Tax Reform Action Coalition (TRAC)
TRAC now numbers over 30 community and civic groups with an intention of continuing to expand throughout the city and the county. TRAC's mission is to reform the property tax system - a lofty goal with an already substantial achievement. TRAC and its members were instrumental in obtaining some short term relief for the residents of Cook County in 2004 when Governor Blagovich signed the bill that was dubbed the 7% Solution. TRAC will continue to work with Assessor James Houlihan and our State legislators to extend this legislation to ALL property owners in addition to trying to get this legislation extended and the "cap on the cap" removed.
Fittingly, the President of TRAC had a meeting with Mayor Daley in December 2005. It was a very positive meeting focusing on – what else but property tax reform and the renewal of the 7% Homeowners Exemption bill
EFFORT TO RENEW 7% HOMEOWNERS EXEMPTION BILL.
In January 2006, coinciding with the beginning of the legislative session in Springfield, we implemented “Operation Blizzard!” -- a blizzard of 9,000 postcards hitting Springfield the first few of weeks of January. We held a rally on January 11, 2006 downtown in the plaza of the State of Illinois Building.
Don’t forget the phone calls, too. Call Governor Blagojevich, (217-782-0244, 312-814-2121) Speaker Madigan, (217-782-5350, 773-581-8000) and President Jones, (217-782-2728, 773-995-7748) Call your State Representatives and Senators. Phone calls are very effective! The message is simple – Renew the 7% Homeowners Exemption bill – make it permanent and remove the “cap on the cap!” Don’t take away our property tax relief.
Acquisition-based assessing means that properties are only re-assessed upon the sale of a property. In other words, your assessment would no longer take a giant leap upward just because someone in your neighborhood sold his house. Under the proposal supported by TRAC, your assessment could increase no more than 2% per year in any year other than one in which you sold the property. It is a tax assessment system that prevents long-time homeowners and other property owners from receiving huge property tax increases that result not from your activity, but from changing market conditions completely beyond your control.
TRAC knows that the median projected increase in assessments citywide is 42%. The "HOT" real estate market has continued and been widely reported. What that means to you and your community is that the protection you had with the original 7% Homeowners Exemption during the last triennial reassessment has expired. This year's reassessment will include the portion of the prior reassessment that was limited in 2003 plus new increases from this year's reassessment – a double whammy! The result will be a much bigger property tax bill in 2007!
TRAC needs your support! If you have any questions, please go to TRAC's website, http://www.trac-il.org/.
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