With Illinois small businesses reeling from the loss of revenue tied to the COVID-19 pandemic and the Governor’s response, State Representative Avery Bourne (R-Morrisonville) is co-sponsoring legislation that would remove the graduated income tax question from the November ballot.
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 forced closures from executive orders time to recover. “So many businesses in our area have been devastated by this pandemic and subsequent stay at home order. We simply cannot allow for another tax increase for small businesses that are barely hanging on,” said Bourne. “We need to adopt policies that assist with Illinois’ economic recovery, not policies that will cause the further closures and devastation of the state’s economy.”
It is estimated that small businesses are responsible for 60% of all new Illinois jobs every year, and Bourne said 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.
“Increasing taxes on our small businesses is the last thing we should be doing right now,” Bourne said. “We need to provide a framework that allows our businesses to get up and running again so they can bring their employees back. That’s how we restore the economy. That’s how we address our budget woes.”
House Joint Resolution 123 was filed on Monday and already has 43 sponsors.