January 11, 2012. On the one year anniversary of the 67% income tax hike approval by the Illinois House of Representatives, Illinois State Representative Dwight Kay (R-Glen Carbon), 111th District State Representative Candidate Kathy Smith, and 113th District State Representative Candidate Melinda Hult pledged if elected in 2012 they will oppose the extension of the 67% income tax hike set to expire at the end of their term on January 1, 2015.

"A year ago today our state government got greedy and chose to take more money out of our paychecks without any reduction in state spending," said Kay. Just hours before I was sworn into office my predecessor Jay Hoffman voted for the tax hike set to expire January 1, 2015. The 67% income tax hike must be repealed or expire indefinitely or we will continue to lose jobs to our border states."

The 2012 election is important for the taxpayers in Illinois due to the fact that the same legislators who supported the tax hike (Rep. Dan Beiser and Jay Hoffman) are on the ballot in 2012. If elected Beiser and Hoffman will have the option to extend or expire the 67% income tax hike at the end of their 2012 term.

"I hope I am wrong but my gut feeling is that the same legislators who voted for the 67% income tax hike last year will vote to extend the tax hike again at the end of their term," said Kathy Smith. "Extending the tax hike will continue to scare away jobs in our region, we have already lost hundreds of jobs at Olin which is why I have signed the pledge with the Illinois Policy Institute to repeal or expire the 67% income tax hike and I ask my opponent Rep. Beiser to do the same."

According to the U.S. Department of Labor Statistics, Illinois has lost 61,390 jobs since the tax hike took effect January 1, 2011. Illinois' border states created 67,549 jobs since Illinois' tax hike took effect. The current unemployment rate in Illinois as of November 2011 stands at 10%.

"As a City of Belleville Alderman, I have a record of opposing and repealing tax and fee increases," said Melinda Hult. "I voted against a sales tax hike and successfully repealed the wheel tax. I have joined Rep. Kay and Kathy Smith in signing the pledge to repeal and expire the 67% income tax hike because we can't afford to lose any more jobs and I urge the people of
the 113th District which includes Belleville to hold if elected either Hoffman or myself accountable."

Illinois' neighboring states continue to have lower unemployment rates. Illinois' neighboring states unemployment rates are as follows: Indiana, 9%; Iowa, 5.7%; Kentucky, 9.4%; Missouri, 8.2%; and Wisconsin, 7.3%.

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