Last Updated: 7/23/2015
Sin Taxes: The Sobering Fiscal Reality
The Civic Federation and Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago are pleased to announce our 2015 forum, Sin Taxes: The Sobering Fiscal Reality. The forum will be held at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago on Thursday, April 2 from 8:00 a.m. to 2:45 p.m. The forum will examine why governments implement or raise sin taxes, whether they are a reliable source of revenue and ideas about their future use. A Chicago Fed Letter summarizing the discussions is available.
Registration and Continental BreakfastBadge Pickup and Security Inspection in the Lobby
William Testa, Vice President, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago
Opening Remarks – Sin Taxes: Good Idea, Bad Idea or Simply Convenient?
Adam Hoffer, Assistant Professor, University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse
Session 1 Competition and Cooperation: Cross-Jurisdictional Issues and Tobacco TaxesDifferent tobacco tax rates across jurisdictional boundaries can create difficulties in budgeting revenues and in enforcement. However, they also create opportunities for cooperation. Panelists will discuss challenges, opportunities and the future of tobacco taxes in Illinois, as well as the role taxes play in Chicago’s goals to reduce tobacco use among residents.
Adrienne Archia, Director, The Civic Federation
Brian Cooper, Acting Program Administrator, Illinois Department of Revenue
Jidong Huang , Senior Research Scientist, University of Illinois at Chicago, Institute for Health Research and Policy
Ivan Samstein, Chief Financial Officer, Cook County
Session 2 High Times? Marijuana Legalization in Colorado and Medical Marijuana in IllinoisThe new frontier in sin taxes is marijuana, with four states and the District of Columbia having legalized recreational use of cannabis. Colorado was the first state to legalize and realize significant tax revenues, along with unexpected enforcement issues. Illinois recently passed a pilot medical marijuana program. Panelists will discuss the revenues and complications associated with full legalization and limited medical use.
Rick Mattoon, Senior Economist and Economic Advisor, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago
Andrew Freedman, Director of Marijuana Coordination, State of Colorado
The Honorable Lou Lang, Representative, Illinois House of Representatives
Scott Pattison, Executive Director, National Association of State Budget Officers
Session 3 At the Tipping Point: Gaming Expansion vs. Falling RevenuesGaming expansions are perennially on the agenda to increase resources for cash-strapped states and municipalities, including in Illinois. However, some observers are now questioning whether gaming has become so ubiquitous that new expansions will not significantly increase revenue. Panelists will discuss national and state gaming revenue trends and the prospect for future gaming expansions in Illinois and Chicago.
Elizabeth Coolidge, Managing Director, PNC Capital Markets
Lucy Dadayan, Senior Policy Analyst, Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government
Peter Matuszak, Senior Analyst, Institute for Illinois’ Fiscal Sustainability, Civic Federation
Mark Ostrowski, Director, Illinois Gaming Board
Closing Remarks, Adjourn
Laurence Msall, President, Civic Federation