Illinois Is $8.5 Billion in Arrears

     SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (CN) – The Illinois Comptroller’s Office has nearly $4.3 billion in overdue bills, and other departments owe nearly as much, because the state doesn’t have the money, Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka said.
     The total amount of overdue debt comes to $8.5 billion, according to Baar Topinka’s office.
     Baar Topinka delivered the sobering news during her quarterly report. She said her office is still paying bills dating back to Sept. 1. That means organizations that provide services for the state, including businesses, hospitals, schools and charities, must wait months to be paid for their work.
     There is good news though. Baar Topinka told The Associated Press that the cash crunch is better than it was at the same point in the two previous years. State lawmakers last year approved various spending cuts and tax increases to help alleviate Illinois’ financial woes.

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