Budgeting down to the wire
Good Thursday morning, Illinois. Three years ago on this day, George Floyd was pinned by three Minneapolis police officers, showing no signs of life.
The three tops agree on the broad strokes for the next state budget, but House and Senate leaders were still working out the specifics late Wednesday, setting the stage for a down-to-the-wire vote early Saturday.
What we know: Gov. JB Pritzker, Senate President Don Harmon and House Speaker Emanuel “Chris” Welch appeared together Wednesday afternoon to announce they had a budget in hand. It seemed a formality that their respective chambers would approve it with a first reading Wednesday so it could sail to Pritzker’s desk Friday.
But lawmakers tinkered with it for hours, so the first reading of the legislation won’t take place until this morning. The state Constitution requires that bills get three readings over three days. Senate and House lawmakers were working furiously Wednesday night to dot the i’s and cross the t’s so the Senate could now pass the legislation today and then send it ASAP to the House for its first reading.
Timing: The second reading would be Friday and the third could be as early as 12:01 a.m. Saturday. It would allow House lawmakers to head home in time for (most of) the long weekend.
The hold-up: Pritzker, Harmon and Welch agreed the language must be nailed down before the budget legislation goes to the House. Any disagreement between the House and Senate Democrats, who control the chambers, needed to be shored up before today’s reading. This would prevent the process from being delayed any longer than it already has been, though it’s still ahead of the official deadline of May 31.
What’s in the budget: The Medicaid program for immigrants is getting $550 million instead of the $1.1 billion that was sought. But the budget also frees up administrative “tools” to control the costs, according to Pritzker. “The Senate and the House have agreed to give us the tools to manage the program properly,” Pritzker said in announcing the deal.
— More from the Tribune: “Some Democratic lawmakers had been pushing to increase spending in other areas, including funding for elementary and high schools. The budget deal would increase overall school funding by $350 million over the current year, an annual goal established in state law that some had wanted to go beyond,” write Dan Petrella, Jeremy Gorner and Rick Pearson.
Mayor Brandon Johnson won one vote and had a setback on another, but otherwise killed it during his first Chicago City Council meeting Wednesday.
How he ran the meeting: Johnson listened intently to all the public speakers and council members. He stood the whole time. And he injected humor now and again, including in his opening remarks:
“There’s breaking news,” he said. “This City Council meeting is being recorded live from Naperville.” It was a dig at Fox News, which created an uproar when it interviewed people in Naperville about crime in Chicago.
Johnson’s big win: The council voted 41-9 to approve his plan for 20 committees, for which he’s already assigned allies to lead.
His opponents: Council members who voted no on Johnson’s committee structure — and could be the same folks who challenge him going forward — are Alds. Anthony Beale (9th), Marty Quinn (13th), Raymond Lopez (15th), David Moore (17th), Silvana Tabares (23rd), Anthony Napolitano (41st), Brendan Reilly (42nd) and Jim Gardiner (45th).
Ald. Scott Waguespack (32nd) also voted against the plan. He had initiated an effort for council members to take more control of the committees. But like Johnson, Waguespack is a progressive, so his future votes may often align with the mayor’s.
A loss for now: Lopez, Napalitano and Beale opposed a plan to divert $51 million from the city’s surplus funds to help with the migrant crisis. Their opposition delayed the vote, so Johnson called for a meeting next week to take up the issue again.
Side note: Beale surprised the mayor’s staff when he announced he would resign from the Zoning Committee. Beale and Ald. Carlos Ramirez-Rosa, who heads the committee, would surely have butted heads.
Can’t we all just get along: Ald. Brian Hopkins (2nd) called on council members to sign a “civility pledge.”
Johnson’s response: At a post-council press conference, the mayor was asked about the “civility pledge,” to which he responded: “I do support civility. I’m trying to keep a straight face. … Coming from a large family, I know how to disagree without getting put out of the house.”
From the City Hall press corps:
— With sometimes self-deprecating humor, Johnson presides over first City Council meeting, writes Sun-Times’ Fran Spielman
— Johnson introduces outdoor dining ordinance at first City Council meeting, by Fox 32’s Kasey Chronis
— Council delays migrant funding but approves new committee structure, by WBEZ’s Mariah Woelfel and Tessa Weinberg
— There was drama at a pre-council press conference on the migrant issue, the Tribune’s Alice Yin, Gregory Pratt and A.D. Quig include in their report
If you are Ald. Anthony Beale, Playbook would like to know your aldermanic game plan. Email [email protected].
No official public events.
At the 63rd Street Beach at 1:30 p.m. with Chicago Police Department Interim Superintendent Fred Waller, Chicago Fire Department Commissioner Annette Nance-Holt and other officials to share the city’s public safety plan in advance of Memorial Day weekend.
In the Cook County Building at 10 a.m. for the County Board meeting.
Thank you for reading Illinois Playbook! Drop me a line sometime: [email protected]
— Authorities are recovering more carjacked vehicles in Chicago, providing crucial data: “The recoveries and years of data sharing are helping to shed light on who is doing the carjacking and why, but arrest rates are still low,” by WBEZ’s Patrick Smith.
— Chicago promised students would do better after closing 50 schools. That didn’t happen, by WBEZ’s Sarah Karp, Sun-Times’ Lauren FitzPatrick and Nader Issa and WBEZ’s Alden Loury
— More pre-K, ‘earn and learn’ offerings as CPS opens registration for summer programs, district says, by Sun-Times’ Mitchell Armentrout
— Tribune creates a heat index to see where the disparities are, by Sarah Macaraeg
— Ozinga family’s underground development on Southeast Side may be dead due to mining ban, by Sun-Times’ Brett Chase
— Charlie Kirk’s ‘Turning Point’ Pivots to Christian Nationalism: “The organization founded to promote the free market sure is spending a lot of time promoting attacks on the separation of church and state, via Rolling Stone’s Tim Dickinson.
— Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, will be in town today, joining Illinois Federation of Teachers President Dan Montgomery and Chicago Teachers Union President Stacy Davis Gates to tour Northeastern Illinois University and hold a roundtable discussion about financial insecurity among college students. Later, Weingarten’s team said she’d join Mayor Brandon Johnson to speak at Palenque-LSNA’s Annual Congress. Both the AFT and Palenque-LSNA backed Johnson’s election.
— United Airlines CEO Scott Kirby, a self-declared climate change “geek” took, talks about developing the nascent industry for sustainable aviation fuel, by POLITICO’s Allison Prang.
— Former DCFS manager accused of stealing at least $1.6 million in day care funds and spending it at a casino, via Sun-Times
— Carbondale man charged with theft for allegedly stealing backhoe for 10-mile drive to Illinois airport to catch flight, via The Southern Illinoisan
— 2 Chicago-area brothers plead guilty to assaulting officers in Jan. 6 Capitol breach: “Daniel Leyden was accused of pushing a metal barrier onto a U.S. Capitol police officer. Joseph Leyden was charged with pushing a Metro police officer,” by Sun-Times’ Mary Norkol.
We asked which politician you’d like to invite to your home for cocktails.
Kristopher Anderson: “Former Sen. Carol Moseley Braun.”
Tyler Bohannon: “Former Illinois Gov. Jim Edgar. The guy clearly understood how to effectively work with the other side.”
Cam Davis: “Democratic Sen. Jon Tester of Montana. He’s a farmer and a politician. I appreciate elected officials who are grounded.”
Judith Hamill: “Sen. Tammy Duckworth and Ald. Nicole Lee, who are both knowledgeable about aviation. It would be fun to hear about aviation from a feminist perspective.”
Lucas Hawley: “Former Massachusetts Gov Charlie Baker.”
Scott Kaiser: “Former House Speaker John Boehner. He grew up in a large family, helped run the family bar at a young age, served in the Ohio Leg, elected to Congress as a conservative reformer, third in line to the presidency, hated by the wacko right and a great storyteller who never holds back.”
Fred Lebed: “President Barack Obama, of course!”
John Lopez: “California freshman Congressman Kevin Kiley who testified before Congress about the threats to independent contracting.”
Pat McCann: “Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Green. I can’t imagine what she’d say after three Jack & Cokes.”
Marilynn Miller: Congressman Bill Foster. I have volunteered many times for his campaigns.”
Timothy Powell: “Sen. Ted Cruz. I would serve him a Chicago Handshake paired with a flat iron steak with ‘special’ mushrooms.”
Steven Smith: “Hillary Clinton.”
Patricia Ann Watson: “Former New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.”
What’s your pastime while flying? Email [email protected]
— ’It turned out to be a mistake’: Botched rollout puts DeSantis on his heels, by POLITICO’s Sally Goldenberg and Meridith McGraw
— It was Elon’s fault, via The Associated Press
— Inside Joe Biden’s struggles to create a ‘new economic world order,’ by POLITICO’s Gavin Bade
— House votes to repeal Biden’s student debt relief plan, by POLITICO’s Michael Stratford
— Tina Turner’s 11 Essential Songs: “Turner, who died Wednesday at 83, went from R&B shouter to rock queen to pop superstar. Here are some of her greatest musical moments,” according to The New York Times’ Ben Sisario.
— Christian Perry has joined the Partnership for College Completion as director of policy and advocacy. He’s the former deputy political director for Gov. JB Pritzker and was a political adviser to Mayor Brandon Johnson.
— Today at 11 a.m.: NBC 5 political reporter Mary Ann Ahern is being honored with the Dante Award by the Joint Civic Committee of Italian Americans during its annual luncheon, and Robert Allegrini, president of the National Italian American Foundation, is receiving the lifetime achievement award. Details here
WEDNESDAY’s ANSWER: Congratulations to Kevin Conlon, Mary Lawlor and Andy Shaw for being first of many to answer that former President George H.W. Bush went through training at the then-Glenview Naval Air Training Station.
TODAY’s QUESTION: What was the name of a proposed new state under a 1970s effort to secede from Illinois? Email [email protected]
Illinois first lady MK Pritzker, Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart, governor’s senior adviser Emily Bittner, attorney Joel Hurwitz and writer and editor Greg Burns.
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May 25, 2023 at 08:33AM