Chicago/Suburbs

PROPERTY TAX HIKE: LIGHTFOOT TO INCREASE CHICAGO’S PROPERTY TAX LEVY IN 2022

by James R. Scott, The Chicago Times

September 17, 2021

CHICAGO — Chicago’s property tax levy will rise by $76.5 million in 2022, but Mayor Lori Lightfoot has promised to freeze all other taxes, fines, and fees thanks to a once-in-a-lifetime influx of federal stimulus funds.

Lightfoot raised property taxes by $94 million last year and persuaded a divided City Council to follow suit with annual increases based on the Consumer Price Index.  Which many experts considered was a shrewd move considering the now very noticeable soaring inflation rate spreading across the country.

According to a presentation distributed to aldermen ahead of the mayor’s 2022 budget address to the City Council on Monday, Chicago’s property tax levy will increase by $76.5 million.

This includes $22.9 million for the CPI linked automatic increase provision, $25 million for the 2022 installment of Lightfoot’s $3.7 billion capital plan, and $28.6 million from “new property.”

The CPI automatic increase provision implemented last year is still an extremely unpopular and there seems to be no end to the shocking increase in assessment values.

Aldermen were told last fall that the massive borrowing would be financed through a combination of tax increment financing, a first-year bond issue backed by property and/or sales taxes, and “interim financing and cash-flow management” in anticipation of future state and federal funding.

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