Friday, July 12, 2013

It's About Time :
TIF Contributions To Be Shown On Property Tax Bills

Think you're supporting the schools, the cops, and Chicago infrastructure when you look at your twice-yearly property tax bill?  Well, you might be, or you might not be, depending on whether or not you live in a TIF district.

And if you do live in one, it's pretty hard to know just how much you're paying into the TIF.  As we showed in 2010, the TIF contribution is shown on your property tax statement as a series of asterisks.  Don't bother your purty little mind with the TIF, sweetie!  Your betters have it all taken care of.

In the case we featured, that little row of asterisks translated into more than 71% of the taxes on one property.  Other readers reported that more than 74.5% of their property taxes were going into TIFs.

We may still be getting screwed, but at least we'll be better informed about it in the future, according to the Sun-Times.
"Cook County property owners next year will for the first time see how much they pay toward tax-increment financing districts, Cook County Clerk David Orr said Thursday.

In announcing 2012 revenue for TIF districts in Chicago and Cook County suburbs, Orr said the county is changing the format of the twice-yearly tax bills. Starting with the summer bills of 2014, taxpayers will see how much — if anything — they pay into a TIF.

Tax bills break out amounts paid to every local government, but they are inaccurate for property in TIF districts. Owners of homes and businesses might think their money is supporting schools and municipal services, when much of it could be diverted to a TIF."  Read the entire article here.
This change is long overdue.  Just goes to show, the politicians who put TIFs into effect may no longer be in office, but their legacy continues, at least for the life of the TIF.

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