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Steve Chiotakis: In the state of Illinois, finances are a mess. Later today in his budget address, Governor Pat Quinn will unveil how he plans to make up a huge shortfall there. Reporter Jay Field previews some of the proposals on the table to find $13 billion.
Jay Field: As you try mouthing $13 billion a few more times, here’s some perspective, courtesy of Chicago budget analyst Laurence Msall:
Laurence Msall: The state of Illinois meets the classic definition of insolvency. That is, it is unable to pay its bills as they come due.
The situation is so dire, Governor Pat Quinn has put up a special Web site and asked everyone in Illinois for their input. Residents are suggesting all manner of fixes, from cutting everything except education to legalizing marijuana to generate tax revenue.
As for Governor Quinn, he is likely to propose cutting hundreds of millions of dollars from education, child care, the state police and local governments. Budget observers also expect him to push for some kind of tax increase.
And they’re watching to see what, if any reforms, he comes up with to fix the state’s broken public pension system. It’s now more than $60 billion in the red.
In Chicago, I’m Jay Field for Marketplace.
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