Credit Downgrade Threats Loom Over Budget Talks
John Gregory -- Illinois Radio Network
The threat of a credit downgrade isn't going to move Gov. Bruce Rauner to raise income taxes.
The budget impasse has already claimed the credit rating of the state-supported corporation which runs Chicago's McCormick Place and Navy Pier, since the legislature didn't appropriate the money needed for a required monthly $20.8 million payment on its debt.
The state could be heading for a downgrade of its own, and while raising taxes may satisfy ratings agencies, Rauner doesn't seem willing to consider only raising revenue without his other proposals being included.
"I don't work for the credit rating agencies. I work for the people of Illinois," Rauner said, "and we are going to have a healthy state with a booming economy, rising wages, jobs for everybody, value for taxpayers, and the best schools in America."
Rauner says he wouldn't be surprised if more credit downgrades come if the budget battle drags on longer. The state has been on Standard & Poor's downgrade watch list since May, when the Illinois Supreme Court voided the state's 2013 pension reform law.