Illinois continues to face significant fiscal headwinds in light of enormous budget pressures, a sluggish economy and too many of our neighbors seeking a job. Due to these factors, the Illinois General Assembly needs to have a vigorous focus on policies that create jobs and make Illinois a desirable place to do business again.

Throughout my tenure as a Member of the Illinois General Assembly, I have worked to do my part to help fix business climate in Illinois. Those efforts included, but are not limited to, supporting substantive reform to our workers compensation system; authoring a measure that created an independent tax tribunal so the taxpayers can have a fair, transparent hearing before an independent arbitrator regarding tax liabilities; and introducing legislation that would end the practice of malicious lawsuits against small business owners who make clerical errors on their personal income tax returns.

There is a bright line between those policies enumerated above and those that do nothing to bring jobs to Illinois, but instead create a false sense of accomplishment through disclosure of proprietary business information.

The General Assembly can, should and will continue to evaluate its tax code to ensure fairness and transparency. As vice chairman of the Illinois House Revenue and Finance Committee, I have taken a lead role in these evaluations. We must not mistake transparency for wrongheaded policies that score political points, instead of bringing meaningful reform.

As always, I ask constituents to contact me at 708-442-6500 or to discuss these or any other matters.

State Rep. Michael J. Zalewski