This morning, Mayor Emanuel unveiled his proposed 2016 city budget.
In his proposal, the mayor looks to address our police and fire pension obligations with a property tax increase of $543 million over four years as well as new fees on garbage collection, e-cigarettes, ride-sharing services and taxis. To increase savings, he announced the elimination of 150 vacant positions, the move to a grid sweet sweeping system, TIF reform and several other proposals.
At the same time, the mayor is calling for some new investments, including continued expansion of after-school programming and reassignment of more than 300 police officers currently performing desk jobs back to street patrol duty.
I'm very concerned about the magnitude of the proposed property tax and the effect it would have on renters, homeowners and small businesses in our community. My City Council colleagues and I will be spending the next month going through the budget process, and we will be working together to look for alternative ways to increase revenue to fund city government and provide important city services. I welcome your ideas and feedback.
I also will be holding a series of Town Hall meetings in October:
- 6:30 pm Thursday October 8 at Unity Lutheran Church, 1212 W. Balmoral Ave.
- 6:30 pm Tuesday October 13 at Senn High School, 5900 N. Glenwood Ave.
- 6:30 pm Wednesday October 14 at the Somerset Place Apartments, 5009 N. Sheridan Rd.
- 7 pm Thursday October 15 at Emanuel Congregation, 5959 N. Sheridan Rd.
In the meantime, please feel free to contact me at 773-784-5277 or Harry@48thward.org with questions or concerns.
Alderman, 48th Ward"
Details on the proposed budget can be seen on the City's website.