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posted: 11/23/2012 4:40 AM

Time to adopt progressive tax

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What should we expect from the Illinois General Assembly?

Illinois has an antiquated tax system caused by a failure of revenues to keep up with the rising costs of services. Fixing the revenue problems would help Illinois balance its budget.

Behind the resistance to raise revenue is the Civic Committee of Chicago, which is made up of 36 of Illinois' largest corporations. They have resorted to constant threats of reckless, unconstitutional "pension reform" for public workers. Why would the Civic Committee want to propagandize that public workers are to blame for Illinois' deficit and be against closing tax loopholes and not allowing tax breaks and incentives to corporations? Because the money the Civic Committee can take from public workers' benefits can be used to fund corporations' tax breaks, tax incentives and loopholes.

Most Illinois legislators say they will oppose raising taxes to balance the state's budget. That means that they will not raise taxes, especially for the wealthy one percent that bankrolled them, for the guarantee of continued campaign funding and re-election.

Recently, many legislators approved a financial windfall for a few Illinois corporations. Remember, each tax break means less money to run the state government. Who will pay? You, the taxpayer. If not you, it will be the public workers.

While the corporations received these healthy tax breaks, there was not one word of generating much needed revenue with the passage of a fair progressive tax on income which allows for the wealthy to pay their fair share.

Legislators could and should focus on closing tax loopholes, tax breaks and amending the constitution for a progressive income tax in this session. Illinois is one of seven states in our country that does not have a progressive income tax we still have a regressive flat rate tax on income; everyone pays the same rate.

Joni Lindgren


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