Hoffman Estates Mayor
William McLeod and other suburban leaders are calling for local taxing
bodies to rally together in an attempt to motivate Cook County
officials to send out property tax bills on time.
Cook County officials have warned the second half of
this year's tax bill will be late, possibly arriving in mailboxes after
McLeod, during Monday's village board meeting, spoke
about the lack of any law requiring county officials to mail out tax
bills by a deadline.
"I can't believe there's no mandatory date to get things done," McLeod said.
County officials said the delay stems from listening to
property tax objections, which require a hearing. The most recent bills
began arriving in late January and are due on March 2. A new state law
requires at least 55 percent of a property tax bill to be paid on time.
"Every other county is able to do it in a timely fashion," McLeod said.
McLeod attended a meeting Monday morning at the
Schaumburg Township office where the topic was addressed.
Representatives from the village of Schaumburg and other taxing bodies,
including local park and school districts joined him, as did Elk Grove
Hoffman Estates Village Manager James Norris explained how late bills would affect the village and taxpayers.
Residents have to pay first and second installments in rapid succession.
Taxing bodies are forced to ask for tax-anticipation
warrants - a short-term loan that is paid back once the municipality
receives the actual tax money.
Tax-anticipation warrants also affect taxpayers,
because money that could have been spent on services is instead spent
paying interest to a bank, said Norris, who called the practice "an
Residents who expect a deduction on their itemized
income tax returns also have to wait and won't have the full deduction
available to them.
Issuing tax-anticipation warrants became a regular practice during The Great Depression.