and local governments
The next big challenge is to pass next year’s budget which will be the first full year that the state will have to balance the budget without proceeds from the temporary income tax hike.
Here’s how you can take action today to prevent cuts to critical programs and services that support job seekers and their families:
- JOIN fellow advocates for a Rights & Revenue rally Thursday, April 9 at 12 noon in Chicago. Click here for more information.
- MEET with your state legislators while they’re home in their districts during spring break and share with them the harm these proposed cuts will have on your community or the clients you serve. Click here to find your legislator’s contact information, here for talking points from the Responsible Budget Coalition, and here for a legislative fact sheet from Social IMPACT Research Center highlighting the community members, institutions, and programs most impacted by the state budget.
- SUBMIT a letter to the editor to your local paper on how the FY 2016 proposed budget will devastate communities and individuals across Illinois.
If you have any questions or need any assistance, please contact:
- Dan Lyonsmith, Director of Policy & Advocacy | firstname.lastname@example.org or 312.252.0461
- Andrés Moreno, Senior Communications & Outreach Associate | email@example.com or 312.252.0467
Thank you and spread the word!