- Published: Monday, March 16, 2015 05:47 PM
CARLINVILLE – State Senators Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) and Sam McCann (R-Carlinville) joined local government and law enforcement officials to highlight the ramifications of Gov. Rauner’s proposed cuts to local governments.
Rauner’s proposed budget includes a roughly half-billion dollar cut to the state’s Local Government Distributive Fund that villages, cities and counties receive from state income taxes. Communities use this shared revenue to finance emergency 911 services, police departments, public utilities and other essential services.
“From my time in city and county government, I know the difficulties of balancing a budget. These cuts will devastate local governments and the communities they serve,” Manar said.
“It's still very early in the process, but we need to be aware of the ramifications of these types of cuts," said Senator Sam McCann. "This simply underscores exactly how serious the stakes are this spring. I hope my colleagues and I in both chambers, along with the Governor, are able to negotiate a reasonable solution to the budget that protects all of our communities.”
Rauner’s introduced budget reduces each local government’s funding by 50 percent. Because many rural, downstate communities rely on revenue sharing to fund large portions these services, they are disproportionality impacted by these cuts.
“Cuts like these—losing half our state funding—leave us with extremely tough choices. If Rauner is serious about this, we’d have to cut patrols, lay off deputies and be forced to provide second-rate service to the people we are charged with protecting,” Macoupin County Sheriff Shawn Kahl said.
"We do a good job in Benld keeping our budget in balance. We know the state has financial problem but cutting city governments just shifts the burden to local taxpayers. Governor Rauner's proposed cuts for the City of Benld would reduce our entire city operational budget by 30 percent in one year and we simply cannot absorb that," Benld Mayor Gloria Sidar said.
Manar, McCann, Kahl, Sidar and other local officials discussed these cuts during a press conference Monday in Carlinville.