Illinois’ unpaid vendor debt spiked to $9,386,070,931.79 during the week ending March 5, a significant jump from the previous week when debt stood at $8,520,183,376.48.
The nearly $1 billion jump represents the largest spike since Gov. Bruce Rauner moved to issue $6 billion worth of general obligation bonds earlier this year with all the funds being earmarked for the state’s massive debt load.
Over the last several months, the state’s unpaid debt has dwindled to roughly half of where it stood for most of 2017, when it swelled to record highs easily topping $16 billion.
Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner
More recently, Rauner, who is being challenged by Rep. Jeanne Ives (R-Wheaton) in the March 20 Republican primary, kicked off talks for the next fiscal budget by calling for an end to what he called “wasteful spending.”
The state’s debt load regularly hit record highs during a two-year period where lawmakers operated with no balanced budget in place, resulting in the state’s debt load more than tripling.
In January, Comptroller Susana Mendoza released her first monthly debt transparency report, which indicated the state was hit with more than $1.03 billion in late payments during 2017. The debt transparency act went into effect on Jan. 1 and is aimed at keeping state legislators and residents abreast of the state’s financial status.