As leaders extend session with budget unfinished, several sweeping last-minute bills surface

Lawmakers won’t finish their spring legislative session by Friday’s scheduled adjournment as negotiations over the state budget remain in flux. 

The May 19 end to the General Assembly’s spring session had been on the calendar for months, but it’s not a deadline; lawmakers still have until the end of May before a constitutional trigger raises the threshold on the number of votes needed to pass legislation immediately to a three-fifths majority. 

Democratic legislative leaders in the General Assembly issued a statement Friday evening announcing they’ll return next week instead of working through the weekend. Both chambers will be back on Wednesday and Thursday, while the House has scheduled Friday session as well.

House Republicans’ lead budget negotiator Rep. Norine Hammond, R-Macomb, said members of her party have been essentially uninvolved or uninvited to budget negotiations throughout the spring session. 

“We have attempted numerous meetings with the House Democratic budgeteer, with the speaker and the governor,” Hammond said at a Capitol news conference. “Only one group has met with us on more than one occasion; that is the governor and his team. No negotiations with others have occurred.” Read the entire article at Capitol News Illinois