State Representative Allen Skillicorn (R-Crystal Lake), joined by House colleagues Darren Bailey and Chris Miller, held a press conference at the Illinois State Capitol today. Officials from Rivian Automotive LLC had hoped to join them for the press conference to express their shared concerns with the excessive fee hikes proposed on electric vehicles.
It’s no secret the Capitol is buzzing about Gov. Pritzker’s $40 Billion Tax and Fee Hike capital proposal. According to WalletHub’s March 2019 study, Illinois already has the highest overall tax rates in the nation and simply put, the Governor wants MORE!
Pritzker’s tax and fee increase proposals include:
- Gas tax: 231% increase
- Passenger car/truck registration: $101 to $199
- Electric car registration: $17.50 to $250
- Tobacco tax: 1% increase
- Ridesharing tax: $1 per ride
- Cable, satellite and streaming tax: 7%
- Beer tax: 23.1 cents to 27.7 cents
- Wine tax: $1.39 to $2.05
- Liquor tax: $8.55 to 12.60
- Parking tax: 6% daily, 9% monthly
“Illinois managed to bring in $1.5 billion more in tax revenue and the increased revenue is expected to continue in the next fiscal year thanks to the economic boost of Pres. Trump’s tax cuts, but we are still not even growing at the same rate as the rest of country,” said Skillicorn. “The windfall benefits of the national economy won’t continue forever and Moody’s just reported we cannot withstand a recession.
“Despite these facts, Gov. Pritzker and Springfield Democrats have proposed a mountain of new taxes and fees on essential transportation needs that will surely drive more people and investment out of the state instead of helping us catch up with the rest of the country. Rivian is a perfect example of a company that wants to invest in Illinois, but their plans for a $400 million invest in Normal could be severely damaged if these oppressive fees from Springfield are implemented.”
Rivian, an electric car manufacturer, purchased the former Mitsubishi plant in Normal in 2017 and began a $400 million investment plan that will ultimately create 1,000 jobs. One of the driving factors for their expansion in Illinois was the favorable climate toward electric vehicles and the prospects of major EV growth in the state. However, proposals that would drastically increase the fees on electric vehicles and other transportation tax and fee increases could dramatically dampen their investment and job creation plans.
Skillicorn also pointed to data from the Federal Highway Administration to show that Illinois does not need a broad range of new regressive taxes to meet infrastructure needs. According to their data, Illinois’ roads and bridges are in twice as good condition today as they were in the 1990s. Only 9% of Illinois bridges faced structural deficiencies in 2017, compared to 18% in 1992. As structurally deficient, they are not at risk of collapse or a safety hazard, but the maintenance costs are higher than necessary. A problem, which like other state issues, can be more readily dealt with through better management and project prioritization on the state level.
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