State Representative Steve Reick (R-Woodstock) is serving as a Chief Co-Sponsor of legislation that would significantly reform Illinois’ budget process.
The “Taxpayer’s Fiscal Charter,” filed in Springfield as HB 4229, gives broad power to taxpayers, limits lawmakers’ ability to create new and unfunded entitlement programs, stops the flow of unfunded mandates toward schools and local government, and ensures the pension system’s stability.
“The State of Illinois is bleeding red ink,” said Reick. “In spite of a serious overspending problem, the majority party lawmakers continue to spend money recklessly by refusing to live within their means. Lawmakers must stop adding new programs and spending initiatives that we simply cannot afford.”
Specifically, HB 4229 includes:
- A two-year freeze in discretionary State spending; the freeze would continue after the deadline if at that point the State is unable to pay vendors within 30 days
- A prohibition against adding any new programs or expansions of existing programs unless a full pension payment – based on actuarial requirements – is made
- A requirement that any new legislation which creates new spending include an identified revenue source or identified cuts to an existing program to pay for the new spending
- A mandatory 72-hour online posting of the General Assembly’s proposed new fiscal year budget prior to passage
“Lawmakers must take serious action to address reckless spending, and the provisions included in HB 4229 represent a major first step in addressing Illinois’ financial problems,” said Reick.
HB 4229 is awaiting assignment to a substantive committee.