Municipalities will need to (eventually) invest in aging water lines

By: Christopher Ryan Crisanti A recent front-page story from The Chicago Tribune noted that nearly 8 of every 10 residents live in communities with high exposure to lead in their tap water from very old and depreciating service line pipes. Many, if not nearly all, of pipes in Illinois were installed over 100 hundred yearsContinue reading “Municipalities will need to (eventually) invest in aging water lines”

Obama’s healthcare fight in the General Assembly

Overview Before he was the architect of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the nation’s most significant health care legislation since Medicare and Medicaid, Barack Obama’s passion for providing health insurance to low and middle class families stemmed from his time as a state legislator in the General Assembly. As a state senator representing Chicago’s Southside,Continue reading “Obama’s healthcare fight in the General Assembly”

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.Continue reading “How federal stimulus money will be allocated in Illinois”

Municipal Snow Management During the Winter

Overview Illinois, especially the northern part of the state, falls victim of a high abundance of snow during the winter. Massive snow fall not only creates inconvenience, but potentially dangerous conditions. Moreover, poor planning can deplete reserves and put a strangle hold on budgets as municipalities coop with maintenance of roads, snow removal, liability claims,Continue reading “Municipal Snow Management During the Winter”

The History, Benefits, and Concerns of the Illinois State Lottery

By: Quinn Newman Overview  The Illinois Lottery was established in 1974 as a way to help fund Chicago’s K-12 school programs as well as many other causes over the years. The lottery generates about $3 billion per year with the state collecting over $700 million. Originally intended to help fund education, the program has receivedContinue reading “The History, Benefits, and Concerns of the Illinois State Lottery”

What is the Local Government Distribution Fund?

Overview The recent legislation to adopt police reforms (House Bill 3653) concerned many about a penalty if municipalities did not install body cameras for police officers by 2025. If the municipality failed to comply with the requirement, it would have face a 20 percent reduction in state funding from its Local Government Distribution Fund (LGDF)Continue reading “What is the Local Government Distribution Fund?”

Why Federal Economic Stimulus Matters for State and Local Governments

By: Christopher Ryan Crisanti Fiscal stimulus is not meant to simply be a generous act by the federal government to provide financial help to struggling Americans. Rather, the public policy serves a major economic purpose to stimulate economic activity by increasing aggregate demand for goods and services. In normal economic times, the Federal Reserve reliesContinue reading “Why Federal Economic Stimulus Matters for State and Local Governments”

The State’s Bond Ratings Over the Years

Overview A bond rating grades the credit worthiness of the state or municipality. The stronger the bond rating, the greater ability for the state or municipality to borrow at lower interest ratings and better deal to finance projects, fund services or service debt. This piece looks at the state’s bond ratings in prior years. TheContinue reading “The State’s Bond Ratings Over the Years”

Fiscal Pain From Fair Tax Defeat Will Be Broad-Based, Especially for Tax Payers

By: Christopher Ryan Crisanti Illinois voters convincingly struck down Gov. Pritzker’s fair tax initiative, which would have allowed the General Assembly to levy higher taxes on those who make more than $250,000 a year, while also providing relief to those who make less than $100,000. Gov. Pritzker recently responded by noting that painful cuts willContinue reading “Fiscal Pain From Fair Tax Defeat Will Be Broad-Based, Especially for Tax Payers”

How Redistricting Works

Overview The Illinois Constitution of 1970 mandates that legislative maps are changed every 10 years. Additionally, the Federal government also requires that a U.S. census be commissioned ever 10 years as well to record data on demographic and socio-economic changes in the country. The census data is used as a mechanism so that the newlyContinue reading “How Redistricting Works”