Experts predict that Illinois could lose $1 billion in federal grants if leaders in Washington allow the nation to fall off the so-called ``fiscal cliff.'' But they say the state could be hit far worse by the recession that's sure to follow. That could mean another $1 billion in lost revenue. President Barack Obama and congressional leaders must reach a deal on raising revenue and cutting spending by month's end to avoid automatic tax increases and across-the-board cuts from taking effect. The National Conference of State Legislatures estimates Illinois could get about $1 billion less in programs for education, housing, defense and more. But recession is the greater fear. State Revenue Department officials estimate a recession could choke income and sales tax revenue by an estimated $1 billion through mid-2014.
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