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Madigan promises “aggressive economic reforms”

Wednesday, Jan 11, 2017

* According to Speaker Madigan’s spokesman, this op-ed “will be an element of the remarks the Speaker plans to deliver at the start of the 100th General Assembly later today in Springfield.” One of Madigan’s featured proposal here is a retread from 2014, when he also proposed cutting the corporate tax rate in half. And the House already voted yesterday to extend the EDGE tax credit for a few months. The stuff about not giving any special incentives to companies that export jobs to other countries may be new.

Anyway, here’s the Speaker…

The last two years have been extremely difficult for our state. But with the inauguration of a new General Assembly today, we have an opportunity for a new way forward. Regardless of how any of us feel about the proposals laid out by Gov. Bruce Rauner, the elected leaders of our state must face Illinois’ challenges together. Rather than placing blame and looking to find the worst in each other, we should focus on working together and finding common ground to address the issues facing our state.

In that spirit, I think we can all agree that legislators and the governor must take immediate action to address the state’s budget crisis. There are people across Illinois whose lives are forever altered in a negative way because of our lack of a budget. If we have a repeat of the last two years, there will be more people forever harmed across our state. We can all agree that can’t happen.

House Democrats agree with the governor that Illinois can and should improve our business climate. Improving our business climate will create new opportunities for families across Illinois and will provide a better standard of living for many of our state’s residents.

But House Democrats don’t agree that the only way to create jobs is to hurt the people who work in those jobs each day. I would like to suggest a better approach for improving our business climate than those who insist the only way to compete in a global economy is to join in a race to the bottom by cutting wages, and stripping away protections for workers in an effort to increase profits for businesses.

Crain’s Chicago Business columnist Joe Cahill recently studied Donald Trump and Mike Pence’s efforts to prevent the Carrier Corp. from outsourcing jobs from Indiana to Mexico. By committing $7 million in taxpayer incentives, they were able to keep one-third of the jobs in Indiana, but two-thirds of those jobs are still going to Mexico. No state in this country will ever offer lower labor costs than Mexico, which is why Mr. Cahill concluded that our economic development strategy cannot focus solely on costs, but must offer businesses the opportunity for growth.

The attributes that drive economic growth can be found right here in Illinois: We have first-class universities and nationally recognized research labs. We have a highly educated workforce. We have a world-class transportation infrastructure. We are home to innovative projects like Chicago’s digital manufacturing initiative.

To this end, House Democrats will introduce and pursue an agenda that contains aggressive economic reforms to leverage these attributes, create jobs and improve the business climate, without hurting hard-working middle-class families.

If we must use a cost approach to helping businesses in Illinois, we could start by cutting the corporate income tax by at least 50 percent. This would allow businesses to spend more of their resources on creating jobs and improving our economy. However, many of the largest corporations in Illinois pay no income tax, putting the real economic drivers - small and medium-sized employers who do pay - at a tremendous disadvantage. If we cut the income tax rate by half, we should also level the playing field for those small and medium-sized businesses by creating a new corporate tax structure that eases the burden on most employers while ensuring that all businesses pay something.

We can also put Illinois jobs first by reinstating the EDGE tax credit for businesses that create new jobs. While we invest in businesses that invest in Illinois, we should also take the step of outlawing any future tax incentives for corporations that ship American jobs out of our country. I think it only makes sense that we should be investing tax dollars in companies that invest in Illinois.

Positioning Illinois as a place for growth also means investing in a strong middle class. This is why the House Democrats’ agenda for economic growth will include an increase in the Earned Income Tax Credit, to help working families keep more of what they earn. And our agenda will include an increased minimum wage.

We will invest in education at all levels. We will work to make our tax code fairer and our schools stronger by requiring the wealthiest in our state to pay a small surcharge only on income over $1 million, with 100 percent of the new revenue going to fund our schools. A well-educated workforce will benefit our businesses in the long term.

We choose this pathway to create jobs, grow our economy and improve the business climate, rather than joining in a race to the bottom and lowering our standard of living by gutting protections for workers hurt on the job through no fault of their own, restricting collective bargaining rights and cutting middle-class wages.

We all see the challenges facing our state. We must address the budget crisis, and we must grow our economy. We can create growth without dismantling the middle class. The oaths taken today by new members of the General Assembly make these challenges ours together. I hope we can work together to address them.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

78 Comments
  1. - Annonin' - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 7:47 am:

    One smart leader. Wonder if BigBrain will ever understand there are efforts to work together


  2. - RNUG - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 7:55 am:

    Interesting how some of this intersects with what the Senate put together and what the additional asks are to get it through the House. Still a bit of simmering and flavoring to go, but it looks like it really is becoming soup.


  3. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:01 am:

    It’s about time.


  4. - Curious - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:02 am:

    If the corporate and income tax are both cut, how will the revenue difference be made up?


  5. - c'mon, man - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:03 am:

    Good message. Take it on the road–the blue room ain’t gonna cut it.


  6. - thunderspirit - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:04 am:

    This would be a good idea.

    Of course, two years ago would’ve been a better one. But better late than never, I suppose.


  7. - Earnest - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:15 am:

    It’s a message and gives a better sense that his party stands for something. Maybe I just woke up on the wrong side of the bed but it just sounds so hollow to me. It also needs some tie-ins for political messaging, i.e. talking points. I like the message of supporting small business and the “middle class.” Sadly, it looks like no one things that supporting social services earns any votes in elections.

    Perhaps I should put it more like this: if it’s a beginning (whether of an actual agenda or political messaging to bring Rauner to the table), I like it. Hopefully, that is what this will be.


  8. - Ggeo - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:16 am:

    “we should also level the playing field for those small and medium-sized businesses by creating a new corporate tax structure that eases the burden on most employers while ensuring that all businesses pay something.”

    If only we had that GRT!


  9. - RNUG - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:17 am:

    == If the corporate and income tax are both cut, how will the revenue difference be made up? ==

    Suspect that is the purpose of the proposed Millionaire’s Tax.


  10. - PublicServant - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:18 am:

    ===Suspect that is the purpose of the proposed Millionaire’s Tax===

    Which the public overwhelmingly supports.


  11. - Ok - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:19 am:

    Great words from the Speaker.


  12. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:22 am:

    ===Great words from the Speaker===

    To mean like “Turnaround Agenda” is from Rauner?


  13. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:25 am:

    ===Good message. Take it on the road–the blue room ain’t gonna cut it.===

    This.

    If the Speaker decides that standing “in the Blue Room” with ridiculous charts and graphs, with an easel, that will be the most telling. The “1987″ messaging will be mocked by Raunerites on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and visibly mocked on television in every media market, then kept via YouTube by these media outlets…

    … then it will find its way… to keep it fresh… on BossMadigan.Com… as they point out the “dated” way Madigan is “just too… ” whatever they want to say to make the stale mocking fresh.

    This message isn’t the solution, just as retooling the message isn’t the sole problem in responding too

    The Democratic and Madigan blowback to Rauner and Raunerites and Raunerism must be dogged, continual, relevant, intelligent, and, most importantly, consistently in-tune to a broader messaging conception and plan.

    Are Democrats and Madigan done getting beat by Twitter trolls and world jumble press releases?

    We’ll see.

    This is as good as Democrats place it in the discussion.

    Will it be a continued “1987″, or will it be something for today?

    My decoder ring is reading for the recalibration.


  14. - Ron - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:25 am:

    Millionaire tax is unconstitutional in Illinois.


  15. - Publius - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:25 am:

    a very statesman like approach but the ruanercans FKA Illinois GOP are not statesmen as proven by the website attacks in everything madigan.

    Good leaders accept more of the blame and less of the credit that they deserve. In this speech madi does not blame Rauner even after a full year of everything is madigans fault campaign.

    I think there is even and anti madigan rally today


  16. - illinoised - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:26 am:

    Garbo speaks.


  17. - Ratso Rizzo - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:34 am:

    Sounds reasonable to me. Therefore, it will not pass.


  18. - Because I Said So.... - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:35 am:

    A plan we can get behind.


  19. - Give Me A Break - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:35 am:

    Agree with OW and others the way this is rolled out and presented is key.

    Every Dem member needs to adopt the plan as their own then carrying the message back to their districts, their voters, their business groups and their media outlets.

    They need to use social media every chance they have to burn the message home the Dems have a plan.

    In the words of the Doobie Brothers, this all about “Takin It To The Streets”.


  20. - wondering - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:37 am:

    Well, thunderspirit, two years ago the ball was in Rauner’s court. He is the one who came in on a white horse bearing the banner, “tax cut”, “67% increase!”. Since that time the horse went lame and the Governor is demanding a Democratic budget proposal, i.e., assumption of the heretofore executive leadership role.


  21. - Lech W - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:42 am:

    The key words are these …”. I would like to suggest a better approach for improving our business climate than those who insist the only way to compete in a global economy is to join in a race to the bottom by cutting wages, and stripping away protections” MJM as usual will put protecting his labor support as a first priority; the rest is just window dressing. Rauner won’t budge on his labor reform so nothing new here.


  22. - Lurkin' MBA - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:47 am:

    Folks who made/make things for a living have a hard time finding their place in the new economy. Those folks are voting for Rauner & Trump in a desperate effort to preserve their livelihoods.


  23. - Team Sleep - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:50 am:

    This kinda reminds me of the old cartoon about Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Internet Explorer. In the cartoon Chrome and Firefox shout in the first suqare, “I’M FAST!” Two squares later Explorer blurts out, “I’M FAST!” The other two roll their eyes. This is not much different. Rauner has been setting the tone/tune for 2+ years and now we get this. Where was this during the summer of 2015 or 2016?! Did it get misplaced in a basement storage room like Jane Curtin’s doctoral thesis in “3rd Rock from the Sun”?!


  24. - KAA-boom - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:50 am:

    Rich is right. A lot of retread here. Seems like the same stuff wrapped in fresh packaging. In any event, it’s a day late and several dollars short. The Senate has taken the high ground.


  25. - Maximus - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:53 am:

    This is a good statement from the speaker and this could be a way forward. However, this all comes down to money. Im not seeing anything about cuts, changes to workers compensation, Cullertons pension reform proposal or anything similar. What wont be ok is raising various taxes or creating alternate taxes and calling the problem solved. Moodys and other credit agencies would see right through that and in 5 years we would need another tax increase due to spiraling costs. Hopefully there will be much more forthcoming for details.


  26. - Arock - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 8:54 am:

    Madigan preaching to the choir after sitting on his hands for the last two years.


  27. - Robert the Bruce - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 9:01 am:

    The first two paragraphs sure are rich, considering how poorly he has worked with the governor (I believe the governor deserves more of the blame than the speaker, but he’s hardly innocent).

    His corporate income tax cut proposal is a big concern. A deliberate poison pill by Madigan against the Senate bill that called for a corporate income tax hike?


  28. - Last Bull Moose - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 9:01 am:

    As I understand the Illinois corporate income tax, it is only levied on profits from sales in Illinois. We would do better to eliminate it completely and replace it with excise taxes on goods and services purchased in Illinois.

    A graduated income tax with the money raised going to education sounds great, but there needs to be a maintenance of effort clause from existing revenue. Otherwise the education money will be diverted to other uses. With a maintenance of effort clause at the State level, school districts could cut property taxes.


  29. - facts are stubborn things - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 9:03 am:

    MJM is saying, “before this is soup, I need a few ingredients that mine. He did nothing to turn off the burner or take the spoon away.


  30. - PublicServant - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 9:03 am:

    Maximus,

    Madigan has said that a combination of revenue enhancements and program cuts are needed. Governor Gridlock will not sit down and discuss any of that until first getting whatever TA du jours he wants first.


  31. - JS Mill - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 9:04 am:

    I find it interesting that property tax “reform” was left out. Or did I miss it?


  32. - Honeybear - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 9:07 am:

    You know what. I’m just sick of words.

    I’m sick of this whole thing.

    So many trick boxes and twists and turns.

    In the end the average working person is going to get screwed.

    As Rauner has proven over and over. You can say anything you want.

    Only actions count.

    I’m tired of perfidy.

    Besides what I smell now is the scent of

    Austerity, by Neoliberals

    Cut Corporate taxes
    Extend EDGE
    Give Tax Credits
    Unlimited Enterprise Zones

    outflow
    outflow
    outflow

    NOTHING COMING IN.

    Equals Austerity

    Austerity equals suffering
    Austerity equals turning our backs
    Austerity equals amoral callousness

    I’m bringing a new scent online for Spring.

    “Austerity, because someone must pay for it”


  33. - Pontiac - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 9:16 am:

    This is the plan?
    Cut business taxes in half.
    Reinstate EDGE tax credit for businesses.
    Increase Minimum Wage.
    Tax Millionaires.

    I don’t know the numbers but cutting the business tax and taxing millionaires can’t be much more than break even on revenue.

    So, what about the $7 billion hole?


  34. - PublicServant - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 9:17 am:

    I’m tired of Perfidy too, Honeybear. Whenever that word is used, since its used so uncommonly today, I feel like I’m listening to a soap-opera from the 1920s. I recommend using the word “lies”. It’s so much more clear.


  35. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 9:18 am:

    –However, many of the largest corporations in Illinois pay no income tax, putting the real economic drivers - small and medium-sized employers who do pay - at a tremendous disadvantage. If we cut the income tax rate by half, we should also level the playing field for those small and medium-sized businesses by creating a new corporate tax structure that eases the burden on most employers while ensuring that all businesses pay something.–

    Took him long enough to clear his throat.

    But, just as with the governor, actions, not words, speak loudest and reveal the truth. We’re all full up on sizzle, let’s see the steak.


  36. - Honeybear - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 9:22 am:

    PublicServant, 1) Perfidy, as a Just war means prohibition is just really appropriate for what is happening. 2) You know me when I get jacked up and start using “lies” I tend not to make it to print. I can use perfidy and still make the morning edition! Perfidy is my safe word!


  37. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 9:34 am:

    “House Democrats agree with the governor that Illinois can and should improve our business climate. Improving our business climate will create new opportunities for families across Illinois and will provide a better standard of living for many of our state’s residents”

    These are just words- zero economic development proposals from Democrats for the last two years. No Democratic alternative to the Turnaround Agenda or an acknowledgment why one is necessary.


  38. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 9:40 am:

    According to GOMB, the corporate income tax is projected to generate $2.3 billion in FY17.

    That’s 7% of the projected $32.8 in GRF revenues.

    So, a 50% cut would be about a $1.2 billion hit.

    Madigan seems to be suggesting a new “corporate tax structure,” in which the Big Dogs who now pay nothing — or receive real money, net, every year from the state in refunds from tax credits — will be subject to an alternative minimum tax.

    I’m all for it, but it will be a heckuva fight.

    If you’re curious as to what the Big Dogs pay in state and local income taxes, total, across the country, that information can be found buried deep in the annual reports of publicly-traded companies.

    Hint: not so much. Nothing close to what individuals pay, or what small business people pay who take earnings as personal income.


  39. - illini97 - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 9:40 am:

    Honeybear, I don’t see a mention of Enterprise Zones in there, unless I’m mistaken.

    Opening up the gates on enterprise zones would be extremely dangerous in a session when a property tax freeze is on the table.

    Enterprise Zones have the power to grab schools and other tax districts main source of revenue, topping that off with a freeze means those districts get put into an untenable situation.


  40. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 9:51 am:

    –These are just words- zero economic development proposals from Democrats for the last two years.–

    Yes, all proposals start as words. That’s how they are communicated on this planet.

    – No Democratic alternative to the Turnaround Agenda or an acknowledgment why one is necessary.–

    Um, isn’t that what this is?

    Better have the IT guys update your coding.


  41. - 4 percent - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:02 am:

    Enterprise zones allow for property tax rebates but don’t mandate them. Some allow it and others do not. It’s called local control.


  42. - Ractin - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:03 am:

    Really quickly, 2 years ago, we as voters wanted to raise the minimum wage. Whose desk has that bill been sitting on for 2 years again?


  43. - Simple Simon - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:05 am:

    As a Dem, I was almost overjoyed by the first 7 paragraphs, thinking this was shaping up to finally be the needed response to Rauner’s and GOP’s nationwide race to the bottom. But the “meat” at the end seemed to be mostly tepid. Maybe I fail to understand the usefulness of EDGE credits (which most around here seem to think needs auditing, oversight, and reform) as well as cutting corporate taxes, at least until sufficient details are given so we can judge the impacts. Nice words about universities and the poor and struggling, but details needed.


  44. - Lucky Pierre - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:07 am:

    These are just words with none of the charts and graphs and ROI like the big boys have remember?

    A proposal would be actual legislation Wordslinger.

    They have had two years to come up with something, anything. The Senate can point to actual bills negotiated with the minority party. Madigan has a speech and a stop gap proposal with no input from Republicans. See the difference?

    How can we cut the corporate tax and raise the individual rate when the Illinois Constitution mandates they move together? Again just words.

    Sorry, other finally acknowledging the problem after denying we have one for two years, I don’t see any solutions attached that address the business communities concerns.

    Workers comp, property taxes, onerous regulations, our an acknowledgment our manufacturing is not competitive with our neighboring states because of our legal environment.

    Major 180 turn though that acknowledges tax cuts promote economic growth after denying the linkage.


  45. - Team Sleep - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:19 am:

    Ractin - that was an advisory referendum. Not a constitutional amendment. And even in 2013 and 2014 - when the Dems controlled the State House in total - the efforts of Senator Lightford to increase the minimum wage past the $8.25 per hour level went nowhere. So with respect all previous efforts were no more successful than some craftfully-worded, non-binding referendum.


  46. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:20 am:

    –These are just words with none of the charts and graphs and ROI like the big boys have remember?–

    I’m all for that, and will hold Madigan to the same standard as Rauner on that front.

    Glad to see you’ve been converted on the importance of informed decision-making.

    I’m sure you’ll see legislation (not that tough) and with at least a fiscal note. I expect more justification for the proposals.

    Of course, GOMB has the crew to turn around fiscal and economic projections in a hurry, when the boss tells them to. I hope they chime in. It’s their job.


  47. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:23 am:

    –”Rauner reacts positively to Madigan “embracing economic changes”–

    See LP, I told you to update your coding. Now you’re sideways of the boss.


  48. - Precinct Captain - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:24 am:

    How soon until Rauner is screaming to raise the corporate income tax because Madigan is for cutting it?


  49. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:27 am:

    –Major 180 turn though that acknowledges tax cuts promote economic growth after denying the linkage.–

    Who denied what when?

    What economic growth do you attribute to the tax cut two years ago? Show your work.


  50. - cover - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:27 am:

    = How can we cut the corporate tax and raise the individual rate when the Illinois Constitution mandates they move together? Again just words. =

    That’s not what the Constitution says, it limits the corporate income tax rate (not including the Personal Property Replacement Tax) to no more than 8/5ths of the personal income tax rate. It does not require them to move together.

    The income tax increase signed by Gov. Quinn moved us below the 8/5 ratio that had previously been in place (4.8% vs. 3.0%).


  51. - Precinct Captain - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:29 am:

    Lucky, the stage constitution does not mandate the corporation and individual income taxes move together. It sets a ratio for corporate exceeding individual.

    “A tax on or measured by income shall be at a
    non-graduated rate. At any one time there may be no more than
    one such tax imposed by the State for State purposes on
    individuals and one such tax so imposed on corporations. In
    any such tax imposed upon corporations the rate shall not
    exceed the rate imposed on individuals by more than a ratio
    of 8 to 5.”


  52. - Honeybear - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:29 am:

    llini97, it’s probably not. I just hate enterprise zones, TIF’s, tax incentives, Loopholes, anything that skims off the top before it goes in. I hate that the manufacturers get a utility tax exemption in EZ’s and my bill this month went through the roof! I hate that every town of note has TIF’s and companies have nine million ways to get out of contributing to our society.

    Honeybear is on the warpath this year.

    I’m not letting anyone tell me “look away”
    Not my union
    Not my friends
    Not my enemies
    and sure as feces not any politician.

    Lowering Revenue or preskimming means
    I catch it on the chin
    My friends catch it on the chin
    My community catches it on the chin

    Economic Development is A LIE!
    Only the privileged make out.

    Economic Development is stealing
    from the public to benefit the few.

    Economic Development promises jobs
    But delivers low paying temp jobs.
    You can’t feed a family being an Amazon packer!

    “Scorn to take the crumbs they drop us”

    Economic Development as is, is not transparent and doesn’t even try to provide a ROI.

    So no, Honeybear isn’t playin Economic Development anymore.

    Show me proof that what you’re doing is helping ALL our citizens not just the privileged.

    Oh and that’s another scent coming on line.

    “Privilege, because I deserve it”


  53. - m - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:31 am:

    =If the Speaker decides that standing “in the Blue Room” with ridiculous charts and graphs, with an easel, that will be the most telling. The “1987″ messaging will be mocked by Raunerites on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and visibly mocked on television in every media market, then kept via YouTube by these media outlets…=

    That isn’t the most important question.

    Rauner “I want pepperoni pizza”
    Cullerton/Radogno “Pepperoni and sausage”
    Madigan “I want bacon”

    Is he asking to order a 3 topping pizza? Or saying “bacon or nothing”?

    That is the question.


  54. - UIC Guy - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:32 am:

    ‘We have first-class universities and nationally recognized research labs. We have a highly educated workforce. We have a world-class transportation infrastructure.’
    For how much longer? These things cost money, which has not been arriving—most obviously not for the last eighteen months, but to a lesser extent for many years.


  55. - Lucky Pierre - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:34 am:

    Not really, the first step in solving a problem is realizing one actually exists after denying it for a long time. It progress today.

    The Senate framework of linking the reforms to revenue is also huge. I don’t think reform and revenue would happen without the necessary horse trading that has gone on forever. All of the fake pearl clutching about “hostage taking” like that has never happened before in just about every negotiation fooled no one.

    I am an optimistic person by nature and am heartened by any movement towards compromise


  56. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:36 am:

    –How can we cut the corporate tax and raise the individual rate when the Illinois Constitution mandates they move together? –

    Maybe you should read the Constitution. For comprehension.

    If you’re interested in Constitutional mandates, there’s a big one coming up for the governor.


  57. - Gooner - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:40 am:

    If anybody is looking for the Democrats’ message to connect with working class voters, this should be it.

    Illinois can never compete with Mexico — or Alabama for that matter — when it comes to wages. If the cost of labor is the only issue, we are going to lose.

    So what do we do? We put in policies to make employers want to pay for more expensive labor. An educated work force and great transportation are at the top of that list.

    In any case, this is the first time I ever recall being impressed by the Speaker’s message.


  58. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:46 am:

    - m -

    I read your comment.


  59. - illini97 - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 11:10 am:

    - 4 percent - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:02 am:

    “Enterprise zones allow for property tax rebates but don’t mandate them. Some allow it and others do not. It’s called local control.”

    Yes and no. The municipality(ies) certainly have control, but the other taxing districts (i.e. school districts) do not have control. They are just told they won’t be getting tax revenue from that parcel for, say, ten years.


  60. - Lucky Pierre - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 11:11 am:

    Honeybear I agree with you on many things from time to time. I totally agree on Amazon, a far more dangerous company than the retailer liberals detest more- Wal Mart.

    Amazon is able to basically drive their competitors out of business through unfair tax policy and should be broken up through anti trust legislation.

    Somehow because their founder Jeff Bezos is a huge liberal who owns the Washington Post, they are able to avoid the same kind of push back Wal- Mart does.

    They are on Trump’s radar and should be very worried.


  61. - Honeybear - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 11:36 am:

    Lucky you and I are, I believe, are about to agree on a lot more this year. I’m pledging to work towards that. As active citizens in shaping and forming our democratic infrastructure, our agreements and wrestling’s are super important to the maintenance of government/state health.
    As I stated before I’m on the warpath against,
    1) Pre skimming of our tax money. (somebody come up with a good word for this, PLEASE)
    We can’t democratically debate what should be done with our tax money if it never gets in the door in the first place!
    2) Corporatocracy, Plutocracy, Oligarchy, Neoliberalism, Fascism. All about wacking those. I want constitutionally oriented democratic dialectic systems. We get in the ring, duke it out fair and forge a temporary better.
    3) Fight for the Disadvantaged. ( which includes mainstreet small/medium business) Yep, I am going full on Mother Jones. I aspire to be the “walking wrath of God”.

    In so far as my union goals coincide with those great. If they diverge, and that’s where you come in LP, Deft, A Guy, Team Sleep, m, you all have to keep up my probity. Deal?

    God I hope we can pull our state out of the nosedive.


  62. - m - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 11:43 am:

    =I read your comment.=

    And?
    Agree, disagree?


  63. - RNUG - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 11:52 am:

    == Millionaire tax is unconstitutional in Illinois. ==

    Currently. Put that constitutional amendment on the ballot and it would pass in a New York second.


  64. - Simple Simon - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 11:55 am:

    Give them Hades, Honeybear! I’m with you being suspicious of backroom deals. At the very least, an ROI for each and every deal needs to be public and tracked, and there needs to be a clear net gain for the state in the long run. With clawbacks for underperformance. Too many deals are also structured that allow businesses to go from state to state regularly, never paying taxes to anyone.


  65. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 11:55 am:

    - m -

    I read your comment. i didn’t want you to think I missed it. Thanks.

    ===All of the fake pearl clutching about “hostage taking” like that has never happened before in just about every negotiation fooled no one.===

    (Sigh)

    It’s like you consistently don’t pay attention.

    It’s hostage taking, and will continue to be hostage taking until 60 and 30 are secured and a clean signature is guaranteed.

    That’s the same as it ever was.

    Where your false bravado fails is the $20 million that “secured” the former ILGOP GA, and the continued, even days and hours ago, Democrats reiterating the Turnaround Agenda won’t pass on required musts, that Rauner says in the same breath are flexible items and… Rauner touts support that never materializes as 60 and 30.

    The hostage taking is the parliamentary maneuver not unlike Ken Dunkin stopping overrides for Rauner.

    It’s always and forever going to be about 60 and 30, or until the Constitution changes the numbers in the Chambers.


  66. - Lucky Pierre - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 12:01 pm:

    So Madigan has been hostage taking by not allowing the reforms he now agrees are necessary to pass through the rules committee
    so they can get the necessary 60 and 30 right?


  67. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 12:24 pm:

    ===So Madigan has been hostage taking by not allowing the reforms he now agrees are necessary to pass through the rules committee so they can get the necessary 60 and 30 right?===

    The Speaker’s comment speaks for itself.

    You clamored for a Democratic agenda, here it is, broad as it is, and Rauner boxed him on these words.

    The rub seems to be… you not recognizing these reforms the Speaker is now pushing have little mirroring in the Turnaround Agenda, today, and Rauner still boxed these to get something to get 60 and 30.

    Madigan ran “sham” bills according to Raunerites, will these also be “sham” reforms if they lack Labor hurts, and lack other things like term limits too(?)

    Again, you’re looking for wedges, you need to recalibrate.


  68. - blue dog dem - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 12:46 pm:

    Honey’s Army. Count me in. End corporate cronyism now!


  69. - BK Bro - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 12:52 pm:

    Either both sides give in a little or Illinois continues with no budget/chaos. Reasonable ppl would likely agree and pick option 2.

    In before workers of the world/evil corporation comments.


  70. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 2:12 pm:

    –Somehow because their founder Jeff Bezos is a huge liberal who owns the Washington Post, they are able to avoid the same kind of push back Wal- Mart does.

    They are on Trump’s radar and should be very worried.–

    Inside dope from Trump Tower. Tell us more. Who, exactly, are “they” in this context? Amazon, Washington Post? What should “they” be worried about from Trump and why?


  71. - Lucky Pierre - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 3:19 pm:

    Note exactly inside dope, this was widely reported.

    Jeff Bezos has helped himself to a huge piece of humble pie since the election and has met with him personally. Trump believes Amazon is subject to antitrust proceedings and benefits unfairly from the fact that Amazon purchases are tax free and the Washington Post has unfairly targeted him.

    https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/nov/18/amazon-jeff-bezos-donald-trump-challenge

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/ryanmac/2016/11/10/why-did-jeff-bezos-make-nice-with-trump-amazon-depends-on-it/#40b1fde5334a

    http://www.cnbc.com/2016/11/21/trumponomics-and-amazon.html


  72. - HangingOn - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 3:42 pm:

    ==Amazon purchases are tax free==

    I must not be up on Amazon. I know I pay tax on everything I purchase on there. I thought some states said they had to charge tax and they said ok….


  73. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 6:05 pm:

    LP, perhaps you should read the links you posted.

    –“On the retail side there is no antitrust case to answer as Amazon does not exert dominant control over any one area of the market. On the point about Jeff Bezos’s ownership of the Washington Post, this isn’t an antitrust case as it is an entirely different business sector to the retail operation.

    “The tax threats are largely hollow. Amazon does pay corporate tax, but its tax payments are limited because it is not the most profitable of companies. The same holds true for the Washington Post. Sales tax is not a matter for the federal government so Trump has no power over that area of taxation.”–


  74. - City Zen - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 7:12 pm:

    ==I must not be up on Amazon. I know I pay tax on everything I purchase on there.==

    That was Quinn’s going away present.


  75. - HangingOn - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:00 pm:

    ==That was Quinn’s going away present==

    I’m actually glad. Once they started collecting tax I could stop worrying about it on my tax returns. Yes, I’m one of those weird people who was paying it on my tax returns when they asked how much I spent online lol


  76. - Lucky Pierre - Wednesday, Jan 11, 17 @ 10:52 pm:

    Yes Wordlsinger I read the articles I posted and one of the three I posted for balance does not think it is an issue. That does not mean Trump could not try which he seems to want to do.

    To be clear, I think Amazon collects tax in 20 states and is inconsistent collecting it. Some of the items have it and some don’t.


  77. - froganon - Thursday, Jan 12, 17 @ 8:38 am:

    I’m a day late but Honeybear is right on. We will never have a strong economy by keeping wages and taxes low while starving public services. Taxes are necessary to provide the framework for a strong and fair economy.


  78. - m - Thursday, Jan 12, 17 @ 8:50 am:

    =That was Quinn’s going away present.=

    No you pay tax on most Amazon purchases because they have a physical presence in Illinois. Has nothing to do with Quinn. His “amazon tax” did absolutely nothing other than kill amazon affiliate marketing programs for Illinois businesses. It would have charged tax if you followed a link from an affiliates page if the affiliate page was based in Illinois. Illinois passed the law, so Amazon shut down affiliate program for Illinois websites and continued to not charge tax.

    Amazon later began charging tax in Illinois when they opened facilities here. Period. That is the only reason they charge tax here. That is the same as it always was for internet purchases.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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