Government
1:24 pm
Wed March 26, 2014

Quinn: keep income tax rate, give property tax breaks

Governor Pat Quinn Wednesday gave his annual budget speech. He is trying to sell a plan that keeps in place Illinois’ 5-percent income tax rate, but which will give homeowners a $500 annual break in property taxes:

“Illinois is in stronger financial position now than we were five years ago. Because of the hard choices that we’ve made, today we’re in a position to balance the budget in a way that protects the middle class in a way that protects the middle class by providing significant tax relief.”

The pending rollback of the tax increase in January is expected to cause a $1.6 billion loss in revenue. Quinn says former Republican governor Jim Edgar was right to use income tax to invest more in education in the late 1990s. 

Quinn says his plan creates a state budget that "properly funds" schools. He wants more money for early childhood education and community colleges.   Quinn faces a tough re-election bid against Republican businessman Bruce Rauner in November.