Rep. Carroll clarifies position on 'Fair Tax'
Illinois State Rep. Jonathan Carroll (D-Northbrook) responded to the idea that he is against the state’s “Fair Tax” proposal, stating Thursday that he instead wishes that legislators take their time and "do this right."
“Yesterday I was quoted by Mary Ann Ahern (@MaryAnnAhernNBC) that I’m a ‘no’ vote on the fair/jobs tax,” said Carroll in a Facebook post. “Let me be clear that I want us to change how we tax in Illinois. I’d rather take our time and do this right and not rush such an important policy change. #twill #ilgov”
The Ahern tweet that Carroll was referencing stated, “Add Dem State Rep Jonathon Carroll to NO #ProgressiveIncomeTax: ‘I am a no on this plan and changing the constitution. I'm not opposed to modernizing how we tax in Illinois, but this has to be done right. The current proposals don't address our oppressive property tax issues.’”
The proposed change would alter the state’s income tax system from a flat tax to a progressive income tax. Proponents argue that the change would make the Illinois tax code fairer for residents as well as provide tax relief throughout the state, accelerate job creation, and boost small businesses. Those who oppose the proposed progressive taxation believe that it would open the door to other tax hikes that may hurt small businesses and possibly drive additional job creation to neighboring states.
Facebook commenters responded to Carroll’s post, offering their own ideas. “Maggie Wunderly you seem intelligent, but you failed to mention that the pension crisis is IL’s main issue,” said user Simon Herley in response to a commenter who disagreed with Carroll’s stance.
Herley continued: “How about spending cuts? The fair tax will lead to middle-class tax raises. Flat tax is completely fair. It’s simple math. The more you make, the more you pay. It also protects us from tax raises due to the fear of voter backlash. If they can change tax rates on smaller groups of people, voter backlash is no concern. He’s doing the right thing, but taxing people will only lead to more of us leaving. Then who will pay the ridiculously high taxes we keep imposing?”
Commenter Lisa Miller Raju said, “I’m 100% behind you Rep. Carroll! The people in higher income brackets tend to be more mobile and will not only establish residency elsewhere, but are also in the positions of influence regarding the locations of businesses moving in and out of the state of Illinois. If there is an increased outflow (beyond the scary level it’s already at!) of residents due to this tax, it will further hurt families who remain in Illinois.”
The proposal, which was similarly killed in 2014, needs a three-fifths approval by state legislature before it can be voted on in a referendum.