You knew it was coming, right? You knew that when Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn and lawmakers swore up and down two years ago that a 67 percent state income tax hike was only temporary, they didn't mean it.
You knew that once a tax increase is enacted, it seldom goes away.
And so it's no surprise that Democratic Rep. Lou Lang has introduced a pension fix bill that would make the temporary tax permanent. But that makes it no less galling.
Illinois residents have for years paid taxes with the expectation that the money would pay for employees' pensions, but lawmakers used it for other things. This is like giving someone money to pay the mortgage, and he's back asking for more because he spent the money on other things.
Even if lawmakers make the tax increase permanent, we have doubts it will fix the problem. Despite the temporary tax, Illinois' fiscal condition has barely improved. The state has $9 billion in overdue bills right now. Lang's bill would take 50 years to get the pension funds to 80 percent funding. Most of us won't be around to know if it works.
We don't know whether this bill will get approved or some other, but we do know this much: The taxpayers again will be the ones stuck holding the bag.