by Mish

Highlights

  • Between 2013 and 2016 the population of Illinois fell by 77,966. The population of Cook County fell by 36,739.
  • Between 2001 and 2016 the population of Illinois rose by 313,084. The population of Cook County fell by 122,759.
  • Starting in 2013, the “great escape” is in roughly equal numbers from Cook County and the rest of the state.

Job Highlights

On July 23 I noted Eight States Including Illinois Have Not Recovered Jobs Lost in Prior Recessions. The states are Alabama, Connecticut, Illinois, Michigan, Mississippi, New Mexico, Ohio, and Wyoming.

Illinois, Ohio, and Michigan are still below employment levels set in 2000. Here is a new chart I created comparing Illinois to Michigan and Ohio.

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At least Illinois is not last in every category.

Metro Area Unemployment: Which States Are in Reverse? Spotlight Illinois

  • Illinois has 12 metro areas, none of which have unemployment rates below the national average.
  • Illinois worsened between 1998 and 2007 and then again from 2007 to 2017.
  • Neighboring states are all now better than Illinois

Illinois vs Neighboring States

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For more details, please see Metro Area Unemployment: Which States Are in Reverse? Spotlight Illinois.

With each passing decade, the unemployment situation in Illinois has gotten worse.

This is not surprising. The state passed its first budget in three fiscal years, complete with massive tax hikes. The budget is required by Constitution to be balanced, but it isn’t.

An exodus of businesses and private citizens is underway. Reforms are desperately needed but none came with the passage of the budget.

Rauner 0-44

Governor Rauner is 0 for 44 in reforms he set out to accomplish. In fact, the corporate and personal tax hikes put the true score at -2 out of 44.

Cash-strapped cities suffer under prevailing wage laws and untenable pension promises.

Corporations suffer under the worst workers’ compensation laws in the nation.

Citizens suffer from the highest property taxes in the nation.

It is too late to save Illinois from insolvency. Rather than fix the problem, the new tax hikes will make matters worse.

Five Desperately Needed Reforms

  1. Municipal bankruptcy legislation
  2. Pension reform
  3. Right-to-Work legislation
  4. End of prevailing wage laws
  5. Workers’ compensation reform

Number one on my list of Illinois reforms is bankruptcy legislation. It is the only way out for numerous Illinois cities whose hands are tied by union-sponsored prevailing wage laws and pension plans.

Moody’s held off for now downgrading Illinois to junk status, but junk is baked into the cake sooner or later. The budget fixes nothing.

Cook County Illinois Suffers Largest Population Drop In Entire US

Illinois voters are voting with their feet. Not only are people scrambling to get out of Cook County, but the entire state is suffering.

US Population Growth +0.79%, Illinois -0.17%, Illinois Second Worst to Coal Plagued West Virginia

According to Census bureau data, only seven states lost population in the last reporting year (July 2014 – July 2015).

Chicago Population Shrinks Most of Any City in US

Illinoisans continue their exodus, with Chicago having the dubious distinction of the highest population loss in the nation.

Chicago Population Shrinks Most of Any City in US

Illinoisans continue their exodus, with Chicago having the dubious distinction of the highest population loss in the nation.

All Hail, Michael Madigan, Dictator of Illinois

One person controls Illinois more than any other. That person is not the Governor. Rather it’s Michael Madigan, Speaker of the House. And it’s been that way for 33 years.

Illinois General Assembly Retirement System Only 13.52%

Despite a massive rally in the stock market, Illinois public pension liabilities continue to grow.

Illinois Revenue Freefall: Fiscal Year-to-Date -8.1% and Worsening

Illinois’ fiscal condition is in bad shape and worsening. Jim Muschinske, Revenue Manager, notes a “February Freefall“.

Governor Rauner Screws Illinois

Illinois governor Bruce Rauner caved in on tax hikes and got absolutely nothing in return.

Metro Area Unemployment: Which States Are in Reverse? Spotlight Illinois

The US unemployment rate is 4.4% but unemployment varies widely among the nation’s 388 metro areas.