By Bob Balgemann


Many schools throughout Illinois just ended the 2015-16 term and are facing an uncertain future.

Given that, state Rep. Joe Sosnowski, R-Rockford, has launched a petition drive aimed at drumming up support for a stopgap bill, which would provide school districts with the funding they need in order to reopen on time later this summer.

Access to the petition is available by going to sosnowski@ilhousegop.org, or by calling his local office at (815) 547-3436.

State Rep. Bob Pritchard, R-Sycamore, who also covers Boone County, is a major co-sponsor of House Bill 6583.

The petition is addressed to House Speaker Michael Madigan, a Democrat, and reads:

“Many Illinois K-12 schools will not open in the fall without funding from the state. Please call House Bill 6583 to a vote, which will provide emergency funding for schools so they can open on time and operate until next year.

“These are students, teachers, and parents counting on you not to let politics get in the way of educating our students. Make the right decision. Fund our schools. Let the Legislature vote on House Bill 6583, which will give schools money to keep them operating until next year.”

Boone County schools in Districts 100 and 200 are not in danger of remaining closed at the outset of the 2016-17 term, Sosnowski said.

“I am continuing to monitor the individual districts,” he said. “But, from looking at financial conditions and fund reserves, it does not appear that any schools in our region should be in danger of not opening this fall. Moreover, most should be able to operate for six to eight months without a budget.”

Despite that immediate good news, he said it is imperative that the Legislative Majority (Democrats) pass a budget to the governor that is in balance and funds the schools.

“The funds are available for the K-12 educational system and the Speaker and Senate President need to support the governor’s proposed budget,” he said.



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