Providing Quality Effective Government
Our corrupt and inefficient state government is one of the biggest issues we face in Illinois. Our politicians are being paid above-average salaries, the General Assembly is consistently passing pork-projects and wasteful programs, and our spending has gone out-of-control. The time has come for Illinois to halt its path of corruption and wastefulness and start providing quality, effective government.
We need to take several steps to regain the trust and respect of Illinois residents. As your state representative, I would support a pay reduction for all elected officials. Currently, members of the House make a base salary of roughly $65,000, and House Speaker Mike Madigan makes over $90,000 for his position of leadership. Elected officials should not be in office for the salary, and we owe it to the citizens to reduce our pay. States with large salaries, like California (roughly $105,000), Michigan (roughly $80,000), and New York (roughly $80,000) are examples of why higher salaries do not provide a better government.
Many states have lower salaries and continue to run efficient governments, like Georgia (roughly $18,000), Texas (roughly $10,000), and Indiana (roughly $12,000). I suggest we lower the salary of every legislator to the average of Midwest states, which currently is around $34,000. We need to focus our efforts on tightening our own belts, and stop asking citizens to tighten theirs. This is only one small step toward cleaning up our government and building the respect of our constituents.
Cutting the Waste
Every time money is appropriated in Illinois, we should question whether it is needed and, if so, where we can cut money in other places. Over the course of the years many politicians have promised to cut the waste and cut the budget, but little progress has been made. We need to take a comprehensive look at the budget and every state-funded program. Everyone would be surprised at the hundreds of millions of dollars that are wasted each year in unnecessary programs and projects. Before we spend another dollar, we need to cut pet projects, cut duplicative and ineffective programs, and cut our budget.
As your representative, I will fight against new unnecessary spending and eliminate wasteful government programs. Springfield needs to be focused on reducing the burden on taxpayers—which is currently a very heavy one. We need to take the first step toward cutting the budget and the pork, and the first step toward our new future. One of the current efforts that I fully support is House Bill 4134, the Sunshine Commission, which would create a review process for all Executive Branch programs and report to the General Assembly with recommendations. By taking a detailed look at spending programs, we can begin to eliminate waste and inefficiency.
As a resident of Illinois, I know how disappointing our government has been. We have been through years of corruption, years of large deficits, and years of ineffective, inefficient government. I want to change how Springfield acts and works. I’m not afraid to put a magnifying glass on every piece of new spending and every action within our government.
The history of America is proof enough for what elected officials should do to represent the best interests of each citizen. This includes reducing elected officials’ salaries, making sure we are not raising taxes to fund pet projects, and acting fiscally responsible with your money.