SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — Illinois Governor JB Pritzker gave his 2023 State of the State and Fiscal Year (FY) 2024 Budget Address Wednesday in-person at the State Capitol, and before a joint-session of state representatives and state senators.
The State of the State is traditionally more than a simple update on where Illinois is at, but rather a chance for the governor to outline his own policy agenda for the next year. Pritzker provided a preview of sorts at his second-term inauguration in January.
“I come to you with an agenda as ambitious and bold as our people are, thinking not only about the next four years but about the next 40,” Pritzker said in his Jan. 9 speech.
Without getting into specifics at the time, Pritzker promoted preschool for every child, making college more affordable, widespread health care, and permeant tax relief. However a plan to expand early childhood education has since been released.
The governor’s proposal is called Smart Start Illinois and includes:
- A spot in pre-school for every child in Illinois who wants one
- A provision to provide predictable funding to the state’s childcare system
- Investment in new early childhood facilities and expansion of existing locations
- Extending the reach of early childhood support and resources
In order to achieve the aforementioned results, Pritzker is expected to include $440 million in his proposed budget targeting a variety of efforts. He laid out the plan in more detail, along with a series of other proposals, during his address.