When you think of all of the bogus taxes and fees that exist, it’s shocking that our City, County and State are on the Detroit path when it comes to their finances. Buying a house? The county gets a big commission on that. Going to the ballgame? The City gets a big portion of your ticket fee.
On the same level of ridiculousness is the State charging $250 for a company to file an annual report. Once a year a business owner gets a piece of paper in the mail and you sign on a line to state that you are still in business at the same location. There are approximately 1.2 million businesses in Illinois to this b.s. report costs employers $300 million a year and is a boon to the State in terms of revenue.
The cost is ridiculous, but what’s even more backwards is how it’s processed. I received mine the other day and saw that I could renew it online. But to do so I’d have to pay an “expedited fee” which would bring the total cost to $308.
So instead of handling this by computer, someone has to be paid to open my document and process it. And this happens tens of thousands of times every single week.
Perhaps Jesse White, who is in charge of this program, hasn’t heard. Most businesses actually reduce fees when you handle something online because they are more efficient that way and it can save them money. If you try to book a plane ticket for example and want to talk to a human, you can certainly expect to pay more.
But instead of pushing people to handle these forms online, the Secretary of State has incentivized people to process the payment as if it was still the 20th century.
Maybe Jesse is just trying to look out for the post office because that’s a lot of stamps for this small form. But the reality is that this is a joke and while it’s not the only reason Illinois is in shambles, it’s certainly evidence as to why it is.
And while I’m guessing this information is available on line, I’d be really curious as to what the Government brings in on top of income and property taxes. It’s probably my laziness and the same from others that really allows this system to go unchecked.
On a side note, the worst tax story I’ve come across is from a good friend that is a bar owner in Chicago. He has an efficient, computer operated system that keeps track of every drink served so they can re-order inventory when it’s appropriate to do so. So even if a bartender gives away a free drink, it gets recorded. The City audited him and because he keeps great records, they were able to see how many free drinks he gave away. The City fined him for not paying taxes on those free drinks. There was, of course, no revenue, but the City told him he had an obligation to collect their tax anyway since what they were giving away had value. That is so ridiculous that it makes the Secretary of State sound sane.
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