Niemerg: Democrats’ Punt on Unemployment Makes Jobs Tax Hike Likely

SPRINGFIELD, IL – State Representative Adam Niemerg is continuing his fight to convince the Democrat majority and Governor Pritzker to use American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds to pay back the $4.5 billion in borrowed money to keep paying benefits to the thousands of people who lost their jobs during the forced shut down of businesses.

“Last night the Democrats passed a tax on small business and a loss of benefits to working-class folks, this is a tax on every job in the state,” said Rep. Adam Niemerg. “Small businesses have taken the brunt of the Governor’s lockdowns and now they have a tax increase and working people will receive less benefits and the Democrats wonder why people and employers are leaving Illinois?”

“We have nearly $6.9 billion of ARPA money that has not been spent and that should be used by April 1st  of this year, that’s just one week away, to make the right decision to pay this loan back plus mounting interest fees,” declared Rep. Adam Niemerg. “Until April 1st,  Federal rules allow the State of Illinois to deposit remaining ARPA money into its own unemployment trust fund. Instead they allocated 2.7 billion and left the 1.8 billion tab to the people of Illinois. The Governor shut down business and now the house gives us a tax increase.”

Projections are that Illinois will take in $4.6 billion more in revenue during the current Fiscal Year (FY22) than the current budget passed last May 2021. Rep. Niemerg suggests that loan can be paid off, the trust fund can be replenished, employers can avoid higher taxes, and working class people who depend on the unemployment benefits won’t have their benefits reduced.