Rep. Morrison: Institute reforms before income tax increase
Reforms need to be implemented before any income tax increase sees the light of day, a suburban Chicago state representative said while also alluding to lessons he said Illinois needs to learn from New York State.
"Why don't we put those reforms in place first before any discussion whatsoever on a tax increase?" Rep. Thomas Morrison (R-Palatine) asked rhetorically during a North Cook News telephone interview. "Let's see what kind of savings we can get from putting those reforms in place."
Morrison said he based his position on what his constituents have to say about the property taxes, sales taxes and income taxes they are already paying.
"What my constituents are telling me is that their overall tax burden in Illinois is too high," he said. "Unless we can absolutely demonstrate a reduction in their taxes somewhere else, then I can't justify raising the income tax."
Morrison, first elected to his 54th District seat in November 2010, narrowly defeated Democrat Maggie Trevor of Rolling Meadows by 37 votes during last year's midterm elections.
The 54th state House District is located entirely within Cook County and includes Arlington Heights and Rolling Meadows.
Last week, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced income tax revenues in that state had dropped by about $2.3 billion since the new budget plan he introduced in January. Cuomo blamed the new federal tax code and stock market volatility, and he admitted spending will have to be curbed.
Cuomo's report appears to be threatening plans to build Amazon's second headquarters, commonly referred to as "HQ2," in Long Island City, Queens.
Illinois is facing many of the same issues that are confronting New York State, Morrison said.
"Even the governor of New York identified his state's tax increase as one of the factors for a loss in revenue," he said. "When you lose taxpayers, you lose revenue. You can raise the rates but actually, over time, you lose revenue when those individuals move out."