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Simon Institute funding disparity study gets wide coverage

Wednesday, Aug 29, 2018

* That Paul Simon Public Policy Institute study on how Downstate counties get more back from the state than the taxpayers send to Springfield has gotten some traction. I wrote about it earlier this month, but here’s Jake Griffin at the Daily Herald with the latest report

For every dollar DuPage County taxpayers send to Springfield, the state returns 31 cents.

That’s the lowest rate of return among all 102 counties in Illinois, according to a recently released study conducted by researchers at the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale.

That puts DuPage County in a tie for the state’s biggest “giver.” Taxpayers in the other five counties in the Chicago area also put in more than what comes back from the state, according to the report. […]

Tiny Putnam County southwest of the Chicago area tied with DuPage, getting back 31 cents for every dollar sent to Springfield. That’s likely linked to a Cook County-based oil company that moved its sales offices to Putnam County to save on sales taxes.

The Daily Herald created a cool interactive county map, so click here and have a look.

* Chuck Sweeny at the Rockford Register Star

When some politicians around here need a convenient excuse for the fiscal problem of the day, they go to their default position: Blame Chicago.

The party faithful are sure to believe anything and everything negative about the Windy City, which was given that name by New York newspapers’ editorial writers in the early 1890s to mock over-the-top boasts of Chicagoans touting their 1893 World’s Fair.

Blaming Chicago and Cook County — saying the city and the state’s most populous county take in more than their share of precious state money — is especially popular in the Rockford area.

The problem is, it’s not true. The Paul Simon Public Policy Institute at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale ran the numbers.

* Doug Finke at the SJ-R

The Paul Simon Public Policy Institute has some bad news for all those people who think Chicago gets all of the benefits of state spending.

In short, it doesn’t.

A paper titled “The Politics of Public Budgeting in Illinois” looked at how various regions of the state fared under state budgets. In other words, how much did a region pay in taxes vs. how much did the region get in return of state spending?

In Cook County, home of Chicago, where downstaters believe all of their tax money ends up, residents paid about $2 billion more in taxes than they got back from the state, the paper found. In the suburbs, people paid more than $4.2 billion more in taxes than they got back.

And downstate? They paid about $8 billion in taxes and got $12 billion worth of spending. The paper further separated areas of downstate and determined the central part of the region got back nearly twice as much as it paid in.

* Chris Kaergard at the Peoria Journal Star

But the raw data is still fascinating — especially if you saw those original, condensed reports about our region taking more than it gives.

It’s true, regionally. But at the county-by-county level it seems that most of the Peoria region still actually gives more than it takes. (Fulton County is an exception, having both a high poverty concentration and a state prison. Knox and Stark counties also receive more than they give.)

Using the same controls researchers did regionally to account for the missing data on payments and revenue, we found that for every dollar Peoria County sends out in tax revenue it receives back about 93 cents. In Tazewell County it’s about 82 cents. Woodford County gets about 91 cents and it’s 88 cents in Marshall County.

* Kevin Schwaller at Peoria’s WMBD

The study also showed that approximately 19.9 percent of the state’s disbursement revenue went towards southern Illinois, 12.4 percent went to central Illinois, 11.1 percent to northern Illinois, 8.7 percent went to southwest Illinois, 6.2 percent went to Cook County and 3.5 percent went towards the Chicago suburbs.

* Andrew Feather at WSIL TV

“We get told that over and over again by people in office and people running for office that we’d be great as a state if just weren’t for us having to support Chicago,” [John Jackson of the Simon Institute] said.

Some have even proposed splitting Illinois into several states. In fact, Robert Marshall made separating the state the counterpoint of his failed Democratic Primary campaign earlier this year.

Jackson says such a change could have drastic effects.

“If it weren’t for the support from northeast Illinois we would be north Mississippi basically,” he said.

Union and Johnson Counties are the biggest beneficiaries of state funding, with each getting back more than six dollars for each dollar they send to Springfield.

* Greg Hinz at Crain’s Chicago Business

As the report concludes in boldfaced type: “It is quite clear that downstate taxes are not being disproportionately siphoned off and spent in the city of Chicago. . . .The lower income regions of Illinois as a whole are receiving significantly more in state expenditures than they contribute in taxes. Indeed, in the southernmost region, there would be very little activity at all without the state.” […]

Why the sharp disparities? Part of it is that income levels tend to be lower the farther south you get. Another part is that state government and all of the state’s major public universities, except the University of Illinois at Chicago, are downstate. And the major state pension funds all are headquartered in central Illinois. […]

The study does have some flaws. For instance, it uses data that don’t yet incorporate changes in the state’s elementary and secondary school aid formula, which delivered a pile of new money to Chicago and other poorer school districts around the state. Also of interest is the conclusion that the current tax system “certainly is not progressive,” something that works to the advantage of higher-income areas.

But there should be no debate over its main finding: “Facts should count for something, indeed for a lot, and are essential to any form or rational decision-making.” Amen.

* Cole Lauterbach at the Illinois News Network

Shelbyville state Rep. Brad Halbrook was a chief co-sponsor of a resolution urging Congress to recognize Chicago as the 51st state. He doesn’t dispute any of the report’s findings on state spending but said that it only tells half of the story in terms of regional antipathy for the power that Chicago politicians wield over the rest of Illinois.

“We continually see unfunded mandate after unfunded mandate,” he said. “Whether it’s on schools, local governments, or even individuals, we continue to see regulation that drives costs up.”

Illinois lawmakers often write laws that exclude or pertain to only Chicago by saying they’re only applicable or don’t apply to counties or municipalities with a population of more than two or three million people. Reasons for these exceptions vary and can be logical, but Halbrook said the laws tend to give Chicago more autonomy, send specific funds or services, or require things from other towns that are not required from the state’s largest city.

“Some of this legislation is for everybody but Chicago or Cook County,” he said. “They exempt themselves out and I think it’s really improper to do that.” […]

Jackson said those mandates and orders are small when compared to the amount the state spends on the regions, typically for higher education. Plus, it takes more than just Chicago lawmakers to pass state mandates. Many urban areas have legislators who often vote with Chicago on issues that Halbrook criticized.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

57 Comments
  1. - Honeybear - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 11:28 am:

    It seems to me it’s about who gets it back.
    It’s the poor, disabled and elderly that get it back
    Not
    The privileged
    It’s the perceived slight
    And the resentment that engenders
    That cause the hatred of Chicago
    By the privileged.
    I will grant that the privileged
    Are excellent
    At deceiving the poor, disabled and elderly
    And the regular folk
    That Chicago is to blame

    But it is perfidy
    To hide the tracks of the privileged


  2. - Diogenes in DuPage - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 11:29 am:

    WOW. Was reared in Cass ($2.67 return rate on taxes) and live in retirement in DuPage ($0.31 return rate). I personally don’t mind paying taxes. Life has been kind to me. The idea of government is for the collective good. I wonder, though, how much of the we-they thinking of my friends downstate is driven by wage differences and the economy versus racial-ethnic concerns?


  3. - AnonymousOne - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 11:34 am:

    Having relatives in rural ILlinois I believe when you say Chicago they think housing projects and a drain on “their” taxes. Say suburban, they think “hedonism”.

    Say Chicago to me and I think of high powered financial districts that are the economic machine of the state. Say suburbs, I think workers that pay a heckuva lot to travel into Chicago for those jobs.

    It’s perspective and what one is told.

    No surprise at all to me that Chicago and suburbs are making it happen financially in this state.


  4. - Al - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 11:38 am:

    Are the collar counties paying too much? Or do the oil, gas, coal and timber industries enjoy the benefit of generations of tax lobbyist. Profitable industries are not paying their share in southern illinois.


  5. - Alex Ander - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 11:39 am:

    That’s the problem. Many people down here simply think of public housing when they think of Chicago. They don’t see the large institutions that have what many consider “blue chip” stocks. Many do not realize the large companies that are in Chicago and the surrounding counties. For many of those people down here, Chicago is 5-6 hours away and they’ve never been to Chicago. They only know of the crime they hear on the news and that’s their only perception of Chicago.


  6. - Person 8 - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 11:40 am:

    And those of us in the suburbs are screwed over twice. Once at the state level, once at the national level. Personally, I’m ok with the disparity at the state level….at the national level that’s another story…


  7. - Annonin' - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 11:42 am:

    Wonder if this document will have long time impact like media telling GOPie mope whiners that their claims of Chicago training all the downstate riches is a load of Moby Dicks?

    Perhaps some need to make this annual data collection project for the Institute or COGFA or the busy bees at the treasurer or comptroller who always thirst for new tasks


  8. - Put the fun in unfunded - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 11:42 am:

    How does this study account for a kid from the suburbs who attends Western in Macomb, or Eastern in Charleston? You cannot say that 100 cents of every dollar spent on the Universities is a pure “subsidy” for McDonough or Coles County, because the students are coming from all over. Areas with higher income/property wealth subsidize areas with lower income/property wealth, but statewide services (prisons, universities) have to be based somewhere, and it makes sense to do so in areas with lower cost of living.


  9. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 11:48 am:

    @Put the fun in unfunded
    No one is saying it is bad that prisons and universities are downstate. And no one is saying it is a bad thing that more money is being spent downstate. The hurt feelings are only yours.


  10. - City Zen - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 11:49 am:

    Is there a form I can submit to Andy Manar for a refund?


  11. - tomhail - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 11:51 am:

    I like this report. Things are as they should be.


  12. - Actual Red - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 11:54 am:

    As a Chicagoan, this is as it should be. Money absolutely flow from where it is concentrated to where it is needed. The next step is to fix the tax system so this is true within regions as well as across them.


  13. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 11:54 am:

    You can’t do anything about the greater cost for rural areas. A road that is necessary to get people from point a to point b will have its cost shared by more people in an urban area. Urban areas are just more efficient. Infrastructure costs per person are less.


  14. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 11:55 am:

    –Shelbyville state Rep. Brad Halbrook was a chief co-sponsor of a resolution urging Congress to recognize Chicago as the 51st state.–

    I thought a monorail was more of a Shelbyville idea.

    You’d think a grown man would feel silly peddling such nonsense.


  15. - JIbba - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 11:56 am:

    The broad trends seem apparent (Chicago, collars, downstate), but more details are clearly needed before figuring out how outraged anyone should be. For example, DuPage probably can’t house any more prisons or universities due to buildout, so those are not really options to improve the situation.

    There are some really interesting trends within regions that might help. For example, Champaign gets 1.6x but McLean only gets 0.8x. Presumably they should be more similar, both having similar land uses and state facilities. Such a large discrepancy, if not readily apparent, suggests problems with methods or “lost” revenue that the authors say is not important.

    Similarly, compare Effingham and Fayette, or JoDaviess and Stevenson. Probably related to some state facility, but details are important.

    Other trends, such as the deep southern counties getting 3x or more, are not likely to cause outrage because of the small total dollars we are likely talking about, and the need to support roads and similar infrastructure even in areas with low population.


  16. - jibba - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 12:04 pm:

    This study is a good reminder that we are all in it together, and downstate should appreciate Chicago and the collars.

    I’d like to see a map of the percent of population in each county that is a state employee. I think you’d see similar trends, suggesting that the location of state offices and facilities might be driving a lot of this disparity. Those decisions have been made gradually over two centuries, even before Chicago existed, so it is a little harder to be outraged over that. Nor does anyone in the collars want a new prison next door, so solutions are few other than giving proper appreciation.


  17. - Ole' Nelson - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 12:08 pm:

    You’d think a grown man would feel silly peddling such nonsense.

    Perhaps Representative Halbrook has spent a little too much time in the sun watering his strawberries, though I imagine it is just an effective rallying cry for his Central Illinois constituency. It never ceases to amaze me how many downstate citizens think Chicago is the cause of downstate Illinois’ problems.


  18. - Real - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 12:22 pm:

    Funny how downstate believes they are paying for Chicago and we now see it is the other way around… But even though this study is released you won’t see democrats or minorities that live in Chicago complaining about there tax dollars supporting downstate. That’s one of the stark differences between dems and republicans. Dems won’t complain about our tax dollars supporting different regions in Illinois, but republicans will complain even without facts on there side if they believe there tax dollars are supporting other areas.


  19. - flea - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 12:29 pm:

    Perhaps Representative Halbrook should be excused for his judgement due to his prior experience building fences with a post pounder. He must have jarred the grey mass in his noggin.


  20. - Anon221 - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 12:53 pm:

    The DH’s map was very helpful. I wonder though, why counties like Piatt and Dewitt get so little back compared to much larger and well off counties. I looked at the Illinois Poverty Report, and it doesn’t seem like that should be the case-
    http://2018.ilpovertyreport.org/


  21. - Lester Holt’s Mustache - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 12:58 pm:

    Yeah yeah - but what do the Proft “newspapers” say? Most of those who believe this nonsense most strongly don’t read the Peoria Journal Star or Crains. They’ll ignore all of this information, at least until they have their straw men and “whatabouts” lined up for them by the chambana sun and east central reporter.


  22. - JSI - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 1:00 pm:

    “Union and Johnson Counties are the biggest beneficiaries of state funding, with each getting back more than six dollars for each dollar they send to Springfield.”

    Could this have anything to do with the fact that Johnson County has two prisons? The prison population is over 4,000, but the county’s population is only 12,000. Johnson County also has a 7.3% unemployement rate which is one of the highest in the region.

    Union County also has a state-ran mental health institute and veteran’s home.


  23. - the Patriot - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 1:12 pm:

    Several Factors are in play:

    1. obviously social programs in very poor counties with almost no industry. Virtually no money going to Springfield so any come in is a plus.

    2. State institutions like prisons and mental health facilities. it is good for the local economy, but fewer and fewer people live in the county so it is not like the “count” is actually “getting” the money. Most of it is payroll that drives in and drives out.

    3. Federal Money is pass through and based on lots of factors. We have miles and miles of interstate through rural IL that feed Chicago.

    4. Don’t understate the libertarian Spirit. Most rural people would prefer Chicago keep their money and their rules. It does not have to be rational to you, for it to be real to someone else.


  24. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 1:24 pm:

    ==Most rural people would prefer Chicago keep their money and their rules.==
    You speak for rural people now?


  25. - Grandson of Man - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 1:25 pm:

    As a liberal I believe everyone who qualifies should get government help, no matter the region or political affiliation.

    I am tired of downstate people who get more than they give from state government bashing and hating Chicago. If Chicago bothers them so much they owe it to principle to come up with a plan in which regions would get what they pay, as far as state expenditures and taxes.


  26. - Almost the weekend - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 1:45 pm:

    Only project I can think of to benefit Putnam County was I-180, because a big steel factory was there and then they closed it.

    Please put the DuPage and Johnson County GOP tables at the GOP brunch side by side next year.


  27. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 1:48 pm:

    ==If Chicago bothers them so much they owe it to principle to come up with a plan in which regions would get what they pay, as far as state expenditures and taxes.==

    They can’t. Not unless they make their own megalopolis. Large cities are efficient, rural areas are not.

    But as far as Chicago bashing goes I wouldn’t assume the majority of downstate people are guilty. Obviously a few loudmouths are.


  28. - Saluki - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 1:50 pm:

    I would still rather Chicago just go ahead and be it’s own state. I would be willing to take the risk of losing a few dollars from The Windy City.


  29. - a drop in - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 1:53 pm:

    “Most rural people would prefer Chicago keep their money and their rules.”

    If this would happen, I would be able to hear the screaming from downstate in my house in Chicago.


  30. - Almost the weekend - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 1:55 pm:

    Saluki, you would be losing more than a few dollars sending them to Springfield. And you would have to change your name on this site because SIU would cease to exist.

    “South Illinois increases incometax to 10%, at least its not going to Chicago anymore”


  31. - Tequila Mockingbird - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 2:12 pm:

    As an Illinois resident south of I-80, I appreciate the financial support from the NE corner of the state. I just wish they didn’t feel it entitles them to cram their politics down our throats.


  32. - Smitty Irving - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 2:13 pm:

    JIbba -
    The difference between Champaign and McLean is State Farm.


  33. - Montrose - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 2:24 pm:

    “I would still rather Chicago just go ahead and be it’s own state. I would be willing to take the risk of losing a few dollars from The Windy City.”

    This. I am genuinely curious about this thinking. You have seemingly accepted the fact that such change would have a negative economic impact on a Chicagoless Illinois. So what is gained by not being connected to Chicago to offset those losses? What is so truly horrible about Chicago that makes this trade off worth it? I really want to know.


  34. - DeseDemDose - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 2:36 pm:

    As a Chicago area Yankee I am outraged that my tax money is going to those rebel downstaters who are wasting it on chewing tobacco and moonshine.


  35. - Jibba - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 2:43 pm:

    Smithy Irving…I think we’re seeing lots of individual stories that almost outweigh the overall narrative. If State Farm is big enough and pays so much in state taxes to outweigh the very large input of state funds in ISU, then most of the pattern outside of Chicago and the collars is probably due to local factors. And with really big corporations in Chicago and the burbs, how much of the pattern being seen is related to corporate headquarters alone? Not wanting to say the pattern is all junk, but it clearly needs more analysis than it was released with, especially before generating outrage or making policy changes.


  36. - Stumpy's bunker - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 2:58 pm:

    As southern Illinois continues to lose population, sustainable employment and tax base, I do not forsee improvement in this disparity…considering the roads & state infrastructure to be maintained remains static.

    T


  37. - Chris Widger - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 3:22 pm:

    ==”Facts should count for something, indeed for a lot, and are essential to any form or rational decision-making.”==

    This historically has never been true and will never be true as long as we keep electing the same people.


  38. - Grandson of Man - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 3:29 pm:

    ** “Most rural people would prefer Chicago keep their money and their rules.”

    If this would happen, I would be able to hear the screaming from downstate in my house in Chicago. **

    Downstaters can hit up suburban Republicans for for cash if they’re short. I’m sure they won’t mind paying.


  39. - Shemp - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 3:45 pm:

    But in absolute dollars, the disparity wouldn’t look so great in many cases. If you send in $100 million and get $200 million back, that’s one thing, but if you send $10 and get back $20, that’s another. We’re talking some pretty large counties versus pretty small in terms of population.


  40. - Shemp - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 3:53 pm:

    I don’t think some of you should be so quick to disregard these types of sentiments. You really don’t think there would be a more conservative policy in Illinois if it were without the Chicago area? I wouldn’t see Illinois going full Kansas or Nebraska given it’s manufacturing history, but I do think policies that exist, and structures that exist to drive up the cost of doing business (labor rules, prevailing wage rates, public collective bargaining laws, work comp, contracting requirements, etc) would look a lot different without a Chicago influence, and potentially be a noticeable cost saver.

    The sentiment exists. It’s not just a few people’s opinions posting on here.

    =====

    - the Patriot - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 1:12 pm:

    4. Most rural people would prefer Chicago keep their money and their rules. It does not have to be rational to you, for it to be real to someone else.

    - Tequila Mockingbird - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 2:12 pm:

    As an Illinois resident south of I-80, I appreciate the financial support from the NE corner of the state. I just wish they didn’t feel it entitles them to cram their politics down our throats.


  41. - DuPage Bard - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 4:14 pm:

    I would take a check from downstate, please. I said please..


  42. - TominChicago - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 4:20 pm:

    Jibba UIUC is about twice the student polpulation size of ISU. Maybe that explains the disparity.


  43. - Jibba - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 4:30 pm:

    All this discussion led me to Rogers back and read Paper 53, and here are some takeaways.
    1) The authors do not use county level data due to spillover effects. They use regions. Perhaps we should also ignore individual counties.
    2) Corporate taxes are apparently not included, so there is no State Farm effect. Neither are transportation dollars, tolls, and gas tax.so a lot of things are left out.
    3) The biggest expenditure is Medicaid, followed by K-12 and other mandated education spending. These are need based, driving much of the funds from the suburbs to Cook County and poorer regions elsewhere in the state. These alone can cause much of the patterns seen.
    4) The biggest revenue source is individual income tax followed by sales tax. Clearly, the collars and Cook get hit hard by this.
    5) Downstate where total revenue dollars can be low, a state facility can make a huge difference, such as a prison or university, probably forming most of the odd differences between adjacent downstate counties.
    6) To me, a lot of data are missing. The authors acknowledge this, and accommodate this by regionalizing.

    The big picture of Chicagoland paying more and the Deep South receiving more is probably accurate, but I have to wonder about the rest of downstate, especially when regionalized, and taken into context of the location of state facilities. Are Sangamon and Champaign “takers” just because state facilities were located there 150 years ago? Probably not even if you ask the collars.

    Since poverty seems to drive the flows of funding, the collars probably are sufficiently magnanimous so as to not be outraged. Downstate attitudes seem to be the target of the study more, and hopefully they will read it and take it to heart.


  44. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 4:42 pm:

    ===“Most rural people would prefer Chicago keep their money and their rules.”===

    … but send money.

    It sounds thoughtful to the moment, “She-Caw-Go” takin’ money, or givin’ money… we just don’t want no “She-Caw-Go”…

    Yeah, it sounds just as foolish as i thought it would.

    Society, here in Illinois, needs to come to grips with the phony narratives peddled and designed to gin up regional biases, with no facts back stoppin’… “perceptions”.


  45. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 8:35 pm:

    ==Are Sangamon and Champaign “takers” just because state facilities were located there 150 years ago?==

    Technically yes, since they get state revenue. But its not helpful to anyone to use such pejorative terms like “takers” or call money spent a “subsidy”. It just perpetuates the silliness. Yes if you have a large state institution the state will spend a lot of money to run it in the county it is in.


  46. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 9:02 pm:

    ==Are Sangamon and Champaign “takers” just because state facilities were located there 150 years ago?==
    It’s not helpful to use a pejorative word like “takers”, but yes the state is going to spend money where it’s institutions are located


  47. - Taxedoutwest - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 9:20 pm:

    With the whole mess IL is in, does it really matter where the money ends up? Property taxes are ridiculously high which with over 70% going to education and none of this goes to the teacher pension mess. And guess what, this study doesn’t even mention the spilt of MFT’s. It is IL, why fight it?


  48. - Jibba - Wednesday, Aug 29, 18 @ 9:33 pm:

    DBBW…I intentionally used that term because I wanted to know if the collars would think that way. They’re getting screwed according to one or two people, and it is happening for many reasons, the location of state facilities being one that happens to affect Sangamon most. Sangamon is the only county other than Cook that has expenditures exceeding a billion dollars (some collars are close), and it is mostly due to the capital.

    Is it really important to the collars? If so, what is the solution? I suspect most won’t be outraged, but this is an opportunity to find out.


  49. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Thursday, Aug 30, 18 @ 6:53 am:

    ==Society, here in Illinois, needs to come to grips with the phony narratives peddled and designed to gin up regional biases, with no facts back stoppin’… “perceptions”.==

    Agree, Oswego. The widespread dissemination of this report is a step in that direction.


  50. - Jibba - Thursday, Aug 30, 18 @ 8:06 am:

    Additional thinking about this issue leads me to think that, other than dispelling the downstate idea that all the money goes to Chicago, the report holds little other meaning. The collars should not be agitating for change, and it appears that most are not, knowing their good fortune. They might take a close look at the figures by county, with some counties in the Deep South receiving less than 10 million dollar disbursements, while the collars approach a billion each, suggesting that some poorer counties really get by with very little. No expressways for them.

    Each part of the state contributes what it is suited for. Chicago cannot grow its own food, so rural places do that efficiently. Previous Comments about rural areas being not efficient ignore that, History has also played a part, with historic mining, farming, and development along the rivers playing a large role in the making of the state even before Chicago was much of anything. It grew in part because of the success of others.

    Downstate should be appreciative of what Chicsgoland brings, but it should also not feel like a supplicant for handouts. Each region is generating what it can given history and resources, and receiving in turn what they need.


  51. - the Patriot - Thursday, Aug 30, 18 @ 8:24 am:

    The fiction is that money solves all problems. Many rural schools have low taxes and good test scores. Our kids are educated at a fraction of the cost of suburban and city schools, better test scores and better extra curricular activities because everyone in the community pitches in.

    Chicago needs to get over the failed concept that throwing money at everything creates a good society. It buys votes, little else.


  52. - the Patriot - Thursday, Aug 30, 18 @ 8:27 am:

    ==Yeah, it sounds just as foolish as i thought it would.==

    Try traveling a little and blogging a little less. There is a lot of IL outside of the surburbs.


  53. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Aug 30, 18 @ 8:30 am:

    ===Try traveling a little and blogging a little less. There is a lot of IL outside of the surburbs.===

    … and yet, you make it about me, and ignoring how foolish it sounds.

    It sounds foolish. If you think it doesn’t sound foolish, because people say it, maybe you need to think about who you are visiting in your travels(?)


  54. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Aug 30, 18 @ 8:34 am:

    ===The fiction is that money solves all problems. Many rural schools have low taxes and good test scores. Our kids are educated at a fraction of the cost of suburban and city schools, better test scores and better extra curricular activities because everyone in the community pitches in.===

    … and yet, Ms. Bourne complained more money is going away from schools in her district, as Charlie Wheeler had to “educate” her on how much each school got, or how much is spent on each student.

    ===Chicago needs to get over the failed concept that throwing money at everything creates a good society.===

    Are you suggesting Illinois shouldn’t distribute monies, we should be a large commune, and you’ll do your part in the commune to help Chicago?

    That’s fun.


  55. - the Patriot - Thursday, Aug 30, 18 @ 9:03 am:

    You don’t have to agree with me. The the voters do. Forby and Bradley got bounced not because they were not liked, but because they could not sell Madigan’s Chicago Policy. These guys brought a lot of money to their districts, and the people said we don’t want the money. Phelps is a good guy, but saw the writing on the wall.


  56. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Aug 30, 18 @ 9:17 am:

    ===You don’t have to agree with me. The the voters do. Forby and Bradley got bounced not because they were not liked, but because they could not sell Madigan’s Chicago Policy. These guys brought a lot of money to their districts, and the people said we don’t want the money.===

    … and they still took it.

    Your argument is “bias” is fine, abd “bias” is what we want.

    Hmm. I learned a great deal. Thank you.


  57. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Thursday, Aug 30, 18 @ 5:35 pm:

    ==Previous Comments about rural areas being not efficient ignore that==

    I the person who made the comment about rural areas being less efficient. I ignored the fact about Chicago growing or not growing its own food because that has nothing to do with efficiency. Let me explain.

    If the state police need a radio tower in Chicago and another in a small town downstate, they build the radio towers with state money. Both towers take the same equipment and materials and manpower to build. One services an area of 4000 people, the other an area of 4 million people. Percapita the tower that serves 4 million people will coat less. Now think of all the other things that government pays for: roads, bridges, water pipes. The rural area infrastructire items will serve less people. The urban area items will serve more. So it is right to say that urban areas are more efficient, as far as government spending goes. It has nothing to do with the value of the labor of rural people.

    I think we can be mature adults and just acknowledge that there are different levels of efficiency without assigning a moral scale to the people involved. It’s not about “takers” and “givers” or “handouts”. Different strokes for different folks.


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