Madigan doomed school funding bill from start, McConchie says
Negotiations on the state's education funding measure, Senate Bill 1, were doomed from the beginning because of House Speaker Michael Madigan’s (D-Chicago) unwillingness to negotiate, according to Sen. Dan McConchie (R-Hawthorn Woods).
“Having sat in endless hours of negotiations over the past week … it didn’t matter what was put on the table,” McConchie told hosts Shaun Thompson and Dan Proft of "Chicago's Morning Answer" radio show. “They were going to walk away from it because Madigan is playing this game of just waiting until it gets to the point that he’s able to get what he wants, he’s able to peel off enough Republicans to do it, and he’s able to say to the governor at the end of the day, ‘You really don’t matter. I’m the only thing that matters in this state.’”
Proft is a principal of Local Government Information Services, which owns this publication.
McConchie said that downstate students would benefit from the removal of pension payments for Chicago Public Schools (CPS) – which Gov. Bruce Rauner has done via an amendatory veto. McConchie cited Cicero as one example of a city that would gain from removing the CPS payments.
“We attempted to really say, ‘OK, what is it that the speaker wants?’ McConchie said. "I spoke to the Senate president and said, ‘What is it that we can do to get to an agreement with the speaker?’ And he couldn’t tell us, because at the end of the day there was no deal, at least until the [concessions were] given, that the speaker was going to take.”