Policy expert calls Syverson mistaken: New taxes can't help Illinois
When it comes to putting an end to Illinois’ long and ongoing financial woes, Sen. Dave Syverson (R-Rockford) argues that nothing should be taken off the table.
Syverson recently told Chuck Sweeny of the Journal Standard that there is no “painless solution” and a tax increase might be in order if the state is to dig itself out from under a $14 billion pile of unpaid bills.
The veteran lawmaker warned, however, that any new taxes would need a five-year sunset clause to help ensure that the money is going where it's supposed to and actually helping get the state's affairs back in order.
Ted Dabrowski, vice president of policy at the Illinois Policy Institute, agrees that something must be done, but he is adamantly against new taxes.
“Illinois residents already carry some of the heaviest tax burdens in the country,” Dabrowski told the McHenry Times. “Politicians want to sell a narrative of tax hikes while they should be focused on the reforms that the public so clearly wants.”
Dabrowski characterized the Illinois system of government as one of the country’s most “bloated,” with more than 7,000 local units of government.
For now, the state is set to embark on its third straight year without a full budget, prompting Gov. Bruce Rauner to blast Democrats for "dereliction of duty."
Without any Republican support, Senate Democrats pushed through a budget bill with a $5.4 billion tax increase, but it has not even been voted on in the House.
Credit agencies recently downgraded the state’s standing for the seventh time in recent months, with two of them putting Illinois one step above junk status.
“If politicians want to show true leadership, they should be pushing reforms,” Dabrowski said. “We will keep pushing reforms spending. That’s what people are asking us for and really want for themselves.”
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