WASHINGTON – As part of its $5 trillion tax plan giveaway to the wealthiest and corporations, the U.S. House Republican leadership bill eliminates most of the state and local tax deduction (SALT). Its elimination could blow a hole in state and local revenue to support public education and put nearly 250,000 education jobs at risk according to a detailed analysis of the impact of House Tax Bill (HR 1) on funding for public education conducted by the National Education Association. Illinois could see 7,408 education jobs at risk if Congress eliminates SALT. View a state-by-state breakdown of the impact of eliminating SALT.

“Corporations will get to keep their state and local tax deductions, while our children, students and communities will lose and lose big,” said IEA President Kathi Griffin. “The Republican leadership’s tax plan is on par with the education job loss America endured during the Great Recession. We need to be moving Illinois forward, not backwards.”

The NEA analysis also showed that nationally the bill would lead to cuts of approximately $250 billion in public education funding over the next ten years. Corporations would get to keep their state and local tax deductions. A cut of this magnitude is akin to eliminating the Title I and IDEA special education programs overnight. If enacted, the elimination of state and local tax deduction could have a negative, ripple effect on states’ and local communities’ ability to fund public services such as public education. In Illinois, that amounts to $869,171, which is a cut of $425 per student.

“Eliminating the state and local tax deduction would jeopardize the ability of our state and local governments to adequately fund public education,” Griffin said. “This will translate into cuts to public schools, lost educator jobs, overcrowded classrooms that deprive students of one-on-one attention and threats to public education. We can do so much better.”

The Republican leadership bill comes as the nation also faces a teacher shortage. At the start of the 2017-18 school year, every state in the country was facing a teacher shortage. In addition, according to the Washington Post, school districts also are struggling to fill positions in math, reading and English language arts, as well as finding substitute teachers. Here in Illinois, according to the Chicago Tribune, we are seeing a shortage of teachers for visually impaired students.

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