Illinois spending

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A second major credit rating agency has downgraded Illinois' rating, citing financial "mismanagement" by state leaders amid a yearlong budget impasse.  S&P Global Ratings lowered the rating from BBB+ to BBB. The agency says the lack of a budget for the current fiscal year has "left Illinois with unmanaged spending" that could go on for another year.

On Wednesday, tempers at the capitol flared; but Thursday the legislature's top Republicans shifted toward an optimistic stance on the budget situation.

  A potential new state budget barely passed the Illinois House last night,  but Gov. Bruce Rauner is already signaling a veto.

The Republican says the budget spends $7 billion more than the state takes in.

Robert S. Donovan / Flickr/Creative Commons

CHICAGO (AP) - A newspaper analysis has found Illinois' 20 members of Congress have gone on 70 foreign trips to 44 countries in the past two years, costing more than $518,000. Trips can be paid for by a number of entities under congressional rules, including taxpayers, foreign governments and private groups. 

The Chicago Tribune says the actual cost of the travel is hard to pinpoint, with the cost of oft-used military aircraft not listed for taxpayer-funded trips. Costs aren't made public when foreign governments pick up the tab.

Governor Bruce Rauner is continuing his public campaign for pro-business, union-weakening measures before compromising on a state budget.  Illinois has gone four-and-a-half months operating without a budget, but still spending at 90% of last year's levels, despite a steep drop-off in revenues. 

State's year end bills mount

Jul 1, 2013

Illinois is ringing in the fiscal new year with 6-point-1 billion dollars in unpaid bills. As IPR'S Brian Mackey reports, it's only expected to get worse.

Illinois' budget year ended Sunday, but Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka says she still has thousands of bills to pay, in fact, 73,184 bills to pay, and that doesn't even include figures from other state agencies.