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BOMA/Suburban Chicago's Successful, Behind-the-Scenes Lobbying Effort to Stop Harmful Legislation

October 10, 2017 8:34 AM | Heather Woods (Administrator)


Schaumburg, October 10, 2017.  In the fall of 2014, Republican gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner announced his fiscal plan which included a proposal to eliminate the Illinois sales tax exemption for up to 32 professional and business services. Since his announced plans, the idea to expand the sales tax base floated around the State Capitol as an option to help close the looming budget deficient that was to occur after the 2011 temporary income tax increase expired at the end of 2014.

Fast forward to the Spring of 2017, after a nearly two-year long budget stalemate, the idea received renewed attention after Governor Rauner reaffirmed his interest in expanding the sales tax base in his 2017 budget address. Shortly after the budget address, the Senate began working behind the scenes on a comprehensive budget and revenue package that included, among many items, a fairly comprehensive expansion of the sales tax base.

In mid-March, as discussions continued, a list of eight service categories emerged that would have imposed a 6.25% excise tax under the Senate’s proposal: use of storage space, including parking garages and boat docks; repairs and maintenance of personal property, such as cars; landscaping services such as sprinkler installation and snow removal; dry-cleaning; cable TV, satellite and digital streaming services; pest control; use of a private detective or installation of a home security system; and personal care, ranging from tanning to tattooing but not including hairstyling.

Once the list of services became public, BOMA/Suburban Chicago, through its legislative team in Springfield, began communicating to lawmakers about the impact the proposed sales tax expansion would have on BOMA/Suburban Chicago members. The team also worked behind the scenes to remove services the BOMA/Suburban Chicago Government Affairs Committee deemed most impactful to its members from the proposal, including landscaping services, private security, and snow removal services.

After months of successful lobbying, and in partnership with other industry-related organizations, the services BOMA/Suburban Chicago were most concerned with were removed, ultimately, resulting in the House budgeteers scrapping the entire sales tax expansion provision and saving potential increase costs of 3-5 cents per square foot on commercial buildings.

BOMA/Suburban Chicago’s Government Affairs Committee is committed to promoting and advocating for legislative and building code issues impacting the ownership and management of our member's buildings and being the premier forum for action on emerging industry issues.

BOMA/Suburban Chicago
1515 E. Woodfield Rd, Suite 110
Schaumburg IL 60173

Phone: (847) 995-0970
Fax: (847) 995-0971


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