Looking to stimulate development in Illinois and strengthen the middle class, state Rep. Natalie Manley, D-Joliet, is backing an economic reform agenda that would lower the cost of doing business, reward economic investment and boost education funding.
“The last two years have been difficult, as the lack of a responsible spending plan and non-stop partisan rhetoric have prevented the stability that businesses look for,” Manley said. “I agree with Governor Rauner that Illinois must do more to improve its business climate. However, instead of working to reduce middle-class wages in order to pad the profits of big corporations, we need to approach our economy in a way that encourages growth and levels the playing field for small and medium-sized businesses, while protecting middle-class families.”
Manley supports proposals to make the state’s tax code fairer by reducing the corporate income tax by at least 50 percent, giving small and medium-sized businesses a better opportunity to compete. Additionally, Manley will push to make the tax code fairer to small employers by closing loopholes that have allowed large corporations to avoid paying their fair share.
Manley’s economic reform agenda also calls for stronger protections for Illinois jobs by prohibiting companies that ship jobs overseas from receiving any taxpayer-funded incentives. Instead, she backs an extension of the Economic Development for a Growing Economy (EDGE) tax credit program, which in recent years has generated economic investment and jobs in Illinois.
Additionally, Manley is calling for reforms that raise middle-class wages and let working families keep more of what they earn, including an increase in minimum wage, expanded income tax credits for working families and increased funding for elementary and secondary education.
“A strong school system is critical to building a strong middle class and creating a region that businesses want to move to,” Manley said. “Our area is an important economic generator for the state and for this part of the country. We need to make sure we are fulfilling our potential.”