This Week's Quick Hits

Take a few moments to check out the latest headlines impacting Illinois taxpayers, along with my view:

My Perspective: I predicted this and said so during the school funding debate. Now that state taxpayers must pay the normal cost of Chicago teacher pensions, required by the passage of SB1947 – the new school funding formula – lowering the interest rate means state taxpayers will pay even more towards Chicago teacher pensions leaving less for the classroom. In 2000, the CTPF was nearly 100% funded. Then the politicians, in concert with the union, failed to pay in for 13 years. They asked for a further reprieve from funding for 3 more years but I was able to kill that bill on the House floor in 2013. CTPF is about 50% funded with unfunded liability around $11 billion.

My Perspective: We do not give tax policy over to the unelected protected class of bureaucrats that cannot even deliver education at an affordable cost. This is one of the most ridiculous ideas I have ever heard. Dr. Killeen and all his smart management guys in the B-school know what Illinois needs to thrive, they just don't want to utter the words: work comp reform, pension reform, collective bargaining reform, property tax reform, cut spending, and cut tuition to make us average among our conference peers instead of 20-50% higher cost.

My Perspective: This is a national story and Illinois looks inept. We are going to get to the bottom of this matter. I have MANY questions for the Foundation board members and director.

Do tax credits bring jobs? Not in Illinois. – Crain’s Chicago Business
My Perspective:  Only I and 4 of my Republican colleagues opposed the continuation of EDGE credits. We did so because they are not the solution our business sector really needs to incentivize them to come here and stay here.

My Perspective: Police and Fire and other municipal workers: your pension, your job or your home. You cannot have all three. You want your pension and job, then the property taxes are going up and your ability to stay in your home is jeopardized. You want your job, then you need to help reform pensions. You want your pension, then some people will lose their jobs so others can have all three. See Harvey, Illinois as an example of where this all leads.

My Perspective: We are going in the wrong direction. The budget passed in May was blatantly unbalanced and continues the problem. We have a constitutional requirement to have a balanced budget and only 20 legislators recognized that and voted No on this year's budget.

My Perspective: Wheaton comes in at #27. Congratulations, Wheaton residents!

I hope you find this update informative. As always, please don’t hesitate to call me at (630) 384-9719 with any questions or to schedule an appointment. Your feedback is always welcome and appreciated.


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