Pritzker Signs Capital Plan and Gaming Expansion, Including Gas and Cigarette Tax Hikes - NBC Chicago
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Pritzker Signs Capital Plan and Gaming Expansion, Including Gas and Cigarette Tax Hikes

The capital plan is a $45 billion initiative largely to rebuild the state's infrastructure, including roads, bridges, mass transit and buildings

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    Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed bills to expand gambling across Illinois and authorize a $45 billion capital plan on Friday.

    Pritzker signed the measures at the Lincoln Depot State Historic Site in Springfield, his second of three scheduled events to "celebrate the impact" the capital plan - which he has branded as "Rebuild Illinois" - will have on various parts of the state.

    The capital plan is a $45 billion initiative largely to rebuild the state's infrastructure, including roads, bridges, mass transit and buildings, according to Pritzker, with approximately three-quarters of the investment dedicated to transportation priorities.

    To fund the capital plan, Pritzker also signed an accompanying revenue package. It includes a 19-cent per gallon increase in the state's gas tax (raising it to 38 cents total), and a 5-cent increase in the diesel fuel tax. It also increases the vehicle registration fee by $50 to $151 total, and the electric vehicle registration fee from $35 for a two-year period to $248 annually, among other initiatives.

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    Pritzker also signed into law an expansion of gaming across the state, that will in part fund the ambitious infrastructure plan.

    The legislation allows for six additional casinos in Illinois, located in Chicago, Danville, Waukegan, Rockford, south suburban Cook County and Williamson County in southern Illinois. The Chicago casino will be able to place gaming machines at O'Hare and Midway airports, and allows horse racing tracks to have slot machines and table games on site.

    The measure legalizes wagering for competitive professional sports and authorizes it at racing tracks, casinos and other sports facilities. It also increases the state cigarette tax by one dollar from $1.98 to $2.98 total, and implements a 15% wholesale tax on e-cigarette products.

    The new laws and their accompanying tax increases take effect on July 1.

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