SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WCIA)– Lawmakers are getting prepared for some busy days towards the end of this week when they come back to Springfield for special session.
Ahead of the trip, Republican leaders in both chambers are now calling on lawmakers to vote on removing the fair tax amendment question from ballots in November, saying the coronavirus pandemic has already presented a big enough burden for families in the state already.
In April, Governor Pritzker said he feels the state needs a progressive income tax now more than ever in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. Republicans say now is not the time to raise taxes on anyone in the state.
Right now, everyone in the state is taxed at a flat rate of 4.95 percent. In November, voters are set to decide whether people making more money would pay higher tax rates. While they have been opposed to the plan from the beginning, Republican house and senate leaders say looking to go froward with the plan now is a cash grab.
“It is time the general assembly wake up. The world has changed, our lives have all changed and Illinois has changed as well. It is time we change how we govern and it is time to repeal the progressive tax from our ballot. Let us provide certainty at a time when there isn’t any. Let us stand up and say we are in this mess together,” Minority Leader Jim Durkin said Monday.
Leaders said they feel putting a graduated income tax into effect this year would simply be to fulfill the governor’s campaign promise. They fear the progressive income tax will drive business owners out of Illinois. Governor Pritzker said Monday the taxes would bring in more than one billion more dollars next year.