Same-old, same-old in Springfield.

The road to budget hell is paved with good intentions, especially if the pavers are oblivious to or ignorant of actual costs.

The taxpayers of Illinois continue to pay a high price for the last-minute sleight of hand that distinguishes our state’s budget practice from so many other more responsible ones across the country.

The latest example is a supposed $2 million addition to the 2020-’21 state budget to cover the costs of providing Medicaid health coverage to senior citizens who are living illegally in Illinois.

What’s $2 million, argued the sponsor of the proposal, then state Rep. and now U.S. Rep. Delia Ramirez.

It’s unclear where Ramirez came up with the $2 million estimate. After all, there was no official cost study done.

It turned out the $2 million estimate ballooned to $188 million in the first year. That’s not pocket change in a state facing the kind of desperate financial woes that Illinois is facing.

No matter; legislators have since expanded the program — dropping the age of eligibility from senior status to 55 and then to 42. Pending legislation would reduce it to 19.

As for the current estimated cost for the upcoming fiscal year that begins July 1, it’s up to $990 million.

Making the problem even worse is that the federal government isn’t helping to cover any of the costs — it’s usually 50-50 for Medicaid programs.

But the federal government doesn’t provide medical coverage to non-citizen illegal residents. So Illinois taxpayers have the privilege of picking up the entire tab, and it’s sure to grow exponentially higher.

Superminority Republicans recently used the only tool they have at their disposal — highlighting the skyrocketing spending at a news conference and pointing out the irresponsible budget practices that created it.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s administration responded with a litany of insults that deliberately ignored the specifics of the issue and boasted that Democrats have a “proven record of balancing the budget and improving state finances.”

It’s unfortunate that boastful rhetoric doesn’t solve financial problems, because this one is a biggie.

A program that didn’t exist four years ago and was passed in haste now threatens to eat up nearly $1 billion in funds that could have gone to education, infrastructure, law enforcement, mental health — the list could go on and on.

What happened here is an unfortunate repeat of the kind of top-down legislating that drops hundreds of pages of legislation — in this case, the budget — on legislators at the last minute and leaves no one but the authors with any idea of what’s in it and what the potential consequences could be.

Will Illinois ever learn? It’s hard to see why. It’s all part of a perverse business as usual that emphasizes power and secrecy over openness and accountability.