To address the revenue problem that policymakers have chosen to ignore: with a constitutional amendment, “given an appropriately designed graduated-rate structure, Illinois could cut the overall state income tax burden for 94 percent of all taxpayers—on average providing a tax cut to every taxpayer with less than $150,000 in base income annually, raise at least $2.4 billion more in revenue, and keep the effective individual income tax rate for millionaires well below five percent… Illinois taxpayers with the bottom 94 percent of base income collectively would receive an annual tax cut of $1.06 billion… [T]he combined effect of this policy would be a stimulus to the economy from tax cuts and additional state spending (assuming that the additional revenue is used to fund current public services that would otherwise not be funded) that would create at least 36,000 private sector jobs in communities across Illinois…” (Center for Tax and Budget Accountability);
Establish a financial transaction tax or “Robin Hood Tax”: a .50 cent tax on every $100 of transacting. “We used to have a financial transaction tax in this country from 1914 to 1966” (Bill Moyers);
Eliminate the tax loophole for “Tax Increment Financing Districts”; eliminate “Edge Tax Credits” for large corporations; eliminate “Accelerated Depreciation” or “write offs” of all assets; eliminate “Single Sales Factor” that “allows large corporations to cut their taxes 80-90%; eliminate “Vendor Discounts” that allow companies “to keep an uncapped part of their state taxes as a ‘processing’ fee” (Greg Leroy from a national policy resource center for corporate and government accountability in Washington, DC, GoodJobsFirst.org);
“Since the rich are able to save a much larger share of their incomes than middle-income families – and since the poor [can] rarely save at all – the taxes are inherently regressive” (The Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy, ITEP). Illinois income tax uses a single-rate structure that results in low-income wage earners paying more taxes than the wealthy. Illinois is among 10 states in the nation with the highest taxes paid by its poorest citizens at 13 percent (ITEP);
Implement a more timely system of payments (cash management practices are greatly affected by budgetary practices in relation to deferred liabilities which place additional pressures particularly in the first and second quarters of the year to pay those expenses; timing of tax payments also affects the state's cash flow and should be adjusted accordingly).
“No ex post facto law, or law impairing the obligation of contracts…shall be passed” (The Constitution of the State of Illinois, Article I—Bill of Rights, Section 16).
“Each prospective holder of a State office or other State position created by this Constitution, before taking office, shall take and subscribe to the following oath or affirmation: ‘I do solemnly swear (affirm) that I will support the Constitution of the United States, and the Constitution of the State of Illinois, and that I will faithfully discharge the duties of the office of…to the best of my ability’” (The Constitution of the State of Illinois, Article XIII—Oath or Affirmation of Office, Section 3).
“One thing we cannot do… is [to] ignore the Constitution of Illinois.... No principle of law permits us to suspend constitutional requirements for economic reasons, no matter how compelling those reasons may seem…” (COLA: a Guarantee for Illinois Judges).