Letter to the Editor
Posted April 27, 2017
Outside of the Chicagoland region, Montgomery and Christian counties are among the most overtaxed counties in south central Illinois. For those who don’t follow the news, Montgomery County passed a 1% county school facilities sales tax and Taylorville voted in yet another oppressive property tax hike on April 4. Unfortunately, things are only going to get far worse before things get any better.
It’s time for you to become informed on some pieces of pending legislation in committee hearings awaiting release to the legislative houses of the Illinois General Assembly that will be even worse than our current property tax rates, as well as the 8.25% overall sales tax effective in the business districts of Nokomis, Litchfield and Hillsboro beginning July 1.
Senate Bill 9, drafted by Senator Toi W. Hutchinson of Chicago Heights, was originally a bill proposing a 1% tax on bottled beverages which contain sugar products, but was abandoned after much criticism from voters. Since then, revisions have been made that, if passed, you can be charged sales taxes for Internet streaming, satellite Internet service, parking in a municipal parking lot or garage and services like laundry/dry cleaning, storage unit rentals, plumbing, landscaping & gardening, heating & cooling (HVAC), information technology and dog grooming. The bill also proposes increased taxes on your utility bills, tax penalties for a municipality wishing to establish a TIF or business district and a “business privilege” tax. This also doesn’t include attempts from Democrats to increase the individual income tax to 5% from 3.75% and the corporate income tax to between 15% and 20% from 7.75%.
You may have seen occasional ads in your local newspaper advocating for you to contact your legislators to oppose another tax proposed by Democrats in the General Assembly since 2015: a 10% sales tax on advertising. It essentially punishes small businesses for advertising in newspapers, as well as on radio and television. A proposed House Resolution (HR 28), written by Republican Rep. David McSweeney of Barrington Hills and co-sponsored by Democrat Reps. Jay Hoffman of Swansea, Natalie Manley of Joliet and Martin Moylan of Des Plaines, opposes the proposed tax as it is oppressive toward small businesses which rely on advertising to build up their business and bring in new customers. A study done by No Ad Tax Illinois in 2015 showed that small businesses make up more than 98.2% of the state’s employers, helping create 53,000 new jobs a year.
We’re among the highest taxed states in the nation, third only to California and New York, mostly because of all the additional taxes we’re forced to pay. As a result of this excessive taxation and reckless spending in Springfield, the state’s billions of dollars in debt simply because they haven’t had a balanced budget since 2001, something our legislators are bound to according to Article VIII, Section 2, subsection (b) of the Illinois Constitution, which clearly states: “The General Assembly by law shall make appropriations for all expenditures of public funds by the State. Appropriations for a fiscal year shall not exceed funds estimated by the General Assembly to be available during that year.” So if Democrats in Springfield clearly can’t balance a checkbook, then why are they in office forcing unbalanced budgets to be passed?
There is absolutely no need for more taxation when the problem over the past sixteen years is overspending and a lack of fiscal accountability. Call your legislators and voice your opinion that you don’t want to be bogged down with an even heavier tax burden. It’s because of their recklessness with money which has led to one person leaving the state of Illinois for a less hostile environment in regards to taxation and commerce every five minutes. Yes, Illinois loses 12 residents every hour and can lose a little over 100,000 residents in a calendar year.
It’s time to project a strong message to both Democrats and Republicans in Springfield: NO MORE NEW TAXES!
Chapter Chairman | Tri-Counties Libertarian Party
Deputy Communications Director | Libertarian Party of Illinois