Damage Done: Rauner’s “Home I Fought to Destroy” Tour Starts Day Two

Chicago, IL – Bruce Rauner is taking his “Home I Fought to Destroy Tour” to Peoria, Rockford and Moline today, three cities wrecked by Rauner’s budget and school funding crises. Here’s a look at the damage done:

From Peoria Journal Star: Peoria area hit hard by state budget impasse[I]nstitutions across the Peoria area continue to feel the impact. Nearly $43 million was owed to agencies and government just within the city of Peoria in mid-April… Much of that debt is centered around some of the city’s largest employers in health care and education. Together, Peoria’s two hospital networks — UnityPoint Health and OSF Saint Francis Medical Center — are owed tens of millions of dollars in late state bills.
 
From Rockford Register Star: State owes Rockford schools $12.5 million (and climbing)The dramatic loss of funds has forced school districts to deplete cash reserves, borrow money and shift funds from other needs to cover expenses that ought to be covered by the state. The region’s four largest school districts are owed more than $20 million in categoricals and that amount will soon rise closer to $30 million.
 
From Moline Dispatch-Argus: State money problems make trouble for local assistance providersAs of January, the state was about $93,000 behind in reimbursing the [Child Abuse Council] for the program. Mr. Mathews blamed the state government's ongoing budget impasse for the tardy payments. […] If state funding issues continue, it is not a sustainable situation for many nonprofits, he said. It could bankrupt them. […] The council is not alone in its circumstances. Several area social and medical care providers said their state payments are lagging, too.

“Bruce Rauner is traveling the state on his ‘Home I Fought to Destroy Tour,’ providing photo ops instead of relief to the communities he’s damaged,” said Pritzker campaign spokeswoman Jordan Abudayyeh. “Peoria, Rockford, and Moline are fighting to rebuild their healthcare systems, schools, and social service agencies, but instead of fighting for them, Rauner is fighting for his own failed agenda.”

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Michael Berger