Pritzker's claims in capital-improvements plan simply 'do not make sense,' McSweeney counters
Republican state Rep. David McSweeney (Barrington) does not mince words when voicing his opinion of Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s capital-improvements plan and some of the details it includes.
“I oppose raising the gas tax,” McSweeney told the McHenry Times. “The job-creation numbers that the governor presented are wildly optimistic and do not make sense.”
The debate stems from Pritzker’s proposed $41.5 billion capital-improvements plan that he insists will rebuild the state’s roads and bridges while putting some 540,000 Illinois residents to work. Critics are quick to point out there is the small matter of the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics recently reporting there are only roughly half that many Illinois residents now out of the labor force due to its dwindling 4.42 percent unemployment rate.
In addition, that same data shows that there are only about 230,000 construction sector employees in Illinois overall, or far less than half the number of new jobs Pritzker is insisting will be created from his so-called “Rebuild Illinois” plan.
“We need to cut Illinois taxes, not raise them,” McSweeney added.
To fund his plan, Pritzker has proposed a combination of raising taxes and fees on everything from gas, vehicle registrations and ride-sharing services to liquor, cable, satellite and streaming services. Again, McSweeney has no interest in what the governor is selling.
"We need a capital bill, but it should be funded by issuing bonds supported by future cash flows such as sports gambling revenues,” he told the Daily Herald.