Calculator shows possible Illinois Labor Amendment tax increase

ILLINOIS — Amendment 1 on the November ballot in Illinois has supporters saying it gives unionized workers a level playing field when negotiating with their superiors. Opponents say the measure will lead to further tax increases.

The amendment has been the subject of much debate, as many Democrats say the amendment is a way to codify workers’ rights in Illinois.

Bryce Hill of the Illinois Policy Institute said it would likely increase property taxes.

“Amendment 1 would open up and create this Pandora’s box of new collective bargaining topics, and each new topic will ultimately increase the cost to taxpayers,” Hill said. “The cost of government becomes more expensive when you have to meet new demands.”

Illinois residents already pay the second highest property taxes in the nation. Illinois Policy Institute Property Tax calculator says that if Amendment 1 passes, Cook County residents who own a home rated at the county average will see a $3,000 increase in property taxes over the next four years. Residents of DuPage County meeting the same requirements would see an estimated increase of $2,200 and in Madison County, homeowners would see an average increase of $700 over the same period.

Hill said if voters approved the measure, it would also stop future tax relief legislation.

“These taxpayer-friendly reforms, the things taxpayers need to get relief from this crippling tax burden, will be thwarted,” Hill said. “These things will be ruled unconstitutional in many cases because of the wording of the language.”

State Rep. LaShawn Ford, D-Chicago, said lawmakers will still be able to legislate.

“We are always [as legislators] obligated to make the laws in the state of Illinois,” Ford told The Center Square. “We are not giving up our powers to protect workers.

Ford said the measure would benefit Illinois in many ways.

“Democrats think this will help the economy because we’re going to strengthen working-class people and their families,” Ford said. “It will help working-class people send their kids to college, and it will help working-class people fight inflation.”

Voters have the final say on Amendment 1 in the November 8 ballot. A three-fifths majority of voters is required for the measure to be approved.

The Center Square Illinois’ work focuses on state and local government and economic reporting that approaches stories with sensitivity for taxpayers. For more stories from The Center Square, visit

Eleanor C. William