On Aug. 1, Gov. Bruce Rauner issued an amendatory veto to Senate Bill 1, an education funding bill that would distribute new state dollars to districts based on need, while maintaining the current level of funding each district receives.
His veto included a series of changes to the bill, including some that addressed funding for Chicago Public Schools.
“With my changes, our state ensures that enough resources flow to children in the poorest and most disadvantaged school districts across the entire state," Rauner said in a statement. "And my changes ensure that the education funding system in our state is fair and equitable to all students in Illinois.”
The matter now heads to the General Assembly, where lawmakers will decide whether or not to uphold Rauner's changes.
Here is what some state legislators representing parts of the suburbs had to say about the veto.
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state Sen. Chris Nybo, R-Elmhurst
“Our children’s right to a quality education should never once be a partisan decision, but instead a unifying issue. The Democrats have wasted two months holding on to the school funding bill – gambling our children’s education, rather than negotiating in good faith to reach a compromise. As promised, the Governor issued an amendatory veto that is fair and equitable to every school district in Illinois without unfairly tipping the scale toward Chicago. Now it’s time we get back to Springfield and pass this legislation to ensure every single school opens on time this month.”
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state Sen. Tom Cullerton, D-Villa Park
“Once again the governor chose campaigning over our children. Using catch phrases to pit folks throughout the state against each other is not leadership, it is posturing and it hurts our entire state. The governor agreed with 90% of the school funding legislation yet vetoed it. He called negotiating an outrageous tactic. I will continue to work in a bipartisan manner to find solutions for our state as I have done in the past. I encourage Governor Rauner to do the same.”
state Sen. John Curran, R-Downers Grove
“Everyone in Springfield should all be working toward the same, unified goal – fair and equitable school funding for all Illinois students. Democrat legislators held on to the school funding bill for two months, ignoring the needs of our schools and students and stoking fears that school doors may not open on time this month. Within 24 hours of the bill’s release, the Governor issued his promised amendatory veto to advance this bill. His changes are fair to every school district and more equitable to low-income and disadvantaged students throughout Illinois. We are all still open to negotiations, but I strongly urge my colleagues to take action as soon as possible to ensure our schools receive the funding they rely on."
state Sen. Don Harmon, D-Oak Park
“Today, Gov. Rauner had the opportunity to fix the worst school funding formula in the nation. He had a chance to sign legislation that brings equality to a system that currently shortchanges the school districts that need our help the most. I am disappointed that the governor put politics ahead of the needs of our state’s children, but I will continue to work with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to make sure they get the education they deserve.”
state Rep. Silvana Tabares, D-Chicago
“It is infuriating that even after getting 90 percent of what he wanted in our education funding reform plan, Governor Rauner chose to put regional politics ahead of our children’s futures. The current system is broken because it discriminates against poorer communities. Our plan, Senate Bill 1, would have given all children the necessary tools for a brighter future, regardless of where they lived. Governor Rauner had the opportunity to be a champion of education, like he promised the people of Illinois he would be, but once again, he has failed them. I will continue working with all of my colleagues to do whatever it takes to ensure that all children have a future worthy of their promise.”