BOMA/Chicago Raises Concerns About Assessment Legislation

March 11, 2019

The House Revenue & Finance Committee Property Tax Subcommittee held a subject matter hearing on identical legislation House Bill 2217 on March 14.  BOMA/Chicago testified at that hearing and again 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.

BOMA/Chicago previously testified on legislation proposed by Cook County Assessor Fritz Kaegi that would that 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.

BOMA/Chicago has 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. The House Revenue & Finance Committee Property Tax Subcommittee will hold a subject matter hearing on identical legislation in legislation House Bill 2217.  BOMA/Chicago will also testify at that hearing and will again caution 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.

Read BOMA/Chicago testimony provided to both legislative committees.
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