Toro BudgetAddressEOS PinkSPRINGFIELD —After lengthy budget negotiations, State Senator Natalie Toro was pleased to vote for the Fiscal Year 2025 Budget – which will deliver on investments to early childhood education, the child tax credit, and disability services.

“Financial barriers to early childhood education can set kids back years in their educational development—something I witnessed firsthand as a former kindergarten teacher with students who struggled to catch up to their peers,” said Toro (D-Chicago). “All children in Illinois deserve access to high-quality early childhood education, and these initiatives will make these fundamental building blocks more accessible.”

The proposed budget includes $14 million to the Department of Early Childhood, and $4.3 million to support the Dolly Parton Imagination Library early childhood literacy program. It also includes $50 million for a child tax credit to help working families with children under the age of three.

Additionally, the proposed budget provides pay raises for direct service providers and funds the Home Services Program, allocating additional funds to support growing caseloads. As a proud advocate for people with disabilities, Senator Toro is hopeful these investments will have a positive impact on Illinoisans with disabilities and their caregivers.

“People with disabilities deserve to be treated with dignity, and that includes having support from a robust staff at developmental centers that can help meet their needs,” said Toro. “I am proud to support a budget that priorities the care and safety of people with disabilities with these investments, and its support for direct service providers.”

The Fiscal Year 2025 budget passed the Senate Sunday.