Illinois lawmakers have agreed on how much money will be available for next year's budget, now they have to decide how much they'll actually spend on services. The state Senate yesterday joined the House in approving a revenue estimate of $33.7 billion, or about $200 million less than Governor Pat Quinn's estimate. It was approved 52-1. The figure amounts to an upper limit for the fiscal year starting July 1. But much of the money will go to paying pensions and old bills, leaving less for day-to-day government services. Senate Republican Leader Christine Radogno says deciding how much to spend will be the most difficult challenge for legislators.
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