Yes, YOU. If you are a taxpayer in the Land of Lincoln, your share of Illinois’ bills is almost $27,000.
According to the Institute for Truth in Accounting (www.truthinaccounting.org), each Illinois citizen owes $26,800 for the combined total state debt. The Institute ranks Illinois’s per-capita debt as the third highest of all 50 states; falling behind Connecticut and New Jersey. The ranking includes the pension and retiree health care obligations. See the data at http://www.truthinaccounting.org/uploads/files/States_financial_burdens.pdf
Pardon the capital letters, but ILLINOIS’ PER CAPITA DEBT IS 3RD WORST IN THE NATION!!
So, if you are the kind that likes to keep score, we’re #3 in Financial Burden. But wait! If you study the chart you’ll see that our total financial obligation to operate the state is $110,631,129,000. (I’ll save you counting zeroes -that’s $110.6 Billion.) That $110.6 Billion is second only to California which needs $163,594,912,000 ($163.6 Billion) to operate. That’s better…. Were #2! (and like the old Avis commercial – we’re trying harder… we only have about half the population of California).
That staggering number should make us all squirm- and make our legislators ashamed of themselves. Not only has our state government mortgaged our lives, they’ve mortgaged our grandkid’s grandkids!
So for all the talk out of Springfield about the balanced Budget for fiscal 2011-12, they conveniently forgot to tell you about a pile of unpaid bills. I hope you have a stack of extra cash handy when the IOUs comes due.