Calling it the “worst possible time” to heap more taxes on small businesses, State Representative Grant Wehrli (R-Naperville) is co-sponsoring a resolution that would remove the graduated income tax question from the November ballot. House Joint Resolution 123 was filed on Monday and already has 43 sponsors.
Through a party-line vote last year, Democrats voted to place a referendum question on the 2020 November ballot that would change Illinois’ income tax system from a flat tax to a graduated tax structure. HJR 123 would remove the question from the ballot and allow businesses devastated by the Coronavirus fallout time to recover. “It’s the worst possible time,” said Wehrli. “Our businesses have been decimated by forced closures tied to COVID-19, and many have already gone out of business permanently. To heap a new tax increase on those barely hanging on would utterly destroy the Illinois economy.”
According to Wehrli, small businesses are responsible for 60% of all new Illinois jobs every year, and the 100,000 small businesses that file as “pass-through” entities would see tax hikes of up to 47% under the proposed tax rates approved by Democrats last year. Additionally, C-Corps would face an initial 10% tax increase. If approved and implemented, corporate income taxes, already among the highest in the nation, would increase to a point where Illinois businesses pay the highest income taxes in the United States.
“We cannot address our revenue shortfall on the backs of Illinois’ job creators. We need to rely on fiscal discipline and responsible budgeting,” added Wehrli. “Our focus needs to be on economic recovery and not on causing further damage to our job creators. We need to provide a framework that allows our businesses to get up and running again so they can bring employees back. That’s how we restore the economy and that’s how we restore Illinois.”