8 months and counting: No clear path on Illinois budget saga

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — Gov. Bruce Rauner’s attempt to spur lawmakers into action has left no clear way forward in the state’s seemingly never-ending budget saga. Illinois remains far from passing a budget for this year and months of legislative hand-wringing has done nothing to change the predicament. This is a time when lawmakers should be focused on passing a budget for next year. The Republican gave lawmakers a choice in his second budget address last week: Pass reforms he wants in exchange for a $36 billion budget, which would include raising taxes, or allow him to make $3.5 billion in spending cuts. But Rauner’s proposition appeared to do little to move Democrats who control the Legislature. No negotiations have been publicly scheduled, and little is expected to happen before the March 15 primaries.