Breaking Down The Bill Backlog

Financial data is available in bulk for those who would like to view and query the financial information of local governments in Illinois. All financial data provided is self-reported by the local governments, according to state law. An understanding of Microsoft Access and Microsoft Excel is encouraged for analyzing the data. Please refer to the Chart of Accounts and Definitions document, found in the Local Government Help File, for assistance with understanding the data.


Illinois’ budget stalemate has stretched in to its tenth month, and the backlog of unpaid bills at the Comptroller’s Office continues to pile up.

Bill Backlog Breakdown

Today the state has an estimated bill backlog of $7,057,500,579. But how does the Comptroller’s Office come up with this number?

As shown in the graphic above, the Comptroller’s Office currently has 22,785 unpaid bills in house totaling $2.9 billion ($2,957,500,579). The remaining $4.1 billion is what’s estimated to be currently held at state agencies, but just haven’t made it to the Comptroller’s Office yet.

Because state agencies are not required by law to keep the Comptroller informed more than once a year on how many vouchers they are holding, the Comptroller’s Office arrives at the $4.1 billion estimation by assessing four different categories: Group Insurance, Medical, Rent & Utilities, and finally Commodities/ Travel/ Contractual Services Provided.

Whether it’s making estimations based on last year’s numbers or speaking directly with the agency, there are a variety of techniques used to reach these individual amounts.

Information on the bill backlog is updated daily on the Financial Data page in the menu.