Sen. Oberweis not completely sold on Pritzker's 'knowledge for the policies he's putting into place'
Illinois state Sen. Jim Oberweis’ (R-Sugar Grove) hardcore resistance to Gov. J.B. Pritzker's state budget plan is hardly personal.
“I think the governor seems like a nice guy that you can be good friends with," Oberweis told DuPage Policy Journal. “The thing is, he seems to lack knowledge for the policies he’s putting in place. We need to be focused on waste, fraud and getting our spending down. What we’re doing right now is only driving more people out of the state.”
Pritzker has proposed a $41.5 billion capital-improvements plan to rebuild roads and bridges that he also claims will mean 540,000 new jobs for Illinoisans. Some have taken exception to the governor’s numbers, given that the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported just last month that only around 287,000 people in Illinois are now out of the labor force because the state’s unemployment rate has dropped to just 4.42 percent.
“I have no information for the governor’s numbers,” Oberweis said. “What I do know is we need to address our runaway pension costs first and foremost, and we need to reduce spending to get this state moving back in the right direction.”
To raise the money needed for his “Rebuild Illinois” plan, Pritzker has outlined a combination of increased taxes and fees on things that include gas, vehicle registrations, ride-sharing services, liquor to cable, satellite and streaming services. While Oberweis concedes some of the plan could make sense, he warns that you can never take too many precautions.
“A capital plan project can make sense, but in Illinois you never know with all the corruption,” he said.