Mt. Prospect objects to Gov. Rauner's proposed cut
Mount Prospect has joined the growing chorus of local governments strongly objecting to Gov. Bruce Rauner's plans to cut the Local Government Distributive Fund in half.
When discussing passage of an ordinance supporting the Northwest Municipal Conference's 2015 Legislative Program, Mayor Arlene Juracek and trustees slammed the plan and drew a grim picture of its potentially devastating impact, which is estimated at between $2.6 million and $3 million and would require, she said, drastic cuts in services in a village that has already made drastic cuts in its workforce.
"We're certainly very supportive of the governor's issues about consolidating and finding efficiencies and eliminating duplication," she said. However, she said, what the governor proposes with regard to fund sharing "stands to harm us much more greatly."
Rauner suggested villages might be able to use reserves to fill the budget hole.
Trustees Paul Hoefert said the village has done all the right things in managing its money, saving for a rainy day. Now, he said, "We're penalized for doing all the right things. That's just blatantly wrong." Hoefert pointed out the importance of reserves in determining the village's bond rating.
Juracek pointed out that her predecessor, Irvana Wilks, experienced several natural disasters. "You never know when you're going to need those reserves for those things."
"We are mandated by the state to provide a balanced budget," said Trustee Michael Zadel. "And we have met all of our obligations. And the state, perhaps, has not met all of their obligations. And to try and put something on the backs of the municipalities, as you said, is wrong. I like the phrase, 'We are a victim of our own success.'"