The President of the League of Women Voters of Champaign County (LWVCC), Trisha Crowley, was featured in the News Gazette on Sunday, July 26 in an article urging the community to vote on November 3 to amend the Illinois Constitution to allow passage of a Fair Tax. Below are selected paragraphs from the article. Read the full article on the News Gazette's website, section C5. And for even more background on the Fair Tax, see LWVCC's Fair Tax page.
ELECTION 2020: IT’S ONLY FAIR
MY TURN: TRISHA CROWLEY
Graduated-income-tax amendment deserves your vote
For more than 40 years, the League of Women Voters has supported a graduated- rate income tax for Illinois. In May of this year, the General Assembly finally decided that the public can vote on whether the Illinois Constitution should be amended to remove the requirement that income may only be taxed at a flat, non-graduated rate.
Only four states, including Illinois, still mandate a flat tax. The proposed change, reflecting the federal income-tax system, would allow for higher incomes to be taxed at higher rates, and lower incomes at lower rates.
The league believes that a progressive income tax is a fair tax because it is based on the ability to pay. Currently, Illinois has one of the most regressive overall tax structures in the nation. A progressive income tax is the only tax that can be designed to correct this burden on low-income taxpayers.
In the general election in November, at the top of the ballot, we will have a chance to amend the Illinois Constitution to allow a graduated income tax. To amend this section of the state constitution, approval is needed by either a majority of those who cast a ballot, or by three-fifths of those who do not skip the question and vote on the proposed amendment.
For decades, the state has notoriously “kicked the can down the road,” saddling an enormous debt on future generations. It is time to put the state on a steady path to meet its obligations with a modern income-tax structure. The league urges you to vote yes on the Fair Tax Amendment.
From September 7 - September 18, the League of Women Voters of Champaign County, the NAACP, Champaign County Branch, The News-Gazette, and Illinois Public Media (WILL-TV, AM, FM & digital) will be co-sponsoring candidate forums for the 2020 General elections. The candidate forums will be available live via Zoom Webinar (first 100 people), Facebook, and the League's YouTube page. They will also be televised on WILL-TV and UPTV. Specific dates and times for the forums and re-broadcasting to be determined.
We've just added a new handout to Voter Services Resources - a nice visual summary of key dates for the November 3 General Election. Find it on the Volunteer Services Resources page.
See our new Fair Tax page for more details about what it is, why the League supports it and what it means for you. There's also a short video and a flyer for sharing.
The Fair Tax constitutional amendment changes the Illinois state constitution to eliminate the requirement that Illinois tax income at a single rate, allowing instead for higher rates for high income and lower rates for people with low and moderate incomes.
For the past 50 years the League of Women Voters of Illinois has advocated for a graduated rate income tax in our state. Now more than ever this is needed. At a time when we are facing loss of revenue and increasing needs for support for populations affected by the pandemic, we recognize that only our top income earners can afford to pay higher taxes.
That is why the League is asking everyone to Vote YES! On the Fair Tax Constitutional Amendment at the top of the ballot this fall. Here are some quick and easy ways to share information about the Fair Tax.
Please watch this 60 second video and share on your social media. In addition... check out this Fair Tax fact sheet and share these facts with friends, family and colleagues.
President's Letter, Illinois League of Women Voters, 7/2/2020