ILLINOIS HOUSE UNANIMOUSLY APPROVES BIPARTISAN LEGISLATION TO SHED MORE LIGHT ON THE STATE'S LATE PAYMENT INTEREST PENALTIES

The bill would require the Governor to make a full accounting of these costs

 

SPRINGFIELD, IL — The Illinois House has unanimously passed bipartisan legislation that will require governors to identify and account for the cost of late payment interest penalties in their budget proposals.  

 

“The bill backlog more than tripled under Governor Rauner. The state fell far behind on paying its bills and that cost taxpayers more than $1 billion in late payment interest penalties. Yet the Governor hasn’t had to account for those penalties in any of his budgets. That’s not right. Taxpayers deserve to know how the Governor plans to budget for them,” Comptroller Susana Mendoza said.  

 

Comptroller Susana Mendoza partnered with Representative David McSweeney, R-Barrington Hills, and his bipartisan cosponsors on House Bill 5814, which passed 110-0 Friday. The bill also requires the Governor’s Office of Management and Budget to include an estimate of interest penalties in its Annual Economic and Fiscal Policy Report. 

 

"I'm proud of my role in helping to pass the Debt Transparency Act. We must now shine light on the ultimate example of wasteful state spending – late payment interest penalties," Representative McSweeney said. 

 

Currently, state agencies are faced with determining whether to use their appropriations for late payment interest penalties or for services. Including these now-hidden costs in the governor’s budget will ensure they are fully accounted for and will make clear what appropriations he wants to use to pay for them.  

 

This additional transparency reform builds on Comptroller Mendoza's Debt Transparency Act, which passed last year with unanimous or near-unanimous overrides. Under that act, the Comptroller’s office publishes a monthly report that includes an estimate of the late payment interest penalties owed by the state, including on bills sitting at state agencies.

 

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You can download the PDF version of this release here.