Cross: Income Tax Extension Not Needed
By Sean Powers
Amid billions of dollars in unpaid bills and a massive pension crisis, a Republican candidate for Illinois treasurer says the state can get out of its budget hole without another income tax hike.
State Rep. Tom Cross (R-Oswego) made a campaign stop Friday in Champaign.
Cross said the 67 percent income tax increase signed into law a couple years ago should expire when it is supposed to in two years.
“I don’t think anyone can expect us to be out of this hole in the next year or two,” he said. “I think this is going to take a number of years to get out. Let’s hope the economy comes back a little stronger, and the General Assembly quits spending and they have a plan to pay down the bills. So, I’m of the opinion that we need to focus on the amount of resources we have, and live within those means.”
If elected, Cross said he would set up a special unit of law enforcement officials, former prosecutors, and financial experts to work on protecting the state’s pension funds from corruption and fraud.
So far, Cross faces DuPage County Auditor Bob Grogan and Chicago Economist Michael Scott Carter. On the Democratic side, State Sen. Mike Frerichs of Champaign is also running for treasurer.
Cross was previously the Republican leader in the Illinois House, but stepped down from that post to run for treasurer.
On Friday, he was endorsed by State Sen. Jason Barickman (R-Bloomington), Sen. Dale Righter (R-Mattoon), Sen. Chapin Rose (R-Mahomet), Rep. Adam Brown (R-Champaign) and Rep. Bill Mitchell (R-Forsyth)