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Bernas criticizes Cullerton’s gas tax plan

Local Government

By Carol Ostrow | Apr 19, 2016

Gas pump drip

Jillian Bernas, Republican candidate for the 56th House district, recently spoke out against the concept of taxing Illinois automobile owners for every mile they log, calling it a poor investment and driver deterrent.

Senate President John Cullerton’s idea to establish new taxes for Illinois residents, known as the Cullerton Mileage Tax Proposal, met with Bernas’ strong disapproval as it coincided with the nation’s annual tax season.

The Democratic senator’s plan would not simply add a tax, Bernas stated, but would also adversely restructure the state’s taxing mechanism itself.

“This is just not a tax,” Bernas said. “This is an entire additional bureaucratic agency being proposed, one that will install monitors, track mileage and charge taxes. I find it outrageous that legislators including my opponent cannot even manage the bureaucracy they have today and pass a balanced budget, yet they want to propose additional layers of government.”

Bernas maintained that the plan fails to address sustainability issues, deters vehicle owners from remaining in-state and fails to support the infrastructure already in place.

“When I look at Springfield, there are no solutions,” she said. “Proposals like this one just demand more money from families without fixing the inefficiencies in the system. I’m running for office because we need a new generation of leadership to reform Illinois, and lead on issues that protect and empower families. I will work for structural reforms that solve our budget problems and make it possible for us to finance core services like roads and infrastructure projects, and caring for those most in need.”

Cullerton’s plan would obligate drivers to pay a per-mile fee beginning in July 2017 and rely on the state to issue rebates for taxes already paid when refueling, additionally monitoring cars registered in Illinois through a new government commission.

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Illinois General AssemblyJillian Bernas for State Representative

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