Cullerton: Rauner holding fuel-tax revenue 'hostage' during budget impasse
Normally, revenue received by a state from fuel taxes is returned to municipalities throughout the state to cover the costs of products and services to keep the roads healthy and safe.
In Illinois, however, those funds have not been paid in nearly six months, creating problems for drivers as supplies, such as road salt, and projects, such as snow-plow maintenance and road repairs, are beginning to lag behind.
“Governor Rauner is holding your money hostage,” State Sen. Tom Cullerton (D-Dist. 23) said recently. “Last weekend, DuPage County received over seven inches of snow. Imagine what will happen to our communities when we don’t have the money to put salt on our roads and keep snow plows running.”
Since the State of Illinois has yet to approve a budget, there is no authorization to distribute funds, and no plan for how much to send where. Last year, the community of Villa Park received $542,276 in redistributed fuel-tax revenues. Municipalities throughout DuPage County took in over $33.5 million. Those funds continue to be collected by the state, but local governments, and thus, Illinois residents, are not reaping any benefits.
Fearing that city governments would soon run out of money for these services, Cullerton and his Democratic Senate colleagues proposed SB 2046, an alternative plan, in September that would have opened the door to municipalities receiving the tax revenues. In a suspected political play by Gov. Bruce Rauner, every Republican Illinois senator voted against the plan.
“This is your money. It belongs in the hands of our municipalities to provide services vital to public safety,” Cullerton said. “Hopefully, Governor Rauner will soon realize he is holding our communities back, instead of moving us forward.”
Organizations in this Story
421 N County Farm Rd
Wheaton, IL - 60187
338 South Ardmore
Villa Park, IL - 60181