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Gov. Pritzker to deliver Illinois budget address Wednesday

Ahead of the address, Pritzker outlined a list of proposed government efficiencies that he projected will save the state $225 million a year

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker plans to break down the state budget in his annual address Wednesday.

Ahead of the address, Pritzker outlined a list of proposed government efficiencies that are projected to save the state $225 million a year, while also boosting certain state-funded programs.

Among the money-saving efficiencies, the governor's office listed improvements in auditing and anti-fraud efforts, reduction of Department of Corrections expenses, and the refinancing of millions in medical bills to avoid late-payment interest costs.

"I believe strongly that effective government demands efficient government—and it's been a point of pride for my administration to act as wise fiscal stewards of Illinois' limited state resources, maximizing operational resources and saving hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars," Pritzker said in a press release.

"In the past, irresponsible management of state revenue and a failure to invest in the long-term health of our state and its people put us in a challenging fiscal position. But today, I'm proud to announce that for the coming year, our efficiencies and initiatives will yield at least $225 million in savings and will put the state in a position to save more than $750 million over the next three years."

Three of Pritzker's proposed programs, in particular, would benefit young people -- from pre-k to college age.

Pritzker has proposed to add $147 million in funding for the state's child welfare agency. The money would be used to hire more staff to the Department of Children and Family Services.

Funding for underfunded public schools could also increase by at least $350 million. Under the proposal, more teachers and social workers would be hired, and money would also be used to increase salaries and for property tax abatements.

The proposed Student Athlete Endorsement Act is modeled after a similar California law and would allow student-athletes to hire agents and use their name image or likeness.

The budget address is scheduled for noon.

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