Bob Daiber, Madison County regional superintendent of schools and a Democratic candidate for governor, criticized Gov. Bruce Rauner's budget address Wednesday.
"Bruce Rauner today proposed a huge property tax increase, and I oppose that," Daiber said. "He imagines $700 million in savings by shifting the cost of teacher pensions from the state to local school districts.
"That $700 million obligation doesn’t miraculously disappear. It is simply shifted to local property tax, which is an even more regressive tax than income tax. This is not a solution, it’s an abdication of responsibility.
"When Rauner took office in 2015, he said balancing a budget is easy — yet in four tries, he hasn’t done it. I will not lie to the General Assembly or to the public: Balancing a budget is hard."
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Daiber said the top priority for his administration would be to pay the state’s bills.
"We can’t be No. 1 in anything until we get the bills paid," he said. "But we can’t cut our way to prosperity. Starving our schools will not give us a boomin’ economy. We have to invest in our state if we want the economy to grow."