- Cape student sues, accuses school officials of slamming her to ground multiple times (04/28/16)41
- Bob Evans restaurant in Cape Girardeau among chain's 21 closings (04/26/16)9
- Missouri House votes to allow concealed weapons without permits (04/28/16)6
- Two hurt in motorcycle wreck on Interstate 55 (04/25/16)1
- Law firm requests information about Cape's traffic cameras (04/25/16)2
- Local lawmakers split over failed medical marijuana bill; voters may have a say (04/26/16)19
- Police report filed, but no charges in incident at Cape Central (04/29/16)19
- Tanker truck catches fire near Oak Ridge (04/24/16)7
- Local company makes eco-friendly kitty litter that cuts cat-box smell (04/25/16)
- Senator introduces bill for I-57 that would connect Sikeston with Little Rock (04/28/16)4
Illinois governor calls in lawmakers on holiday
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- Hoping to break a stalemate over the state's budget crisis, Gov. George Ryan took the extraordinary step of calling lawmakers into special session Monday and asking them to raise taxes by $590 million.
He proposes raising cigarette taxes 50 cents a pack, or $285 million, casino taxes $185 million and a tax on real estate transfers $120 million.
Ryan's plan also would cancel a tax break for businesses, saving the state about $240 million.
Ryan wants to cut about $260 million from the already-Spartan budget he proposed in February, his aides said. That would include cutting about 6,500 state jobs, closing a prison in Sheridan, reducing college scholarship money by $20 million and more.
"This budget is a tough proposition to accept, but the alternatives before you -- stalemate, deadlock and inaction -- are worse," Ryan said to lawmakers in a prepared statement.
The Republican governor reversed some of the proposals from his first budget speech, such as closing a state prison in Vienna -- he would close the Sheridan prison instead -- and ending numerous education grants so the money could be used for general school needs.
Plummeting revenue quickly made Ryan's February budget proposal irrelevant. Officials realized state government actually would take in less money this year than the year before, the first time that has happened in nearly half a century.