It's a one-time program approved as part of the governor's election year state budget.
"This $1.8 billion in tax relief is possible because Democrats balanced the budget, eliminated the bill backlog, funded schools, fixed roads – and through responsible financial decision-making – still found ourselves with a one-time surplus," Pritzker said in a statement. "There are those who might have sent those funds straight back into the pockets of the 1 percent and big corporations instead of to working families, but that’s not what good government does."
The rebate payments will be sent to residents who filed their state income taxes for last year and claimed a property tax credit.
Individuals who earned less than $200,000 in 2021 and are not claimed as a dependent will get $50 rebates. Couples who filed jointly with incomes under $400,000 will receive $100 rebates. Residents who claimed a dependent on their state income taxes will also receive $100 per dependent, for up to three dependents.
"You'll receive a hundred dollars for each dependent, up to three dependents plus $50 per adult," Pritzker said. "And if you qualify as a homeowner and property taxpayer - and the vast majority of Illinois homeowners do - and if you claimed a property tax credit in 2021, you're set to receive both payments," Pritzker said.
A number of top Illinois Democrats also spoke at the governor's news conference in the Loop.
Critics accused them of trying to buy votes with taxpayers' own money, among them State Sen. Darren Bailey, the Republican nominee for governor.
"This whole idea that he's taking from our pocket, turning around, giving it back to us and calling it tax relief, that's what he does best. And I'm encouraging people that until this man is fired from his position to hang onto your wallet," Bailey said.
The income tax and property tax rebates are expected to total about $1.2 billion, money the politicians acknowledge will ultimately come from those Covid relief dollars sent by Washington.
State officials said it will take at least eight weeks for the rebates to be issued in total.
Illinois officials released the following steps for residents to claim their rebate checks:
- For those who have filed state income taxes and claimed a property tax credit for 2021 and are not claimed as a dependent on another return, nothing additional is needed to receive the property and income tax rebates. Payments will be automatic.
- Taxpayers who did not file or are not required to file their 2021 IL-1040 individual income tax returns but want to only claim the individual income tax rebate must file Form IL-1040, including Schedule IL-E/EIC, Illinois Exemption and Earned Income Credit, to report any eligible dependents.
- Taxpayers who did not file or are not required to file their 2021 IL-1040 individual income tax returns but want to claim both the property tax and individual income tax rebates must file Form IL-1040, including Schedule ICR, Illinois Credits, and Schedule IL-E/EIC, Illinois Exemption and Earned Income Credit, to report any eligible dependents.
- Taxpayers who only want to claim the property tax rebate or did not report their property tax information on their 2021 IL-1040 individual income tax return have the option to fill out Form IL-1040-PTR either electronically, or by filling out a paper form and mailing it to IDOR. Form IL-1040-PTR, the Property Tax Rebate Form, is available on IDOR’s website at tax.illinois.gov/rebates.
- Taxpayers eligible for both rebates will receive one payment. Rebates will be sent automatically using the same method original refunds were transmitted if they were sent directly to the taxpayer by the State of Illinois.