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The Illinois graduated tax amendment explained

The Illinois graduated tax amendment explained

  • Updated
  • 5

One of the major questions Illinois voters will answer on Nov. 3 will be on the ballot statewide – whether to amend the state’s constitution to allow for a graduated rate income tax.

Strictly speaking, the amendment removes a provision from the Illinois Constitution that requires any income tax to be levied at a flat rate on any level of income – the current rate is 4.95 percent. Passage of the amendment would allow lawmakers to apply different tax rates on varying levels of income. Of the 42 states that have an income tax, 32 and Washington, D.C., have a graduated rate structure, while Illinois is one of nine that impose a flat tax.

While the amendment itself does not set any tax rates, legislation already passed by lawmakers and signed by the governor would take effect in January if the amendment passes. The rates created by that legislation would apply to six tax brackets, ranging from 4.75 percent on income up to $10,000 to 7.99 percent on all income for individual filers making more than $750,000.

Here’s a look the amendment, the accompanying rate legislation, some of the arguments being made and who is funding the advertising campaigns for and against it.

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