Our View: Things Could Get Worse, And Will

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Editorial Board on June 7th, 2016:

Illinois is less than four weeks away from beginning a new fiscal year without a budget … for the second consecutive year.

It’s gone all of fiscal 2016 without a budget, yet is spending billions more than it’s bringing in because the courts had to step in due to the incompetence of our state’s elected leaders, present and past.

Illinois’ five statewide pension systems are underfunded by more than $110 billion, the worst in the nation. It’s a deadbeat state, with a backlog of bills nearing $10 billion. Its social service infrastructure is crumbling because of the lack of funding, and schools might not open in the fall because of the budget crisis.

All of these fiscal problems are occurring despite the fact Illinois homeowners pay the highest property taxes in the nation.

Why? Corruption. Waste. Speaker Michael Madigan. Lapdog Democratic representatives who will do whatever Madigan tells them. Weak or criminal former governors such as Pat Quinn and Rod Blagojevich.

Given how low we’ve fallen, Illinois certainly has hit rock bottom, right? Things can only improve from here? Think again.

While much of Springfield is corrupt, incompetent or both, there still are a few who want to do the right thing and fight for this state’s future.

McHenry County is blessed to have some of the best elected lawmakers in Illinois. But because of the political nonsense in Springfield, two have decided they’ve had enough.

Reps. Mike Tryon, R-Crystal Lake, and Jack Franks, D-Marengo, are not seeking re-election largely because they’ve realized Springfield is so broken, it’s impossible to get anything done.

Tryon has represented local residents in Springfield since 2005; Franks since 1999. They’ve both placed the best interests of Illinois taxpayers above themselves and fought to change the Illinois political climate, but have been unable to break the chain of nonsense.

McHenry County will miss them in Springfield, but we understand their decision.

What happens when the state’s other quality legislators decide they’ve had enough?

Don’t think things can get worse in Springfield?

Think again.

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