CHICAGO — GOP gubernatorial nominee Bruce Rauner finally showed his full fiscal hand Thursday, unveiling a plan to revamp state finances that would repeal the “temporary” income-tax hike but at least partially replace it by extending the sales tax to cover a wide range of services.
In a policy blueprint and at a press conference, Rauner also said he would freeze the local property tax and raise the minimum wage, later mentioning the figure of $10 an hour as a “reasonable” rate. The figure now is $8.25.
But it appears that the new sales tax on services would not cover the loss of revenue from letting the income-tax hike lapse, much less the cost to local governments of freezing property taxes.
Rauner linked all of this to a series of proposed steps he said would eliminate the disadvantage the state now has that has retarded job creation here. Included: further reform of the workers’ comp insurance program, restructuring the state’s edge tax credit and turning the state’s economic-development agency into a private-public partnership that he said could act more quickly than state government.
The GOP nominee described his proposal as the key to creating more, better-paying jobs, and to providing tax relief.
Among services that would be dinged under his plan are lawyers, travel agents, advertising and sewage-disposal operators. Printing, janitorial, security and computer programming services also would be subject to a levy that, in the Chicago area, could hit as much as 10 cents on the dollar.
Rauner’s blueprint plan can be found here.