(The Center Square) – As Illinois sees a decline in its average household income in 2022, some are warning of a possible tax increase to compensate for the decline.
U.S. Census data analyzed by the Associated Press shows nationwide, the median household income was $74,755 in 2022, down around 1% from the year before when adjusting for inflation. Illinois is one of 17 states to see its average inflation-adjusted household income decrease in 2022. Neighboring states Indiana, Iowa, Michigan and Wisconsin also saw declined household income for 2022.
State Rep. Charlie Meier, R-Okawville, said the state is losing jobs due to policies that harm businesses.
“A lot of our legislators continue to pick on businesses and think they are just made of money,” Meier said. “They keep making it harder to do business in Illinois.”
Meier said taxpayers could pay the state to make up for the decline.
“Let’s go ahead and put the progressive income tax in there. That will be the Democrats’ theme,” Meier told The Center Square. “‘We need to have more money. We have got to support the illegal [immigrants]. What are we going to do? We are going to tax our way out of it,’ and that is no way to create jobs.”
State Rep. La Shawn Ford, D-Chicago, said there will be no progressive income tax due to the income decline.
“The fact that the people voted it down is something that we really should look at,” Ford said. “Do I believe we need a better tax system in Illinois? I do.”
The progressive income tax, with higher rates for higher earners, was rejected by voters in 2020.
Ford said fixing these issues will take a multifaceted approach.
“It is crucial for government on all levels to address these issues and work towards equitable solutions that promote upward mobility and financial well-being for all Illinois residents,” Ford told The Center Square. “To overcome these challenges, we must prioritize policies that support job creation, workforce development, and access to affordable housing and healthcare.”