Barickman: Teacher Minimum Wage Law Could Raise Property Taxes

State Senator Jason Barickman/WJEZ file photo

By Neil Doyle

A local lawmaker is concerned about a bill signed into law last week that increases the minimum wage for teachers in Illinois to $40,000.

State Senator Jason Barickman (R-Bloomington) told WJEZ’s Todd Wineburner some around the state are worried the move will affect local school budgets and cause other issues.

“The concern that I have is this mandated minimum wage will result in a property tax increase. I suggested finding ways to increase teacher pay through the school funding formula, which we’ve spent years working on,” said Barickman.

Barickman added that most school districts already pay above the minimum wage set by the state, which was set decades ago at $9,000-11,000.

Gov. JB Pritzker said the measure will help attract teachers to the state. He also dismissed the increased labor costs over four years being called an unfunded mandate and something that will increase property taxes.

The new law phases in the increase over four years, starting at $32,000 in 2020.