Raising Taxes Will Not Lead to Success

More Talk on Taxes The Legislature may not be in session but the talk about the state budget and taxes continues. The non-partisan Illinois Policy Institute released a report on how state government can get its fiscal house in order so to allow the 2011 state income tax increase begin its scheduled rollback beginning January […]

Education Funding Bill- “We Have to Pass it to See What’s in it”

Without question, education funding is important for students, parents and schools. A quality education is a key to success in life. After a series of statewide public hearings on the topic, there is now legislation before the Senate (Senate Bill 16), which would drastically rewrite how education funding is determined for the more than 800 […]

Medicaid-The Single Most Expensive State Program Continues to Grow…

Another growing financial concern for state government is the cost of the Medicaid program, a program of taxpayer-funded healthcare for low-income residents. Beginning in the Blagojevich years, the expansion of Medicaid has ballooned to become the single most expensive state program. The expansion of the program through the lessening of eligibility requirements vastly grew the […]

Dec 3-Lawmakers to Consider Pension Proposals; Legislative Panel Close to a Solution???

There is apparently a possibility of lawmakers returning to the Capitol to consider one or more proposals to reform the state’s public pension plans, which have the infamous designation of being the worst-funded pension plans of any of the states. Senators were notified this week to be prepared to meet in session on Tuesday, Dec. […]

Veto Session Update

The annual fall Veto Session came to a close this week with no resolution on the biggest financial problem facing state government and taxpayers:  A $100 billion public pension debt, which rests squarely on the shoulders of taxpayers and state employees alike. Instead, most of the legislative attention was focused on the issue of same-sex […]

A Citizen’s Guide to Illinois Right to Carry Law

“Since I first came to the State Senate to succeed Senator Frank Watson when he retired, I have been a staunch supporter of pro-Second Amendment legislation that ensures your right to protect your self, your family and your property,” said McCarter.  “I have also fought against laws that sought to undermine your rights.” “I am […]

9.5% Fuel Wholesale Tax?

An Illinois group comprised of business and labor organizations associated with road construction, local governments and economic development agencies is backing a plan to change the way Illinois taxes motor fuel. The Transportation for Illinois Coalition wants to replace Illinois’ current 19 cents per gallon gasoline tax with a 9.5% fuel wholesale tax, which would be applied to […]

Veto Week-What Didn’t Happen & What Did

The first week of the annual fall veto session concluded Wednesday, Oct. 23 and it was pretty uneventful, ending with the Senate quickly disposing of the few vetoed measures and then moving on to address other issues many people would consider minor and less critical compared to the state’s poor business climate, pension reform and […]

Murray Center Public Hearing Oct 9

The latest news this week about the Murray Developmental Center is that a federal lawsuit on the fate of the facility has been delayed until November 4. As reported by the Belleville News Democrat, “U.S. District Judge Marvin Aspen issued an order Thursday postponing the hearing until Nov. 4 because the parties ‘continue to file […]

Illinois: 45th out of 50

Various reports show Illinois ranks 45th among the 50 states for job creation while the state’s unemployment rate stands at 9.2 percent. Both of these assessments are for the month of August and are the same as they were in July and just fractionally worse than June. Elsewhere, federal figures show nearly 15 percent of […]