A Taxpayer Bill of Rights, or TABOR, would require any government to seek voter approval before imposing a new tax or raising existing tax rates. The TABOR also contains a formula that determines how much in taxes a government can collect in a year, based on increases in population and inflation. If more revenues are collected than the formula allows, then the governing entity is required to reimburse the excess money back to the taxpayers.
A provision could also be included to allow excess revenues to be kept by the government if the taxpayers give voter approval through a ballot initiative. Anytime there is a proposal to raise taxes or keep excess tax revenues, the ballot must provide the following: information on the governing entity’s current and previous four years of spending, the proposed tax increase in percentages and estimated dollar amounts, and summaries of support for and opposition to the proposed tax increase.
Taxpayers in Illinois already suffer under the burden of some of the highest taxes in the nation. If Illinois had a taxpayer bill of rights, the government wouldn’t be able to suddenly impose taxes on residents without their approval. This would allow businesses and residents to know their long-term tax liabilities and to budget accordingly. Taxpayers would also benefit from having a more efficient and transparent government because the taxpayer bill of rights would require politicians to disclose how they spend taxpayer money.
Illinois residents have spent too much time under a government notorious for irresponsible tax-and-spend policies that hurt Illinoisans. A taxpayer bill of rights would be a win for Illinois taxpayers.