Daily dose: Local history, Jason Barickman, State Police chief out?, Jim Thompson on income tax, Wisconsin governor wants to fight neighbors
In 1911, Judge Oliver A. Harker denied today that the University of Illinois College of Law is to be moved to Springfield. He said he believes he would have been consulted if such a move was being considered. It is understood that Gov. Deneen would like to see the law department in the state capitol.
In 1961, the Champaign Unit 4 school board plans to add 30 new elementary school classrooms and build an educational service center with the proceeds of a $944,000 bond issue going before voters on Feb. 25. If a person is paying a school tax of about $200 a year, his or her bill will increase by about $6 with the bond issue.
Barickman on the road Wednesday and Thursday
Newly appointed state Rep. Jason Barickman, R-Champaign, hopes to meet with voters throughout his six-county 105th House District on Wednsday and Thursday.
On Wednesday Barickman will be at the Paxton City Hall from 9 to 9:30 a.m., the Hoopeston City Hall from 10 to 10:30 a.m., the Cissna Park Fire Department from 11 to 11:30 a.m., the Watseka Municipal Center from 12:15 p.m. to 1 p.m., the Ford-Iroquois Farm Bureau building in Gilman from 2 to 2:30 p.m. the Kankakee County Farm Bureau building in Kankakee from 4:30 to 5 p.m.and the Dwight Village Hall in Dwight from 6 to 6:30 p.m.
On Thursday Barickman will start at the Savoy Municipal Center from 8:30 to 9 a.m., the Gibson City Hall from 10 to 10:30 a.m., the Bloomington Public Library building from 1:30 to 2 p.m., the Dominy Memorial Library in Fairbury from 3:30 to 4 p.m. and the Livingston County Farm Bureau building in Pontiac from 4:30 to 5 p.m.
State Police director out?
From the State Journal-Register ...
Acting Illinois State Police director Jonathon Monken could be out of a job after the Illinois Senate failed to confirm him before it adjourned last week.
A Jan. 14 letter written to state Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka by Eric Madiar, chief legal counsel to Senate President John Cullerton, said Monken and 37 other unconfirmed appointees of Gov. Pat Quinn are no longer entitled to be paid salaries or other expenses by the state.
As of Monday, however, Monken was still on the job, said Quinn spokeswoman Annie Thompson.
The letter, first reported by WUIS-FM/Illinois Public Radio, said the Senate had 60 legislative session days to act on Quinn’s appointments. Session days are when the Senate is in session.
“The Senate of the 96th General Assembly did not confirm any of the listed persons,” Madiar wrote. “In addition, fewer than 60 session days elapsed on these nominations before that Senate adjourned sine die in the early hours of Wednesday, Jan. 12, 2011.
“As you are aware, when the Senate adjourned sine die that action terminated its session, and all unfinished business before the Senate expired, including all pending gubernatorial nominations. … With their nominations no longer valid, I am unaware of any legal authority permitting the formal nominees to continue to draw a salary or receive expense reimbursements …”
Jim Thompson on income tax increase
From Rockford Register Star ...
SPRINGFIELD — While most Illinois Republicans have lambasted the income tax increase passed by Democratic legislators and signed into law by Gov. Pat Quinn, former Republican Gov. James Thompson is taking the long-term view.
“If the press reports of the provisions which will force budget cuts ... and they’re carried out in good faith, and most importantly, we get honest and competent government in return for our taxes, then I think most citizens will be happy to see that Illinois will no longer be the deadbeat state,” Thompson said in an interview Wednesday in the Capitol rotunda after Quinn swore in the new members of the Senate.
Thompson, governor from 1977 to 1991, was the longest-tenured governor in state history.
He does not necessarily buy into the assumption by many that the tax hike, which raises individual income taxes from 3 percent to 5 percent and the corporate rate from 4.8 percent to 7 percent, will not be temporary. The tax is scheduled to drop to 3.75 percent in 2015.
Thompson signed a law that temporarily increased the tax from 2.5 percent to 3 percent. That increase took effect on Jan. 1, 1983, and went back to 2.5 percent on June 30, 1984.
“I went through and the people of Illinois went through in 1982-1983 the second-worst recession in American history,” Thompson said. “(The tax increase) wasn’t renewed, and so it can be done.”
The Illinois-Wisconsin tax war
From the Wisconsin State Journal
I understand that particular brand of Wisconsin schadenfreude when it comes to doing harm to the Land of Lincoln. But does this southerly march really merit major-battle status in Walker's campaign for lower unemployment and a healthy state budget?
"Taxes are a relatively small part of the cost of doing business," said Andrew Reschovsky, an economist with the UW-Madison La Follette School of Public Affairs. He predicted probably "a few firms that are on the margin" that might move from Illinois to Wisconsin for a better tax climate.
Added Todd Berry, president of the nonpartisan Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance: Even with the states' changes in tax policy, "when you come right down to it, there's not going to be a huge difference between the two states."
Wisconsin picks a fight with Minnesota, too
From the Minneapolis Star Tribune ...
Wisconsin Monday announced it planned to post signs at the Minnesota-Wisconsin (and Illinois-Wisconsin) borders declaring: Open for Business.
“The pro-growth initiatives I support stand in stark contrast to those policies being discussed in our bordering states. These signs are aimed directly at job creators to make them aware that they are welcome here,” said Wisconsin's new Gov. Scott Walker, a Republican, in a statement.
Wisconsin will place the "Open for Business" signs at 23 Wisconsin entry points, including in Hudson and Superior.