New Laws Effective July 1st

There are quite a few laws that will take effect starting July 1st in Illinois. Below is a list of the new changes to our current law:

Increased Penalties for Using Cellphones While Driving

  • Police will no longer give warning tickets but instead you will now be issued a moving violation if you are using a cellphone while driving.
  • That means no texting, talking, or even touching your phone, unless you are utilizing hands-free phone technology such as Bluetooth.  To clarify, it’s also illegal to text or talk while holding a device at a stop sign, at a red light or while sitting in traffic.
  • The ban is not limited to cellphones and includes any “electronic communication device.”
  • Three moving violations in a 12-month period will lead to a license suspension.

Gas Tax Increase

  • Illinois’ state gas tax will increase to 38 cents from the current 19 cents per gallon.
  • In addition to the state-level increase, the bill allows Chicago to increase its local gas tax by 3 cents. It allows Lake County and Will County to impose a gas tax of up to 8 cents per gallon. And DuPage, Kane and McHenry counties would be able to double their 4-cent-per-gallon gas taxes to 8 cents.

Increased Cigarette Tax

  • The current cigarette tax in Illinois is $1.98.  Starting July 1st it will be increased to $2.98.

E-Cigarette Tax

  • Imposes a 15% tax on the wholesale price of electronic cigarettes, like vaping products or e-cigarettes. 

Video Gaming Terminals

  • Increases the tax on video gaming terminals (VGT) to 33% on net terminal income in the Fiscal Year 2020, and up to 34% in FY21.  A 6th terminal will also be allowed to be placed at each establishment (currently, there may be no more than 5 VGTs per license).

Locally Imposed Sales for Remote Retailers

  • Requires that any “remote retailer” that currently is required to collect State sales tax must also begin collecting any locally-imposed sales tax currently administered by the Illinois Department of Revenue.

Corporate Tax Phase Out

  • Begins phasing out the corporate franchise tax in tax year 2020 by exempting the first $30 of tax liability. Currently, this tax is collected from corporations in the amount of 0.15 percent of paid-in capital when beginning business in the state, an additional 0.15 percent of any increase in paid-in capital during the year, and an annual tax of 0.10 percent of paid-in capital.