After spending April 30 in Springfield attending the Illinois Chamber of Commerce and Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB) Employer Action Day, I am happy to report that proposals for both a progressive income tax and millionaire’s income are dead.
Unfortunately, Senators and Representatives from both sides of the aisle believe that the “temporary” income tax hikes will be extended beyond their January of 2015 sunset. Enacted in January of 2011, income tax rates jumped from 7.3% (4.8% plus 2.5% property replacement tax) to 9% for corporations and from 3% to 5% for individuals, including “pass-through entities” such as sole proprietorships, partnerships, limited liability corporations (LLCs) and S corporations taxed as partnerships.
Democrats in the Illinois General Assembly appear supportive of Governor Pat Quinn’s proposal to raise the state’s minimum wage by 21% to $10.65 from $8.25—which is already the highest in the Midwest and $1 more than the federal minimum wage.
While Republican Gubernatorial nominee Bruce Rauner delivered our luncheon address, Gov. Quinn turned down an invitation to speak to representatives from hundreds of chambers across the state, sending the Director of the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) to stump for him instead.
A proposal to cap/reduce/eliminate the sales tax vendor collection allowance on 1.75%—which allows a business to keep $1,750 of every $100K collected to cover expenses related to record keeping, reporting and filing—appears to be targeted at large retailers.
Video Gaming Terminals
As an update to last month’s report on video gaming, a Trustee at the Village of Lombard has asked his Village Board to reconsider allowing video gaming in that community. Every community surrounding Elmhurst but Oak Brook is participating in the State of Illinois’ Video Gaming Act, which is netting $30 million per month statewide.
There is a 30% tax on the Net Terminal Income (Funds In minus Funds Out), with 25% going directly to the state’s General Fund and 5% given to a municipality. The video gaming house and their state-licensed vendor each get 35% of the NTI.
According to online reports from the Illinois Video Game Board, the Village of Villa Park netted $11.5K from its 12 licensed houses in April (up from February’s $8.6K) and the Village of Addison earned $6.95K (up from $5.3K) from seven locations with terminals. The Village of Oakbrook Terrace got $3.7K from seven locations and the Village of Bensenville got $1.74K from two locations
Fitz’s Irish Bulldog in Villa Park, owned and operated by the same family that runs Fitz’s Pub and Fitz’s Spare Keys in downtown Elmhurst, made 35% of its April NTI of $24.4K.
Explore Elmhurst 2014
Explore Elmhurst 2014, the Chamber’s biennial publication featuring maps of the City of Elmhurst and its business districts, has been rebranded in 2014 to better meet the needs of consumers and to increase the ROI (return on investment) for our display advertisers.
More than 19,100 copies will be direct mailed to every residential, businesses and post office box address in Elmhurst in late May, while some 2,900 copies will be distributed via the Chamber’s New Resident Greeter Box program (600 per year) and by advertisers, as well as municipal bodies such as the City of Elmhurst, Elmhurst Public Library and Elmhurst Park District.
The cost per exposure starts at only 2.7 cents for a quarter-panel ad ($600), 4.1 cents for a half-panel ad ($900) and 5.5 cents for a full panel ad ($1,200)—a savings of 10% to 20% off our 2012 pricing. Specialty panels range in price from $1,410 to $3,250.
Six members are celebrating Chamber anniversaries in May, as follows: 40 years—Diplomat West Banquet Halls and Elmhurst Public Library; 30 years—Korman-Lederer & Associates; 25 years—All Chicagoland Moving & Storage; and 15 years—Celar Chiropractic and Korzenowski Design.
The Chamber welcomed five new members in April as follows (in alphabetical order):
American Family Insurance (Vazquez), Lakeside Bank, Nick’s Sales & Services, Pout In Pink and Ruff Life.
Andersen Office Interiors, Bilancio Salon & Day Spa, Elmhurst Family Restaurant and PNC Bank reactivated as Chamber members in April.
No Longer Members
The Chamber said goodbye to the following 12 members in April: Back Alley Burger, Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage (Suzanne Mauzey), Courageous Bakery, Cutters Landscaping, Irish Treasure Trove, K&A Investments, Patrick’s Pro’s, Prairie Center, S&S Automotive, Stenograph, Steven May Landscaping and Top Driver.
On the April 24 passing of long-time Elmhurst real estate agent William “Bill” Rohn, formerly of L.W. Reedy Real Estate, at 56.
On A Personal Note
Thanks to all who have supported us both as Anne and I move forward with our divorce.