Lawmakers, organizations react to State of the State

Lawmakers, organizations react to State of the State (File Photo)

Watch the State of the State Address live at newschannel20.com/watch

House Speaker Michael J. Madigan issued the following statement Wednesday:

“As he has done throughout his administration, Governor Rauner chooses to blame others for the challenges facing our state on his watch instead of being the leader he was elected to be. If the governor were as serious about addressing property taxes as he is about scoring cheap political points, he would have come to the table and worked with Democrats to support any of the multiple bills we have advanced to provide property tax relief for middle class families.
“For the good of our state, maybe it’s better the governor continue sitting on the sidelines and pretend he is ‘not in charge.’ That way, serious leaders can continue working to move our state forward, while the governor can continue to ignore his utterly dismal record without accomplishments, and avoid the real discussion about the damage he has inflicted on our state. While he remains on the sidelines, those of us in the Legislature will continue working together in a bipartisan way to ensure our state moves forward.”

Illinois Republican Party Chairman Tim Schneider issued the following statement after Governor Bruce Rauner delivered his State of the State Address:

"Today, Governor Rauner showed why he’s the right person to lead Illinois to a better future. He clearly and compellingly articulated the need to work together to find real solutions to our state’s challenges. His commitment to grow good-paying jobs, cut taxes for small businesses and hardworking families, and end the corruption in state politics is exactly what we need to unlock Illinois’ potential."

COMPTROLLER MENDOZA’S RESPONSE TO THE STATE OF THE STATE:

We just heard Governor Rauner's re-election speech. Now he has 14 days to deliver a balanced budget that doesn’t involve pixie dust and magic beans.
I don't know about 'turning yesterday into tomorrow,' but Governor Rauner turned the $5 billion backlog of bills he inherited into a $16.7 billion backlog. He deficit-spent more than any other governor in the history of Illinois - $5 billion a year.
You heard all the applause for his empty promise to propose a balanced budget. The Governor has had three chances to propose a balanced budget. All the objective fact-checkers, Politifact, the Better Government Association, all agree his budgets have been billions of dollars out of balance and his claims to the contrary flat-out lies.
I welcome his call for bipartisan governing. The good news is we do have bi-partisanship. Republican and Democratic legislators came together last year to override the governor's vetoes on the budget and my Debt Transparency Act. Just before Governor Rauner entered the chamber to deliver his State of the State address, Legislators of both parties came together to override the Governor's veto of education funding.
Our Debt Transparency Report we released last week showed he ran up $1 billion dollars in late payment interest penalties over the last 2 ½ years. That’s money that will never be spent on educating our children; rebuilding our state; or fixing the pipes at the Quincy Veterans Home where 13 people have died from Legionnaire’s Disease on his watch.
We need to see a balanced budget from him. We need for him to answer these five questions:
1) How are you going to cover the cost of the $1 billion in late interest penalties you racked up by not paying the state’s bills on time?
2) What is your plan to pay down the State’s $8.37 billion bill backlog?
3) How will you account for the $2.3 billion in unappropriated spending by your agencies last year?
4) How will you account for the $1.7 billion in unrealized revenues and savings from failed initiatives like the sale of the Thompson Center and the Tier III retirement plan?
5) Can you, for the first time, introduce a balanced gimmick-free budget that doesn’t call for pixie dust and magic beans?
http://illinoiscomptroller.gov/news-portal/comptroller-mendoza-s-response-to-the-state-of-the-state/#.WnIStKinHZs

Republican Candidate for Comptroller Darlene Senger issued the following statement after Governor Bruce Rauner delivered his State of the State Address:

"I applaud the Governor's call for common-sense, bipartisan solutions that can deliver real property tax relief for Illinois families starting with reforming the broken and corrupt property tax assessment system. For too long, this system has benefited the insiders and connected while punishing hard-working families who only lack clout.
"The time is now for those, like Speaker Madigan and Comptroller Mendoza, who continue to defend and benefit from this broken system to either support reform -- or get out of the way."

In response to Governor Rauner’s State of the State Address, state Rep. Sue Scherer, D-Decatur, issued the following statement:

“Frankly, the governor clearly summarized the state of the state a few weeks ago when he said, ‘I’m not in charge.’ For the last three years, all he has done is sit back and blame everyone but himself for the all the damage our residents have suffered through.
“In my time in Office, my priorities have been to grow and improve our middle-class families, providing all our children with better education opportunities, and addressing the opioid drug crisis that has devastated our communities.
“It’s time that Governor Rauner recognize that he is in charge. I am hopeful that the he comes to the table and works with the legislature to address these important issues rather than observe from the sidelines. I believe the people of Illinois want compromise and teamwork, and I believe if all sides commit to this, the state of the state will strengthen and we will help the working families we represent.”


Sen. Jason Barickman (R-Bloomington) issued the following statement after Governor Bruce Rauner delivered his 2018 State of the State address:

“I think the Governor offered a good look at some of the recent high points for state government, including the passage of a bipartisan school funding overhaul that will help deliver funding to where it is needed most. But he also made it clear that many of the biggest challenges facing our state remain. I agree that we must continue to fight to break the broken status quo that has paralyzed our state for far too long.”
“A new regular session is now underway. I look forward to working with my colleagues again to find common ground on the issues before us. We’ve seen what is possible when we work together toward a shared goal of doing what is best for the people of this state. We have to keep the momentum going.”


The Democratic Governors Association, through its spokesman Sam Salustro, releases the following statement on Governor Bruce Rauner’s State of the State address:

“The state of the state is worse under Bruce Rauner. While the Governor continues to pretend like he has not been in charge, voters will not forget how Rauner engaged in the worst kind of no-compromise, partisan politics that hampered economic growth and led an atmosphere of perpetual crisis. Rauner forced the state to suffer through a two-year budget crisis that crippled job creation, increased debt, slashed social services, and devastated the higher education system.
“Three years ago, Rauner promised a turnaround, but he’s only made things worse.”

Illinois Chamber of Commerce President & CEO Todd Maisch’s statement on State of the State:

“At the state capitol, there are many complex issues. Today, the Illinois Chamber came together with the rest of the state to listen to Governor Bruce Rauner’s 2018 State of the State address and zero in on some of the key issues affecting Illinois.
This session, we look forward to working with lawmakers to further Illinois’ economic advancement. The Illinois Chamber applauds the governor and key lawmakers for successes in job creation and for igniting further discourse on matters facing our employers.
The Illinois Chamber supports movement toward a framework that addresses the state’s fiscal problems as well as its business climate.”

Republican Candidate for Comptroller Darlene Senger issued the following statement after Governor Bruce Rauner delivered his State of the State Address:

"I applaud the Governor's call for common-sense, bipartisan solutions that can deliver real property tax relief for Illinois families starting with reforming the broken and corrupt property tax assessment system. For too long, this system has benefited the insiders and connected while punishing hard-working families who only lack clout.
"The time is now for those, like Speaker Madigan and Comptroller Mendoza, who continue to defend and benefit from this broken system to either support reform -- or get out of the way."

BOB DAIBER STATEMENT ON STATE OF THE STATE:

“The next time Gov. Bruce Rauner proposes a balanced budget will be the first,” Democratic governor candidate Bob Daiber said in response to the governor’s State of the State message today.
The governor promised lawmakers in his half-hour speech that he would propose a balanced budget, and urged bipartisan cooperation, criticizing politicians for having a “divide and conquer” attitude.
Daiber is not buying it. “The governor came to Springfield three years ago and immediately told the House speaker that it was his priority to enact Right to Work for Less, repeal prevailing wage rules, and end collective bargaining for public employees. Fortunately, the speaker stood up to the governor, and the governor hasn’t gotten over being told ‘no’ for the first time in his life.”
Rauner proposed legislation aimed at House Speaker Michael J. Madigan that would bar members of the General Assembly from handling cases before property tax appeals boards. Madigan’s law firm handles property tax appeals cases.
“How can you call for restoring trust and working together, and then in the same speech fire an attack at your political nemesis? The governor cannot be trusted and cannot be taken seriously,” Daiber said.
Daiber said new leadership is needed in the governor’s mansion: “If I am given the honor of being elected governor, I will sincerely work to solve the state’s problems. I have 20 years of experience in government, including at the county level in the second-largest Downstate county. I have political skills that go beyond writing a check. I know how to work with people. With this governor, everything he says sounds like a threat.”
Daiber does agree with the governor on term limits: Daiber believes constitutional officers should be limited to two terms and legislative leaders should be limited to 10 years – but there should be no limit for legislative seats.

Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) released the following statement reacting to the governor’s fourth State of the State address to the General Assembly today:

“I heard a disappointing speech that was light on specifics and played more toward politics than problem-solving. Gov. Rauner offered no plan for job creation in parts of the state that have not benefitted from jobs recently even though the general economy is improving.
“As for his call that we all roll up our sleeves and work together, I see no evidence that he understands what ‘bipartisan’ actually means and what it takes to set that in motion. It takes more than words to achieve bipartisan cooperation. It requires trust building, one-on-one conversations and spending enormous amounts of time building relationships.
“We’re three years into this governor’s term, and he hasn’t done one of those things with lawmakers in all that time. To set those things in motion in his fourth years is going to be an enormous challenge. I wish him luck, because that’s what it will take to begin solving problems. But this speech did nothing toward that effort.”

Following today’s State of the State address, Illinois Federation of Teachers President Dan Montgomery released this response:

“Much like President Trump’s speech last night, today we heard Governor Rauner fail to take responsibility for the problems he’s caused while taking credit for progress that occurred despite him, not because of him.
Look no further than his deceptive boasting about school funding. The truth is, Rauner vetoed a bipartisan solution to a decades-long problem, forced through private school vouchers, and has now put equitable funding – and our most vulnerable students – in jeopardy again.
The truth is, Rauner failed to fund MAP grants, forced five public universities into junk bond status and layoffs, and proposed deep cuts to higher education.
As he himself once bragged, he continually creates crisis to gain leverage for his political agenda, refusing to compromise and forcing the state to suffer.
Regardless of what he claims, Illinois has lost under Rauner’s failed leadership:
We lost jobs. We lost thousands of college students. And the state lost $1 billion to late fees last year alone, money that could have gone to schools, higher education, and social services.
The state of the state is far worse than when Rauner took office, and it’s time for someone else to take charge.”

The Illinois Retail Merchants Association (IRMA) issued the following statement regarding Governor Rauner’s State of the State Address:

“Retailers are a critical economic engine for the state, but our industry continues to operate on razor thin margins as regulations, mandates and taxes continue to squeeze Main Street retailers. Our state faces its share of challenges and IRMA has consistently said the state needs to generate more revenue and practice long-term spending discipline in order to return fiscal stability, but the solution cannot be solely on the back of employers. We share the Governor’s belief that more business reforms are needed to lift up our state, which will only bolster productivity, economic growth and wages. As we have throughout our history, IRMA stands ready to work with Governor Rauner and legislative leaders on both sides of the aisle to create policies that help Main Street retailers and restore Illinois’ stability and competitiveness,” said Rob Karr, president & CEO, IRMA

The Illinois Manufacturers’ Association has released the following statement in response to Governor Rauner’s State of the State Address:

"Illinois is full of opportunity for our businesses and families if policymakers will simply enact pro-growth policies and economic development reforms to release the might of the manufacturing sector. Manufacturing optimism is an at an all-time high nationally but the industrial sector faces immense challenges in Illinois due to tax hikes and costly and burdensome regulations. Since the recession ended, our neighboring states have added 413,300 manufacturing jobs, an average of 68,800 jobs, while Illinois has remained relatively stagnant adding only 8,300 jobs. Imagine the economic impact if Illinois had added tens of thousands of good, high-paying manufacturing jobs averaging $84,000 per year in wages and benefits. The IMA lauds Governor Rauner for his laser focus on growing the economy and adding jobs. It's time to work collaboratively to once again take advantage of our many assets and make Illinois the economic engine of the Midwest and the nation."

NFIB State Director Mark Grant released the following statement in anticipation of Gov. Bruce Rauner’s State of the State address:

“Governor Rauner clearly understands what it takes to run a business, and we hope the legislature will set aside politics and work with him on economic reforms such as lowering workers’ comp costs, cutting income tax rates and finding a solution to Illinois’ sky-high property taxes. Small business owners are also counting on the governor to hold the line on any kind of service tax. Our members and their customers can’t afford that. A balanced and stable state budget is also a priority for our members. We have to stop the alarming exodus of citizens from our state.”
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