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EDITORIAL BOARD QUESTIONNAIRES

Anne Marie Miles

Democratic candidate for Illinois House (25th district)

Anne Marie Miles

Anne Marie Miles

Democratic candidate for Illinois House (25th district)

Education
B.A., M.P.A., J.D., LLM(Tax)
Occupation
Attorney -- Elder law focus
Home
Chicago
Past Political/Civic Experience
I ran for Alderman in the 5th ward in 2011 and 2015.

Responses to our questions

Why do you think it has been so difficult for Springfield to get a balanced budget passed and signed?

I love to swim and will often go out for an hour or two swim in the Lake, weather permitting.

Do you believe the state budget can be balanced going forward without new sources of revenue?

The Governor has not had experience with the legislative process and the compromises entitled therein. His intransience and lack of understanding of the legislative process has contributed to the gridlock.

What new sources, if any, would you support? Please be specific.

I think that Illinois' deficits are greater than currently acknowledged. As regards the pension payments, the discrepancy between the required retirement payment and the actuarial correct payment plus the discrepancy between the estimated rate of return and the actual rate of return have created a much larger deficit than is currently acknowledged. Since I think that the budget crisis is larger I think we need more revenue.

Do you support a constitutional amendment favoring a graduated income tax? Please explain.

I would support a graduated income tax, decoupling of the state tax on corporate investment, tax on legal marijuana sales, and perhaps a LaSalle Street tax.

Please list five areas where you would cut spending.

Yes, I do favor such amendment. In the event that it is not possible to pass such an amendment I would favor increasing the state rate and increasing offsetting tax credits for lower income taxpayers

Since the Illinois Supreme Court's 2015 decision tossing bipartisan pension reform, what can and should the legislature do to control pension costs, if anything?

The number of governmental units in Illinois is staggering. We need to consolidate these units of government and the state should not be providing ongoing support to these units through its Local Government Distributive Fund. I would reduce the number of college administrators and thereby decrease pension requirements. I would require state departments to reduce their overtime by 20%. I would require and across the board departmental cut of 10% over and above the overtime cut. I would favor cutting subsidies to fossil fuel based companies. I would work with Medicaid to insure recipients received more preventative care and reduced the number of emergency room visits.

Should all new state workers be moved into defined contribution plans?

? I think the first plan of action is to get a realistic estimate of the amount of the deficit in the pension plan. As I stated before I think that deficit is grossly underestimated. Then we must sit with the unions and really lay out future projections. We must cap end of career increases which increase pension payments.

What should the governor do to control pension costs during union contract talks? What would you do?

? I would love to have everyone receive a defined benefit pension. However, I think that State employees must realize that there are significant changes in the private sector in regards to pensions and retirement savings. Perhaps a hybrid system might work.

Illinois lost more residents than any other state in 2016 and the trend appears to be holding for 2017. What is the No. 1 reason, in your opinion, for the exodus?

I think that information is power and I would make sure that the real deficits of the state pension systems are well known to all union members.

What should Illinois do — via tax policy, spending or other policy means — to keep residents from leaving?

I believe that people move for jobs, retirees for more spending power (and climate) and families for safety issues.

What should Illinois do to promote job creation?

Work to encourage small businesses by decreasing start up fees, reducing regulations and providing tax credits.

Did you support the education funding reform bill that the governor signed in 2017?

Pass a balanced budget. Work on lowering Worker's Compensation premiums.

What, if anything, should the legislature do to help Chicago Public Schools?

Yes.

Do you support opportunity scholarships included in the funding reform bill? Or will you try, if elected, to eliminate that program?

Pass a balanced budget. Work on lowering Worker's Compensation premiums.

Should Illinois do more to regulate campaign fundraising? If so, what?

I am not thrilled with the opportunity scholarship program but compromises have to be made and if this compromise enabled the education funding reform bill to pass then I can live with it.

What help, if any, are you receiving from your party and its leaders, including staff help, advice, legal assistance, money and resources? Be specific.

Yes, we should have public financing of campaigns. Funding from special interests carries too much weight in elections. In addition limits should be placed on the amount of contributions made. Stricter accounting of time volunteered by groups should be kept and newspapers should publish weekly lists of large contributors.

If you are an incumbent, give an example of a time you worked across the aisle on an important issue.

The party leaders are waiting to see who ends up on the ballot but I have had meetings with representatives of the Democratic party.I have been meeting with House Majority Leader Barbara Flynn Currie.

If you are an incumbent, give at least one example of a time you did not vote with your party on a significant issue.

NA

Do you support term limits? If so, will you commit to sponsoring legislation and/or lobbying your colleagues on behalf of a constitutional change?

I believe in term limits. I will commit to both sponsoring legislation and lobbying on its behalf.

Do you support changes to the redistricting process? If so, will you commit to sponsoring legislation and/or lobbying your colleagues on behalf of a constitutional change?

? I do support changes to prevent gerrymandering.

Tell us a little about your family.

My husband and I live in South Shore and love living on the South side of Chicago. We raised our three children who were educated at Ray, Mount Carmel and Lab School. All three are independent and engaged in their communities, ranging from an attorney working with start ups to obtain financing -- to an aspiring web series producer. My husband is a research psychiatrist who studies the biology of aggression and seeks to find treatment methods which will reduce the level of violence in our society. We are committed to our communities and at any major community event you will see one of us there, often having helped plan it.

Tell us something about you that might surprise us.

I enjoy entertaining and planning events for children in the community.

Candidates for Illinois House (25th district)

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