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Monday, October 26, 2015

Ind. Gov't. - "Can a Venture Capitalist Jumpstart Illinois?"

Illinois is not paying its lottery winners anymore, but that is just the tip of the iceberg, according to this revealing Politico story Oct. 22, reported by Carol Felsenthal. A few quotes from the lengthy story:

[Illinois Governor Bruce] Rauner made no secret of his business-minded impulses on the campaign trail: Last year, he told me that Republican governors Mitch Daniels, Rick Scott, Jeb Bush, Scott Walker, and Michigan’s Rick Snyder, “a venture capitalist just like I’ve been,” would all serve as role models for him. * * *

Late last week, Jim Edgar, a two-term republican governor in the 1990s—respected for his moderation and, this being Illinois, for the fact that he has never been indicted and imprisoned—warned Rauner, for whom he campaigned, that he should make a deal with the Democrats and drop his insistence on reforms first. Edgar told Bernard Schoenburg, the State Journal-Register’s political writer, “State government’s probably in the worst state it’s been in the 47 years that I’ve been around.”

Indeed, the headlines about the budget crisis are getting increasingly rough politically for everyone involved. The latest set of news even went international: Illinois lottery winners would be getting IOUs in place of cash for winnings of more than $600 because Illinois has no budget and so no appropriation to pay winners.Because of various court orders, existing laws, temporary restraining orders and consent decrees, roughly 90 percent of spending continues at last fiscal year’s levels. State employees are being paid; DMVs are open, although the Secretary of State has announced that he’ll no longer be sending out vehicle registration renewal reminders.

As state government lurches along, leaving unpaid bills, the fiscal crisis is hitting hard on social services to the most vulnerable—the young, the old, the poor. Domestic abuse shelters, rape crisis centers, homeless shelters, state day care centers that allow low-income parents to work are cutting back or even shutting their doors.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on October 26, 2015 11:46 AM
Posted to Indiana Government