“Because of the terrible job we’ve done in Springfield, we’ve created hostage situations at every level,” Franks said. “We have created a political freak show and a financial armageddon for our state. We haven’t shot the hostages yet, we’re giving them a temporary reprieve.”
Sen. Daniel Biss, D-Evanston, voted for the bill, but said it doesn’t go far enough.
“To see us voting on this measure without a dime for human services is pretty painful,” he said.
The Senate later approved a bill that contains the same funding for higher education, but also allocates $400 million to a lengthy list of human services programs. The amount is far less than the spending authorized in another bill sent to Rauner that the governor has threatened to veto.
The human services money comes from a special state account set up when the state income tax was raised in 2011. There is cash sitting in the account that hasn’t been spent.