President's Corner

January 2018 Building Opportunities for the Next Generation

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Illinois Court Strikes Down Capital Bill Funding; Quinn Promises Immediate Appeal

​Today, an Illinois Appellate Court declared the laws providing approximately half of the funding for the $31 billion capital bill unconstitutional. This threatens the future of thousands of projects and tens of thousands of jobs.

The law was deemed unconstitutional not because taxes on liquor and other products are not legal, but that the law included too wide an array of taxes. The Illinois Constitution states that laws must only deal with one issue at a time.

Rocky Wirtz, owner of the Blackhawks and Wirtz Beverage Inc., stated that the tax unfairly targeted liquor distributors. To put things in perspective, the tax amounted to about 5 cents per gallon of beer or $1 per bottle of liquor.

“Wirtz claims that his liquor company pulls in $1.5 billion in profits every year,” said Local 150 President-Business Manager James M. Sweeney. “Now he is trying to take food off struggling workers’ tables? I don’t think so.”

“Republicans and Democrats were behind this capital bill because everyone can agree that our citizens need to work. Now, we have already seen legislators from both sides of the aisle exploring ways to remedy this situation and keep the jobs on track.”

In comments to Fox Chicago News, Sweeney stated that a boycott of the Blackhawks could be a very suitable way for workers to voice their displeasure with Wirtz.



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