The ballots have been counted and the winners declared, but perhaps most important of all, the campaign ads are over. Ads for candidates, ballot measures, and specific issues monopolized commercial slots over the past few months. One of the most important issues this election cycle was energy development, especially as it pertains to hydraulic fracturing, also known as “fracking.”
The Illinois Forum celebrated its 25th Anniversary with a banquet on Saturday, August 23rd, at the Round Barn Banquet Center in Champaign, Illinois. The Illinois Forum was founded byRobert S. Redfern and U.S. Congressman Dan Crane in 1989 as a statewide grassroots coalition of nonpartisan political activists. Since 1989 Illinois Forum has become one of the largest citizen groups in the state working to promote a smaller state government, to restrain spending, and to encourage tax cuts.
Gov. Pat Quinn’s “millionaire tax” question, the most recent nonbinding vote added to the bloated November ballot, is not only a misguided effort to draw his base to the polls with blatant class warfare but incredibly poor public policy. Like all “soak the rich” tax schemes, the imposition of increased taxes on high-income earners will discourage new capital and entrepreneurs from entering the state.
President Obama, and his administration, has enacted so many foolish and cost-increasing energy policies, it is easy to think that they are his purview alone. But in 2007, Republicans were just as guilty. Seeds were planted and a garden of bad legislation took root in a totally different energy environment. At the time, the growth seemed like something worthy of cultivation. However, what sprouted up more closely resembles a weed that needs to be yanked out.
A gentle giant just fell. Every person living in Illinois owes Jack O. Roeser an enormous debt of gratitude. The state’s business leaders, politicians, and reporters should hang their heads in shame for not having followed his lead.
A judge in Sangamon County Circuit Court has blocked a modest reform of Illinois’ pension system for state workers and retirees outside Chicago from taking effect June 1, giving Gov. Pat “Four Counties” Quinn the excuse he’s probably been looking for to block reforms for two of Chicago’s pension plans. (I’ll explain “Four Counties” in a moment.)
With more than $155 billion in debt and a projected annual deficit $3 billion in 2015, Illinois has certainly proven it can spend like Nero. Now Chicago is inviting the state to allow it to turn to increasingly more discriminatory and greater confiscatory heights of tax on mobile broadband.
There is a growing controversy throughout America. Parents, teachers, state officials, and concerned citizens from most every state have become concerned about the new nationalized education system, known as Common Core.
Barack Obama is finishing his fifth year as president, and continues to try to move America further in the direction of increased government paternalism with the implementation of ObamaCare, a push for a higher minimum wage, more intrusive business regulation, a drive for higher taxes to redistribute wealth, and a persistent insistence that individuals must sacrifice their own interests for that of “society.”
Illinois may have only one opportunity to get pension reform right, and this proposal is not it. More than likely, this proposal will set back the true fundamental pension reform that is required to protect taxpayers from further tax hikes, give public employees more job flexibility, and put Illinois on a sustainable fiscal path.
Crain’s recently published“Pullman inching closer to national park status,” an article detailing plans by Illinois Sens. Dick Durbin and Mark Kirk and Rep. Robin Kelly of Chicago to introduce a bill to make Chicago’s Pullman neighborhood a national park. They and local supporters say a national park designation could “bring much-needed funds and development to the neighborhood.”