Friday, May 27, 2022 - Posted by Rich Miller
* The Peoria Journal-Star asked candidates “What help do small businesses still need due to pandemic?” Here’s Richard Irvin’s response…
When J.B. Pritzker ordered our business to close their doors, we worked quickly in Aurora to provide local businesses with the support they needed. But local governments can only do so much when Springfield keeps trying to raise taxes on small businesses. Cutting income taxes and delivering property tax relief will be an enormous help to small businesses in Illinois – and give them the support they need to recover from the pandemic.
Local property tax collections are about equal to state revenues. By far the biggest property tax driver is education spending. The state already picks up most of the tab on K-12 pension costs. So, unless you have a magic plan to drastically reduce the state’s teacher pension costs (which Irvin doesn’t, as far as I can tell), the only meaningful relief at the local school level is to provide more state investments. And that costs money, which you won’t have if you cut state income taxes.
This whole “The taxes are too high and the spending is too low” argument is very common, but quite tiresome.
* Gov. Pritzker’s answer to the same question…
I believe that protecting the health of our citizens is the most important thing I can do as Governor, while also doing everything possible to mitigate the effects of the pandemic on our economy. I have worked to save lives AND livelihoods and have always followed the science to ensure our economy would reopen when we had the proper tools to mitigate the spread, like masks and vaccines. We created the nation’s largest state program of its kind, providing grants and other support to over 12,000 small businesses. We led with equity and prioritized hard-hit industries in awarding state funding, including businesses that didn’t qualify for federal funds and businesses in disproportionately impacted areas of the state. While Republicans ignored science, encouraged people to inject bleach, lied about the dangers of COVID, and promoted conspiracy theories, I was assisting small businesses and helping workers and their families weather the health and financial impacts of the pandemic.
Yeah, OK, but the question was about what small businesses still need. No answer. At all.
* Jesse Sullivan…
The biggest thing small businesses need is leaders who represent them, rather than the corrupt virtue-signaling insiders in Springfield. Government is too often focused on making sure the insiders get their cut. We saw that in the past two years, and we’ve seen it for the entirety of J.B. Pritzker’s term.
I’ve been an entrepreneur and job creator, helping small-business owners all over the world create the jobs of the future. I know what it takes to foster a business-friendly environment, from lower taxes to regulatory certainty, and I will bring that commitment to growth here to Illinois.
Small businesses deserve the right to earn a living, without fear that they could be shut down again at any moment. I will deliver that for Illinois – as the first step of making our state the best in the nation to hold a job, raise a family, or run a business.
The question was about what small business still need because of the pandemic, Jesse.
Bailey and Rabine didn’t respond.
…Adding… From the debate…
Sullivan claimed he could save $10 billion in the state budget, citing only a planned hiring freeze, planned pension reforms and local government consolidation.
Even for him, that’s ludicrous.