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Chicago, IL (June 4, 2013) - The Center for Tax and Budget Accountability (CTBA) released a detailed analysis of the state's recently enacted FY2014 General Fund budget. The report places the FY2014 budget in context of the state's long-term spending patterns, budget problems and tax policy.
Many of the fiscal problems that have plagued Illinois over the last decade remain apparent in the FY2014 General Fund budget the Illinois General Assembly passed. These problems include an accumulated deficit ranging from $8.4 - $8.9 billion, a failure to invest adequately in basic core services like educating our children or caring for vulnerable members of society, and an ongoing structural imbalance between General Fund revenue growth on the one hand and service cost growth on the other, that will only get worse when the temporary tax increases passed in 2011 begin to phase out in FY2015.
According to CTBA Executive Director Ralph Martire, "Illinois' fiscal woes were not caused by either the Great Recession or spending on services, which after accounting for inflation will be 28% less in FY2014 than in FY2000. They are primarily the result of long-term, structural flaws in the state's tax system. So, while the temporary tax increases passed in 2011 helped mitigate Illinois' fiscal woes, the state's structural fiscal problems remain unresolved."
The report demonstrates how those temporary tax increases of 2011 helped stabilize the state's fiscal condition, averting billions of dollars in service cuts. According to the report, the General Assembly authorized $24.5 billion in spending on services for FY2014, with somewhere between $8.4 and $8.9 billion of that being deficit spending. Without the revenue from the temporary tax increases, however, the state's accumulated deficit would be around $34 billion, or over $10 billion more than all General Fund services scheduled for the year.
Since $9 out of $10 dollars of General Fund spending goes to the four, core services of education, healthcare, human services and public safety, allowing the temporary tax increases to phase out as scheduled will in turn force devastating cuts to the most basic public services the state provides.
The report will be distributed to the public at 2:00 p.m., June 4, at CTBA's 12th annual Fiscal Symposium, with Senate President John Cullerton and Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka as keynote speakers. The event, to be held at the Standard Club in Chicago, will also have the following panelists addressing major issues confronting Illinois:
- Senator Pamela Althoff (R-32), Chair, Illinois Senate Republican Caucus
- Brian A. Hamer, Director, Illinois Department of Revenue
- Senator Toi Hutchinson (D-40), Chair, Senate Revenue Committee
- Ralph Martire, Executive Director, Center for Tax and Budget Accountability
- Philip Nelson, President, Illinois Farm Bureau
The Center for Tax and Budget Accountability, established in 2000, is a bi-partisan 501(c)(3) research and advocacy think tank that promotes fair, efficient and progressive tax, spending and economic policies. For more information on CTBA, visit www.ctbaonline.org or contact Kathy Miller, CTBA Director of Communications and Development, at 312.332.1481 or firstname.lastname@example.org.