Rauner: No Special Session If Deadline For Budget Missed
Gov. Bruce Rauner says he won't call lawmakers back into session if there's no agreement on a budget by Sunday. He told reporters Friday that if he can't reach a deal with majority Democrats in the General Assembly by the end of the spring session that he will ask that "good-faith'' negotiations continue.
Democrats are in the process of approving a budget for the year that begins in July that has a $3 billion deficit. Rauner won't agree to new revenue and Democrats have turned thumbs down on business reforms Rauner wants to spur economic activity.
What happens after Sunday ... the Republican governor wouldn't say.
But the governor is reportedly ready to use his massive campaign fund to unleash a barrage of ads, aimed at getting the public on his side. He also says he's set to continue meetings all summer to get his way.
Speaking at the executive mansion in Springfield, Rauner also wouldn't say exactly what a deal would look like.
"We'll know by Sunday night. We'll either have a deal Sunday night or we won't, and anybody who says, 'well we didn't have enough time,' that's baloney," he said. "That's wrong; we had plenty of time."
Democrats, who control the General Assembly, are moving forward with a budget they admit is out of balance. They want a tax hike to mitigate cuts; Rauner says he'll only consider that if they pass some of his priorities, like a workers' compensation overhaul, and a property tax freeze.
Rauner says he is encouraged by a meeting Friday morning with legislative leaders and says he sees a "true effort'' at compromise.