- Associated Press - Wednesday, February 14, 2018

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Reaction to Gov. Bruce Rauner’s 2019 budget plan unveiled Wednesday:

- Democratic Sen. Daniel Biss of Evanston, a candidate for governor: “He’s taking the money from the tax increase that he’s claimed to have opposed and spending it, and in the meantime going after working people and property taxpayers. It’s backwards, it’s illogical and it’s a sign of three years of failure.”

- Senate Republican Leader Bill Brady of Bloomington: “Gov. Rauner delivered on his pledge and presented a budget proposal that is both balanced and holds the line on taxes.”

- Democratic Senate President John Cullerton of Chicago: “It appears much of this is the governor recycling previous proposals. He’s going after public sector employees’ health insurance, again. He’s going after retired teachers’ health insurance, again.”

- Bob Daiber, Democratic candidate for governor: “Bruce Rauner today proposed a huge property tax increase, and I oppose that. He imagines $700 million in savings by shifting the cost of teacher pensions from the state to local school districts. That $700 million obligation doesn’t miraculously disappear. It is simply shifted to local property tax.”

- House Republican Leader Jim Durkin of Western Springs: “It is now time for the General Assembly to come together in a bipartisan manner to do its work and enact a long overdue balanced budget that Illinois taxpayers deserve.”

- Democratic state Treasurer Michael Frerichs: “I don’t think there’s an appetite for the General Assembly to push their expenses off on local school districts and municipalities so they can increase property taxes.”

- Chicago Democratic Rep. Greg Harris: “It is already apparent that the governor’s budget once again asks legislators to turn their backs on the middle class by slashing critical care for those in need and enacting a pension scheme that would take more than $1 billion out of our classrooms.”

- Democratic Sen. Andy Manar of Bunker Hill: It is “a proposal that spends upward of $400 million more on K-12 education but results in less equity. On its face, that cost-shift provision he’s proposing would shift those pension obligations onto local property taxpayers.”

- Comptroller Susana Mendoza of Chicago: “Instead of taking the opportunity to present today to the taxpayers a road map to fiscal stability, it’s more like a road trip to ‘Fantasy Island.’ The reality of it is that you can’t balance a budget which is wishful thinking and pixie dust and magic beans.”

- Wheaton GOP Rep. Jeanne Ives, candidate for governor: “Some of his initiatives really should have happened three years ago. It’s pretty disappointing. Even with that pension shift, he has to give the locals the ability to actually control those costs and that’s not what we’re seeing.”

- J.B. Pritzker, Democratic candidate for governor: “I just don’t know that there’s anything believable here and unfortunately I think that does head us toward the problem of no proposed balanced budget.”

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