The Illinois Senate could vote today or Thursday to provide additional funding for state agencies that are limping towards the next fiscal year.
The bulk of the $50 million supplemental budget approved by the Illinois House Tuesday will be spent on setting up the state’s new concealed carry program.
But the focus wasn’t on what is in the bill, but what isn’t: paying back wages owed to state employees.
“A contract is a contract and, as the way I understand it, the interest we are paying is 7 percent,” said State Rep. Pat Verschoore (D-Milan). “Well, I think anyone knows we can borrow money cheaper than 7 percent, so I think that we should – as soon as possible – get this taken care of.”
A court says the state has to pay the back wages to 25,000 state employees, but lawmakers have to approve spending that money before the checks can be cut.