Illinois Radio Network

State's Debt Deeper than Expected According to One Group

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Get out your checkbook! The group Truth in Accounting says every taxpayer in Illinois is responsible for $29,200 of the state's debt.

Truth in Accounting founder and CEO Sheila Weinberg says state government doesn't count pension liability, which means pension checks, as part of the budget. She does count those costs, and says the state really has a $140 billion budget that carries a $120 billion deficit.

Weinberg says her group is not opposed to pensions, but says if the state has them, it has to fund them.

Asked if the state wasn't supposed to be better off when former Governor Rod Blagojevich was ousted, she replied, 'That's a little political. She did say that the budget picture was bound to get worse no matter who was in office. Weinberg says she feels sorry for whoever wins the governor's office in the upcoming election, because the financial picture is so bad.