Rep. Hammond stresses seriousness of tax debate
House Rep. Norine K. Hammond (R-Macomb) respects the gravity of changing Illinois' income tax structure, and only wishes more of Springfield's lawmakers did as well.
"We hear all the different words for this but since the governor released the details of his income tax he proposed in March, even Senate Democrats have already changed the tax rates," Hammond said on the House floor Monday. "With these changes, the number of taxpayers who would’ve received a cut went down."
Hammond said that national trends are moving away from progressive tax structures.
"Once again, Illinois has it backward," Hammond said. "This is extremely important to taxpayers of Illinois. It’s not an exercise in Facebook Live, it’s serious business."
During the debate, House Rep. Robert Martwick (D-Chicago), the sponsor of the bill in the House, was streaming the debate on Facebook Live. Senate Joint Resolution Constitutional Amendment 1 passed the House on Monday with 73 Yes votes and 44 No votes. It will now be on the November 2020 ballot for Illinois voters to decide.
Every Republican voted No on the bill, and many businesses and individuals have spoken out about their disapproval of a graduated income tax structure. Critics like Hammond suggest that because rates are not nailed down in the amendment, it will eventually become a tax on the middle class.
Gov. J.B. Pritzker has been adamant about his preference for a "fair tax" since running for governor last year.