As many of you have seen on television commercials lately, the Illinois General Assembly has proposed a Constitutional Amendment to change our income tax system from a 4.95% flat tax to a tax based upon your income. This proposal does not impact any public employees, such as teachers, police officers, and other local public employees. Therefore, all lower and middle-class taxpayers making a modest income (approximately 97% of taxpayers) will pay the same amount of taxes or less, while the wealthiest 3% will pay more on their income over $250,000, In other words "their fair share." Some experts call this plan a "graduated or progressive income tax." I have included below a partial county by county listing the percentage of taxpayers who will pay less or the same if voters on November 3rd approve the "fair tax" reform.
Taxpayers in these counties will pay less or the same: Whiteside County (99.2%), Rock Island, Henry, and Knox County (99%), Mercer County (99.2%) Lee County (98.9%), Bureau County (99.1%), Stark County (98.6%), Warren County (99.2%), Henderson County (99.4%) and Peoria County (97.4%). Statewide this percentage is 97% or higher. These figures are based on the income by county in 2017.
A group of organizations have formed with the main purpose of defeating this constitutional amendment on the ballot. Do not be "fooled". Their sole reason, such as the Illinois Policy Institute (IPI) and the Commercial Club of Chicago, is to distort the truth and urge people to vote "NO." These groups do not want their wealthy members to pay more in taxes. No individuals with common sense want to pay more in taxes, but those individuals making more than $250,000 a year should pay their fair share. IPI has mailed information that is clearly distorted and false to many of us citizens. This proposal does not open the door for public employees to start paying an income tax on their retirement income, even though these other groups have stated such lies in their misinformation campaign. There are consequences if this "Fair Tax" proposal should fail, possibly taxing retirement income for public employees. Contrary to what you may be hearing, this proposal safeguards our retirement income. It does not propose to tax retirement income.
This proposal will bring additional tax monies into the state. Illinois has the most unfair tax system in the country, meaning all of the surrounding states pay less than we do. This tax proposal will alleviate the budget shortfall we currently experience in the state. Do not be fooled by these groups. Vote "Yes" in November.
Dr. Stewart L. Adams
Retired Special Education Teacher/ Rock Island-Milan SD 41