Illinoisans carry heaviest tax load, analysis determines
Making ends meet in the Prairie State is no walk in the park, according to a recent WalletHub analysis that said Illinois' combination of sales, property and income taxes is the nation’s highest.
The personal finance website's “2017’s Tax Rates by State,” published on March 14, reveals that Illinois taxpayers are at a distinct disadvantage regardless of how the data is evaluated. Illinois ranks dead last when compared with the 49 other states and the District of Columbia.
Illinois' total state and local tax rates on median U.S. household is 14.76 percent. That translates to an average tax bill of $8,011 per family, which the Illinois Policy Institute called "crushing” and “the single biggest reason” that residents want to leave the state.
By comparison, Illinois' rate is nearly three times higher than Alaska, which ranked lowest, at 5.64 percent.
The institute said what's worse is that some elected leaders want to hike taxes further, pointing to the “grand bargain” budget recently debated -- and now presumably dead -- in Springfield that could have included “a permanent 33 percent income tax hike, implementing a tax on sugary beverages, raising taxes on food and drugs, and expanding the sales tax to include previously exempt services."
Citing its independently commissioned polls, the institute said state politicians are not seeing what is obvious to taxpayers.
“These proposals are out of touch with what Illinoisans want,” the group said. “Illinois lawmakers should embrace real reform by going after the cost drivers that are bankrupting the state and implementing a five-year property tax freeze to give Illinois families some much-needed relief.”