Senators who sit on appropriations committees spent Monday afternoon hearing tales of woe from local mayors who do not want the state to halve, as proposed, the municipal share of the state income tax revenue. “Since 2009, we've lost over seventy employees in the city of Rockford,” says that city's mayor, Larry Morrissey.
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“We have one key building inspector. He can't keep up. We're kidding ourselves that we can get by with the number of employees we have now,” says Frankfort mayor Jim Holland.
“Tax caps prohibit us from raising (property) taxes,” says Richton Park mayor Rick Reinbold, “so we have to turn to things like vehicle stickers (and) raising our water rates.”
Cities who have planned ahead and built up reserves can set the example, according to a lawmaker from one of those cities.
“Although they don't like the fact that they have to face these cuts, they can weather them, and they understand why we need to make these cuts,” says State Sen. Chris Nybo (R-Elmhurst). “From Elmhurst's perspective, they're willing to share the pain that all of us are going to have to share in. I'd like to view this as an opportunity for all the mayors that are sitting out there.”