A couple of more recent budget articles

Human service agencies hope the recent tax increase will stop the trend of cuts year after year, though hope does not translate into confidence at this point.  Project the experiences of the agencies mentioned to all the other areas of the state and it is a staggering amount of employees losing their jobs and people losing important services.

Human service agencies also hope a proposed bond sale by the state will catch up their bills.  This would be a big help.  In many ways, the late payments have been even more devastating than the budget cuts.   Another provision of this, which wouldn’t help the nonprofit SU, would make it possible for the state to pay the $1 billion in tax refunds it owes to businesses, which would surely help out the state economy.  It would also allow the state to refinance current debt at a better interest rate and to be able to make the pension payment for this fiscal year.

Here at SU we’ve received payments for services rendered as recently as August, which is a big improvement and a great help.

Getting Questions on the Income Tax Increase

We’ve had a number of questions about whether or how the income tax increase may affect Streator Unlimited.  It is hard to predict, but we believe the main positive impact is that it will be much less likely to lead to further cuts to the Medicaid Waiver or Medicaid funding we receive for our programs.  This would be a very good thing and a big relief.  It will not restore funding to the consumers whose grant funding was cut.  It will not assure the state will pay us in a timely manner either.

Another article in today’s Times describes a possible settlement of a lawsuit against the State of Illinois.  People with developmental disabilities who live in institutions (defined here as  homes of 16 or more persons) would be allowed to take their funding with them in moving into smaller group homes.  It would also require the state to take 3,000 people off the 20,000 person waiting list over the next few years.  That would be good news for people with developmental disabilities who want their services in their own communities instead of having to move to large places to get them.