This coronavirus crisis has forced postponements and cancellations of seemingly countless events in the coming weeks and months. Sadly, this includes some of our area’s most cherished annual traditions, the Bourbonnais Friendship Festival and Herscher Labor Day celebration to name a few.
Some of these cancellation announcements are now starting to pertain to fall events. The 2020 general election will surely not be one of them, but the postponement of one aspect of the election suggested by top state Republicans makes some sense regardless of your political leanings.
GOP legislative leaders are pushing for a vote to remove the progressive income amendment from the November ballot. If the measure is voted on and approved, it would replace the current flat tax with the progressive model, which its proponents say will yield billions in additional taxes and help fund the state’s budget priorities.
But someone will be on the line for that additional tax money, and Republicans say the onus will fall particularly hard on small business owners who are in no position to bear further expense as the shutdown order mandated by Gov. J.B. Pritzker has put so many of them out of business for the last two months.
House Minority Leader Jim Durkin, R-Western Springs, has called the progressive tax a potential “kick in the teeth’’ for these small business owners who are already grappling with a financial shortfall, which will continue as long as they are sidelined.
The progressive tax has been a controversial proposal since the day it was first considered. But what the Republicans are asking for has less to do with controversy and more to do with common sense. Under the circumstances, it would be best to table the vote until at least the next statewide election in 2022.