Out of the 50 states, Illinois ranks 48th in economic performance. According to the ALEC-Laffer State Competitiveness Index, Illinois is doing better than only two states: Michigan and Ohio.
According to this report, as well as government data, Illinois also ranks:
• 44th in economic outlook. Neighboring Indiana and Missouri rank well ahead in terms of future opportunity, at 12th and 17th respectively.
• 44th in GDP growth, averaging only 3.83% over the last decade. Illinois GDP growth has declined since 1977 at a rate from 7.6% to 5.9%.
• 46th in debt burden. Illinois continues to spend government revenue growth on government expansion rather than funding past debt obligations, including pensions.
• 44th in personal income growth over the past decade, averaging at 3.83% while the U.S. average is 4.19%.
• 48th in employment growth from 1977 till 2006, ranking ahead of only Michigan, Ohio and Louisiana.
• 37th in improving its standard of living, growing at only 1.13% per year over the past decade. While Illinois ranks relatively high in standard of living (18th), the state continues to fall farther down the ranks.
• 48th in net migration, with over 727,150 people having left the state from 1997-2006.
• 7th highest in median property taxes paid.
• 14th highest overall tax burden in the nation.
• 11th highest in property tax burden.
• 4th highest gas tax burden (approximately 40 cents per gallon).
• 1st in sales tax burden (Chicago & Cook County).
• Illinois is shrinking in wealth, once ranking as high as 6th in per capita personal income and dropping to 12th today.
• The growth of the Illinois economy has lagged the rest of the country for each of the last three decades.
The solution: lower taxes, restraint in spending, and working to create a business-friendly environment that empowers entrepreneurs, investors and workers instead of expanding the government’s role in our lives.