Nursing home advocates warn of state tax rollback

May 6, 2014

Nursing home advocates say the scheduled rollback of Illinois' income tax rates would have far reaching consequences for the already cash-strapped industry.

Pat Comstock, with the Healthcare Council of Illinois, says nursing homes will have a tougher time borrowing money without the continued revenue support from a five-percent income tax.

"We survive based on being able to borrow money ... but now that's starting to dry up because some bankers don't have the same confidence in the financial situation of the state of Illinois as these providers do."

Comstock is mirroring warnings that have come from several ratings agencies, which have said Illinois' credit ratings could plunge if the state allows a 2011 tax hike to expire. Healthcare workers also warn of cuts to state support of elderly homecare programs. 

But Republicans say Illinois' leading Democrats have had years to prepare to phase out what they originally promised would be a "temporary" tax increase.