- Associated Press - Wednesday, July 26, 2017

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - The Latest on a special legislative session on school funding (all times local):

2:50 p.m.

House Speaker Michael Madigan is accusing Gov. Bruce Rauner of a “no compromise” position on a school funding bill that’s the source of the latest gridlock at the state Capitol.

The Chicago Democrat says the proposal is fair to all schools. The Republican governor has vowed to change it through his amendatory veto powers. Rauner says Chicago Public Schools receive a “bailout” in the bill, but he hasn’t detailed what he’d change in it.

Madigan spoke to reporters on the first day of a special session, where attendance was noticeably light.

At issue is a plan the Democrat-majority Legislature approved that changes how Illinois distributes school money. However, the Senate isn’t sending the bill to Rauner until Monday.

The special session is expected to continue through Friday and then again on Monday.


2 p.m.

Senate President John Cullerton says he hasn’t sent a school funding bill to Gov. Bruce Rauner yet because he wants to meet with him first. But the Chicago Democrat says he’ll now send it on Monday.

Cullerton spoke to reporters Wednesday, the first day of a special session called by Rauner to resolve the fight over the bill, which will determine whether schools get funding.

Rauner says he’ll rewrite the bill through his amendatory veto powers and reiterated his demand Monday for lawmakers to send it. But Cullerton says if Rauner does that and there aren’t enough votes to override, the bill dies and there isn’t another plan.

Cullerton accused Rauner of acting out of anger and questioned his “mental state” because of the turbulent month. Lawmakers approved a budget earlier this month over Rauner’s objections and Rauner fired numerous staff members.

Rauner says Cullerton refused to meet until Monday.


12:00 p.m.

Gov. Bruce Rauner has signed a measure that will halt increases of lawmaker cost-of-living pay adjustments, mileage reimbursement and other costs.

The Republican signed the plan into law Wednesday at the Capitol at the start of a special session, calling it an important step for taxpayers. The measure received wide and bipartisan support.

Rauner called lawmakers to Springfield starting Wednesday in an attempt to resolve a school funding fight. He told reporters at the bill signing that he justifies the cost of a special session because “children come first.”

Special session can run approximately $48,000 for a single day. The new law keeps that rate the same. It’ll freeze legislator per diem at $111, instead of jumping to $142. It’ll also keep mileage reimbursement at 39 cents per mile, instead of about 54 cents.


The bill is HB643.


12:15 a.m.

Illinois legislators are headed to the Capitol for a special session on school funding called by Gov. Bruce Rauner

At issue is a plan the Democrat-majority Legislature approved that changes how Illinois distributes school money. However, the Senate isn’t sending the bill to the Republican governor who says he’ll make changes through his amendatory veto powers. He objects to additional funding for Chicago Public Schools.

If lawmakers want to override, they’ll need a three-fifths majority vote, including Republicans.

Rauner claims Democrats are holding the bill hostage weeks before schools are scheduled to open. Democrats accuse Rauner of “political theater” and not revealing what he’ll change.

Lawmakers convene at noon Wednesday, but what they do depends on if the bill is sent to Rauner. They could also draft a new proposal.

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