- Associated Press - Wednesday, August 5, 2015

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Gov. Bruce Rauner plans to lay off at least 171 state employees because of Illinois’ budget crisis.

Rauner spokeswoman Catherine Kelly says the administration notified public-employee unions this week that the layoffs will be effective Sept. 30.

She says they are a result of Democrats sending Rauner a budget that’s $4 billion short of revenue. Union officials say layoffs could be avoided if Rauner would drop his “extreme political agenda.”

The Department of Natural Resources will lose 107 people. Many work for the Illinois State Museum, which Rauner has targeted for closure.

There are 17 positions in the Department of Transportation, 24 at the Illinois Commerce Commission, eight in both the Department of Agriculture and the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity and seven at the Illinois Emergency Management Agency.

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