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BOMA/Chicago Raises Concerns About Assessment Legislation

March 11, 2019


BOMA/Chicago's Ron Tabaczynski testified at House and Senate committees to oppose legislation introduced by Cook County Assessor Fritz Kaegi, voicing concerns about unforeseen shifts in tax burdens to commercial properties. The legislation would require income producing properties to submit income and expense data annually in electronic format. The data would be used to create a database for the development of capitalization rates that, along with other factors, will be applied to the mass appraisal process. It is not to collect and use the data to determine an individual building’s valuation, as happens in the appeal process.

Most recently, the House Revenue & Finance Committee Property Tax Subcommittee held a subject matter hearing on March 14 to discuss House Bill 2217.  BOMA/Chicago testified at that hearing and cautioned legislators that while there may be merit to modernizing data collection, they should also recognize the great potential for sudden changes in assessment practices to cause unintended and unforeseen shifts in tax burdens. Those shifts can occur between and within different real estate classes and across neighborhoods, and they will create hardships for some taxpayers.

BOMA/Chicago also provided similar testimony at a Senate hearing on identical legislation, Senate Bill 1379.

BOMA/Chicago has also voiced concerns about privacy and data security as well as how the data will actually be used in the valuation process. Concerns about substantial financial penalties were already addressed in an amendment.

Legislators are moving carefully on the legislation. While the Senate Committee did pass Senate Bill 1379 unanimously, it did so with the intent to give the full Senate the opportunity to amend it on second reading and then bring it back to the Committee for further consideration.

Read BOMA/Chicago testimony provided to both legislative committees.