by Glenn Minnis, Will County Gazette
Alyssia Benford laments the last five-plus years has been a time to forget in the world of Illinois politics.
“Since the 2011 income tax hikes, the flight of wealth and people from Illinois has accelerated,” Benford said in a Facebook post in which she reacted to recent IRS data showing that more than 86,000 people fled Illinois over a yearlong period beginning in 2015 at a taxpayer cost of nearly $5 billion.
“This summer we experienced another 32 percent tax hike,” Benford, a Bolingbrook Republican who recently launched her campaign to unseat Rep. Natalie Manley (D-Joliet) in the 69th District, added in the release. “Mars Wrigley has now chosen not to expand their operations in Illinois. With this recent announcement, we lost another opportunity for economic growth and 2,400 jobs.”
Benford said making matters even worse is the fact millennials are leading the mass exodus.
“Because of the failure of our elected leaders, young people are fleeing Illinois for states where they have opportunities to pursue their dreams and build a life for themselves,” she added. “We have to change the dynamics, grow businesses, attract new businesses and provide better economic opportunities for all of the residents of Illinois.”
Illinois Policy Institute reports the net loss of nearly 42,000 tax returns over the yearlong period represents an all-time high, with millennial taxpayers leading the exodus of those seeking greener pastures.
The institute adds the top 10 states to which Illinois lost people were Florida (12,800 exemptions gained from Illinois on net), Texas (9,400), Indiana (8,200), California (7,600), Arizona (6,400), Wisconsin (6,000), Colorado (4,700), Georgia (4,200), Tennessee (3,600) and North Carolina (2,700).