SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Julie Morrison declared the state’s Fiscal Year 2024 budget a fiscally responsible, smart spending plan that prioritizes affordability and accessibility to education at all levels.

“Increasing funding for public education, making college more accessible, and supporting business development all coincide with my priorities in the Senate,” said Morrison (D-Lake Forest). “This responsible spending decision is a vote of confidence in the future of our state.”

Morrison, a Senate Majority Whip, is Vice Chair of the Senate Appropriations-Health and Human Services Committee and was actively involved in budget negotiations. She was proud to support a budget that puts the state on a path toward fiscal responsibility and invests in education from preschool to college.

The budget continues the commitment of a $350 million increase toward the evidence based funding model for K-12 education, and increases Monetary Award Program funding by $100 million –  to a total of $701 million.

This increased funding allows nearly all community college students and 40% of public university students at or below median income levels to have their tuition and fees covered through MAP and Pell Grants.

“College affordability is an issue that affects parents all across the state,” Morrison “As a mother of college graduates, I know firsthand that the funding increase to higher education will provide financial security to many families and allow more children to further their education right here in Illinois.”

When Morrison first entered the General Assembly, she passed a measure to create the one-stop business portal to foster entrepreneurship – however, it was never funded. This year, she secured $10 million for the program, leading to a more streamlined process to start a business.

Further, the budget prioritizes business attraction and development, workforce training, economic assistance programs, and more. It includes funds to support job creation, improve commercial corridors and attract new businesses to the state.

“Illinois businesses drive our economy,” said Morrison. “Job creation and business development will bring forth greater financial stability that will invite companies to make our state their home.”

The FY 24 Budget will take effect July 1.