* Subscribers knew some of this already. From Gov. Bruce Rauner’s budget address…
The current Senate proposal calls for a permanent increase in the income tax rate but offers only a temporary property tax freeze in exchange. That’s just not fair to hard-working taxpayers across the state.
We need a permanent property tax freeze in Illinois, just like the one the House passed last month. Over time, as our economy grows and revenues expand, any increase in the income tax could be stepped down – dedicating future surpluses to taxpayers, not more government spending.
The current Senate proposal would expand the state’s sales tax to cover everyday services, and raise taxes on food and drugs. We’re open to a broader sales tax base to mirror neighboring states like Wisconsin, but let’s make sure it’s best for the people of Illinois, not for the lobbyists in Springfield. We cannot raise taxes on people’s groceries and medicine – just as we cannot tax people’s retirement incomes. We can find a way to balance the budget without hurting lower-income families and fixed-income seniors.
We must all support raising the earned income tax credit to help low-income families. And we must support making the research and development tax credit permanent to encourage innovation and job creation.
MOST IMPORTANTLY, a good deal for taxpayers comes with economic and regulatory changes that are significant enough for job creators to get excited about the future of Illinois.
Term limits get job creators excited. Passing term limits is one of the most important things we can do to send a positive recruiting message to job creators: “it’s a new day in Illinois, we’ve turned the corner.”
Workers comp changes get job creators excited. We must get our worker’s compensation costs in line with other states. We’re asking for a worker’s compensation system that matches Massachusetts. Massachusetts is a blue state with a strong middle class–and it’s growing.
Now, those parameters aren’t controversial– they’re right in line with what Democrats and Republicans have said they agree with. And while the Senate package is still evolving, it wouldn’t be that hard to reach a good deal for taxpayers.
I firmly believe that we can come to agreement on these issues. And I pledge to you that I will sign that good deal for taxpayers the minute it arrives at my desk.
This is now a question of political will. I’m know I’m willing– I hope you are too.
So, a permanent property tax freeze and a stepped-down income tax hike. In the briefing earlier today, I thought there was some willingness to go with a temporary property tax freeze if the income tax is stepped down within the Senate plan. Not sure at the moment by reading what was written for delivery.
The broadening the sales tax base like Wisconsin is a reference to the service tax proposal, which is in the Senate’s grand bargain.
The Senate’s proposed sales tax on food and medicine polls horribly, and the governor wants no part of it. Same goes for the tax on retirement income, which the Senate hasn’t proposed.
The Senate’s proposal for term limits for legislative leaders, I was told, will be sufficient in this context.
I would have to go back and look at the Massachusetts stuff to get a good grip on that one.