Gov. Rauner takes on opioids, property taxes in State of the Sta - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Gov. Rauner takes on opioids, property taxes in State of the State

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WSIL -- Just moments before Governor Bruce Rauner gave his State of the State address the Illinois House and Senate overrode his amendatory veto of an education funding bill.

The move didn't phase the governor as he discussed education and the state's economy.

"Today, we have an opportunity to turn yesterday into tomorrow, and make Illinois the powerhouse job creator it should be," Rauner said.

During his address Wednesday, Governor Rauner highlighted Illinois' rich history as a road map to a more successful future.

"It requires a laser-like focus on economic development and job creation and a bipartisan dedication to restore public trust," Rauner said.

The governor credits his administration for helping put 120,000 people to work and cut red tape for businesses.

But, he says more growth is impossible in the state's current political culture.

"Where once we joined to address our problems, we now divide to conquer the other side," Rauner said.

His call to lawmakers echoed past goals. He says ordinary people are victims of a rigged property tax system.

"It is a vicious form of oppression," Rauner said.

The governor wants voters to get tax relief through a referendum.

Rauner also says 80 percent of Illinoisans want term limits.

"The other 20 percent, it seems, are seated in this chamber.," joked Rauner.

A test of whether partisan politics can end is just around the corner.

"I will submit a balanced budget next month." ,Rauner said.

The news drew some laughs and lots of applause.

Rauner continued, "And I hope this year you guys will pass it instead of ignoring it." 

Despite the veto override earlier Wednesday, Rauner called changing how Illinois funds education a success.

"For most districts it will be a welcome and long overdue infusion of new money for their program," Rauner said.

The governor recently spent time at the Quincy Veterans Home where more than a dozen people have died from Legionnaire's Disease.

While improvements there are underway--more drastic actions may be needed.

"...we are investigating the possibility of entire system replacements, and perhaps even a new facility," Rauner said.

Rauner also set big goals when it comes to the opioid crisis.

"We are determined to reduce projected opioid deaths by more than one-third in the years ahead,"

But the true question is, "Can lawmakers and Rauner come together to make any of it happen?"

"...the seeds are planted. The work has begun. Now it is time to finish the job," Rauner said.

You can read Rauner's full State of the State Address below: .
 

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