Chicago City Wire

Chicago City Wire

Friday, April 10, 2020

Activist opposes city income tax: 'We have a swamp in Chicago'


By Kyla Asbury | Jan 26, 2020


While Chicago resident Richard Munnich concedes the likelihood of the city adopting an income tax to help dig itself out of its growing $800 million debt, the conservative activist says he is staunchly opposed.

"The possibility is very strong," Munnich told Chicago City Wire. "Our current mayor is a globalist who intends to carry out the globalist agenda that includes fully destroying American's faith in a democratically elected representative form of government. We have a swamp in Chicago. A virtual government behind the government made up of unelected bureaucrats who desperately need a haircut."

Munnich says that before approving an income tax, a responsible city government that the taxpayers can afford should be created and maintained, adding that leaders are making the wrong types of cuts.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot

"Unfortunately, our leaders seem to make budget cuts from the bottom up," Munnich said. "That way they can garner more sympathy on the local TV news. No, government budget cuts should be top down."

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot has said she would not completely reject the idea of an income tax, even though it was not part of the city's legislative agenda back in November.

A 2011 study suggested that having a 1-percent income tax would generate around $500 million a year, according to an article in Chicago Magazine. The author suggests that while a city income tax would not be unheard of, Chicago's 10.25 percent sales tax already makes it an outlier among U.S. cities.

Michael Belsky, the executive director for the Center for Municipal Finance at the University of Chicago, told Chicago Magazine that a good way to "sell" the idea of an income tax would be to show taxpayers what it might do once the city's longtime pension crisis is resolved.

“If you’re going to sell it politically, it would be smart to say, ‘Once we solve this pension problem, we could use the excess in the future to reduce the sales tax or the property tax,’ " Belsky said.

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