BY NOW, the problems are well-documented: More Illinois roads and bridges are falling into disrepair, and the state's financial straits have left less money on the table to address the growing list of infrastructure deficiencies.
Voters took a crucial first step toward addressing the situation when they passed in 2016 the Safe Roads constitutional amendment mandating all money raised to fund transportation actually be used for that purpose. The so-called lockbox has stopped the state's practice of raiding transportation funds to plug budget holes elsewhere, but it hasn't addressed the fact that the state has been underfunding infrastructure needs for far too long.
The cornerstone of J.B. Pritzker’s political career has arrived. A graduated income tax is moving. Pritzker heralded new language for a constitutional amendment April 10. Barring any unlikely changes, this will be what the governor rides until the end of May. It adds 26 words to the Illinois Constitution and eliminates 43.
Those few words mean a lot. Together, they would be the biggest change to Illinois taxation since the state adopted an income tax in 1969. And their inartful phrasing means Illinoisans have good reason to be frightened.
Illinois became the first state in the Midwest to raise the age to buy tobacco from 18 to 21.“It’s nice for the region,” Skyler Taylor said. “Illinois is kind of pioneering this movement for the Midwest.”Taylor is the vice chair of Central Illinois’ American Cancer Society Board and he just lost his grandmother to lung cancer.“The last few years of my grandmother’s life were not the best years of her life,” Taylor said. “Her life was cut short by about 10-15 years.”