(Chicago, IL) — November 2, 2011. The Illinois Budgeting for Results Commission today issued their first report to Governor Pat Quinn and the state legislature and detaied their recommendations on how to restore Illinois’ fiscal health, bringing praise from Quinn and ridicule from some state vendors.
“Senator Kotowski, my staff and other commission members worked tirelessly to review the budget process and gather feedback from Illinois residents on how to ensure taxpayers are getting the results from government they expect and deserve,” Quinn said.
A leading non-profit human services agency CEO that contracts with the state however dismissed the budget panel’s work.
“The idea of ‘budgeting for results’ is well-intentioned, but the ‘results’ metrics on which future budget decisions are to based are so nebulous and vague that they are not worth the paper they’re written on—except if they are written lawmakers’ campaign brochures,” said the executive who declined to be identified for fear of jeopardizing the agency’s contracts with the state.
One of the commission’s recommendations is the development of seven “action oriented” results:
- Result 1 (Government Services): Illinois state government operates efficiently, effectively and transparently.
- Result 2 (Education): Illinois has a quality education system that provides equal opportunity for growth for all Illinois students.
- Result 3 (Economic Development): Illinois’ economy provides sufficient opportunities for residents to achieve economic well-being.
- Result 4 (Public Safety): Illinois has adequate public safety mechanisms and infrastructure in place to protect the lives, safety and property of residents.
- Result 5 (Healthcare): All Illinois residents have access to quality affordable health care.
- Result 6 (Human Services): Illinois assures that all residents, but particularly children, the elderly and disabled, are able to experience a quality life.
- Result 7 (Quality of Life): Illinois maintains a quality of cultural and environmental resources for Illinois residents and visitors.
Proposed by Quinn and enacted last year by the General Assembly, the commission is composed of legislators, members of the governor’s staff, outside experts and stakeholders. State Senator Dan Kotowski (D–Park Ridge) serves as chairman of the commission and was co-sponsor of the legislation.
“This process is going to shake up the way business has traditionally been done in Springfield,” Kotowski said. “The recommendations made by the commission will move the state closer to ending the automatic funding of programs.”
“This is just a fancy, feel-good way for Quinn, Kotowski, and other legislators to cut the state’s budget for poor, vulnerable citizens with a veneer of credibility,” said the president of another social service agency who asked not to be identified. “Let’s not fool ourselves about the motivation here.”