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Tax Relief for Illinois Families Signed by Governor

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CHICAGO, IL- Governor Quinn signed legislation today that will provide direct tax relief for working Illinoisans with an increase in the standard exemption as well as an increase in the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC).  Senate Bill 400, sponsored by State Senator Toi Hutchinson (D-Chicago Heights), is the second of two major economic development bills passed by the General Assembly in mid-December. 

“The tax relief contained in Senate Bill 400 will benefit every taxpayer in Illinois,” Hutchinson said.  “All tax filers will see an increase in their personal exemption allotment.  Working middle class families who claim the EITC, which was claimed by nearly 20% of Kankakee households in 2009, will see a dramatic increase in their available credit.”

The standard exemption is increased in Senate Bill 400 from the current $2,000 to $2,050 while also tying future increases to the Consumer Price Index (CPI).  Yearly increases in the standard exemption will ensure the credit remains valuable to families by keeping up with the increase in the cost of goods and services.  In addition, the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is raised from 5% to 7.5% in 2012 and again to 10% in 2013.  Currently, Illinois is tied for the nation’s second-smallest EITC state credit, which is claimed by over 900,000 Illinois families. 

“Some may say the tax relief contained in this legislation is not large enough to be beneficial to working Illinoisans,” Hutchinson continued.  “I look at this legislation as the first opportunity to raise the EITC since its inception in 2000 as well as the first step in providing some progressivity to our income tax code by tying the personal exemption to inflation.  This legislation is the best possible tax relief package we can offer right now, and I am proud to see it signed today by Governor Quinn.”  

Senate Bill 400 is a companion bill to Senate Bill 397, which contained many business incentives and small business tax relief measures and was also recently signed by Governor Quinn.  

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