Your Illinois News Radar » Where does Pritzker want to take Illinois? – The Capitol Fax Blog

This article was originally published here.

* Brian Mackey spent time on JB Pritzker’s campaign website and pulled out an extensive list of the candidates “priorities and principles.” Here is the economic stuff

* Raise the Illinois minimum wage to $15 an hour.
* Pass a big infrastructure spending bill — money used to build and repair highways, bridges, ports, public transpiration, and government buildings.
* Make high-speed internet access available everywhere in Illinois.
* Upgrading the locks and dams on the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers.
* Update lead pipes in water systems.
* Make “microloans” more widely available.
* Pass a Truth in Lending Act, aimed at protecting small business owners.
* Increase funding for Small Business Development Centers.
* Review the Enterprise Zone Program to make sure the state is stimulating growth in the most economically distressed communities.
* Promote wind and solar power while also supporting the Advanced Coal and Energy Research Center at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. He’s also pledged to ”set Illinois on a path toward 100% clean, renewable energy.”
* Make more money available to farms for investment in technology.
* Force “net neutrality” on internet service providers that have state contracts.
* Pursue legislation that prevents employers from asking about salary history.
* Support construction of a third Chicago airport near Peotone, in the far south suburbs, on the condition it doesn’t take jobs away from O’Hare or Midway airports.

* “Economic inclusion”

* Increase the “aspirational goal” for the share of state contracts going to women- and minority-owners businesses to 30 percent.
* Create a cabinet-level position to make sure it that aspiration becomes a reality.
* Have a loan program that helps minority business owners compete for state contracts.
* Start minority- and women-owned business “accelerators” to provide mentoring, financing and other help.
* Fund pre-apprenticeship programs to help people from disadvantaged communities get jobs in the building trades, both union and non-union.
* Expand employment programs for disadvantaged youth.
* Help “unbanked” communities by encouraging financial institutions to provide services in libraries and other public spaces.
* Cap rates for check cashing.

* Higher education

* Create a single, shared application for every state university in Illinois.
* Increase financial aid for low-income college students, known as Monetary Award Program or MAP grants, by 50 percent.
* Create a state-run program to help people refinance student loan debt.
* Restore funding for state universities and community colleges to levels that predate Gov. Bruce Rauner’s tenure.
* Assign a task force to study how Illinois might “set a course toward” free college.
* Make it so 90 percent of Illinois households can access the AIM-HIGH merit-based financial program.
* Ensure university credit for Illinois community college courses.
* Expand technical education and apprenticeships.
* Start new statewide competitions for university students to foster entrepreneurship.
* Have state grants seed start-ups based at universities.

* He also found this….

Not favor increases in the gas tax, expanding the sales tax to cover services, or ending the tax exemption for so-called retirement income. (All three topics were presented at debates — those who supported the ideas were asked to raise their hands; Pritzker kept his down every time.)


Click here to read the rest. Lots more at that link.

Keep reading about at Google News (Minority Business Enterprise).