Sales Tax Referendums to Improve Schools and Public Safety Fail - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Sales Tax Referendums to Improve Schools and Public Safety Fail in Illinois Primary

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All local referendums to increase taxes for improvements to schools and public safety failed in Tuesday's primary election in Illinois.

You can see a full list of election results at this link.

The result of the Rock Island County local option sales tax proposition had Porter McNeil, a spokesperson for the Yes Makes Sense for Students campaign, telling TV6 he was disappointed by the outcome.  

The tax increase would have been used to fund new school facilities and improvements.

Voters in Rock Island County voted against the measure 55 to 45 percent.

"We came close," said McNeil. "Forty-five percent is a good solid vote. So we have momentum, we'll take a break, we'll look ahead. This issue is too important to say we'll never do it again."

Supporters of the proposition say it would mean a lot to future students as well as other members of the community.

"It's about economic development," said McNeil. "Eleven and a half million dollars a year would be invested modernizing our schools. That would put hundreds of people to work locally every year. At the same time we're modernizing and creating safer schools. School security is a very big issue," he said.

McNeil also said the proposition would have created $1.5 million of property tax relieve every year in Rock Island County.

But critics say the sales tax increase would have just given shoppers a reason to go to Iowa rather than Illinois.

McNeil said he hopes to change their minds in the future when he says  the measure will likely come up for a vote again.

"We didn't get the message across to everyone because obviously, I feel if we were effective in getting it across to everybody, they would respond positively," he said. 

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