Local school's futures in jeopardy

LOVES PARK, Ill. (WIFR) -- For the first time in history, Illinois schools have not received their first general state aid payment less than two weeks before classes start up again in Rockford.

"We're parents, we're students, we're business owners, we're professionals; we're all walks of life," says Caroline Crozier, Education Chair for Illinois' chapter of LULAC.

She believes passing Senate Bill One is what it will take to give Illinois and local students the education they deserve.

Now that Governor Bruce Rauner has used an amendatory veto to send Senate Bill one back to lawmakers, city and state leaders are meeting to show support for a bill they believe is the most fair.

Local superintendents say they will all be able to open their doors this fall by pulling from property taxes, but they are unsure how long those doors will be able to remain open before they are forced to pull from reserves.

"[The amendatory veto] will put us into a state of deterioration that will take years to mend," says Hononegah Schools Superintendent, Lynn Gibson.

"It takes about a million dollars for Rockford Public Schools to be open for one day. It does not take long for local property taxes to be spent down," says Rockford Public Schools Superintendent, Dr. Ehren Jarret.

"If Senate Bill one was really well and good, the governor would support it. Why would we not support a bill that was fair for our area?" says Illinois Republican State Senator, Dave Syverson, "We've met for months to reach a compromise, and then they just say, 'Nah, we're just gonna go back to what our initial offer was: A bail-out for Chicago. That's how a bully acts," continues Syverson.

The Governor returned the bill with changes he believes should be made before he would support the plan.

"The children of Illinois do not wear 'D's or "R's. They're waiting for us to do what's right for them," says Illinois Democratic State Senator, Litesa Wallace.

Sunday, the Senate will vote on whether or not to override the governor's changes. If the vote goes through, the vote will move to the house.

A non-partisan website called Politifact ruled that the governor's claim of it being a Chicago bailout is false because the bill does away with block grants and only gives Chicago schools what it gives every other district when it comes to pensions.