Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker said the state's new budget provides support for kids from the time they are born until the time the head off to, and graduate from, college.

Pritzker's continued with his budget victory laps. His latest had him talking about getting kids ready for college at the United Negro College Fund scholarship gala on Saturday.

"Every child, and I mean every child, deserves quality child care, a quality K-12 education, and the best possible chance for a bright future. No matter what ZIP code they live in, no matter the income level of their parents, no matter of the color of their skin," Pritzker said Saturday night. "And I'm really proud to say that I signed a balanced and bipartisan budget for the state of Illinois that makes historic investments in education."

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The governor said the budget provides more for early childhood programs, public schools and colleges and universities in the state.

"We expanded the Child Care Assistance program to cover 10,000 more children. We increased the Early Childhood Block Grant by $50 million, putting more money into early childhood education than ever before," the governor said. "As students move into kindergarten and beyond, K-12 education will get an increase of $378 million, bringing investments into schools that need it most."

The governor said the new budget doesn't leave college students out.

"Along with UNCF, we're making transformative investments that will allow many more of our students to go to college and get their degree," Pritzker said. "In the state of Illinois, any student that wants to go to college should be able to afford to go to college."

(Copyright WBGZ Radio / www.AltonDailyNews.com)