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Few signs of movement on paying Ill. overdue bills

Posted by wlpo on October 22, 2011

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) – Don’t look for quick action to reduce Illinois’ huge backlog of unpaid bills during the fall legislative session.

Progress is blocked by fundamental disagreements. Officials report little or no discussion of what can be done pay the bills.

Gov. Pat Quinn did not list the issue among his top three priorities for the session. And the Senate’s top Republican doesn’t expect movement any time soon.

Quinn and many Democrats want to borrow money to pay the bills. They say state government should borrow from willing bond-buyers, not struggling businesses and charities.

Republicans, however, say it’s bad policy to pay everyday expenses by selling long-term bonds.

Advocates for human service groups haven’t given up. They say Illinois has an ethical obligation to pay the bills.

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