On Thursday, Senate Democrats passed an ill-advised and incomplete plan to address the state’s multi-billion-dollar Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund deficit. Following the party-line vote, State Senator Donald DeWitte (R-St. Charles) issued the following statement:
“It’s incredibly disingenuous for Governor Pritzker and his Democrat legislative leaders to paint this vote as a victory. This action will lead to the largest tax increase on jobs in Illinois history. Employers who have been treated poorly and with complete disregard throughout the pandemic will be left holding the bag and left responsible for filling the remaining multi-billion-dollar deficit in the Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund.
“Responsible states across the nation took their federal ARPA funds and prioritized the replenishment of their states’ unemployment insurance funds, but not Illinois. Governor Pritzker and legislative Democrats made a conscious choice to use the majority of the ARPA funds on pork projects and other election year gimmickry to buy support and votes from constituents in an election year.
“Yet again, Governor Pritzker and the Democrats are turning their backs on the business community. Their action guarantees a significant tax increase on every Illinois job through higher employment insurance costs, and a decrease in benefits for every Illinois worker. Especially as we head towards what many believe will be another recession, when unemployed workers turn to Illinois’ unemployment system, their benefits will be reduced due to the greed shown by the majority party. Even if the majority party chooses to borrow funds to plug some or part of the remaining hole, the result is the same: a huge tax increase and millions and millions in new interest costs.”
You can listen to Sen. DeWitte’s full Senate floor comments here.