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It’s the pension promises, stupid!

By Ted Dabrowski, Wirepoints | Aug 13, 2018

You can trust public pension apologists to deflect any critique that calls out the failure of defined benefit plans. Unsurprisingly, their response to a recent Wall Street Journal editorial highlighting Wirepoints’ research was just that – deflection via misdirection and victim playing.

Why your property tax bill is so high and how to fix it

By Austin Berg, Illinois Policy Institute | Aug 7, 2018

Less than 50 cents of every additional property tax dollar over the last 20 years went to pay for services that raise home values. Instead, the primary driver of the rise in property taxes was pension costs.

Thanks, Champ, for being an American

By John J. Hopkins | Aug 7, 2018

On the weekend of July 13-15, my wife Margaret and I traveled South to visit with old friends from Nashville. For most of the past 20-plus years, we have met in Memphis, as a sort of rounding spot for our activities. This year for a change we headed east to Louisville, Kentucky, for bourbon, good food and history.

3 ways Illinois can improve its property tax assessment system

By Vincent Caruso, Illinois Policy Institute | Aug 1, 2018

The method by which local governments calculate Illinoisans’ property tax bills is broken. Here’s how Springfield can fix it.

Belleville residents picking up huge tab for work comp payouts

By Vincent Caruso, Illinois Policy Institute | Jul 30, 2018

Illinois industry shoulders the burden of the highest workers’ compensation costs in the region. But what many Illinoisans paying some of the nation’s highest property taxes may not realize is that they’re picking up the tab for those costs, too.

Hog-tied: Illinois state law not equipped to address local governments’ pension problems

By Joe Tabor, Illinois Policy Institute | Jul 25, 2018

Avenues for state oversight for cities with financial difficulties have limited utility in the face of massive pension debt and have almost never been invoked since Springfield passed them into law in 1990.

Say it ain't so Joe

By John J. Hopkins | Jul 24, 2018

The 1919 World Series was intentionally lost by the Chicago White Sox,fixing the game to appease gamblers and to make a pretty payoff themselves. The scheme unraveled, resulting in criminal prosecutions and a lifetime ban from baseball for the conspirators.

Alton voters will choose whether to eliminate township in November

By Vincent Caruso, Illinois Policy Institute | Jul 17, 2018

Alton residents are paying for two overlapping units of government – the city of Alton and Alton Township. But voters will soon have the chance to slash costs by dissolving the city’s redundant township.

Vote 'Yes' to make Madison County a Second Amendment sanctuary county

By The Madison County Record | Jul 17, 2018

Americans are not weak, you are not weak, but if we allow weak political leaders to make decisions for us, we are complicit in where we are being led...where our children are being led.

If Frank Mautino didn’t break the rules, the rules are broken

By Austin Berg, Illinois News Network | Jul 16, 2018

When it comes to political graft, paying people under the table isn’t too complicated – as long as you have some blurred lines to hide in.

Jobs data: After 2017 income tax hike, Illinois slows while nation grows

By Orphe Divounguy and Bryce Hill, Illinois Policy Institute | Jul 11, 2018

As national jobs growth kept up a steady clip, Illinois saw jobs growth dip after lawmakers passed a historic tax hike.

East Alton eyes $35K in savings, but pension woes loom much larger

By Vincent Caruso, Illinois Policy Institute | Jul 10, 2018

Severely underwater public safety pensions have already derailed the finances of other municipalities, such as Harvey and North Chicago.

Janus v. AFSCME is a huge win

By Mailee Smith, Illinois Policy Institute | Jun 27, 2018

In a 5-4 ruling on June 27, the U.S. Supreme Court declared forced union fees violate the First Amendment rights of government workers.

Candy Crush: Illinois slaps sales tax on Snickers, but not Twix

By Travis Nix, Illinois Policy Institute | Jun 26, 2018

State lawmakers should reform Illinois’ overly complicated sales taxes and other anti-business taxes, which violate guiding principles of sound tax policy.

En route to Rauner’s desk: Victories for licensing reform, regulatory rollback and axing golden parachutes

By Mindy Ruckman, Illinois Policy Institute | Jun 26, 2018

Nearly 600 bills are on their way to the governor, some of which would be encouraging changes to the status quo.

Illinois sees fourth straight month of jobs growth in May

By Bryce Hill, Illinois Policy Institute | Jun 26, 2018

Illinois’ jobs situation improved in May, but the state needs long-term solutions such as a spending cap to get on a path to fiscal health and assure investors more tax hikes are not on the horizon.

Raises should be based on merit, not 'steps'

By Dan McCaleb, Illinois News Network | Jun 18, 2018

It's been two weeks since Illinois lawmakers and Gov. Bruce Rauner began congratulating themselves for passing what they claimed was a balanced budget that spends every bit of last summer's $5 billion tax increase.

Magicians: How Illinois politicians made $1.2 billion in budget deficits disappear

By Ted Dabrowski, Wirepoints | Jun 13, 2018

If you want to understand Illinois’ corrupt budget making process, take the example of how the legislature just “cleaned up” some of its unaccounted-for budget deficits.

Belleville has seen sharpest population decline among top Illinois cities since 2010

By Vincent Caruso, Illinois Policy Institute | Jun 13, 2018

As Illinois struggles to address its people problem, population loss has plagued communities across the Land of Lincoln. But the shrinkage in some areas has been more severe than others.

Taxpayers are on the hook for Tim Mapes’ six-figure pension

By Pat Hughes, Illinois Opportunity Project | Jun 13, 2018

Not only are we supposed to accept the fact that our state government is overrun with sexual predators—we are also expected to fund their lavish retirement benefits.

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