Elected Officials Push to Close Corporate Tax Loopholes

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Local News

By: Ashmar Mandou

New legislation to close nine corporate tax loopholes would raise an estimated $924 million to help fight Illinois’ growing budget crisis, as Representative Will Guzzardi and other state legislators announced at a Chicago press conference on Monday. Rep. Guzzardi introduced HB 4004 in Springfield earlier this month with 11 cosponsors. “It’s a moral failure that we’re letting the neediest among us suffer while huge corporations game the system to boost their profits,” said Rep. Guzzardi. “The nearly $1 billion dollars of loopholes we can close will take taxpayer money back from the corporate special interests and invest it where it belongs: in the people of Illinois, in our schools and roads and neighborhoods.” Standing with the state legislators in support of HB 4004 were Elliot Zashin of the Fair Economy Illinois coalition; Linda Jennings of National Nurses United and Fair Economy Illinois; Ralph Edwards, a former program manager at a violence prevention organization, Ceasefire, who was laid off due to state budget funding cuts and a leader with Fair Economy Illinois; Jay Schwartz, owner of Strange Cargo in Wrigleyville and a leader with Fair Economy Illinois; League of Women Voters of Illinois Executive Director Mary Schaafsma; and Marty Levine of the Jewish Alliance for Economic Justice.

“The loopholes included in this legislation are clear examples of corporations lining their pockets at the expense of Illinois taxpayers,” said Zashin. “We want to close loopholes that allow big corporations to hide their money untaxed in offshore tax havens and update an antiquated provision in our tax code that was created before computers.” We need money to fund the programs that are proven to prevent violence. The 1 percent and big corporations benefit from our low tax rates and the loopholes in our corporate tax code. They continue to amass their wealth and profits while 3-three year old kids get shot in the head,” said Edwards. “We need Springfield legislators and Governor Rauner to close corporate tax loopholes and invest in communities like mine and programs like Ceasefire and other violence prevention programs.” HB4004 is assigned to the House Rules Committee. Advocates aim to advance the bill through the committee process in the coming weeks.

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