WIUM Local
3:12 pm
Thu March 18, 2010

McDonough County Finances Threatened By State

Macomb, IL – Governor Pat Quinn's budget proposal could spell trouble for McDonough County. County board finance committee chairwoman Alice Henry says the county stands to lose about $180,000 if the proposal goes through as presented.

The governor has proposed cutting municipalities' share of income tax revenue from 10 percent to 7 percent. Ordinarily, the county receives a little more than a $600,000 share, which is roughly 10 percent of the overall budget.

Henry implored her fellow county board members to contact their legislators to express their disapproval of this idea. She says the county has worked hard to maintain a sound budget situation, despite an ongoing recession. She says it's not fair to make cities and counties suffer because the state has massive problems.

"We're over here minding our own business, and living within our means, and then to just lose this much money all at once... it's a big concern. Of course we're not happy about it, nor is any municipality going to be happy about it," says Henry.

Henry concedes that something must be done to fix the state's budget mess. But she does not believe cities and counties should bear the brunt of the problem. She would, however, favor an income tax increase.

"The budget deficit at the state level is so enourmous," says Henry. "Everyone wants to see the situation improve, but no one wants to be the one to give up anything. That's certainly true."

The city of Macomb is also facing a significant shortfall due to the proposed budget. Mayor Mick Wisslead estimates the city could lose about $463,000 should the governor's proposal go through.