CHICAGO, IL â€“ Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan issued the following statement in response to Judge Diane Larsenâ€™s ruling yesterday in Cook County Circuit Court, clarifying the Stateâ€™s authority to pay for critical services without an enacted State budget.
â€œThis entire situation has been caused by the failure of the Governor and the Legislature to enact a budget.
The Attorney General has been fighting to make sure that the State can legally provide critical government services to the people most in need of them.
The courtâ€™s order authorizes only payments that can be made legally without a budget, for example, services for children in the foster care system, low-income families who cannot afford to pay for groceries, and mentally and physically disabled individuals who need residential support. By doing this, the order ensures individuals who are dependent on these critical government services are not hurt by the Governorâ€™s and Legislatureâ€™s failure to enact a budget.
I absolutely want State employees to be paid their full wages. But the Illinois Constitution and case law are clear: The State cannot pay employees without a budget.Â The judgeâ€™s order reaffirms this. It remains up to the Governor and the Legislature to enact a state budget to allow for necessary government operations and programs to continue.â€