State agencies hurt by budget gridlock

Aug 10, 2015

The state's budget gridlock continues to present a problem for agencies that depend on government funding.

Jim Page is director of the Illinois Law Enforcement Alarm System. The organization is comprised of all police and sheriff's departments in Illinois. 

Page says the group helps respond to floods, tornadoes and other events that could overwhelm a single department. It depends on federal funding, passed through Illinois government. But because there's no budget, Page says his group has received no money since the start of July.

"We have relatively few funds available to continue our operation. In fact, without immediate relief, ILEAS will run out of funds by mid-October," Page said. "Given that it takes four to eight weeks to get reimbursement funds processed, we'll have to consider furloughs and layoffs starting in mid-September. We're already canceling exercises and training, we're now $70,000 in arrears in our leases."

Lawmakers are considering a plan that would authorize spending five billion dollars of federal funds, money that would help keep the Law Enforcement Alarm System up and running.

But even if that passes, other agencies, state universities and social service programs are still waiting on a state budget.