Most Illinois residents were sound asleep on the morning of Jan. 12, 2011, when the General Assembly was debating a 67 percent tax hike on personal income. Backers of the tax increase gave taxpayers assurances that the tax hike would be a "temporary" tax hike to pay the state's bills.
Of course we all know now what many of us knew would happen -- the bills the tax was supposed to take care of still exist and the so-called "temporary" tax was anything but temporary. Illinois taxpayers have given Gov. Pat Quinn and his allies in the House and the Senate their money and their trust and have received little for their investment.
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Illinois is ranked the third-worst state for business and job creation. At 8.7 percent, Illinois has the second-highest unemployment rate in the country and has the worst outlook for job growth for the entire country in 2014.
Tax rates are scheduled to go down to 3.75 percent in 2015, but the Democrats are feverishly working to make sure the tax rate stays at 5 percent. The Pat Quinn tax increases have not worked, and yet they have decided to double down on their failed policies.
Taxes, overregulation and the state picking winners and losers is business as usual in Illinois. The effort to make the 67 percent income tax hike permanent is just the latest chapter in a long tale of high taxes and over spending in Illinois.
Taxpayers should not be punished for the failed leadership in Springfield. Taxpayers have done their part. The only viable option for the state to grow economically is to have a strong private sector and the pathway to a strong private sector and a strong economy begins with tax relief, not more tax increases.
State Rep. David McSweeney