ICYMI: Schoolchildren Suffering Due to Gov. Rauner's Refusal to Compromise

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday April 27, 2017
Contact: Jake Lewis, Illinois Working Together
jake.lewis@illinoisworkingtogether.org
 

ICYMI: Schoolchildren Suffering Due to Gov. Rauner's Refusal to Compromise

School Districts Across Illinois Owed Millions by State

"Instead of finally doing his job and proposing a balanced budget, Gov. Rauner continues to play political games. School districts across Illinois are owed millions by the state, and because of Rauner's failure children, teachers, and families are suffering. Enough, governor. It's time to put people before politics. Do your job." - Illinois Working Together Campaign Director Jake Lewis

This week, school districts large and small across Illinois have highlighted the devastating impact of the Rauner budget crisis and the millions of dollars owed to them by the state. Some school districts are warning parents that they may not open in the fall without a state budget. 

Here are just a few of the stories about school districts desperate for the end of the Rauner crisis:

ELGIN

Elgin Courier NewsU46 CEO: State budget impasse could shut down school year

Without a state budget, School District U46 cannot keep classrooms running beyond Thanksgiving, CEO Tony Sanders said Monday. [...]

Currently, the state owes District U46 more than $25 million in categorical payments. [...]

"If they don't pay (before the start of the school year) and if there's still no budget, I don't see how we could open," said Sanders. "It's going to be really tough next school year."

NAPERVILLE

Naperville Sun: Naperville schools unite to push for state budget

[Indian Prairie District 204 Superintendent Karen] Sullivan said many superintendents believe students are being used as leverage.

"That is not OK. There are school districts in Illinois that won't be able to open in the fall if this cannot be resolved," she said.

District 203 and District 204 are owed more than $24 million.

AURORA

The Beacon News: Aurora-area school districts among hundreds calling for state budget

"You have to put the horse in front of the cart, and that's our state budget," said West Aurora Superintendent Jeff Craig, one of the school leaders driving the effort. "And it's coming to a point that if our state doesn't pass a state budget, we will have to make some dire decisions." [...]

District officials said in a statement the state owes the district $10 million in quarterly payments for services so far this year. Districts received one of last year's quarterly payments this school year, but have not yet received any of this year's payments.

METRO EAST

St. Louis Public Radio: More than 400 Illinois superintendents want Gov. Rauner, legislature to pass budget

Collinsville School District Superintendent Bob Green said his schools are receiving $2 million less than they should this year. And if the budget stalemate tips into a third year, he said he may have to shorten the school year to save money.
“I know not starting school until, say October or ending early in March is kind of drastic,” he said, “but we’re getting painted into a corner that there’s not going to be a lot of options.” [...]

In Granite City, Greenwald isn’t filling teacher and staff positions and is putting off building upgrades.

QUINCY

Quincy Herald-Whig: Revised projections highlight QPS financial struggles
Revised projections paint a darker financial picture for the Quincy School District. [...]

Members of the district Finance Committee were told Monday morning that the state owes the district $4.5 million in categorical payments, typically made four times a year to cover transportation, special education and other services. [...]
"Next year if the categoricals still aren't coming through, or we think the state's just way off, we're going to have to readjust and make significantly more cuts or figure out something with the revenue."

GALESBURG

The Register-Mail: Superintendents urge politicians to pass budget

The state now owes Galesburg District 205 more than $2,100,000, and has been operating without a full budget for the past 22 months. [...]
District 205 has not received any categorical payments this year with the exception of one late quarter payment from last fiscal year. The shortfall means District 205 will likely need to delay purchases of supplies, purchase services and other items to reduce expenses next school year.

EFFINGHAM

Effingham Daily News: Unit 40 superintendent joins call to pass state budget

“As of this morning, the district was still owed more than $1.3 million by the State of Illinois,” said [Unit 40 Superintendent Mark] Doan.

BEACH PARK

WBEZ: Superintendent: Illinois Schools Will ‘Struggle’ Opening In Fall Without State Budget

“Right now, Illinois owes Beach Park School District $1,432,900.39!” wrote Nancy Wagner, superintendent of Beach Park School District 3 in Lake County, on Twitter on Monday.

WARSAW

Daily Gate City: State of Illinois owes district nearly $300K

The State of Illinois owed the Warsaw School District $297,081 as of Wednesday’s regular board meeting, according to Superintendent Bob Gound.

ROMEOVILLE

Romeoville Patch: Illinois Owes Valley View $12 Million: District Calls On Officials To Pass State Budget

The state now owes VVSD [Valley View School District] $12 million and has been operating without a full budget for the past 22 months.

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