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As expected, Pritzker isn’t loving the Civic Committee’s idea

Wednesday, Feb 6, 2019

* Gov. Pritzker’s office reacts to the Civic Committee of the Commercial Club’s plan unveiled yesterday to raise the income tax rate, expand the tax to retirement income and tax some services

Despite what the Civic Committee folks say, Gov. Pritzker does not seem enamored of the plan.

The official response: “We appreciate the recommendations the Civic Committee is making as we begin this journey, and we will continue to listen to and work with all stakeholders as we move forward.”

The unofficial background response from an administration source: “The governor ruled out some of these recommendations during the campaign, including taxing retirement income. He opposes an increase in the flat tax and believes that a graduated income tax is the appropriate path forward for income taxes, so that the vast majority of Illinois families receive a tax break while the wealthiest pay more.”

The only way this plan looks even a little viable (aside from the retirement income tax, which is almost undoubtedly out of the question) is if the progressive tax proposal fails to pass.

Kennedy summed it up…



* There’s also this aspect

At the same time, the [Civic Committee] plan calls for elimination of the estate tax and the franchise tax at a cost of about $500 million. The organization said it would make Illinois more competitive and combat its “outlier status.”

Yeah, I’m thinking the Democrats are in zero mood to eliminate the estate tax these days.

* Illinois Policy Institute

“The people of Illinois pay among the highest state-and-local tax burdens in the nation, and yet Illinois has been in a perpetual budget crisis for years,” it says. “Taxes are the No. 1 reason people consider leaving Illinois, as residents face constant uncertainty about future tax rates. We support some of the reforms the Civic Committee includes in its proposal, including rightsizing government-worker health insurance costs so they more closely match what their peers in the private sector pay. But a $6 billion tax hike with little reform or shared sacrifice is likely to make our problems worse and would require Gov. J.B. Pritzker to break his promise not to raise taxes for his first two budget years.”

* Meanwhile

Also on Tuesday, bond ratings agency Moody’s Investors Service in a report pointed to many of the same issues the Civic Committee highlights: “massive unfunded pension liabilities, chronic budget deficits causing bill payment delays, and subpar economic and demographic trends.” It also says new money likely will be required to balance the budget.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

101 Comments »
  1. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 9:06 am:

    Can we just go ahead and hike the estate tax?

    Civic Committee oflks will either put more revenue in the coffers or will just leave. That’s a win either way.


  2. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 9:14 am:

    Perhaps Hinz should have checked in with the Pritzker people before he tweeted “Gov. Pritzker said to like” the civvies’ plan.

    Because…. journalism.


  3. - PJ - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 9:17 am:

    I can’t wait for the Civic Committee’s endorsement of Howard Schultz for president. They seem to be in lockstep on the idea that we have to erase budget deficits, but only if the poor shoulder more of the burden than the rich. Also cut the estate tax because everyone loves a good trust fund baby. Way to read the electorate!


  4. - Grandson of Man - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 9:18 am:

    Good for Pritzker. Let’s try for the graduated income tax.

    The margin for passing a graduated income tax CA in the House must be razor-thin. I expect at least one or more Democrats would vote against it. I hope at least one Republican will be for it, if it’s done with the intent of proponents, to cut taxes on the many and help lower property taxes.

    The alternative is bad, the raising of the flat tax, and Republicans would own that by not putting enough (or any) votes on it. It would be more of the broken staus quo, protecting the wealthiest at all costs while shouldering the burden disproportionately on others.


  5. - Lucky Pierre - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 9:20 am:

    What a surprise, Democrats continue to ignore the ratings agencies and the business community and then scratch their heads as to why job growth is so weak in Illinois- ranked 46th.

    “Pritzker has promised to bring a balanced budget when he addresses the General Assembly on Feb. 20. But that could be challenging because the governor won’t be able to change the state’s income tax system to a progressive structure by then. And growth in existing revenue sources will be “tepid,” Moody’s reported.

    Moody’s analysts said the coming fiscal 2020 budget will have to address the state’s pension contributions, which they noted are straining the budget even though the contribution is shortchanging liabilities, an operational deficit, and economic headwinds from the state’s shrinking population.

    The report said that more revenue from a progressive tax structure wouldn’t happen in the coming fiscal year, but pointed to other areas like expanding gambling, legalization and taxation of recreational marijuana, and taxing other transactions as possible ways the state could shore up its books. However, the report warned about raising taxes on an economically vulnerable population.

    “Governors have limited direct control over state economies, but the population loss and relatively sluggish employment trends suggest a degree of economic vulnerability that poses a conundrum: revenue growth from existing sources will be too tepid to offset escalating fixed costs, while new taxes could threaten to increase the outflow of residents,” the report said.

    Moody’s rated the state’s bond as Baa3 stable, above junk grade, but not by much. According to the Illinois Comptroller’s website, Illinois has a bill backlog of nearly $8 billion.”

    https://www.ilnews.org/news/economy/moody-s-says-pritzker-will-need-more-money-to-balance/article_a0968a8a-298b-11e9-b8ec-93cf0d3c49f1.html


  6. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 9:29 am:

    LP, what a bunch of hogwash. The population is not declining because of taxes in any way shape or form. Do svidaniya.


  7. - Arsenal - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 9:33 am:

    ==Democrats continue to ignore the ratings agencies and the business community==

    What are you talking about? The ratings agencies didn’t recommend that JB hike your taxes, the civic committee did, and he’s saying, “Nah, I’ll hike my own instead.”

    You are so reflexively upset that your pet loser lost that you’re not even reading these posts.


  8. - Arsenal - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 9:35 am:

    Anyway, folks need to realize that when you campaign on a policy, and your base likes it, and you win, it’s *really* hard to move off of that policy. And it ought to be. It’s bad democracy to campaign on one thing and do another without consequences.


  9. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 9:35 am:

    LP, the ratings agencies are also saying that new revenue is needed. So tell them to make up their minds.


  10. - Chicagoan - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 9:37 am:

    I don’t see how JB doesn’t raise the flat tax or sales tax. Where is the revenue going to come from before 2021, the earliest timing of a progressive income tax? More irresponsible borrowing on the backs of the pension?


  11. - Arsenal - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 9:42 am:

    ==Where is the revenue going to come from before 2021, the earliest timing of a progressive income tax?==

    The budgets will probably just look like last year’s. Limp along until you can get to the real solution.


  12. - Arsenal - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 9:44 am:

    Also, every day that JB isn’t on the hustings saying “BIG BUSINESS wanted me to raise taxes on YOUR retirement and YOUR groceries, but I said NO” is a gigantic compromise with the business community.


  13. - RNUG - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 9:46 am:

    Moody’s, et al: tax somebody more, the State needs the revenue

    JB: tax the people who can afford to pay more

    Rich folks: don’t tax us more, stop taxing our estates, steal from the government pensions and healthcare, and tax everyone else more

    That pretty much sums it up …


  14. - Nick Name - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 9:46 am:

    ===The official response: “We appreciate the recommendations the Civic Committee is making as we begin this journey, and we will continue to listen to and work with all stakeholders as we move forward.”===

    ===The unofficial background response from an administration source: “The governor ruled out some of these recommendations during the campaign, including taxing retirement income. He opposes an increase in the flat tax and believes that a graduated income tax is the appropriate path forward for income taxes, so that the vast majority of Illinois families receive a tax break while the wealthiest pay more.”===

    May we say once again how refreshing statements like these are after four years of Rauner admin word salads?


  15. - DeseDemDose - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 9:57 am:

    JB Correctamundo.


  16. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 9:58 am:

    The governor will have serious choices to make, and looking for new revenue streams within the political context of what he promised and what is possible is where the governor is.

    The question is how much political cover or damage can be weighed when trying to navigate revenue.

    What cuts could help, when the governor’s own plans are more costly than cost cutting.

    Tough pickle, but I don’t think the proposal here is one that’s helpful on ticking the boxes this governor wants ticked.


  17. - PublicServant - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 10:01 am:

    Get on with letting the people decide if they want a progressive, instead of a flat, regressive tax. It’ll be a tough vote, but JB was elected to get the CA done. I, for one, think he’s making the right moves, and he’s not afraid to get his hands dirty To build a consensus on it.


  18. - Norseman - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 10:05 am:

    Kennedy hits a home run.


  19. - steve - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 10:08 am:

    JB didn’t get elected on ideas of the Civic Committee , so what they have to say doesn’t matter too much. Taxes are going to go up , it just a matter of who’s . Overtime progressive income taxes generally lead to higher incomes on everyone.


  20. - Lucky Pierre - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 10:09 am:

    The ratings agencies are saying that retiree health care and pensions must be reformed because they are driving the deficits in Illinois.

    The fact that JB is somehow the poster boy for the rich paying their fair share is laugh out loud funny.

    Pay no attention to his record used for decades to become one of only 14 billionaires in Illinois-

    going to extraordinary means to avoid avoiding paying his fair share.

    Just listen to his campaign promises of tax cuts for working people, and huge spending increases paid for by taxing the rich.


  21. - Not a Billionaire - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 10:17 am:

    RNUG hits it out of the park.The IPI needs a rewording. Taxes too high on poor and middle class . Rich and super rich doing great. Quinn fell for this nonsense and look what happened to them.The game is up we know you just want to stir the political lot with social issues and deviveness while you stuff you pockets.


  22. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 10:28 am:

    –RNUG hits it out of the park.–

    He sure did.

    I’d add, rating agencies always call for higher taxes. You’ll note, however, that the 2011 tax increase did not lead to any ratings upgrades; in fact, just the opposite.

    The 2017 tax increase also didn’t lead to any upgrades.

    This, despite the fact, that all bond payments have been made on time and in full, forever, because of already exponential revenue coverage and state law that gives them first claim on all revenue.

    In short, who cares what the rating agencies say at this point? They make no sense.


  23. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 10:31 am:

    ==The ratings agencies are saying that retiree health care and pensions must be reformed ==

    Pensions have been reformed once. It’s called Tier II. Yet you and others continue to insist that benefits for current employees be reduced even though the courts have said otherwise. Now, I know you are going to regurgitate you same talking point about Cullerton’s plan but we know that plan is unconstitutional. And before you babble on about how we don’t know that we do, in fact, know that because it violates the road map the courts gave.

    You can do as many revisions to the pension plan as you want - for new employees. Go for it.

    ==is laugh out loud funny==

    Like much of your commentary.

    It’s funny LP, I didn’t hear you shouting at the moon when the rating agencies were pontificating about Illinois situation when Rauner was Govenor (well, with the exception of playing the victim and telling us all how nothing was his fault).


  24. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 10:33 am:

    - RNUG - capsulized it.

    The fiscal house of this state and trade-off of keeping wealthy people happy at the cost of ignoring the needs of the Starr direct sound like sound fiscal practices.

    Revenue is required. It’s not up for discussion or debate.


  25. - Lucky Pierre - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 10:33 am:

    Who cares what the ratings agencies say?

    Bond investors not public employees or politicians apparently.


  26. - A 400lb. Guy on a bed - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 10:33 am:

    =LP What a bunch of hogwash=

    As I’ve said before, instead of being rejected in the 2018 election, the IPI is doubling-down on crazy.


  27. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 10:33 am:

    == including rightsizing government-worker health insurance costs so they more closely match what their peers in the private sector pay.==

    Why doesn’t it surprise me that one of the things the Illinois Policy Institute pulls out of that is the anti-public employee proposals?


  28. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 10:36 am:

    ==Who cares what the ratings agencies say?==

    Well, they didn’t persuade you enough to criticize Rauner when he was Governor. So now what’s changed?


  29. - Grandson of Man - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 10:36 am:

    “The ratings agencies are saying that retiree health care and pensions must be reformed because they are driving the deficits in Illinois.”

    The Illinois Supreme Court ruled decisively on retiree healthcare and pensions. What has to happen is at the very least, the richest have to pay a higher state income tax. Minnesota and California have had success with a graduated income tax and raising taxes on the rich, as well as economic success. They report budget surpluses, which enable paying bills.

    As of the last election, we in Illinois said we don’t want a race to the bottom system. We don’t want to be a low wage state and are not using state models pushed by anti-union right wingers like the former governor and the phony criers who slam Illinois but live and/or prosper here.


  30. - ike - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 10:37 am:

    LP - even Fox News viewers believe that the rich need to pay more in taxes.

    https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.gq.com/story/fox-news-tax-poll-fairness/amp


  31. - Proud - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 10:45 am:

    I dont understand why taxing services (other then it is always strongly opposed by the Lawyer Lobby) does not get more traction. Even Rauner campaigned on it 4 yrs ago. The family pays taxes at Walmart for clothes for their kids but a Spa day mani-pedi that costs $200, why thats tax free.


  32. - Truthteller - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 10:45 am:

    If Ty Fahner had taken this approach in 2011, we’d be eight years closer to a solution to pension funding.
    Too bad the Civic Committee didn’t listen to the unions then.
    Great that they’re now waving the surrender flag.


  33. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 10:58 am:

    === Even Rauner campaigned on it 4 yrs ago===

    Right, but Rauner wouldn’t agree to a bill until he’d broken the unions.


  34. - Arsenal - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 11:03 am:

    ==The fact that JB is somehow the poster boy for the rich paying their fair share is laugh out loud funny.==

    How would you know? You were all in for the guy who said the rich SHOULDN’T pay their fair share.


  35. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 11:32 am:

    –Bond investors not public employees or politicians apparently.–

    I’m neither, my cherry picking comrade.

    Perhaps you could address the points I made in my post.


  36. - BenFolds5 - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 11:35 am:

    JB is stuck with YEARS of mis management by both republicans and democrats alike. I did not vote for him, because I felt it was just a hobby of a billionaire like the last guy. That said, I want to give him a chance. We will find out soon enough if he keeps his word about taxes. The fact is though, he of all people should be criticized for paying his fair share. Only hyper partisans give him a pass. I think the ads and attacks write themselves on the subject of paying the fair share really heats up. Seriously, I wish I had the money to send off shore, I am jealous. Speaking of that, why don’t people attack him on here or the far left. He’s the example you are all screaming about paying more. No snark, I would love to hear Honeybear or Word explain why it’s there guy get’s a pass.


  37. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 11:43 am:

    ==why don’t people attack him on here or the far left.==

    Another victim heard from.

    ==explain why it’s there guy get’s a pass==

    You obviously weren’t around during the toilet removal commentary.


  38. - BenFolds5 - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 11:45 am:

    Victim? Tax the rich right? Why does he put so much off shore? That’s not a victim. Actually, physically removing toilets is probably much worse. That’s next level tax avoidance. Thanks for the reminder.


  39. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 11:47 am:

    ==why don’t people attack him on here or the far left.==

    That’s a victim statement. It’s whining. How you translate that into an argument by me to tax the rich is beyond me.


  40. - PJ - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 11:50 am:

    ==why don’t people attack him on here or the far left==

    What planet were you living on during the months-long Democratic primary?


  41. - Lucky Pierre - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 11:53 am:

    How about a service tax on wealthy property tax law firms and the politicians who run them?

    Pay their fair share? Never


  42. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 11:53 am:

    –What planet were you living on during the months-long Democratic primary?–

    Planet Willful Ignorance. It’s like Bizarro World, where you start with conclusions and then search for evidence to support them.


  43. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 11:55 am:

    Of course the state’s population is declining because of taxes. There are plenty of polls showing it to the top one or two issues for people leaving. We have one of the highest state and local tax burdens in the country and don’t have any special government services to show for it.


  44. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 11:56 am:

    ===The fact is though, he of all people should be criticized for paying his fair share. Only hyper partisans give him a pass. I think the ads and attacks write themselves on the subject of paying the fair share really heats up. Seriously, I wish I had the money to send off shore, I am jealous. Speaking of that, why don’t people attack him on here or the far left.===

    There is NO way you were here in Illinois from December 2017 to November 2018.

    Nope. No way.

    Oh, if you were, keep that to yourself. It’s bad enough you typed that, you being here and then typing that is too embarrassing to admit.


  45. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 11:57 am:

    Can we define what rich means?


  46. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 11:58 am:

    ===He’s the example you are all screaming about paying more. No snark, I would love to hear Honeybear or Word explain why it’s there guy get’s a pass.===

    “Only Nixon could open China”.

    It might take one of the wealthiest Illinoisans to change and make possible tax reform, including taxing the wealthy at a greater clip with a graduated income tax… starting at the earliest in 2021


  47. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:01 pm:

    Why don’t we amend the state constitution of public employee benefit protection so future generations never have to deal with this again?


  48. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:02 pm:

    Social Security and Medicare aren’t protected.


  49. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:03 pm:

    ===Why don’t we amend the state constitution of public employee benefit protection so future generations never have to deal with this again?===

    Explain, in your own words to show an understanding, the process to amend the Illinois constitution.

    Thanks.


  50. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:04 pm:

    ==Pay their fair share? Never==

    Would you grow up for crying out loud.


  51. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:05 pm:

    ==Social Security and Medicare aren’t protected.==

    What does that have to do with anything other than being an inane drive by comment?


  52. - BenFolds5 - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:06 pm:

    Again, attack. Personalize it. I thought OW Governors own? Hmm… I heard that for 4 years. I am willing to give him a chance, but anyone that can’t see this is pretty hysterical coming from a tax dodger that the rich should pay more, I think you are playing the “ignorance” card. Everyone’s taxes should raise, but mine. Right?


  53. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:07 pm:

    ===Social Security and Medicare aren’t protected.===

    Again, explain constitutions, and explain process… first.

    Now you’re just yelling at clouds on your porch.


  54. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:11 pm:

    ===I thought OW Governors own?===

    What do you want him to own? When we all hear the budget/state of the state address combo, then I’ll know the path Pritzker will own, and owning the budget and taxing along with it. Keep up.

    ===I think you are playing the “ignorance” card. Everyone’s taxes should raise, but mine. Right?===

    Again, you are willfully ignorant.

    How can a governor with his wealth be for a progressive income tax, and be more worried about being taxed more?

    You want to be angry about something… this is what you’re choosing?


  55. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:15 pm:

    The Tier II pensions are absolutely awful. Why are people still saying this nonsense about pension reform? Reform to minimum wage? We already put in more than we will ever get out. Current employees would be better served by eliminating the pensions altogether.. That might even be constitutional, since elimination may cause employees to actually get a net increase in take home pay during their career over what the pension could give.


  56. - ike - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:21 pm:

    Benfolds5 - Were you making the same argument when Trump was crowing about being the only person who could fix the federal tax system because he knew how to cheat the system?


  57. - Einherjar - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:21 pm:

    I think Hinz was correct. JB does like it. He’s boxed in by some of his public statements on things like retirement income and increase in flat tax but on a lot of other solutions, I am thinking , he’s exploring and possibly has in the works. Why else would he retain Rauners senior budgeting staff? If he was really against it, Pritzker would have brought in all new people diametrically opposed to what Rauner was doing with the budget.


  58. - RNUG - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:25 pm:

    == Why don’t we amend the state constitution of public employee benefit protection so future generations never have to deal with this again? ==

    Without changing the State Constitution, you can change pension and healthcare rules for new hires any time you want to (as long as it is BEFORE you hire them). That’s an easy change.

    But understand if you remove those benefits from the total compensation package, you should expect to have to pay higher salaries to get people to take the jobs … especially since almost every State position these days requires one or more college degrees.


  59. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:25 pm:

    Why do public workers get more protection than everyone else? That is why I bring it up. Eliminate those protections as they completely unfair.


  60. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:27 pm:

    RNUG, the problem with that is the benefit “promises” can always be increased to unsustainable levels like we have now.


  61. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:29 pm:

    ===Why do public workers get more protection than everyone else? That is why I bring it up. Eliminate those protections as they completely unfair.===

    No one is stopping you from applying for these jobs.

    Why won’t you?

    Every employment opportunity has different challenges and benefits. The state constitution protection is a benefit, since 1970.

    You do realize… the employees are paying in, its the state not meeting obligations of borrowing off those monies is the problem… right?


  62. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:30 pm:

    Willy, the know the concept bothers public employees, but adults both Democrat and republican should see that this is what has ruined Illinois. Too bad JB isn’t more courageous and bucks the public employee unions.


  63. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:31 pm:

    The state constitution provides a “benefit” that is destroying illinois by attempting to outlaw math and economics.


  64. - RNUG - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:32 pm:

    == Current employees would be better served by eliminating the pensions altogether.. That might even be constitutional, since elimination may cause employees to actually get a net increase in take home pay during their career over what the pension could give. ==

    Unlikely dropping pensions for existing Tier 2 employees would be found constitutional, given the various court rulings since 1975. I expect the court would rule giving the employees more money now would not be the same benefit as a guaranteed pension upon retirement, using the simple logic that salary and pensions are two distinct and unique benefits, and that it doesn’t matter if the dollars received are the same.


  65. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:34 pm:

    ===they know the concept bothers public employees, but adults both Democrat and republican should see that this is what has ruined Illinois.===

    Your lack of understanding the constitution and how to amend, and 71 and 36 is embarrassing. Either explain how to amend, what that would mean when what’s already earned is untouchable, and the politics to why 71 and 36 don’t exist… or yell at clouds on your own porch. Your “worry” has been asked and answered ad nauseum

    Pick a name. I’ve indulged you long enough without one.


  66. - RNUG - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:35 pm:

    == RNUG, the problem with that is the benefit “promises” can always be increased to unsustainable levels like we have now. ==

    That is where you have to hold the Legislature account about, since the GA, and ONLY the GA, had the power to increase benefits.


  67. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:37 pm:

    –Can we define what rich means?–

    Can you select a handle, troll? I mean Ron.


  68. - Arsenal - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:39 pm:

    ==How about a service tax on wealthy property tax law firms and the politicians who run them?==

    How about we just tax their income? Seems a little easier, and we can broaden the tax base beyond “folks that LP doesn’t like”.


  69. - Arsenal - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:40 pm:

    ==Why do public workers get more protection than everyone else?==

    Because they fought for those protections and won them in a bargaining process.


  70. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:42 pm:

    Willy, whether one is a Democrat or a Republican should not be pertinent to the fact that our constitution has destroyed illinois and is completely unfair. Both parties should unite and amend the Constitution to eliminate the protection.


  71. - Arsenal - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:42 pm:

    ==I think you are playing the “ignorance” card. Everyone’s taxes should raise, but mine. Right?==

    None of the proposals on the table have a carve-out for JB Pritzker.


  72. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:43 pm:

    Arsenal, and it was clearly a mistake and is completely unfair to current citizens of the state that had no say at all in the drafting.


  73. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:45 pm:

    What should these progressive tax rates be? Why won’t JB propose something?


  74. - Arsenal - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:45 pm:

    ==Too bad JB isn’t more courageous and bucks the public employee unions.==

    It’s not about courage, it’s about reality. The last two Governors both tried to slash public pensions. They both failed and were sent home for their efforts.


  75. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:45 pm:

    ===whether one is a Democrat or a Republican should not be pertinent to the fact that our constitution has destroyed illinois and is completely unfair.===

    I didn’t bring up party. Why are you?

    ===Both parties should unite and amend the Constitution to eliminate the protection.===

    Is that you Bruce Rauner?

    You have no idea how to amend the constitution do ya?

    You have no idea that benefits already accrued are protected, do ya?

    Either know what you speak or yell at clouds on your own, and since you still refuse to have a name, I’ll leave you to that yelling on your own.


  76. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:46 pm:

    ===…was clearly a mistake and is completely unfair to current citizens of the state that had no say at all in the drafting.===

    Explain how the constitution was ratified.


  77. - Arsenal - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:49 pm:

    ==Arsenal, and it was clearly a mistake and is completely unfair to current citizens of the state that had no say at all in the drafting.==

    “Clearly” is doing a lot of work in that sentence. Personally, I think it’s absolutely fair that the state government has to honor its employment contracts, and I fear a government that is powerful enough to break contracts without any consequences.

    Moreover, the voters definitely had a say. They voted for the Con-Con. They voted for the delegates. They voted for all the subsequent Govenors who negotiated with the unions and GAs who appropriated the money (or failed to do so, as the case may be).


  78. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:53 pm:

    Arsenal, I haven’t said we should slash public pensions. I said we should eliminate the Constitutional protection to save future generations of Illinoisans.


  79. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:54 pm:

    I didn’t vote for the Con Con not did almost anyone I know here.


  80. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:55 pm:

    - Arsenal -

    “Anonymous” is an angry and clueless, harping without knowing, complaining without reasoning.

    We can only do so much….


  81. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:56 pm:

    ===I understand you are a government worker and this bothers you.===

    I am not. I am also not in a union, not getting a state pension.

    What else ya got?


  82. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:56 pm:

    The reason I bring this up is that I care for Illinois and don’t want to see something like this happen again. I don’t want my kids to have to deal with this.


  83. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 12:59 pm:

    People, I’ve been deleting more and more comments from anonymous users. If you can’t take the time to create a simple name, don’t bother commenting.


  84. - RNUG - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 1:00 pm:

    Anonymous,

    Suggested pension law reading:

    Most of Eric Madiar’s pension articles in one spot.

    https://www.madiar.com/articles/

    Links so you can download some of the actual rulings

    1975 IFT v Lindberg decision

    https://tinyurl.com/yce36sfj

    2014 Kanerva v Weems decision

    https://tinyurl.com/ya788t3x

    2015 SB-1 decision

    https://tinyurl.com/y72yx2ot


  85. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 1:00 pm:

    On December 15, 1970, illinois rarified the constitution by a 57% to 43% vote… in a special election.


  86. - RNUG - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 1:06 pm:

    == Because they fought for those protections and won them in a bargaining process. ==

    They got that protection because a working committee at the last Con-Con decided the pensions were not being properly funded and the committee thought copying the New York Constitution’s pension clause would scare the GA into properly funding the pendions.


  87. - Lucky Pierre - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 1:16 pm:

    Why do public workers get more protection than everyone else?

    Because the politicians are “public workers” themselves.

    They have only funded their own GARS pension system with 16% of what will be required to pay the extremely generous pension benefits for part time work.


  88. - RNUG - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 1:22 pm:

    ==Arsenal, and it was clearly a mistake and is completely unfair to current citizens of the state that had no say at all in the drafting.==

    Excuse me …

    Voters since 1970, including recently, have rejected all calls for another Con-Con. So, -Anonymous-, you have no claim to being a victim … you were just in the miniority that isn’t happy with the current State Constitution.

    BTW: all the 1970 Con-Con discussions are online in the State’s digital archives. If you read the pension debate minutes, it is clear those drafters knew exactly what they were doing … trying to make the State honor it’s promised by invoking Federal Contract Law. That’s why the clause first says pensions are a contract, and then goes on to add they can’t be diminished in the same sentence.


  89. - anon2 - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 1:34 pm:

    === I hope at least one Republican will vote for the graduated income tax amendment. ===
    Only if he or she is retiring.


  90. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 1:39 pm:

    ==Why do public workers get more protection than everyone else?==

    My brother works at a job where he gets bonuses. I’ve got a friend who gets bonuses and stock options.

    Different jobs have different benefits. This “it’s not fair” argument is juvenile.


  91. - Giroud - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 1:44 pm:

    Demoralized, but those benefits can AND do change according to current economic situation and many other factors. The problem with the Illinois constitution is that we can’t change a future benefit.


  92. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 1:50 pm:

    ===The problem with the Illinois constitution is that we can’t change a future benefit===

    Yeah… constitutional guarantees are like that.

    That’s how they work.

    No one is stopping you from applying for these jobs… why haven’t you?


  93. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 1:50 pm:

    ==The problem with the Illinois constitution is that we can’t change a future benefit.==

    Well, those are the cards that have been dealt. Continuously whining about it doesn’t do anything. The pension benefits for new employees can be changed any time they want. They can get rid of the pensions for new employees and replace it with a 401K if they wanted to right now. But instead of doing something constructive we continue to have these arguments about cutting benefits for current workers which cannot happen. That’s been made crystal clear. And yet some continue to whine and stomp their feet as if that changes anything. Eliminate it. Nothing is stopping them for doing that right now.


  94. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 1:55 pm:

    ===The problem with the Illinois constitution is that we can’t change a future benefit===

    You can… change the constitution.

    Find the votes, get it to pass on the ballot, oh… get a governor to sign.

    Please, read up on the constitution.


  95. - James - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 2:19 pm:

    The Civic Club represents the status quo which promotes unregulated capitalism which in turn results in the increasing income inequality that we see around the “free” world (see Piketty).

    Within that status quo, the Civic Club promotes well thought-out solutions for government to solve problems.

    But when the status quo is challenged by the prospect of progressive tax rates (in a single state, despite the majority of other states and the federal government having it), or progressive changes to or mere maintenance of the estate tax, don’t expect the Civic Club to go along quietly. Any significant movement toward income equality will be attacked and resisted by such groups.


  96. - AnonymousOne - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 6:13 pm:

    You can change the constitution for future benefits and guarantees. It still won’t do anything for the debt owed………..


  97. - RNUG - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 8:32 pm:

    == The family pays taxes at Walmart for clothes for their kids but a Spa day mani-pedi that costs $200, why thats tax free. ==

    Maybe because it is real easy to move services to cash off the books, and lose even more tax revenue from underreporting?


  98. - RNUG - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 8:36 pm:

    == The fact is though, he of all people should be criticized for paying his fair share. ==

    Tax avoidance is legal. JB wants to change the rules so it is harder to avoid paying
    fair share of taxes.


  99. - Not a Billionaire - Thursday, Feb 7, 19 @ 7:07 am:

    This is why I am giving Madigan a break . The guy in the tweet is off base here so maybe he shouldn’t be throwing rumor around.


  100. - Illinois Resident - Thursday, Feb 7, 19 @ 8:17 am:

    When you let the elites make policy (unless you have a heart like JB who actually advocates for policies that help average people) they are going to advance policies that help themselves. See the federal tax cut. They have the money but we have a vast majority of the people. We will ultimately win but they will fight us to the end so we need to stay vigilant and advance policies that help the middle and lower class.


  101. - Illinois Resident - Thursday, Feb 7, 19 @ 8:21 am:

    Take a look at the Civic Committee members. I don’t see any “average” folks in membership. I wonder why they do not advocate policies that help 97% of us?


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