Staredown Continues Over Illinois School Funding

(CBS) – In a bid to browbeat Gov. Bruce Rauner, Illinois House Democrats brought together school superintendents to blast his school funding veto.

What emerged in the end was a timeline for another stalemate that could drag on until Labor Day – or beyond.

CBS 2 Political Reporter Derrick Blakley has more.

The Chicago hearing included superintendents from poor districts, like Crete Monee District 201.

“My district has a poverty rate of nearly 70 percent,” Supt. Nate Cunningham said.

And wealthy districts like north suburban Deerfield District 109.

They came together to criticize Gov. Rauner’s amendatory veto.

“Right now, what’s imperative is we don’t have a mechanism to get schools their money — they’re due their money tomorrow. The tenth is their first payment,” Supt. Lonny Lemon of Oak Grove District 63 said.

Democrats called Rauner’s veto of Senate Bill 1 cruel.

“We have affluent communities coming in front of us saying they support SB 1, not because they’re going to get more money but because they actually care about poor students across the state. Do they care more than the governor of this state?” Rep. Melissa Conyears Ervin said.

Rauner insists his veto shifts money from Chicago to poor students in other districts, but even he’s not banking on that veto being sustained.

“We should do this quickly and in a way that’s fair for our kids,” the governor said.

No one’s expecting a quick resolution.

Senate Democrats have the votes to override. In the House, Speaker Michael Madigan does not.

That means SB 1 would die, with Democrats betting the result would increase pressure on Rauner to avoid taking the blame for blowing up school funding.

 

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