March 26, 2018
This article discusses the challenges of assessing the impact of the 2016 Safe Roads Amendment, or “Lockbox Amendment,” which prohibits the State of Illinois and local governments from using transportation-related taxes and fees for areas other than transportation. The article notes that there has been some confusion surrounding interpretation of the amendment. Such confusion is most notably illustrated by a lawsuit filed against Cook County, which contends that $250 million in transportation funds were used to cover expenses unrelated to transportation. Civic Federation President Laurence Msall said that the ambiguity of the amendment's language leaves room for multiple interpretations and the final decision will ultimately fall to the Illinois Supreme Court. He added that the Civic Federation opposed the amendment over concerns that its benefits were oversold.