Tax and Budget

Released July 30, 2014

The Chicago Housing Authority (CHA) participates in the federal program “Moving to Work,” which frees it from much of the oversight that the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development usually exercises over public housing agencies. Through the MTW program, the CHA can pool federal funding for public housing, capital construction, and housing vouchers into one General Fund and spend money from that fund at its discretion. Normally, such federal funding has to be kept in segregated accounts by program. Because of the financial flexibility the MTW gives the CHA, the agency has been able to divert money intended for the issuance of housing vouchers to other uses.

CTBA’s report, A Fiscal Review of the Chicago Housing Authority, found that over the last five years in particular, the CHA’s reserve funds have grown significantly. During that same five-year period, the CHA had an average annual surplus of $107 million.

Released June 9, 2014

Because the Illinois legislature failed to act during the spring 2014 legislative session, both of the temporary state income tax increases that became law under the Taxpayer Accountability and Budget Stabilization Act of 2011 (TABSA) will begin to phase down halfway through Fiscal Year (FY) 2015, which begins on July 1, 2014. Under TABSA, the personal income tax rate will decline from 5 percent to 3.75 percent, and the corporate income tax rate will drop from 7 percent to 5.25 percent beginning on January 1, 2015. 

Released May 19, 2014

This Report provides a detailed analysis of Governor Pat Quinn’s two very different proposals for the FY2015 General Fund budget—a Recommended Budget and a Doomsday Budget. This unconventional approach to the FY2015 budget was forced on the Governor because of the scheduled phase down of the temporary tax increases in the state’s personal and corporate income tax rates that became effective in 2011.

Released April 8, 2014

Presentation on the FY2015 budget proposals given at the National Associatioin of Social Workers Advocacy Day in Springfield, Illinois.

Governor's FY2015 Proposed General Fund Appropriations ($ Millions)

Released April 7, 2014

Policy leaders across Illinois have identified supporting small businesses and entrepreneurship as key to reviving the state’s sluggish economy. And no wonder, given that over 99 percent of all businesses in Illinois are “small business” as defined by the Small Business Administration.  This Report, identifies best practices and policy initiatives decision makers can take to improve the state’s economy and aid small businesses in Illinois.

Released March 28, 2014

Drawing on reports released by Stanford University and the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, this Issue Brief debunks the myth that if Illinois increased income tax rates on higher incomes there would be a mass exodus of millionaire households out of the state and points out the importance of moving to a fair tax.   

Released January 23, 2014

This Issue Brief compares Illinois’ General Fund (GF) spending on services to other states using three metrics: (i) per capita; (ii) as share of state Gross Domestic Product (GDP); and (iii) number of state employees per 1,000 residents. Under each metric, Illinois ranks as one of the lowest spending states in the nation.

Released October 1, 2013

The fiscal problems that have historically plagued Illinois are on full display in the FY2014 General Fund budget passedby the Illinois General Assembly. The state’s accumulated deficit remains significant, and in all likelihood will be at least $8 billion by the end of FY2014. Despite increases for some aspects of the General Fund budget, net spending on services will be $173 million less in FY2014 than in FY2013. Meanwhile, as spending on service delivery continues to decline, the annual cost of debt service continues to grow—specifically the debt owed to the state’s five public pension systems.

Released September 24, 2007

This Report analyzes the basic public services Cook County provides and the revenue sources that fund them. The Report also examines the Cook County fiscal system to determine whether it has the ability to fund and sustain the level of public services it currently provides.

Released February 22, 2006

A drilldown on environmental policies and programs in the proposed FY2005 General Fund budget.

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