Illinois, fiscally speaking, resembles a gurney during the final hours of the Gettysburg carnage. Gov. Pat Quinn and long-term legislators are clueless.
Illinois leads the nation in per capita debt, has the lowest rated bonds, has the highest funded public pension debt (estimated $100 billion -- no one in government seems to know for sure). And killer taxes on all business.
Like rum-soaked sailors too long at sea, Illinois state government issues high-cost, short-term bonds to cover day-to-day bills. Then it delays paying millions of dollars owed to state vendors, medical doctors, etc. They do have enough money to pay themselves plus give occasional raises.
Governor Jim Thompson was the godfather who birthed this mess. He granted iron clad tenure to union members and almost open-ended collective bargaining rights. Union honchos collect millions of dollars in forced dues collected from union members and extorted by Illinois law from non-union members. Union bosses use that money to elect most local board members, college trustees, legislators and governors who repay them with votes and campaign workers at election time. Union elected legislators and governors vote massive state aid (tax dollars) to local school boards who usually spend it on higher salaries and benefits.
Since Big Jim Thompson, succeeding governors and legislators have been elected to office by Alinsky-inspired union robber barons, all big spenders. There will be no relief for Illinois taxpayers short of Illinois becoming a right-to-work state, breaking the costly teachers monopoly. No new taxes needed.
Loren E. Klaus