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House Approves Tax Revenue Distribution Changes
One of Gov. Pat Quinn's ideas for saving the state money could come at the expense of local governments. Quinn is considering freezing the amount of income tax revenue the state distributes to cities and towns. But lawmakers are trying to make sure municipalities get whatever money they're owed on time.
The House approved a plan today that changes the way the state distributes income tax revenue to local governments. Right now, when the state receives income tax payments, the money is deposited into the main operating fund. Then a portion of the money is put into the local government distributive fund. From there, it is divvied up to cities and towns.
But in a nearly unanimous vote, lawmakers agreed today to sidestep the general revenue fund and deposit the money directly into the fund for local governments.
"The services most of us experience at home are provided by our local governments," Rep. Anthony DeLuca (D-Chicago Heights) said. "We're talking about police protection, fire protection. They're all provided by our local governments. This'll help them receive funding in a more timely manner."
The state is behind in distributing income tax revenue to municipalities by as much as six months. DeLuca indicated the initial deposit into the state's main operating fund leaves the door open to use the money for other purposes.
Under the proposal, the changes would take effect at the end of the year.
The idea now heads to the Senate for consideration. No word on whether that chamber, or the governor, will agree.
Quinn is looking at freezing the revenue the state distributes to cities to 2012 levels. Analysts say the change could cost the city of Springfield $1.3 million.