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Rep. Allen Skillicorn is encouraging kids to read this summer by joining his Summer Reading Club. 

Students in kindergarten through 5th grade are encouraged to read over the summer. For a little extra incentive, those who complete 8 or more books will be recognized at a special ice cream party just for them. 

For more information, call the district office at (815) 893-4884 or download the brochure.

Springfield, IL - Fresh off reports of a recent proposal by three economists of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago recommending a 1% property tax levy on the actual value of all Illinois homes to pay for state pensions, I am introducing House Resolution 1091 (HR1091) calling for an audit of the Federal Reserve System.

Enough is enough! Despite having some of the highest property taxes in the nation, the Chicago Fed has the audacity to recommend a massive property tax hike to pay for Illinois’ unsustainable pensions on the backs of middle class taxpayers who are already taxed enough.

I am calling on my colleagues to co-sponsor HR1091 in support of U. S. Congressional H.R. 24, the Federal Reserve Transparency Act of 2017.

Currently the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is prohibited by law from auditing four areas of the Federal Reserve:

•    Transactions for or with a foreign central bank, government of a foreign country, or no private international financing organization;
•    Deliberations, decisions, or actions on monetary policy matters, including discount window operations, reserves of member banks, securities credit, interest on deposits, and open market operations;
•    Transactions made under the direction of the Federal Open Market Committee; or
•    A part of a discussion or communication among or between members of the Board and officers and employees of the Federal Reserve System.

The “Audit the Fed” bill would remove these four exemptions and is supported by nearly 75 percent of the American people.

The economic trio of the Chicago Fed offer three options as their only solution—increase sales taxes, income taxes or property taxes.  How about three of my own: restructure government spending; amend the Illinois Constitution to end the pension protection scheme; or have government employees contribute more to their retirement–no economics degree required.

It is beyond ironic that as a part of the Federal Reserve—a major contributor to the circumstances that caused the Great Recession by keeping interest rates too low for too long, along with crushing those on fixed incomes and savers with Zero Interest Rate Policy for a decade--the Chicago Fed looks to Illinois homeowners to once again bail out reckless government spending. Time to Audit the Fed!
As opposed to cutting expenses and rooting out waste, Springfield once again discusses another tax on the already burdened citizens of Illinois to "solve" a funding issue.  This time it's gas tax hikes, as if the people don't already pay double at the pump--sales tax and motor fuel tax. The following from the Heartland Institute offers a compelling counter-argument: 
Hiking Illinois’ Gas Tax Will Not Solve the State’s Transportation Funding Problem 
Funding transportation projects has become a major problem for Illinois, as it has for many other states. In 2017, Illinois passed its first budget in years, yet the record $5 billion income tax hike did not include basic funds for infrastructure. Traditionally, Illinois has funded new infrastructure projects through a separate capital bill, which generates a different series of dedicated funds and liabilities for the state. The last capital bill in Illinois passed in 2009, when state legislators allocated $31 billion for infrastructure projects.
 Now, several proposals to generate new funds for Illinois’ transportation network have been put forward by organizations across the state. One plan introduced by the Illinois Economic Policy Institute (IEPI) would move the state in the wrong direction by increasing the state’s motor fuel tax to $0.85–$1.00, up from the current gas tax rate of 34 cents per gallon, which ranked 11th-highest among all states in 2017, according to the Tax Foundation.
 IEPI’s proposed hike would make Illinois’ gas tax the highest in the nation, at least one-and-a-half times Pennsylvania’s 58-cents-per-gallon rate – the highest in 2017. The IEPI proposal would also increase Illinois’ annual vehicle registration fee from $101 to $578. Another of the plan’s misguided ideas is a vehicle-miles-traveled fee of 4–5 cents per mile.
 One of the main reasons Illinois’ gas taxes are amongst the highest in the nation is Illinois is one of only seven states that also applies a sales tax to gasoline purchases, which is added on top of state and local motor fuel taxes. In 2011, residents in the Prairie State paid the third-highest combined local, state, and federal gas tax in the nation.
 Any proposal that would increase Illinois’ gas tax ignores the mounting evidence showing gasoline levies are a regressive form of taxation that shortchange transportation networks. In recent years, the rise of fuel-efficient cars has decreased motor-fuel-tax coffers and disproportionately shifted the burden to low-income drivers, a group that typically owns older, less-fuel-efficient vehicles.
 On the other side of the debate, the Illinois Policy Institute (IPI) argues legislators should consider the inflated costs of public construction projects in Illinois before they hike taxes or fees. Austin Berg, a writer for IPI, points to Illinois’ high workers’ compensation costs – Illinois has the highest workers’ compensation costs in the Midwest – and prevailing-wage requirements as key cost drivers for Illinois transportation projects. As an example, Berg compared Illinois to Indiana and found Indiana’s average workers’ compensation insurance premium costs made up only four percent of an average payroll, compared to 22 percent in Illinois.
 It is not practical to increase taxes or fees on households that are already cash-strapped. A tax hike would raise prices on goods and services throughout the economy, not just on gasoline because virtually all consumer goods are transported using gasoline-powered transportation. Businesses will simply pass the added costs on to consumers.
 Illinois should explore more modern and efficient methods to fund road construction and other infrastructure projects. Illinois lawmakers ought to consider options such as privatizing roads or establishing toll systems. In several cities, transportation agencies are also implementing congestion pricing – varying toll prices based on congestion – to manage demand and limit traffic problems. A similar approach in the notoriously congested streets of Chicago is another viable option Illinois policymakers should carefully consider instead of simply increasing the already onerous taxes on Windy City residents and commuters.

The Pet Adoption Fair that was scheduled for Saturday, April 21, has been cancelled.
We are rescheduling for later this year and will let you know the new date as soon as possible where caring people can rescue pets and offer them loving homes.
As a volunteer for Illinois Doberman Rescue Plus, I urge people to “Never Shop, Always Adopt!”
Rep. Allen Skillicorn (R-East Dundee) gave a shout out Tuesday on the House floor to all Hustle Up the Hancock participants.
Skillicorn used his point of personal privilege to acknowledge fellow representatives who attended the annual winter fitness fundraiser Feb. 25 at the John Hancock Center in Chicago, which has been held for 21 years and raised more than $16 million for lung disease treatment and research.
“Sunday was the Hustle Up the Hancock and I heard a couple other legislators joined us that do the stairs,” Skillicorn said, pointing to Rep. Laura Fine (D-Glenview). Skillicorn also mentioned other lawmakers including Rep. Emanuel Chris Welch (D-Hillside) and Rep. Kelly Burke (D- Oak Lawn) and said, "If I forgot someone, please feel free to shout and let us know.”
Skillicorn said the “good cause” that brought together the legislators regardless of political party promotes a positive atmosphere.
“I also want to point out that many state employees and state aides did the similar event here at the Wyndham and say that people who sweat together can work together,” Skillicorn said.
Join the Kane County Farm Bureau for their 13th annual Touch-A-Tractor event. This family friendly event will feature new and antique tractors and farm equipment, as well as raffles and activities for all ages.

What:
Touch-A-Truck

When:
April 6th-8th
Friday, 12pm-4pm
Saturday, 10am-4pm
Sunday, 10am-3pm

Where:
Kane County Farm Buraeu
2N710 Randall Road
St. Charles, IL 60174