How federal stimulus money will be allocated in Illinois

Overview

President Biden recently signed into law a $1.9 trillion package to help further stimulate the economy in the wake of COVID. The massive amount of money will be allocated to all 50 states in various ways. This piece analyzes how much Illinois will receive and how that money will be allocated throughout the state.

Revenue Allocation

The net total being allocated to Illinois is about $21.7 billion. Figure 1 below illustrates how this money will be more narrowly allocated.

Figure 1 created by Prairie State Policy via data from The Chicago Sun-Times.

Most of the stimulus money be allocated to the state and municipalities. The state is expected to receive $7.5 billion with $5.3 billion going to municipalities. It should be noted, however, that media outlets have reported that municipalities will actually receive $5.5 billion. It is unclear where the extra money will be allocated towards, possibly township governments.

The city of Chicago will receive a separate amount of $1.8 billion. In effect, the net total being allocated to municipalities, including the city of Chicago, is roughly $7 billion. Figure 2 below illustrates how that total is divvied up as a percentage.

Figure 2 created by Prairie State Policy

How the $7.5 billion will be spent?

Governor Pritzker and other public managers are currently deliberating how the state should spend the money. However, the stimulus package does come with provisions, such as using the money to pay down pension obligations. Speculation is that the state will direct a large chunk to debts incurred from the COVID pandemic and additional health care measures.

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