Madigan expects tax vote this spring

Mar 27, 2014

While Republicans were quick to pan Governor Pat Quinn's budget plans, the Democrats who control the General Assembly appear to be on board.  Quinn proposes keeping in place a temporary, 67-percent hike in the state income tax while offering homeowners some property tax relief.  

Republicans say Gov. Quinn is using scare tactics to drum up support for an income tax hike. During his budget address, Quinn says if Illinois allows the 5-percent income tax increase to roll back next year, it'll result in teacher layoffs, and veterans will be evicted from state homes.

But, in an interview with public television's "Illinois Lawmakers," Democratic House Speaker Michael Madigan calls Quinn's stance courageous.

"Unlike previous governors who didn't admit up to the problems of financing the state, Gov. Quinn has come in here today and, as he said, he told the truth. He laid the cards on the table. If we wish to continue to provide the level of services which we've become accustomed to for education and other purposes, then the income tax increase should be extended."

Legislators often wait to vote on controversial measures until after the November elections. But Madigan says he expects a tax vote will happen before session adjourns this spring.

Senate President John Cullerton says he too favors keeping the tax in place in order to prevent cuts. Both Cullerton and Madigan also emphasize property tax relief.  Quinn's plan calls for giving every homeowner, regardless of income, a $500 credit.