SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Middle-class families would be able to keep more of their hard-earned money under legislation sponsored by state Rep. Thaddeus Jones, D-Calumet City, doubling the value of the Earned Income Tax Credit. The Jones-backed bill is a key element of an economic reform agenda introduced by House Democrats.
“Governor Rauner seems to think the only way to improve the economy is to pad the profits of big businesses by cutting wages for families in our communities, but I know we can create jobs while lifting up the middle class,” Jones said. “Instead of passing handouts to huge corporations and wealthy CEOs, we need to help working families keep more of what they earn, so they can put more of that money into our local economy and help small and medium-sized employers in our area create jobs.”
Jones is sponsoring House Bill 2475, which would double the value of the state’s Earned Income Tax Credit over the course of five years, raising the value of the credit by 2 percent every year. Each 2 percent increase would put an estimated $44 million back in working families’ pockets. Additionally, the U.S. Conference of Mayors indicates that every $1 returned to taxpayers through the Earned Income Tax Credit generates between $1.50 and $2 in economic activity, helping local businesses grow.
The measure is a key element of an economic reform agenda recently introduced by House Democrats this year. Jones and his colleagues are pushing for reforms that grow the economy while also strengthening the middle class. Rather than padding the profits of corporations by reducing middle-class wages and slashing the rights of Illinois’ workers, Jones and the House Democrats are working to level the playing field for small and medium-sized employers, raise the minimum wage, invest in education at all levels and outlaw taxpayer-funded incentives for businesses that outsource local jobs.
“It’s time to start putting working people ahead of billionaires, big businesses and insiders,” Jones said. “I’m tired of seeing outrageous handouts for large corporations, while many people are struggling to survive. I’m fighting for a living wage, greater educational opportunities for our young people, and good-paying jobs.”