Illinois tax rebates are coming — in time for the election

Sep 12, 2022, 12:49 PM | Updated: 1:26 pm

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — Democrats who run state government celebrated while announcing that tax-rebate checks — totaling more than $1.2 billion — on Monday began heading to 6 million taxpayers.

Rebates on income and property taxes are part of a $1.83 billion inflation-relief package built into this year’s budget.

“Everyone knows inflation is a global problem with local consequences,” Gov. J.B. Pritzker said at a Chicago news conference. “Prices at the pump and at the supermarket have taken Illinois families on a roller-coaster ride over the past months. It’s exactly the kind of thing that responsible government should help our residents with and we have, starting today.”

With eight weeks remaining before the November election, the timing is perfect for Pritzker, Comptroller Susana Mendoza, who shared Monday’s spotlight, and virtually every member of the General Assembly. Rebates will arrive by mail or direct deposit in the closing days of the campaign season, when voters make up their minds.

Individual taxpayers making less than $200,000 will receive a $50 rebate, with $100 to couples filing jointly earning less than $400,000, Revenue Director David Harris said. Taxpayers will also receive $100 for claimed dependents, up to three. Property tax rebates will be equal to the amount a homeowner claimed as a credit on income tax returns last year, up to $300, Harris said.

The rebates are the capstone to the effort begun last winter by Pritzker, and beefed up by legislative Democrats, to fight near-record inflation, which ran as high as 9% this year. Other initiatives include a six-month freeze on an increased motor fuel tax, a year-long suspension of the sales tax on groceries, and a back-to-school sales tax holiday on classroom supplies during August. At the same time, more than $1 billion is put aside for future emergency expenditures.

“We’ve done something very historic. … And if I had to, in this case, sum it up into kind of two words, I would probably say ‘Cha-ching!'” said Rep. Will Davis, a Homewood Democrat who helped negotiate the package.

Pritzker’s fourth budget is extraordinary in Illinois history, particularly given the state’s woeful economic condition during a 2015 to 2017 spending stalemate between legislative Democrats and an intransigent ex-Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner.

But despite all the bluster about fiscal discipline and spending sanity, Pritzker and Democratic lawmakers couldn’t pull off the massive tax-savings plan without playing an old game in the Capitol — borrowing from a fund set aside for a special purpose and which has a separate funding stream.

To backfill money lost to the road fund from the freeze on motor fuel taxes, officials took $140 million from the Leaking Underground Storage Tank fund. Financed by a separate 1.1-cents-per-gallon gas tax, property owners who have cleaned up sites where leaking fuel tanks threatened the environment are already owed at least $900 million, so the diversion of money puts them further behind, advocates said.


Rebate information: tax.illinois.gov


Follow Political Writer John O’Connor at https://twitter.com/apoconnor

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


FILE - Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., leaves the chamber at the Capitol in Washingt...

Associated Press

McCarthy rejects Senate spending bill while scrambling for a House plan that averts a shutdown

A government shutdown appeared all but inevitable as House Speaker Kevin McCarthy dug in Thursday.

1 day ago

(Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)...

Associated Press

Kari Lake reportedly plans to launch US Senate bid in Arizona for seat held by Kyrsten Sinema

Republican Kari Lake will soon launch her campaign for the U.S. Senate seat held by independent Kyrsten Sinema, a senior adviser said Thursday.

2 days ago

Republican presidential candidates, from left, former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson, former New Jers...

Associated Press

3rd Republican presidential debate is set for Nov. 8 in Miami, with the strictest qualifications yet

The third Republican presidential debate will be held in Miami on Nov. 8, a day after several states hold off-year elections.

7 days ago

During the equinox, the Earth’s axis and its orbit line up so that both hemispheres get an equal ...

Associated Press

The fall equinox is here. What does that mean?

The equinox arrives on Saturday, marking the start of the fall season for the Northern Hemisphere. But what does that actually mean?

7 days ago

Ray Epps Ray Epps, an Arizona man who became the center of a conspiracy theory about Jan. 6, 2021, ...

Associated Press

Ray Epps, an Arizona man who supported Trump, pleads guilty to Capital riot charge

Ray Epps, the target of a conspiracy theory about the Jan. 6, 2021, attack, pleaded guilty on Wednesday to a misdemeanor charge.

10 days ago

Former President Donald Trump repeatedly declined in an interview aired Sunday, Sept. 17, 2023, to ...

Associated Press

Trump refuses to say in a TV interview how he watched the Jan. 6 attack unfold at the US Capitol

Former President Donald Trump repeatedly declined in an interview aired Sunday to answer questions about whether he watched the Capitol riot.

13 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Home moving relocation in Arizona 2023...

BMS Moving

Tips for making your move in Arizona easier

If you're moving to a new home in Arizona, use this to-do list to alleviate some stress and ensure a smoother transition to your new home.


Ignite Digital

How to unlock the power of digital marketing for Phoenix businesses

All businesses around the Valley hopes to maximize their ROI with current customers and secure a greater market share in the digital sphere.


OCD & Anxiety Treatment Center

5 mental health myths you didn’t know were made up

Helping individuals understand mental health diagnoses like obsessive compulsive spectrum disorder or generalized anxiety disorder isn’t always an easy undertaking. After all, our society tends to spread misconceptions about mental health like wildfire. This is why being mindful about how we talk about mental health is so important. We can either perpetuate misinformation about already […]

Illinois tax rebates are coming — in time for the election