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HomeIllinois NewsBrady serves as coal-mine canary with his proposed "Grand Bargain 2.0"

Brady serves as coal-mine canary with his proposed “Grand Bargain 2.0”




SPRINGFIELD – Republican state Senator Bill Brady – once the favorite of social conservatives when he ran twice for Illinois governor in 2010 and again in 2014 – has now willingly stepped in as a tax-hike canary in the Illinois Republican coal mine by making a daring call for tax hikes in the governor's newest "grand bargain" budget proposal.  

And it's not just one tax hike the Bloomington senator wants Illinoisans to inhale along with him, it's two or maybe three new ones with little in return.

Brady's "Grand Bargain 2.0" features another state income tax hike back at least to the 5 percent level – but this one will be as temporary as the last one. In addition, taxpayers will, for the first time in Illinois, pay taxes on services such as lawn mowing, haircutting and house painting. (And those kind folks performing those tasks will have a new side job of collecting those taxes in their spare time.) There's also a new idea of a casino expansion fee – along with an unprecedented expansion of casino licenses.  

Frustrated and tapped-dry taxpayers are expected to be duly pacified with a two-year (or so) property tax freeze – that will come with a way to hike those frozen taxes with a referendum hike option.

And to reduce expenses, the cuts Senator Brady proposes just don't shrink the budget enough.

An Illinois Policy Institute review of the senator’s bills and other parts of the grand bargain communicated in Brady’s spending proposal found only $3.8 billion in savings, at best. And even then, some of those savings are unlikely or unreliable over the long term. 

The Institute scoffs at Brady's property tax freeze: 

The proposed property tax freeze does little to reduce taxpayers’ burden because it is not accompanied by permanent reforms, nor does it mandate relief at the local level. It doesn’t address what’s been driving up property taxes in the first place. Without reforms, a property tax freeze alone will simply cause other local taxes and fees to spawn, maintaining the heavy burden on local taxpayers.

State Rep. David McSweeney (R-Barrington) doesn't want to see Brady's proposal make its way to the Illinois House. 

"It's sad that Bill Brady is promoting a massive tax hike that will drive more people out of Illinois," McSweeney told Illinois Review. 

"Raising the income tax rate by 33% will kills jobs and hurt Illinois families. We need to eliminate wasteful spending such as the $2.4 million insider warehouse lease deal involving the family of Bill Cellini, a convicted criminal." 

Someone should tell Senator Brady canaries don't always fare well in coal mines. 


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  1. I guess we didn’t lose as much in 2010 after all. This will ruin Rauner. Rauner should run on: I didn’t raise your taxes. Force the Democrat to run on a tax increase. Rauner has recovered in the last 6 months. His ads are working. Forget a “grand bargain” and run on tax relief. It’ll work.

  2. Brady always was a liberal. You only have to go back to his ill fated run for Governor against Quinn. What did Brady do, he started measuring the curtains for the mansion, so sure was he of victory that he diverted his campaign workers and assisted Kirk in knocking Stufflebeam off the ballot for IL Senator. That stand with Kirk should have sent warning bells off to anyone who stil fell for Brady’s masquerade.

  3. In 2006, I walked seven precincts for Sen. Brady, but, since then, he became more liberal. He voted for the state dream act, and he voted for the law that allows illegal aliens get driver’s licenses. I hope that Sen. Brady won’t run for re-election, in 2018.

  4. You are either a Chamber of Commerce shill or in need of serious psychiatric help. Rauner has been a disaster for conservative Illinois voters – and will not get their support should he run again.
    But he’s wonderful if you’re a big fan of La Raza, cheap Chamber of Commerce foreign labor and/or Planned Parenthood