ILLINOIS NEWS NETWORK
In a unanimous show of support for more open spending practices in state government, Illinois House Republicans joined Democrats Wednesday in voting to override Gov. Bruce Rauner's veto of the Debt Transparency Act.
The legislation, which still needs a successful override vote in the Senate, would require monthly reporting of the state's bills to the Comptroller's Office by all state agencies.
The bill is supported by Democrat Comptroller Susana Mendoza, who says she can't properly manage the state's finances if she doesn't know how much is owed. Current law requires such reporting annually.
Wednesday's vote was 112-0. When the bill initially passed the House in April, it passed by a margin of 70-40, with many Republican lawmakers opposing it.
In vetoing the measure, Rauner said the comptroller is trying to micromanage other executive departments and that out-of-date state technology will get in the way of reporting bills every month. The governor instead urged the comptroller’s office to release money for technology upgrades.
Illinois’ backlog of bills as of last Friday was $16.3 billion, but Mendoza’s office said it could be more than that because state departments aren’t required to report their expenditures regularly.