Governor Offers Illinois Business An ‘Escape To Wisconsin’

CHICAGO (WBBM) — Within hours of the Illinois legislature’s vote to increase the business tax, the new Republican governor in Wisconsin wasted no time in trying to lure Illinois businesses across the border.

Right now, even with the corporate income tax rising to 7 percent in Illinois, Wisconsin’s corporate tax is still slightly higher — at nearly 8 percent.

That’s going to change within the first few weeks of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s administration.

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“Back in the mid-80s, Wisconsin used to have a great tourism slogan called ‘Escape to Wisconsin’–trying to draw folks up from Chicago and Illinois.” Walker said. “We are going to renew that slogan except in this case for job creators.”

Walker says the GOP majority in the Wisconsin statehouse means he’ll move to cut taxes to attract businesses from across the border and create more jobs.

“It’s a great contrast,” Walker said. “It’s one in which we are going to start recruiting in Chicago and Rockford and all over Illinois. I think it’s a stark message.”

While Illinois charges an additional “Personal Property Replacement Tax” of 2.5 percent of income on top of the corporate income tax, Wisconsin charges a state property tax that Illinois doesn’t have.

Wisconsin’s individual income tax rate also is higher for most taxpayers than in Illinois.

Wisconsin has a graduated income tax rate that starts at 4.6 percent for taxpayers earning less than $10,070 a year. For those that make up to about $20,000 a year, it jumps to 6.15 percent. The rate ranges between 6.5 percent and 7.75 percent for higher incomes in Wisconsin.

Earlier this week, Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels also touted his state as the place to go for Illinois’ businesses and families, who will see their personal income tax rate increase from 3 percent to 5 percent.

“We already had an edge on Illinois in terms of the cost of doing business, and this is going to make it significantly wider,” Daniels, a Republican, told the Herald-Review on Monday.

In Indiana, while it has a lower income tax rate than Illinois at 3.4 percent, individual counties are allowed to impose their own income taxes, some of which are as high as 3 percentage points.

And Indiana’s corporate income tax isn’t much different than Illinois. Indiana’s corporate income tax rate is 8.5 percent, plus any local income taxes. In Illinois, the corporate income tax rate is 7 percent, plus the 2.5 percent “Personal Property Replacement Tax.”

  • mdb

    i still do not understand why Indiana does not start a tax on food.. 1-2% would bring in millions if not billions of dollars!!! and it would be for everyone who buys food in indiana not just people who live in indiana and it is still way lower than Illinois tax rate on food… come on people wake up !!!!! simple fix on the indiana budget and ir would not really hurt anyone !!!!

    • Lori

      IN has a balanced budget, created new jobs 2x the national average, has the lowest property taxes and is proposing an automatic refund of tax dollars when the reserves exceed 10% of the annual needs. What exactly needs fixing?

      • FillB

        Perhaps they might start with their unemployment rate. If they’re creating jobs so fast, where the heck are they?

    • borntobePolitical

      In case you did not get the reason that he is luring business to IN fro IL, THEY RAISED TAXES IN IL SO PEOPLE ARE LEAVING!!

      Here you are recommending a TAX HIKE!


  • Dave

    The only thing stopping many of us taxpayers from fleeing this Democrat-controlled hellhole of IL is the location of our jobs in or near downtown Chicago.

  • JC

    Well, the fools in this state have done it again. Elected a bunch of thieves to office and then we all have to take it bent over and dry to pay for Chicago and the Public Service and Teacher’s Unions. In my opinion, the next election campaign starts today. I will do everything possible to make sure that none of the yes votes are re-elected. We also need to find a way to force an oversight of the election results in Crook County. It is obvious that Governor Quinn’s election was fraudulent.

  • Dennis Fritz

    I work for the State of Illinois as a non-union temp. I can tell you, from first-hand experience, the idea Illinois has too many state workers is a LIE. The state barely has enough employees to function, and nowhere near enough to function well. What waste exists in the system is mostly at the top. At the ground level, where state workers interact with the pulic, there is massive, chronic staffing shortgage. No one believes it when I tell them, but it is true.

    • privateuser

      You mean like the 14 people working behind the counter at the DMV in Peoria, IL helping only one person at a time?? I was going to say 2 people were texting, but I noticed they are playing a game against each other with their DS systems. That’s okay, I’ve only been here for an hour and a half and I’m number 53 (they are currently on 21). I’m sure It will be my turn before they close for the day… Maybe if they had a few more workers! oops… hold on to your hat.. they just called 22… one step closer!

      • borntobePolitical

        Been to the US Post office lately? It is like being in a Soviet PO. We have become that place because of the lack of competition. The Government and the Unions with their pensions have bankrupt the nation.

        Thanks Guys

  • Tweets that mention Governor Offers Illinois Business An ‘Escape To Wisconsin’ « CBS Chicago – Breaking News, Sports, Weather, Traffic, and the Best of Chicago --

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by CBS 2 Chicago. CBS 2 Chicago said: Governor Offers Illinois Business An ‘Escape To Wisconsin’ […]

  • Jacqueline Burke

    Well since we are paying more maybe the Governor can use some of the tax payers money to clean up the billions of dollars that is spent on fraudulent welfare cases. Take a good hard look at who is receivint these benefits. Not the ones that really need it thats for sure.

  • N

    TO: Govenors of States Neighbooring Illinois
    FROM: Illinois Citizens

    You are welcoming the buisness to your states, how about the residents with some sort of incentives!!!!???

    Oh, and to Govenor Quinn and the State of Illinois; why don’t you just ‘sub’ everything out and reduce your overhead???

  • Daley: Business Tax Hike Could Backfire « CBS Chicago – Breaking News, Sports, Weather, Traffic, and the Best of Chicago

    […] Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker called Illinois’ corporate tax hike a job killer as invited Illinois b… […]

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