Today in Springfield, I introduced legislation to put a freeze on all property tax increases in Illinois for the next four years. This is the latest in a suite of legislation I have proposed that would eliminate Illinois’s reliance on regressive taxes and help hard-working poor and middle-class families in our State.
Illinois currently ranks as the fourth most regressive taxing state in the country, according to the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy. This new bill is aimed at reversing that sad distinction.
The legislation I am proposing works in concert with a resolution I sponsored earlier this session to modify the state constitution to switch Illinois to a graduated income tax. Combined, these two actions will lower taxes for working families and make sure the State’s highest earners pay their fair share of the tax burden.
Under Illinois’s current tax system, the poor and middle class pay a larger percent of income to taxes than in almost every other state. The only segment of the population that is getting a break in Illinois is the top 1% of earners, who are taxed at a lower rate that the national average.
To correct this, I introduced legislation that would switch Illinois to a graduated tax system. Under the new plan, your portion of the tax burden would depend on your ability to pay it. The lowest income level would be taxed at just 3 percent, while the richest would pay 7 percent.
Not only is this new tax system more fair for working families, but by taxing the elite at a higher rate, it will actually generate more tax money for the State. These excess funds make the second phase of my plan possible, and allow us to freeze property tax increases for the next four years.
We must address the inequities caused by Illinois’s regressive tax system. It is just unfair that the richest in Illinois are avoiding paying their fair share while the poorest and working families are hit the hardest. My plan to freeze property taxes and switch Illinois to a graduated tax system will help reverse this trend.
Together, we can put Illinois on the right path towards a progressive, not regressive, tax system.
Sincerely,Senator Ira I. Silverstein
Illinois State Senate, District 8