THE IL CONSTITUTION REQUIRES A BALANCED BUDGET, WHY DID IT TAKE 13 MONTHS?

By Carol Ostrow

Allen Skillicorn, the candidate for state representative in House District 66, spoke out recently regarding the urgency of creating a balanced budget, citing Illinois’ own laws as the bottom line...

Citing an article published previously by Illinois Policy addressing the requirement in detail, Skillicorn underscored the non-negotiable need to balance the budget – not only to keep the economy safe, but also, he said, because it is actually mandated by the state’s constitution.

“The IL Constitution Article VIII, Section 2 requires a balanced budget,” Skillicorn posted via his Facebook page recently. “’Like’ if you agree that both Republicans and Democrats should OBEY THE LAW and pass a balanced budget now!”

His point spurred at least 43 readers to “like” the post as well as stimulating written responses from several followers.

The original article stated in part that “(the) governor is required to submit a balanced state budget to the General Assembly such that proposed expenditures do not exceed the funds estimated to be available during that fiscal year” and alluded to the “wholly inadequate” practice of borrowing and deficit spending.

Skillicorn’s main concern is that budgets over the past decade have satisfied the constitutional requirement without actually being balanced. The Illinois budget has been out of equilibrium since 2002, and unless Illinois strengthens its minimum requirements for a balanced budget, the state’s economy will increasingly rely on steeper borrowing, placing a greater burden on hard-working families.