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FY16 Budget
Legislature’s budget commission reports continued shortfall in State revenues. A report for September 2015, compiled by the nonpartisan Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability (CGFA), shows that Illinois general funds receipts fell $382 million short of comparable figures for September 2015. This change reflects reductions in personal and corporate income tax rates that took effect on January 1, 2015, and is one of the pieces of background that lie behind the current State of Illinois budget crisis. Released on Thursday, October 1, the report can be found on page 6 of CGFA’s “September 2015 Monthly Briefing.”
The details may be a bit furry, but state Rep. Margo McDermed has proposed a new state law to make sure that animals used in research have a chance to be rescued and adopted later.

House Bill 4297 also tosses a bit of humanity into a legislature that has been fighting, well, like cats and dogs, McDermed, R-Mokena, said.

Dubbed the "Beagle Freedom Bill" because beagles are most popular dog breed used in laboratory research, the bill would require state universities and research facilities associated with state institutions to offer cats and dogs to rescue organizations for adoption instead of euthanizing them. Read more in the Chicago Tribune.
Scammers are trying to collect a phony $125 “fee” by telling businesses in Illinois that the money is owed to the state to process their “Annual Minutes Records Form.”

Businesses are approached by the Illinois Council for Corporations, which sends them a form similar to a legitimate report required by the secretary of state’s office.

“We are concerned that companies are filing the form and paying the $125 fee because they believe they are filing their annual report with us, as required by law,” said Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White. WQAD has the story.

Illinois College Application Month (ICAM) kicks off in October with events and activities throughout the month to help students and returning adults increase career opportunities and improve earning power by applying to and going to college. From college application and financial aid workshops to college treasure hunts and college gear day, ICAM activities will provide direct assistance to students with the college search and application process.

Supported by the Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC), ICAM is part of the nationwide American College Application Campaign® (ACAC) initiative which seeks to increase the number of students who are applying to college early in their senior year, especially those who might not otherwise consider it.
Elgin one of five Illinois campuses to receive distinction

Elgin Community College (ECC) in Elgin today was recognized by the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) for achieving the Ready to Respond Campus designation after completing the program’s rigorous campus safety criteria.

The Ready to Respond Campus program aims to enhance campus safety through a comprehensive, community-based preparedness and response effort, including public safety, campus administration, faculty and students.  The initiative was launched statewide in 2014 following a pilot program in 2013. Participation in the program is voluntary and open to all institutions of higher education in Illinois.
The state of Illinois is entering its fourth month without a 2016 budget. Welcome to red October.

The pile of unpaid bills continues to rise. Small businesses that provide care to the most vulnerable are laying off workers. Public universities warn of staffing and financial aid cuts. Secretary of State Jesse White said his office can't afford to mail certain notices. And last week, a law enforcement official critical of police training cuts compared Gov. Bruce Rauner to a hostage-taker.

Yes, there are those who believe the freshman governor who inherited the state's decadeslong financial fiasco is to blame for today's wreckage. As if it's easy to cure addicted-to-risk-taking-and-high-spending gamblers.

As the rhetoric heats up, a curious date looms: Oct. 20. Lawmakers won't even return to Springfield until then. They're busy preparing for their re-election campaigns. Budget impasse? What impasse?

They've given taxpayers no confidence that they'll make a serious effort at passing a balanced budget even when they return. The supermajority Democrats in the House and Senate sent Rauner a budget in May, knowing it was wildly out of balance. Like their budget the year before. It was a game of chicken, cavalierly playing with the lives of those who rely on Springfield for help. Read the entire editorial in the Chicago Tribune.
FY16 Budget
Secretary of State suspends mailing motor vehicle registration renewal reminders. Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White announced Monday that his office will suspend mailing out vehicle registration renewal reminder notices to the public due to the lack of a state budget.

White noted that by suspending this service, which will save approximately $450,000 per month, his office will be able to prolong the ability to mail vehicle registration renewal stickers, titles and license plates to vehicle owners for a few months longer before the postage account is depleted.