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Pritzker campaign reins in Pritzker on service tax

Friday, Sep 14, 2018

* JB Pritzker at the SJ-R editorial board

“Then there are areas in the sales tax system that we could look at, to expand sales taxes into services,” he said. “Those are three areas we can bring revenue into the state.”

Asked later if he had any specific services in mind, Pritzker said he did not.

“It’s just that if we have to look for revenue sources, that might be a place we can look,” Pritzker said. […]

“As J.B. said in the past, he opposes a sales tax on services,” said campaign spokeswoman Galia Slayen. “J.B. has been clear in his support for a fair tax that would require the wealthy like himself and Bruce Rauner to pay more, while Bruce Rauner thinks he should be paying the same rate as a childcare worker struggling to make ends meet.”

The campaign also referred to a debate Pritzker attended in January with other Democratic candidates for governor in which he was the only one to oppose extending the sales tax to services.

Gov. Rauner also pushed for a sales tax on services during the 2014 campaign.

I happen to think a tax on services is long overdue. All of our tax bases (sales, income and property) are too narrow in Illinois, and that pushes up our tax rates.

But, dude, if you’ve made a big deal out of opposing something, then stick with it. This ain’t some sophomore dorm room debate. It’s a gubernatorial campaign in a major state.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

18 Comments »
  1. - Techie - Friday, Sep 14, 18 @ 10:28 am:

    “But, dude, if you’ve made a big deal out of opposing something, then stick with it. This ain’t some sophomore dorm room debate. It’s a gubernatorial campaign in a major state.”

    Nowadays, they don’t seem to be that different.


  2. - Steve - Friday, Sep 14, 18 @ 10:33 am:

    Illinois is now considered a high income tax state (with the potential to go higher with a progressive income tax). Illinois is considered a high sales tax state. Illinois is considered a high property tax state. Extending taxes to services will not necessarily cut the other ones given the pension problems. But, Illinois voters might be gullible enough to extend taxes to services.


  3. - Ron Burgundy - Friday, Sep 14, 18 @ 10:33 am:

    – It’s just that if we have to look for revenue sources, that might be a place we can look,” Pritzker said. […]

    “As J.B. said in the past, he opposes a sales tax on services,” –

    Tighten up the messaging, folks. “Might be a place we can look” does not equal “oppose.”


  4. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Sep 14, 18 @ 10:37 am:

    ===“J.B. has been clear in his support for a fair tax that would require the wealthy like himself and Bruce Rauner to pay more, while Bruce Rauner thinks he should be paying the same rate as a childcare worker struggling to make ends meet.”===

    This is much better to the progressive tax exacting ask.

    If you must have an exacting policy point as part of the political discussion, and you don’t have the policy, thus is probably as good as you can take it here, specifically.

    Let’s see if they can get this messaging ready for the debates and pivot off the unforced error(s) and use something like that to get it back to the ambiguities needed.

    If they can, it will ramp down the “it’s not a plan, stop calling it a plan”…. it won’t fully go away, that bell has wrung, but this helps… as long as “everyone” stops saying Pritzker has a plan. He doesn’t.

    Now, the call for Pritzker to have a plan on anything, that’s a whole different animal, lol


  5. - Responsa - Friday, Sep 14, 18 @ 10:42 am:

    ==It’s just that if we have to look for revenue sources,…==

    If?


  6. - WhoKnew - Friday, Sep 14, 18 @ 10:49 am:

    So, are we back to “He was for it, before he was against”! /s


  7. - City Zen - Friday, Sep 14, 18 @ 11:18 am:

    A service tax of some sort is long overdue. Pick a few services and tax them at 3%. Not sure if you can prevent counties and municipalities taxing them as well though.

    Of course, there is another source of revenue that is currently untapped…


  8. - Robert the Bruce - Friday, Sep 14, 18 @ 11:40 am:

    Why not pick consulting, audit, and legal services as services to tax? Pritzker doesn’t depend on them for funding his campaign so he could go there.


  9. - JS Mill - Friday, Sep 14, 18 @ 11:49 am:

    =A service tax of some sort is long overdue. Pick a few services and tax them at 3%. Not sure if you can prevent counties and municipalities taxing them as well though.=

    Why limit what services are taxed and tax all services except medical?


  10. - RNUG - Friday, Sep 14, 18 @ 11:57 am:

    Tailor any proposed service taxes to hit primarily services used by the 1.4%. Maybe start with storage / docking fees for yachts over 25 feet. Same for private planes that have a purchase price over $500,000. A tax surcharge on vehicle leases where the initial purchase price of the vehicle exceeds $100,000. A service fee on limo services is another possibility.

    You can be for those kinds of service fees and still have the average voter support you.


  11. - jim - Friday, Sep 14, 18 @ 12:17 pm:

    JB slipped up and told the truth.


  12. - City Zen - Friday, Sep 14, 18 @ 12:21 pm:

    ==Why limit what services are taxed and tax all services except medical?==

    You can make the tax as broad as you want. The broader the tax, the lower the tax rate. No different than taxing retirement income: broaden the tax base and lower the overall tax rate.


  13. - anon2 - Friday, Sep 14, 18 @ 12:23 pm:

    Will Rauner have the chutzpah to attack JB for flirting with a service tax?


  14. - Nanker Phelge - Friday, Sep 14, 18 @ 12:44 pm:

    Where is the talk about cost reduction? It is always about looking for more revenue.

    Short-term, yes, maybe the State needs to bring in more revenue (wasn’t that the purpose of the income tax increase). Long-term, yes, we probably need to look at the whole tax system. But, talk about spending must occur, both short-term and long-term.


  15. - RNUG - Friday, Sep 14, 18 @ 1:28 pm:

    == Where is the talk about cost reduction? It is always about looking for more revenue. ==

    Rauner tried cost reduction … well, actually he tried starvation. Didn’t work out so well, courts ended up mandating about 90% funding anyway. It could reasonably be argued the team are very few places to cut.

    So what cuts are you proposing?


  16. - Duopoly - Friday, Sep 14, 18 @ 1:49 pm:

    Service tax like the majority of US states is a good idea. It’s not logical that basic home and auto repair parts are taxed more than luxury services.

    Too bad JB & Co is running away from such a good idea


  17. - City Zen - Friday, Sep 14, 18 @ 2:36 pm:

    ==Where is the talk about cost reduction?==

    Sometimes it’s about tax replacement. What if the state levied a sales tax on all goods and services but lowered the tax to 3%, or whatever would generate the same amount of revenue?

    This is all about broadening the tax base and modernizing the state’s tax structure.


  18. - Dead Head - Friday, Sep 14, 18 @ 3:28 pm:

    ==All of our tax bases (sales, income and property) are too narrow in Illinois, and that pushes up our tax rates.==

    You forgot gasoline.


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