Senate plan being used as framework

SPRINGFIELD – Illinois Senate President John Cullerton expressed continued optimism that a state budget deal can be reached before the end of the week and prevent Illinois from going another year without a budget.

The Illinois House has begun amending the balanced budget plans the Senate previously approved, and legislative leaders met again Tuesday to try to hammer out a compromise.

“You should know the Senate passed a budget and we have been reconciling that with the House,” Cullerton told reporters after the leaders meeting. “It’s a byproduct of a lot of bipartisan work, and I think it looks like we should have a very good agreement on it.”

The state’s fiscal year runs out on June 30. Illinois has gone two years under Gov. Bruce Rauner without a budget. The Senate approved a balanced budget last month that matches the spending limits the governor proposed. That plan is now pending in the Illinois House.