Take Action: Oppose Legislation That Would Result in Higher Commercial Property Taxes

March 23, 2021

BOMA/Chicago is opposing two Illinois House Bills being advanced by Cook County Assessor Fritz Kaegi that we believe would negatively impact commercial office properties and our ability to recruit jobs and investment to our local economy: HB 860 and HB 3529.
 
BOMA/Chicago President Derrick Johnson will provide testimony in opposition to the bills at the Illinois House Property Tax Subcommittee Hearing on Thursday, March 25 at 2 p.m. We are also asking you to lend your voice in opposition to these bills.
 
Recent reassessments in the northern and southern suburbs have resulted in significant increases in commercial property taxes and reductions to residential taxes, even while residential sales prices have reached record highs over the last year. We are very concerned this year's reassessment of Chicago will result in higher commercial property taxes and disinvestment throughout the city.
 
The Assessor attempts to justify this legislation by criticizing commercial property owners’ appeals of his assessments – despite residential property owners using the same appeal process and filing more appeals. As a result, Assessor Kaegi wants to mandate that businesses submit financial and property data or face fines and the denial of the right to appeal the Assessor’s decisions.
 
These proposals do not help our tenant businesses or improve our property tax system. Contrary to Assessor Kaegi’s claims, mandatory submission of data is not a best practice and is not common in the United States. The International Association of Assessing Officers (IAAO) standards do not require mandatory disclosure when a voluntary system—as used by many taxing jurisdictions—is a viable alternative.
 
Rather than imposing these new requirements and fines, BOMA/Chicago is advocating for transparency measures that would provide real reform to our property tax system and pierce the “black box” assessment process that is opaque to those outside of the Assessor’s Office.
 
Please take five minutes to fill out two position slips to oppose both pieces of legislation. Click the links below to submit a slip.

> Oppose HB 860

> Oppose HB 3529

You can learn more about the negative impact of HB 860 in this fact sheet.
 
NEW TO WITNESS SLIPS?
 
  • Fill out your identifying information using your work affiliation, if you have permission, so that you can represent your company's position (otherwise list “self” under firm, title, and representation)
  • Under Position, pick Opponent
  • Under Testimony, pick Record of Appearance Only
  • Check box to agree with Terms of Agreement
  • Click the Create(Slip) button to file the witness slip online.
You should receive an email confirming you have filed a witness slip, including a copy of the slip itself.
 
If you have questions, contact Farzin Parang, Executive Director, at fparang@bomachicago.org.
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