File Photo – Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker | Photo: Illinois Information Service.

(The Center Square) – Gov. JB Pritzker’s income and property tax rebate checks have begun being sent to millions of Illinois taxpayers and some residents could receive several hundred dollars in cash.

The money is being given back as part of the Illinois Relief Plan, a $1.8 billion aid package Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed into law in the spring.

“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.

“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,” Pritzker said.

To qualify, a person must have been an Illinois resident in 2021 with an adjusted gross income under $200,000 for individual tax filers and under $400,000 for those who filed as couples.

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Taxpayers who filed as a single person on their returns will be eligible to receive $50 and those who filed joint returns will receive $100.

Those who claimed dependents will receive an additional $100 per dependent with a maximum of $300.

“Whether you had to pay or you got money back, it doesn’t matter,” Illinois Comptroller Susanna Mendoza said. “Everyone who filed will be getting a tax rebate.”

Illinois residents who paid state property taxes last year on a primary residence will be getting rebates as well.

Adjusted gross income must be under $250,000 for single filers and under $500,000 for those who filed as couples.

The amount of this rebate depends on the amount of property taxes paid.

State officials said the distribution of the checks should take about two months.

State Sen. Dan McConchie, R-Hawthorne Woods, said he thinks the rebates are about election-year posturing.

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“The plan has checks arrive just before the election and then tax reductions expire right after the election,” McConchie said.

State Sen. Darren Bailey, R-Xenia, Pritzker’s opponent in the November election, said taxpayers need permanent relief, not a one-time election year “gimmick.”

“It’s an absolute gimmick, and I have been calling that out since these bills hit the Senate floor,” Bailey said. “It’s too little, too late.”

Research by the Illinois Policy Institute found that Illinois families are paying more than $2,100 in new state taxes since 2019, overshadowing the average of $556 in temporary tax relief.