Union members rallied around the state saying the state should stop mismanagement before it cuts jobs and facilities. Chuck Stout, a union man from Springfield, says state workers understand tough decisions must be made. But the Illinois has cut to the bone and the only way to pay off the $8 billion in unpaid bills is to increase revenue, such as creating a progressive income tax. But he says that that’s unlikely.
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“Because wealthy people control the state of Illinois and the General Assembly and that’s the bottom line,” Stout says. “Wealthy people who have deep pockets and a big voice that is much stronger than the people have here.” The Center for Tax and Budget Accountability recently released a report advocating for a progressive income tax and said Illinois’ spending has remained relatively over the past two decades after adjusting for inflation. Although the governor says he’s spreading the pain with the facility closures… Stout says the cuts affect rural communities more … especially deep southern Illinois. Steve Nordyke, president of an AFSCME chapter in Springfield,says he doesn’t trust the governor because he denied public employee pay raises after campaigning on it. “Absolutely. If you’re not a person of your word how can you have any credibility or trust,” Nordyke says.