Pritzker Addresses Budget Needs After Riots

ILLINOIS — Gov. J.B. Pritzker talked about the state budget Tuesday at an event aimed at quelling violence across Illinois.

Vandalism and looting have been commonplace the past week in numerous cities around the state in the wake of George Floyd’s death in police custody in Minnesota. The National Guard and Illinois State Police have been deployed and a state of emergency has been declared in nine counties.

The governor appeared with other community leaders at KLEO art residences in Chicago when the topic of the state budget came up. Pritzker said the events of the past few days had made it clear that racism should be addressed in the state budget.

“Our values I think are clear to people and we need to express them in our budget,” Pritzker said. “I think this last budget does express those values, but over the last five days, I think that it has been brought to the fore that our black and brown communities that have been neglected are the ones that we need to focus on.”

Pritzker said he believes the problems the state is experiencing now can be addressed in a state budget.

“We have systemic racism that also has to be addressed in a state budget,” the governor said. “I often say that budgets are a moral document.”

Pritzker said the state is looking to the federal government for funding to make sure it can support the basic functions of Illinois.

The Center Square – Kevin Bessler

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