Illinois Comptroller Susana Mendoza is one step closer to gaining the ability to get a closer look at the state’s giant pile of unpaid bills on a monthly basis
Chicago Sun Times, October 26, 2017
SPRINGFIELD—Illinois Comptroller Susana Mendoza is one step closer to gaining the ability to get a closer look at the state’s giant pile of unpaid bills on a monthly basis — a move the Democrat achieved with unanimous support on Wednesday in an Illinois House veto override.
The Illinois Senate plans to take up the override in November.
The Debt Transparency Act would require state agencies to report monthly the amount of bills being held, liabilities that are being appropriated and liabilities that may have late interest penalties. State agencies currently submit their unpaid bills once a year in October.
The state’s bill backlog is at a staggering $16.5 billion, according to the comptroller’s office.
Rauner vetoed the measure on Aug. 18, saying “the inclination” to be more transparent about the state’s finances is a “good one.” But he said her bill “more closely resembles an attempt by the Comptroller to micromanage executive agencies than an attempt to get the information most helpful to the monitoring of state government.”
Though the veto message appeared to take a political shot at Mendoza, bill sponsor state Rep. Fred Crespo, D-Hoffman Estates, said the intent of the bill wasn’t a continuation of the Mendoza-Rauner war.
“I know on her end I can attest to this, it was never political. It’s just doing the right thing,” Crespo said.