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Friday
Apr042014

SPRINGFIELD HIGHLIGHTS - April 4, 2014

Senate Moves Forward on Graduated Income Tax

Less than a week after Speaker Michael J. Madigan introduced and moved forward with a new graduated tax on “millionaires” the Senate responded with their own graduated income tax proposal.  Sponsored by President Pro Tempore Senator Don Harmon (D-Oak Park), SJRCA 40 as amended provides that “there may be a fair tax where lower rates apply to lower income levels and higher rates apply to higher income levels.”  The IMA strongly opposes the imposition of a graduated tax that violates the basic tenets (broad-based and low rates) of a good tax system and penalizes successful job creators.

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Friday
Mar282014

SPRINGFIELD HIGHLIGHTS - March 28, 2014

Governor Quinn Unveils Budget Blueprint - Six weeks after it was originally scheduled, Governor Pat Quinn addressed a joint session of the General Assembly to provide his blueprint for a new FY15 state budget totaling $38.6 billion. The new budget, if approved by the General Assembly, would represent an increase of nearly $1.8 billion in spending over the FY14 expenditures that totaled $36.6 billion. Funding for the new state budget is premised on Governor Quinn’s public desire to make the “temporary” income tax hike permanent.

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Friday
Mar072014

SPRINGFIELD HIGHLIGHTS - March 7, 2014

Illinois Energy Deregulation Saved $37 Billion: Illinois electricity consumers – resident, business and government – have saved $37 billion since 1998 as a result of deregulation according to a new comprehensive report released this week by the Illinois Manufacturers’ Association in concert with the Illinois Retail Merchants Association, State Chamber of Commerce, and the Illinois Business Roundtable. Since the law took effect, Illinois’ electric rates dropped from the 13th highest average price in the nation to among the ten lowest.

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Friday
Feb282014

SPRINGFIELD HIGHLIGHTS - February 28, 2014

IMA Testifies at House Tax Reform Hearing - Representatives of the Illinois Manufacturers’ Association testified again before a joint committee hearing featuring members of the House Revenue & Finance Committee and State Government Administration Committee. This week’s hearing primarily featured representatives of the business community who outlined strength and weaknesses of Illinois’ current tax system and its impact on employers.

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Friday
Feb072014

SPRINGFIELD HIGHLIGHTS - February 7, 2014

House Tax Reform Hearings Continue - This week, the House State Government Administration Committee and Revenue & Finance Committee held their second public hearing to discuss Illinois tax policy and tax incentives. As the IMA reported previously, this week’s hearing exclusively featured testimony from the Department of Revenue, Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity, Office of the Comptroller and the Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability (COGFA).

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Friday
Jan312014

SPRINGFIELD HIGHLIGHTS - January 31, 2014

Governor Quinn Provides State of the State Address - Standing before a joint session of the General Assembly this week, Governor Pat Quinn provided the annual State of the State Address noting that he’s strived to rebuild Illinois “one step at a time” in the five years following the impeachment of former Governor Rod Blagojevich. Before launching new ideas, the Governor noted that his administration has been “getting the job done” while touting passage of Workers’ Compensation and Medicaid reform, gay marriage, the capital infrastructure program, and most recently the pension reform package that is estimated to save $145 billion over the next thirty years.

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Friday
Jan312014

SPRINGFIELD HIGHLIGHTS - January 24, 2014

Joint Committee Begins Tax Hearings - Last week, members of the House Revenue & Finance Committee and State Government Administration Committee launched the first of four public hearings to debate state tax policy. Seventeen witnesses presented testimony at the first hearing in Chicago including the Illinois Manufacturers’ Association that noted tax policy matters when companies are making decisions about where to invest capital and create jobs.

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Friday
Nov082013

SPRINGFIELD HIGHLIGHTS - November 8, 2013

Pension Reform Delayed… Again - State lawmakers once again delayed taking a vote on pension reform this week citing the need to get an actuarial analysis on newly proposed changes. While the legislative leaders have intimated that they plan to return to the Capitol during the first week in December, it is extremely disappointing that the General Assembly has once again left town with no solution to the greatest challenge facing the state.

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Friday
Nov012013

SPRINGFIELD HIGHLIGHTS - November 1, 2013

Pension Reform Movement - For several months, a ten-member Pension Reform Conference Committee has been meeting and making some progress on reaching consensus on pension reform resulting in both short-term and long-term savings. The bipartisan group made significant progress but was not able to reach a resolution. So this week, the four legislative leaders took ownership of the issue and have been meeting privately without involvement from the Governor’s office in an effort to reach agreement that can pass the General Assembly.

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Friday
Oct252013

SPRINGFIELD HIGHLIGHTS - October 25, 2013

Pension Reform - For those familiar with football terminology, this week’s pension reform effort could be considered “three and out” followed by a punt. Originally scheduled to be in session for three days, the General Assembly cancelled the final day of session and took no action on pension reform. Members of the bipartisan and bicameral conference committee continued to meet with small progress reported.

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