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Would “piggy bank” ends state’s woes?

Posted by wlpo on December 20, 2015

Cash-strapped Illinois has at least $4 billion in the bank.  The money is sits in special funds in the state budget created for specific purposes. But an Associated Press analysis shows it’s in 531 accounts that could be ripe for picking as a fix to the budget mess.

No one has suggested such “sweeps” while Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner and the Democratic-controlled Legislature continue their stalemate over a budget plan that should have taken effect July 1.

A Rauner spokeswoman would not comment on the idea. House Majority Leader and Chicago Democrat Barbara Flynn Currie says she’s OK with sweeps if they’re done judiciously and without harming the programs funded.

According to the Legislature’s budget office, governors and lawmakers have swept $3.4 billion since 2003.

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