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Tom Cullerton leads compromise to get local taxpayers’ money

Published: Monday, December 07, 2015 02:18 PM


SPRINGFIELD- DuPage County residents may soon have millions of dollars going back in their communities to keep their roads safe, local health departments operating and provide energy assistance to seniors.

State Senator Tom Cullerton (D-Villa Park), sponsor of Senate Bill 2039, led efforts to get local money back to the people of Illinois.

“The key point is that this gets local money back in local hands where it can do some good,” said Cullerton.

The Senate concurred on SB 2039, a bipartisan compromise that, among other things, gets millions in gas tax money back in local communities. That money had been stalled in Springfield since July 1 because of the budget stalemate with the governor.

That gas tax money totals millions of dollars for area communities. For instance, last year, Villa Park received $542,276 and local governments across all of DuPage County received more than $33.5 million last year.

“My interest as a former mayor is to make sure our local governments have what they need to keep our communities safe and services running,” said Cullerton. “This is a step in the right direction. I’ll continue to work with the General Assembly and governor to reach a compromise and put a responsible budget in place.”

SB 2039 passed the Senate and House with bipartisan support and now moves to the governor for approval.  

Trotter votes for Will, Cook County funding

Published: Monday, December 07, 2015 02:15 PM

trotter 120715SPRINGFIELD – Cook and Will County residents will soon receive $102 million in critical funding for winter road maintenance, domestic shelter programs and local shares of video gaming and motor fuel tax revenue.

“Local communities have waited long enough. Freeing up critical dollars will keep the doors to domestic shelters open and keep salt on dangerous, icy roads,” said State Senator Donne Trotter (D-Chicago, 17).

The Senate approved legislation, Senate Bill 2039, today to free up gas tax money for Cook and Will County communities. Last year Cook County received $93.94 million in gas tax money, while Will County received $8.01 million.

The bill also includes funding for the following:

•    $1 billion to the Lottery for prizes
•    $165 million for home heating bill assistance
•    $77 million for 911-related costs
•    $45 million to the Dept. of Revenue so local governments can receive their share of video gaming proceeds
•    $43 million to the Community College Board for career and technical education activities
•    $31 million to IDOT to purchase road salt
•    $28 million for nursing home licensing and inspections
•    $3.1 million to the Illinois Department of Public Health for the Tobacco Quitline
•    $2.5 million for breast cancer services and research

The bill now goes to the governor’s desk to be signed into law. While Gov. Bruce Rauner stated he supports this plan, he vetoed similar measures in June when the budget impasse began.

Murphy votes to bring local dollars home

Published: Monday, December 07, 2015 02:12 PM

murphy 120715Springfield – State Senator Laura Murphy (D-Des Plaines) co-sponsored legislation today to bring taxpayer money, withheld due to the state budget impasse, back to local communities.

“As a former city official, I know firsthand the difficult decisions many of these municipalities were forced to make due to the lack of leadership in Springfield. It is past time that these tax dollars were sent back to the local communities they came from, to help avoid layoffs and property tax hikes,” said Murphy.

While state officials have not provided exact totals on the amount communities are owed, in 2014, Des Plaines, for example, received more than $1.4 million. Last year’s totals for other communities in the area included:

•    Schaumburg $1.8 million
•    Hoffman Estates: $1.2 million
•    Hanover Park: more than $940,000
•    Park Ridge: more than $920,000
•    Elk Grove Village: more than $820,000

The proposal also included funding to pay lottery winners, fund breast cancer research and road salt for state highways.

“This is a significant first step but it is only that – a first step. While I am encouraged that we were able to come together in a bipartisan fashion for these essential services, there is still work to be done to ensure that working and middle-class families in Illinois are not getting squeezed and that services are funded for the vulnerable members of our state, such as individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities, rape victims and college students in need of MAP grants,” Murphy said.

Senate Bill 2039 will now head to the governor’s desk.

Bennett passes compromise to give locals' money back to the locals

Published: Monday, December 07, 2015 02:04 PM

bennett careertechSoon local municipalities across Vermilion and Champaign counties will receive their overdue gas tax money to help prepare for winter storms and patch pot holes.

State Senator Scott Bennett (Champaign) passed Senate Bill 2039, which would free up gas money for local municipalities. State transportation officials haven’t provided exact numbers on how much these communities are owed, but last year, Champaign, for example, received more than $2 million in gas tax money.

“This is local money that needs to be in the hands of local people,” said Bennett. “This compromise is an important step in bridging our current budget stalemate. We need to continue to work together to pass a responsible budget that fulfills our responsibility to the people of Illinois.”

Other Champaign and Vermilion County communities received the following amounts in 2014: Urbana, more than $1 million in funds; and Danville, $817,647.

Additional information about how much local communities are owed in gas tax money is available at www.IllinoisSenateDemocrats.com.

Bennett says while Governor Rauner has said he supports this compromise, the budget impasse began when he vetoed similar proposals back in June.

SB 2039 passed the Senate and House with bipartisan support and now moves on to the governor’s desk.

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