Cut sales tax, but tax more services: Emanuel
By Abdon M. Pallasch Political Reporteremail@example.com January 19, 2011 2:47PM
Updated: September 24, 2012 6:25AM
Mayoral candidate Rahm Emanuel is reviving a proposal to cut the sales tax by a quarter-point but extend it to cover items and services not now taxed.
Those include pet grooming, tanning salons, limo services and private club memberships.
For families who don’t use such services, dropping the city’s portion of the sales tax from 1.25 percent to 1 percent could save them $200 to $300 a year, Emanuel claimed.
Emanuel acknowledged it will take action by the state Legislature to change what items are covered by the sales tax. The service industry has fought off past attempts to extend the sales tax to their businesses.
But he removed one bone of contention that has derailed efforts in past years by not taxing lawyers’ or accountants’ fees.
Former Cook County Assessor Jim Houlihan led a somewhat similar effort seven years ago, but it did not succeed in broadening the base of items covered by the sales tax.
Changing the sales tax formula would not cost the city any money and could even result in more money for the city, Emanuel said.