Illinois still doesn’t have a budget, the state has practically defaulted on millions in payments to service providers, can’t even pay its lottery winners, but state Democrats have introduced a bill that would make Barack Obama’s birthday a “state holiday” — meaning state workers would have yet another paid holiday added to their generous benefits.
State Rep. André Thapedi and three other Chicago Democrats sponsored House Bill 4654on February 2 aimed at making Obama’s birthday, August 4, a state holiday. The status means state offices and schools would be closed and state employees would get a paid day off.
But even if they got this dubious benefit, state workers are having other problems. Last September, the state stopped paying health care claims on state employee’s self-insured plans. The move affected up to 150,000 state employees and is likely a harbinger of troubles to come.