News

Sheila's Reflections

Better late than never

March 7, 2017

Includes "Yesterday Illinois State Comptroller Susana A. Mendoza finally released the state’s fiscal year 2016 financial report. This was 251 days after the fiscal year end, which is considered late even under the loose government standard of 180 days. More than 30 states had released their reports before Illinois."

Our national debt: one veteran's view

September 19, 2016

Guest post by H. Lee Fisher, includes "The risks posed by our national debt places this nation in self-destruct mode. Our politicians can continue to manipulate accounting records and conceal our real debt..."

Illinois Teachers Retirement System underfunding equals 679% of covered payroll.

August 12, 2016

If instead of paying Illinois teachers for the next six and half years, their salaries were diverted to their pension plan, there still won't be enough money to cover all promised benefits.

Illinois transportation lockbox

July 21, 2016

Includes, "The amendment is an attempt at circumventing some of the accounting gimmicks used to balance the state budget."

When will Illinois' finances come to a head? 

June 16, 2016

Includes, "When will the governor and legislators come to their senses? When the state can't borrow any more money any more."

FASAB's creative accounting

April 28, 2016

Includes, "Did you know that the federal government does not follow the same accounting standards that they require major corporations to follow?"

The creditor's plight 

April 26, 2016 

Guest blog post by William Glasgall. He is director of state and local programs at the Volcker Alliance in New York.

Are vendors and nonprofits de facto creditors to Illinois? 

April 20, 2016 

With Leslie Munger's delayed payments to state officials, office holders have joined the ranks of de facto creditors to the state. 

Illinois Budget: Defining & Funding the Essential Priorities Recap

April 13, 2016

My recap on Monday's event that we co-hosted with the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform 

Illinois finally releases its audited financial report

April 12, 2016

My thoughts on the state's recently released financial report. 

TIA focuses on the numbers, rather than solutions

February 17, 2016

My response to a Facebook comment regarding Gov. Rauner’s 2017 budget address today.

Governor Brown's State of the State

January 1, 2016

Includes, "Yesterday I listened to Governor Jerry Brown’s State of the State with an ear out for the true financial state of California."

The State of the Union

January 14, 2016

Includes, "The federal government is the largest financial institution in the world, yet the President did not discuss our financial position."

It's Not Just an Accounting Thing 

December 3, 2015

Includes, "State and Local Governments' Balance Sheets Are About to Explode"

Can the US Government Gobble Up $339 Billion in One Day?

November 5, 2015

Includes "At the same time Americans guzzled on Halloween candy, the federal government gorged on debt..."

Six Social Security myths and truths

October 30, 2015

Includes "Governor Christie is correct, politicians and government officials have created many myths about Social Security and Medicare..."

What is a surplus?

October 28, 2015

Includes "Watch out when government officials tell you they have a surplus..."

Two doomsday scenarios

October 14, 2015

Includes "there are two possible nightmare scenarios for America's financial future...