House Dems push bill to pay funded programs during budget impasse

SPRINGFIELD — Once Illinois House Democrats can again claim a supermajority, they may run a bill to pay state lottery winners, fund 9-1-1 centers and get gas tax money to municipalities.

The majority party is one vote short of the three-fifths vote needed to pass a bill taking effect immediately. That’s because party officials from the district formerly represented by the late Esther Golar have not yet named a replacement.

A House committee has passed a $1.8 billion bill – with monies collected through user fees and ticket sales – after testimony from 9-1-1 officials.

“Right now, we have enough reserves to meet our current monthly expenses for about three more months,” said Diana Stiles, director of the Bureau County 9-1-1 center, adding unexpected maintenance could wipe that money all out.

Her counterpart in St Clair County, Herbert Simmons, said, “Everybody in this room knows 9-1-1 is important: whether you have had to use it, or you are going to use it one day,” adding the center takes 200,000 calls a year.

The House is back in session Nov. 10.

HB 4305 has passed the House Executive Committee.