Illinois unpaid vendor debt eclipses $7 billion
The state of Illinois saw unpaid vendor debt increased to $7,118,390,941.56 as of June 5, up from May 25's total of $6,492,739,186.72.
According to recent data compiled by state Comptroller Susana Mendoza, much of the most recent debt has stemmed from late payment penalties, with the state registering more in late payment fees over the last three years than it did in the previous 18 years combined.
Amid all that red ink, several of the state’s major creditors have emerged to claim that they have not received interest payments in more than a year.
During the two-year period when the state operated without a balanced budget in place and the deficit ballooned to over $16 billion, Mendoza shared that prompt-payment penalties jumped to $1.14 billion—$100 million more than the total from 1998 up until that point.
In an effort to keep taxpayers in the loop about the state’s massive debt load, Mendoza recently initiated the Debt Transparency Act Report, which requires state agencies to report monthly liabilities in a manner outlined by the comptroller’s office.