If Gov. Bruce Rauner thought he could paper over Illinois' many ills in order to attract Amazon to the Prairie State, then he must think that the company's decision-makers are fools. In his state-of-the-state address he must have thought that because Twinkies were spawned here the company
that's using state-of-the-art digitals to zoom to the dominate role in the business world be impressed.
To mix metaphors, the chickens are coming home to roost; the very people that he is trying to
persuade (state legislators, public officials and himself) are responsible for this mess. If Amazon goes elsewhere, they have only themselves to blame.
To get a realistic idea of what a mess the state is in, I'd advise you read an itemization provided by the Illinois Policy Institute:
The facts on population loss:
- Since 2010, Illinois has lost nearly 643,000 people on net to other states. That’s equivalent to the population of the four largest cities outside Chicago combined: Aurora, Rockford, Joliet and Naperville.
- Illinois’ people problem is also its biggest budget problem. As people leave, they
take their wallets with them. That means fewer Illinoisans are left to pay the bills.
- Solution: In order to reverse Illinois’ outmigration problem, state leaders must enact policies that encourage economic growth, such as cutting taxes. To make this possible, the state must also bring spending under control. Politicians should peg state spending to what taxpayers can afford.
The facts on economic growth:
- Through November 2017, nearly 100,000 Illinois job seekers gave up on finding a job altogether. Around the rest of the U.S., labor force participation rebounded to the tune of 665,000 new participants.
- Most of the state’s jobs growth occurred during the first half of 2017. Illinois added 25,500 jobs on net in the first two quarters of the year – or 86 percent of its total jobs growth. After the state income-tax hike vote, Illinois’ jobs growth slowed to a crawl, only adding 4,000 jobs on net in the final two quarters.
- The 2011 income tax hikes cost the Illinois economy $56 billion in real gross domestic product and 9,300 jobs from 2012 to 2016.
The facts on property taxes:
- Government data show average property taxes paid in Illinois grew more than six times faster than household incomes from 2008-2015. That means the real property tax burden – the percentage of household income paid in property taxes – increased by nearly 38 percent.
- More recently, those property tax bills have risen, and returns to investment in home equity have declined in Illinois, meaning property taxes are too often sucking away the savings of middle-class families.
- Solution: Illinois officials must address the major cost-drivers behind local government spending with the goal of reducing the property tax burden.
This is the link to the Chicago Tribune debate between Bruce Rauner and Jeanne Ives. I highly recommend that you view the entire debate.