State Senator Emil Jones, III (D-Chicago) offered the following statement after the Senate voted to advance a bipartisan balanced budget:

“Today, we came together and voted for a budget deal after finally reaching a bipartisan agreement that will allow us to fund critical government programs and services.

“The full-year package we passed includes funds to education, MAP grants, Medicaid and childcare services. All of these programs are essential and should be appropriately funded to provide stability to the people we serve.
“For the health of Illinois families, we extended funding to health insurance and the Medicaid Program. Earlier this year, the governor proposed a 4 percent cut to Medicaid, which would have caused more bleeding and suffering to our most vulnerable populations. When negotiating at the bargaining table, I and my colleagues worked to ensure safety-net hospitals were protected and received their fair share in the budget deal.

“Safety-nets, unlike other hospitals, lose millions of dollars, as they take Medicaid patients almost exclusively, and Medicaid only covers 50 to 70 percent of the cost of providing care.

“I am also proud to say we have included and increased funding for P-12 education. Chicago Public Schools will reap the benefits under the new funding formula.

“The investments of the bipartisan budget deal will positively impact the lives of Illinois children and families and I was happy to support the measure.”

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