Statement of the Responsible Budget Coalition in Response to Governor Rauner's Budget Cuts

Submitted on Wed, 10/18/2017 - 18:52

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

 

Today, the Responsible Budget Coalition, a network of more than 300 organizations across the state, calls on the Governor and General Assembly to reverse the current decision to cut hundreds of millions of dollars from vital services for communities across the state and, instead, to raise revenue to repair the damage done by the budget impasse and make smart investments in our state’s future.

Over the past two years, the state’s record-long budget impasse resulted in thousands of lost jobs, billions of dollars of economic damage, and devastating cuts to human service agencies, schools, colleges, and healthcare institutions. While the General Assembly finally passed a full year budget in July, the state still faces shortfalls in key areas and an astonishing $16 billion in unpaid bills from the past years. While our communities are still reeling we should not hit them with yet another round of cuts. Instead, the state should choose to raise revenue.

For one option, Illinois is one of only a handful of states that impose a flat income tax, with the same rates regardless of income level. Thirty-three states and the federal government utilize a fair tax with lower rates for lower incomes and higher rates for higher incomes. A Fair Tax in Illinois could raise billions in new revenue while providing a tax cut for the vast majority of Illinois residents. The Governor and General Assembly should reject more cuts and act now to choose these sort of revenue options to put our state on solid footing and lay the groundwork for prosperity.

 

For more information, contact Alex Tindal Wiesendanger, Field Director and Policy Specialist at (646) 784-1033 or alex@responsiblebudget.org