SPECIAL REPORT ON ILLINOIS' DEBT REVEALS OUT-OF-CONTROL LATE PAYMENT INTEREST PENALTIES

Penalties in the last two-and-a-half years add up to more than penalties from the previous 18 years combined.

 

CHICAGO — During the past two-and-a-half years under Governor Bruce Rauner’s Administration, the State of Illinois has racked up late payment interest penalties totaling $100 million more than it incurred under the previous four administrations, a period of 18 years, combined.

Between fiscal years 1998 and 2015, late payment interest penalties owed to vendors providing services to the state totaled $1.0396 billion.

In just the past two-and-a-half-years, Illinois accrued $1.1396 billion in late payment interest penalties.

These numbers were brought to light in the April 2018 edition of the Office of the Comptroller’s Debt Transparency Report and a new Special Report on Late Payment Interest Penalties released by Comptroller Susana Mendoza’s office today.

“The fact that, under Governor Rauner, the state allowed its bill backlog to grow to a point where we incurred nearly two decades worth of late payment interest penalties in just over two years is asinine,” Comptroller Mendoza said. “Imagine what that money could have done to improve conditions for residents at the Quincy Veterans Home, build roads and other infrastructure or fund public schools. This puts a massive price tag on missed opportunities due to a failure in leadership. Going forward, my Office will continue to pursue a legislative agenda that stresses accountability and requires the Governor to address these costs and tell taxpayers how he plans to cover them.”

On Friday, the Illinois House of Representatives unanimously passed legislation supported by Comptroller Mendoza and sponsored by Representative David McSweeney, R-Barrington Hills, to require governors to identify and account for the cost of late payment interest penalties in their yearly budget proposal.

 

###

You can download the PDF version of this release here.