Quad Cities businesses need help in one form or another, chamber rep says
Henry Marquard is reluctant to support Senate Bill 9, but he's certainly ready for change.
“We worry about the burden the proposed tax increases associated with SB 9 will bring, but the burden of not getting paid is just as critical,” Marquard, the director of government affairs for the Quad Cities Chamber of Commerce, told the Rock Island Today. "We were supportive of the grand bargain, but after it went down in flames we haven’t taken a stance on anything.”
SB 9 would increase the personal state income tax to 4.95 percent from 3.75 percent and the corporate tax to 7 percent from 5.25, as well as adding sales tax to a new range of products and services, such as dry cleaning and storage facilities.
The bill is part of an overall plan to generate as much as $5.4 billion in new revenue for a record-setting spending plan also recently passed by Democrats without Republican support.
Marquard hinted that the Quad Cities Chamber might be open to increases as long as fiscal cuts are also part of the equation.
“Nobody wants to raise taxes or have spending cuts, but this may be for the greater good,” he said. “The state’s inability to pay debts has been crushing for businesses here in the Quad Cities. "There’s an 18-month waiting period that other nearby states like Iowa don’t have.”
The Illinois Policy Institute projects that the new hikes will mean $1,125 in additional annual taxes for every household, on average. It does not include property tax reform, as demanded by Gov. Bruce Rauner.
“All that just proves there needs to be a comprehensive plan put in place that addresses everything,” Marquard added. “We need a strong, long-term plan to rein in spending altogether.