Concern over Illinois’ economic future transcends the partisan divide, especially since Illinois has the lowest credit rating in the country and Chicago’s credit rating has been recently downgraded– again. How to enact responsible fiscal change is the topic of fierce debate.
In Governor Bruce Rauner’s budget proposal for the 2016 fiscal year, he proposes austerity measures that will cut the budget by $6 billion, blaming what he calls historic “recklessness.” But it has left many wondering which communities will be most impacted by these proposed cuts and who will bear the burden of debt repayment. Gov. Rauner’s proposed cuts to higher education and social services, in place of increasing tax revenue, are at the center of this debate.
Please join us as we work through some of the many questions that accompany discussions of debt.
Questions to consider include:
How did we arrive at having the worst credit rating in the entire country?
What exactly is the role of pension spending in both the state’s and city’s debt?
Who benefits most from the state’s debt?
What communities will be most burdened by repaying the state’s debt?
How have communities responded to both the debt and the proposed budget?
For further reading:
- “6 Spending Cuts Proposed by Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner” –Huffington Post by Reboot Illinois
- “Nobody Understands Debt” –The New York Times by Paul Krugman
- “Cullerton calls Rauner’s proposed budget ‘unworkable'” –The State Journal-Register by Sara Burnett, The Associated Press
Note: Conversations on new topics occur every third Wednesday of the month @ 6:00 PM Facilitated by Sandra Pfeifer; alternating monthly between Golconda’s Riverview Mansion Hotel (222 S. Columbus Ave.) and Vienna Diner (511 E. Vine St.)
For more information, please contact Sandra Pfeifer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you need a sign interpreter or require other arrangements to fully participate, please call 312.422.5580 at least 72 hours prior to the event.