"STATE OF DYSFUNCTION" Describes the State of Illinois Budget Process!
Did you know the State of Illinois has gone two years without a budget, let alone a balanced budget? You might have also heard that schools are receiving full funding, but a little digging will prove that statement untrue.
While every school district in Illinois has very similar financial concerns, We can only share those that impact PORTA. The PORTA District receives funding from the State of Illinois for Transportation, Early Childhood Education, Special Education reimbursements, School Lunch and breakfast and General State Aid. To the State of Illinois’ credit it has maintained General State Aid Payments throughout the 2016-17 school term, but that has not been the case in several previous school years and in the case of PORTA Schools General State Aid has been reduced from 3.4 Million dollars in 2009 to just under 1.7 million in 2017.
As of April 1, 2017 the State of Illinois owes the PORTA District a total of $687,829.90.
Special Education Funding owed--$172,131.70
Transportation Funding owed--$325,173.50
Truancy Program funding owed--$49,491
PreK Funding owed--$138,196
While these numbers are staggering and have a dramatic impact on cash flow and budgeting within our district the final outcome is more devastating. If the current trend continues we estimate the State will owe the PORTA District $1,183,799 as of June 30, 2017. As a quick perspective the $1,183,799 is nearly 12.5% of the PORTA Education Fund budget.
One could say that politics are holding up the passing of a budget and to a degree most would agree, but did you know that in the past year the Illinois Legislature was able to introduce 6000 bills while in political gridlock, all within the 3 whole months your legislators were in session. That is an average of 67 bills introduced each day over that 3 month period.
Did you know in the last 5 years the Legislature passed 50 School Mandates with no additional funding and as you read this the latest mandate will require seat-belts on school buses? If a seat-belts on buses law passes it is estimated that the PORTA District will need to increase the bus fleet by 4 buses at a cost of $80,000 per bus and the seat belt addition alone is expected to cost about $7000 per bus. The PORTA District could see an increase in transportation costs of $474,000 in the initial year if this legislation passes. All while receiving no transportation payments from the State of Illinois in the 2016-17 school year.
As Taxpayers and supporters of the PORTA District we should not allow this “dysfunction” to continue. Schools need the State of Illinois to pass a budget that fully funds schools at a level that is adequate to provide a consistent and appropriate education across the State of Illinois.
PLEASE CONTACT YOUR LEGISLATORS AND DEMAND THEY PASS A BUDGET and Fully Fund Schools!!
Senate District #44 Representative District #87
William E. Brady--Republican Tim Butler
State Senator State Representative
contact: http://brady.senategop.org/Contact/Contact-Form Email: email@example.com
103B State Capitol Building 1128-E Stratton Office Building
Springfield IL 62706 Springfield, IL 62706
Phone: 217-782-6216 Phone: 217-782-0053