Amid property tax season, Rauner says state's residents take too big a hit
As homeowners prepared to remit their annual property tax bills ahead of a recent deadline, Gov. Bruce Rauner issued a conciliatory statement from Springfield recognizing the hardship that Illinois’ high tax rates impose on constituents.
"Illinois residents are being hit with record property tax increases in communities all around the state, even though they already pay the highest property taxes in the nation,” Rauner said. "People are literally being driven from their homes by the failure of the General Assembly to enact the reforms that would stop this unnecessary destruction of the American Dream.”
Having introduced a series of policies to bring tax relief to property owners, Rauner expressed concern for parents who have had to trim items from their household budgets to make ends meet, from vacations and athletic activities to academic tutoring.
Rauner said he sympathized with families "forced into tough choices because the leaders in Springfield have failed once again.”
Rauner’s proposals include reforming Illinois’ troubled pension system, enacting labor-related injury-protection reform, and allowing local governments to control costs to boost the economy and help make it less reliant on property taxes.
Acknowledging that property taxes have risen 3.3 times faster than Illinois median household incomes in the past 26 years, Rauner said those taxes now actually exceed mortgage payments in some communities, especially southern Cook County suburbs.
"My proposals will stop the harm (which) out-of-control property-tax increases cause families and businesses,” Rauner said. “When I talk to people throughout Illinois, they tell me that they feel they have lost control of their own property and are simply renting it from the government. That is not fair. We must pass the reforms I have outlined to rein in and then lower property taxes."