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WNIJ's summary of news items around our state.

Democrats Fail To Undo Rauner's Child Care Cuts; Governor Backs Off Anyway

Amanda Vinicky

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner is standing by his decision to backtrack on cuts to a low-income daycare program. 

That comes even as Democrats in the Illinois House failed to pass legislation that would have forced Rauner to undo his changes to the state’s Child Care Assistance Program.

The program is meant to help parents out of poverty by subsidizing daycare, so they can work or go to school.

Rauner unilaterally slashed eligibility this summer. After months of outcry and a Democratic threat to pass legislation undoing his changes, Rauner announced on Monday he'd back off most of the cuts.

But Democrats, like Rep. Jehan Gordon-Booth of Peoria, still wanted the legislation. She says parents and daycare owners need certainty Rauner won't change his mind again.

"We have already seen over 70,000 children either rejected or kicked out of this program," Gordon-Booth said in debate.

Democrats fell one vote short of forcing Rauner's hand. In a statement, the governor indicated he'd still reverse most of his reductions to the program.

Brian Mackey formerly reported on state government and politics for NPR Illinois and a dozen other public radio stations across the state. Before that, he was A&E editor at The State Journal-Register and Statehouse bureau chief for the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin.