Rauner: Give me reform, I’ll sign a tax hike for Illinois

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill.— Gov. Bruce Rauner says he'll set aside his distaste for tax increases and approve one if the Legislature approves his business-friendly reforms.

The state has started a new fiscal year without a spending plan because of the Republican's disagreement with Democratic lawmakers.

Democrats' spending plan has a deficit of up to $4 billion. They want cuts and a tax hike.

They say Rauner's plans for restricting liability lawsuit awards and workers' compensation go against their "core beliefs."

Rauner told reporters outside his Capitol office Wednesday that raising taxes violates one of his "core beliefs" but he'll do it if he gets his reforms.

The House is in session Wednesday to consider a one-month, $2.3 billion spending plan while talks continue. Rauner says he opposes the stop-gap measure.

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15 comments

  • dana

    Never give up! Never surrender! No new taxes! None! The people in office need to be paid significantly less…that’ll save the state money!

  • SmartA1000

    Dems voted in a hike in salary for themselves…how about we suspend Illinois politician salaries until they set the budget as required by law….and use those funds to help pay for pensions.Rauner doesnt get paid by the state…he does this for free……stay the course Rauner…no taxes. Cut hand outs please.

    • Victor Beckimyer

      Not-so-smarta100, IL legislators do not vote for raises, they’re raises are automatic. They must vote NO to a raise.

  • Richard Jackson

    Since the Illinois politicians created the financial mess what if we simply held them personally accountable? All pensions reduced by 50%.

  • Annie

    This joker just doesn’t get it. RAISE TAXES ON THE WEALTHY ONLY, and you will get Illinois back on track, instead of taking away services for children, the elderly, and the disabled. SMH

    • Diane

      Nice tagline Annie but that’s not the answer. Who do you concider WEALTHY ?

      Much of the money lies in seniors retirement funds Are saying tax seniors over 65 who earn more than 100 K a year? Thats part of the solution. Are you willing to tax servies like auto repair ,lawn services, hair salons, plumbers,house painters..etc. Thats what many of the financially stable states are doing.

      When you recite TAX the WEAlLTHY mantra all you get are people moving out of state,

    • Annie2

      Annie, r u kidding? Taxing only the wealthy? Quinn increased income tax in the past, did that fix the issue? No!!!!
      If the property tax is used mostly for school, give me the appropriate discount and I’ll send my kids to private school.
      Also – how about kids that benefited from college grants give back a % of their wages when they start working.

  • John

    How are Rauner’s reforms going to help the average taxpayer?
    All his reforms are for his business friends. Again the supposed trickle down effect is supposed to help as all.
    No new taxes what so ever!!!
    Lets freeze property taxes, cut school administrators salaries and pensions for a start. Then get a citizens committe to look at all the spending, not the politicians who have a vested interest in keeping their supporters happy.
    I get nothing from the state so shut it down, Use the Obama approach. When the Feds ran out of money he closed the places that would hurt the taxpayers the most (i.e. White House visits, National Parks etc) while making sure his supporters were taken care of. Now the shoe is on the other foot and all the democartic free loaders are crying. Maybe if the freeloaders were hit with a new tax the state would not be so bad off.

  • lavelle

    Okay, redistricting reforms and term limits are strictly political issues and doesn’t have anything to do with the budget. To change the district maps, the governor and the republican party can campaign over the next year to pick up democrats seats to be in position to make those changes. Term limits won’t be retroactive to terms already served. Your favorite or most hated illinois politician will still be able to run two more times AFTER it is passed. As far as property tax freezes, Bruce could be hurting the constituents who voted for him by potential cuts to services like fire and police in which property taxes pay for. I do believe a deal on workers comp and tort reform can be made.

  • Victor Beckimyer

    This Gov. agenda is to break down the unions, he is now willing to raise taxes for his business friendly reforms. He continues to hide these agendas in his pension reform;
    1. Removes pensions, wages, hours of work and employee tenure from the collective bargaining process.

    2. Applies changes to items removed from collective bargaining:

    Wages would not decline for five years.
    Vacation resets to two weeks for members with less than 15 years of service, and three weeks for those who have more than 15 years of service.
    Adjusts vacancy and overtime rights.
    Overtime pay would kick in at 40 hours instead of 37.5 hours, matching federal law.
    3. Offers incentives for employees to move lower benefit plan:

    Salary package – $2,000 transition bonus, one-time $3,000 salary increase, overtime pay at 37.5 hours and no additional vacation days.
    Vacation package – $2,000 transition bonus, one-time $2,000 salary increase, overtime pay at 37.5 hours and two additional weeks of vacation
    Overtime/vacancy package – $2,000 transition bonus, no salary increase, overtime pay at 37.5 hours, two additional weeks of vacation; priority rights in work schedule, vacation, overtime and “bumping.”
    4. Those now eligible for the highest pension benefits (in the Tier 1 plan that applies to employees hired before 2011) would have to choose between switching to a reduced cost of living adjustment in retirement or agreeing that all future salary increases will be excluded from their pension calculations. Under current law, they receive a 3 percent, annually compounded increase in their pension every year. The new formula would grant annual, non-compounded increases of the lesser of 3 percent or half the U.S. Consumer Price Index.