As Illinois lawmakers prepare to vote on a constitutional amendment to change the state’s flat income tax to a graduated one, debate on the topic continued Monday even with the legislature off for a two-week break.
The City Club of Chicago hosted four lawmakers Monday, two Democrats and two Republicans, to make their case regarding a progressive income tax, which would have higher rates for higher earners.
Peoria Republican Senator Chuck Weaver said the biggest reason Democrats want a progressive tax is to make it easier to raise taxes on a small number of high-earners.
“Flat taxes are harder to raise. Illinois needs discipline,” he said.
He said raising taxes on people is not the way to keep them in the state.
State Rep. Will Guzzardi disagreed that people make choices to move places based on tax burdens.
“People don’t make decisions based on where they’re going to live based on the top marginal tax rate,” he said.
It later boiled down to one central question: Does Illinois have a revenue problem or a spending problem?
Guzzardi used the years of government gridlock under former Gov. Bruce Rauner as proof that cuts don’t work.
“Just what we’re doing today, we don’t have enough money to pay for it, so the only question is ‘who’s going to pay?’” he said.
McSweeney said calls for more money at a time when the state’s collecting more than it ever has is evidence that reforms are needed.
“It’s a $38.3 billion budget, $8.1 billion is being spent on pensions, $8.2 billion on Medicaid out of the general fund, $9 billion on education with absolutely no reform,” he said.
The state Senate is due to vote on the progressive tax amendment in May before they send it to the House for consideration. If approved, voters would have the final say on the constitutional change at the ballot box.
01-All No Sub,02-Pol,16-Econ,19-Legal,24-ILGA,26-Delivered,HL,HL New,RKPRS HL
via “Illinois Politics” – Google News http://bit.ly/2Sc9ojT
April 15, 2019 at 04:52PM