District 219 Passes 8.22 Percent Levy Increase

Administrators say actual increase in taxes will be lower

school board unanimously passed a $131.4 million 2011 tax levy Dec. 12.

The levy, which is the amount District 219 is asking Cook County to collect for it next year, is 8.22 percent higher than the $121.4 million in property taxes the district collected this year, according to documents provided by the school district.

But taxpayers shouldn’t get too upset yet, school officials said.


The district’s ultimate tax extension for next year – that is, the amount it will actually collect – will show a smaller increase, said School Board President Robert Silverman. That’s because the Illinois Property Tax Extension Limitation Law of 1991 does not allow local governments such as school districts to increase the amount they collect by more than the rate of inflation or 5 percent, which ever is lower, plus the taxes collected on new property.

Last year’s increase in the consumer price index was 1.5 percent, so that is the average increase that most homeowners should see, said Paul O’Neill, the assistant superintendent for business services. Because Niles Township is mostly built out, there won’t be too much in the way of new property added to the tax rolls.

However, some property could come out off Tax Increment Financing districts, which are set up to encourage redevelopment by setting aside any increased taxes to benefit the TIF area. TIF districts have a finite lifespan, and when they expire, the new value of the property within them gets added to the general tax roles.

Local governments such as school districts generally levy — or request — more money than they believe they can get under the tax cap, because they want to get every dollar possible. That’s not only because they want the money for next year, but because the tax extension for each year is based on the year before. That means that levying for less money than a district can legally receive would cut into the amount it could receive in every subsequent year.

Silverman said the district has generally asked for much, much more money than it could receive — sometimes up to a 20 percent increase — even though officials knew their requests were not realistic.

An 8 percent increase is also highly unlikely, Silverman acknowledged. Still, he said, “I feel much better that the gap is narrower.”

District 219 includes and high schools. Want more news? Like your local Patch on Facebook.

Clark Kent December 20, 2011 at 01:09 AM
Partially supported by "The Daily Planet"--- Time to "Occupy NTHS School Board Room!" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q59ZcFguUOo
Gina February 16, 2012 at 09:55 PM
Count me in. I will vote for you.
Morton Grove April 25, 2012 at 06:26 PM
In 2004, my morton grove taxes were about $4600. In 2009, they were $9500. They have more-than-doubled in just 5 years. Meanwhile, my home value has plummeted to where it was at around 2001. Can someone on this board post some info for me, and others, as to where I can start going to show up and make noise about the local school boards' tax levies? I'm scared of being taxed out of my home, and I've been a Morton Grove resident my entire life. There's a handful of school board members, and tens of thousands of MG and Skokie residents. Us vs. them. Let's put some people in there who are sympathetic to the current plight of all homeowners. High schools do not turn out better students because of flat screen TVs and aquatic centers, and state-of-the-art what have yous. My point is that such a level of spending is unnecessary. It is mostly irrelevant to real, authentic learning experiences, and wholly incongruent to the financial capabilities of the community supporting it, particularly in these economic times. **The cost of running a town and supporting a school district- however excellent we want to make it- has absolutely not doubled between 2004 and 2009, and yet we have collectively doubled the money we give them.** And most of it is going to the school districts. It's ridiculous.
Earl Weiss April 25, 2012 at 07:15 PM
"Morton Grove 1:26 pm on Wednesday, April 25, 2012 In 2004, my morton grove taxes were about $4600. In 2009, they were $9500. They have more-than-doubled in just 5 years. Meanwhile, my home value has plummeted to where it was at around 2001". Geez, don't you rememner how part of the push for the unneeded tax increase was their premise that higher taxes will preserve and enhance property values. Sadly, to many ot the taxpayer voters bought what they were selling or were too apathetic.
grandpa April 25, 2012 at 07:41 PM
The board at 219 is not unlike many of the other school boards in the area, (see the kerfluffle regarding Dist 67). Most of these officials know that they do not have to worry about the taxpayers, because, unlike the teachers union, taxpayers are not organized and don't give hefty political donations. And, besides... it's ALWAYS "for the children". Until there is an organized taxpayers revolt, nothing will change and property taxes, the lion's share of which are for schools, will continue to escalate.


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