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Bipartisan Measure Provides Lifeline to Human Service Providers

The General Assembly passed by overwhelming bipartisan votes a $714 million bill (Senate Bill 2038) to fund human services for fiscal year 2016. The measure is essential to providing immediate relief to providers across the state struggling to stay open more than ten months into the fiscal year.

However, it does not remove the need for a full budget for both FY 2016 and FY 2017 (which begins July 1) that requires billions of dollars in new revenue to maintain critical services and investments in the state’s future. SB 2038 follows the General Assembly’s approval three weeks ago of $600 million in emergency funding to state universities, community colleges, and the Illinois Student Assistance Commission for Monetary Award Program grants.

Among the items in SB 2038 are $248 million for the Department of Human Services and $243 million for the Department on Aging (with the majority of funding for the Community Care Program). It also contains funding for other agencies including the Department of Public Health and the Illinois Housing Development Authority. A spreadsheet of the line items in SB 2038 can be found here or below.

Approximately 65% of the money in SB 2038 comes from the Advancement for Human Services Fund. This fund receives 1/30th of net income tax receipts from individuals, trusts and estates. The remaining funds include specialized funds for the designated purposes such as the Drug Treatment Fund, Department of Human Services Community Services Fund, and the Illinois Affordable Housing Trust Fund.

The funds do not cover any services or programs currently provided and funded under a court order. Along with a state order covering employee salaries, numerous court orders and consent decrees cover a variety of services (including Medicaid) for the fiscal year.

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