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State Representative Grant Wehrli and the vast majority of his House Republican colleagues today introduced new legislation opposing Democrat efforts to again raise taxes on Illinois working families – this time through implementation of a new “progressive income tax”. Wehrli and his colleague filed House Resolution 975 clearly stating their opposition to a proposed progressive income tax that would make a struggling state economy worse.

“According to WalletHub, Illinois families are already laboring under the highest effective state and
local tax burden in the country, and their family budgets as well as our state business climate and our economy are all suffering for it. If Illinois moves to a progressive tax, the suffering will increase and more families and businesses will leave the state, taking jobs and tax revenues with them,” Rep. Wehrli said.

Wehrli noted that studies have shown that states with progressive income taxes create even more of a tax burden on the middle class and dissuade economic prosperity.

“While this is always billed as a ‘tax on the rich’, make no mistake, middle income earners will pay more. We have seen this result time and time again in other states that have enacted similar proposals, including California, New York, and New Jersey,” said Rep. Wehrli. “Illinoisans have said no to this scheme before. With this resolution we’re standing up and loudly saying no again.”

"It was wonderful to welcome the 4th grade students from All Saints Catholic Academy to their state Capitol and to get a photo with them on the House floor today! Senator Michael G. Connelly and I enjoyed hosting this great group of students!"  -Rep. Wehrli

In a week at the State Capitol dominated by debate on gun reform initiatives, several Republican Lawmakers are pushing for a fair hearing on bills they stress would help keep our communities safe while also protecting the rights of law abiding gun owners. 

 “We need to pass legislation that focuses on solving the problem, not punishing tens of thousands of
law-abiding gun owners in Illinois; and if Democrats will work with us on common-sense gun safety reforms we can do that,” said Representative Grant Wehrli (R-Naperville).

 Representative Wehrli was joined today at a Capitol press conference by Representative Barbara Wheeler (R-Crystal Lake) and other members of the House Republican Caucus to highlight gun safety reforms they will work to enact, including:

HB 4120 - This legislation makes it illegal in the State of Illinois to sell, manufacture, or possess bump-fire stocks, which is a device attachment for a semiautomatic rifle that allows it to fire faster, operating similarly to a fully automatic rifle.
·        HB 4218 & HB 4855 – The Illinois FOID Card Act requires hospitals to report mental health admissions to DHS, who in turn provide the information to the State Police. Current information from DHS suggestion some hospitals are failing to report admissions, and there is currently little recourse in the law to compel compliance with the reporting requirement. These pieces of legislation update the reporting requirement to ensure compliance and prevent firearm access for those considered a danger to themselves or others.
·         HB 4904 – This legislation updates the rules for sales at licensed gun shops and provides for video surveillance and a notification system to assist law enforcement in the case of a break-in.
·         HB 5475 – This legislation increases the penalties for unlawful possession of a machine gun.
“The recent shooting in Florida is another clear example that we cannot keep delaying action to address the link between mental health and gun violence,” said Rep. Wheeler. “One life lost because of a failure to report a mental health problem or because a firearm was unnecessarily modified is one too many; we need to close the gaps in our system immediately.”
“The tragedies we are seeing all too often cannot be solved with just increased firearm regulation.  The conversation on how we keep people safe must include better mental health screening, stiffer sentencing for crimes committed with guns and how we can improve security measures in public areas such as schools,” Rep. Wehrli said.

To view the Wednesday press conference, click the video below.




Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan's obsession with power has been well-documented throughout the years. But the recent news of how he handled sexual harassment allegations within his organization illustrates perfectly the Madigan playbook: punish those who dare to cross him, protect those who are willing to kiss the ring and sweep issues under the rug...

Read the rest of my guest column in the Daily Herald
In his State of the State speech Wednesday Governor Bruce Rauner singled out for praise new legislation introduced by State Representative Grant Wehrli to help protect property taxpayers from legislators’ conflicts of interest that may negatively impact their tax bills. Representative Wehrli has introduced House Bill 4435 that will prevent members of the General Assembly who make decisions on legislation that impacts property tax rates from also representing clients before a property tax appeals board in Illinois.

“Any legislator who is also a property tax appeals attorney has a vested interest in keeping property taxes high enough to generate appeals cases for his or her law firm. In my opinion, that’s a clear conflict of interest that hurts the very working families we were elected to represent and it needs to stop,” Representative Wehrli said.

“Two weeks ago, we issued an executive order that prevents legislators from practicing before the state property tax appeal board. And today Senator Oberweis and Representative Wehrli will introduce legislation that asks you to apply this same reform to every legislator who might practice before an assessment appeal board anywhere in the state,” Governor Rauner remarked in his speech to a joint session of the General Assembly.

“It’s long past time for this General Assembly to truly put the taxpayers first, and that will continue to be my priority in Springfield this year,” Representative Wehrli said.

Representative Wehrli said he will be working with members on both sides of the aisle to begin moving House Bill 4435 through the committee process in the House in the coming weeks so that it may receive a fair hearing on the House floor this spring.

Rep. Wehrli this week toured the DuPagePads (Public Action to Deliver Shelter) Shelter in Wheaton and met with Executive Director Carol Simler about the facility's current projects and ongoing needs.

DuPagePads provides interim and permanent housing and support services to end homelessness. To learn more click here.