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Lawmakers Override Rauner's Changes To 911 Funding Law

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Illinois lawmakers pushed aside Gov. Bruce Rauner’s objections to the law renewing and funding 911 services Saturday and overrode his amendatory veto that eliminated increases in service fees.

The House voted 90-22 and the Senate voted 43-1 to restore telephone surcharges for emergency services. That surcharge would boost fees in Chicago to $5, an increase of $1.10, and to $1.50 in the rest of the state, a hike of 63 cents.

The telecommunications act allowing fees to be collected and distributed for 911 centers expired Friday.

The bill also moved the “sunset date” for the fees and other telecommunications regulations to Dec. 31, 2020. In his amendatory veto message, Rauner said he had eliminated the sunset clauses so “9-1-1 would continue in Illinois without the General Assembly having to pass legislation to renew the service.”

Following the override, the governor slammed legislative Democrats for the lack of a new budget before the end of the fiscal year.

“While the majority in the General Assembly has been unable to move forward with a balanced budget, it has found the time to inflict further abuse on Illinois taxpayers,” he said in a statement. “We tried to stop this cynical legislation by utilizing an amendatory veto that would have ensured that emergency services continued without … an excessive, unwarranted tax hike.”

Illinois lawmakers pushed aside Gov. Bruce Rauner’s objections to the law renewing and funding 911 services Saturday and overrode his amendatory veto that eliminated increases in service fees.

The House voted 90-22 and the Senate voted 43-1 to restore telephone surcharges for emergency services. That surcharge would boost fees in Chicago to $5, an increase of $1.10, and to $1.50 in the rest of the state, a hike of 63 cents.

The telecommunications act allowing fees to be collected and distributed for 911 centers expired Friday.

The bill also moved the “sunset date” for the fees and other telecommunications regulations to Dec. 31, 2020. In his amendatory veto message, Rauner said he had eliminated the sunset clauses so “9-1-1 would continue in Illinois without the General Assembly having to pass legislation to renew the service.”

Following the override, the governor slammed legislative Democrats for the lack of a new budget before the end of the fiscal year.

“While the majority in the General Assembly has been unable to move forward with a balanced budget, it has found the time to inflict further abuse on Illinois taxpayers,” he said in a statement. “We tried to stop this cynical legislation by utilizing an amendatory veto that would have ensured that emergency services continued without … an excessive, unwarranted tax hike.”

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