The Grassroots Collaborative recently introduced the Responsible Budget Ordinance (RBO), which presents a plan to return hundreds of millions of dollars to the city’s budget, schools, parks, and libraries; thus, helping to address the enormous budget crises facing Chicago with a revenue solution over job cuts.
“Did you know the Chicago Mercantile Exchange received $15 Million in TIF money in order to renovate the Board of Trade bathrooms while over 1000 teachers, healthcare workers, and library staff face layoffs?” asks the Grassroots Collaborative.
Although Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced he would return 20 percent of unallocated Tax Increment Financing funds totaling $60 Million back to the taxing bodies, the Collaborative argues this is clearly not enough when United Airlines alone received $30 Million from the City‘s Slush Fund.
The Grassroots Collaborative position’s is that it would be irresponsible to let these funds sit idle in TIF accounts while teachers are fired, library hours are cut, and park program fees rise.
Records show that Tax Increment Financing districts have been declared in more than 1/3 of Chicago communities where a surplus of $300 Million sits idle.
Unused property tax dollars in TIF districts could be freed to increase the real estate value in blighted communities, by investing in public projects or business development in the areas that need it most.
Reserving the money as a surplus, also known as the City’s Slush Fund, has gravely impacted Chicago Public Schools, Libraries, and Health Department.
This “Slush Fund Brain Freeze” is more than less agony for Chicago children and working families. The money sits instead of being invested to create conditions for future revenue gains in under served areas of the city.
Call or contact your alderman before Nov. 14th and ask them to support the Responsible Budgets Ordinance to send city money back to our schools and libraries.
Ward 1 Alderman Joe Moreno (Supports)
Ward 2 Alderman Robert Fioretti (Supports)
Ward 4 Alderman William Burns (Supports)
Ward 5 Alderman Leslie Hairston
Ward 6 Alderman Roderick Sawyer
Ward 7 Alderman Sandi Jackson
Ward 8 Alderman Michelle Harris
Ward 9 Alderman Anthony Beale
Ward 10 Alderman John Pope
Ward 11 Alderman James Balcer
Ward 12 Alderman George A. Cardenas
Ward 13 Alderman Marty Quinn
Ward 14 Alderman Ed Burke
Ward 15 Alderman Toni Foulkes (Supports)
Ward 16 Alderman JoAnn Thompson
Ward 17 Alderman Latasha Thomas
Ward 18 Alderman Lona Lane
Ward 19 Alderman Matthew O’Shea
Ward 20 Alderman Willie Cochran
Ward 21 Alderman Howard Brookins Jr.
Ward 22 Alderman Ricardo Munoz (Supports)
Ward 23 Alderman Michael Zalewski
Ward 24 Alderman Michael Chandler (Support)
Ward 25 Alderman Daniel Solis
Ward 26 Alderman Roberto Maldonado
Ward 27 Alderman Walter Burnett, Jr. (Supports)
Ward 28 Alderman Jason Ervin
Ward 29 Alderman Deborah Graham
Ward 30 Alderman Ariel E. Reboyras (Supports)
Ward 31 Alderman Ray Suarez (Supports)
Ward 32 Alderman Scott Waguespack (Supports)
Ward 33 Alderman Richard F. Mell
Ward 34 Alderman Carrie Austin
Ward 35 Alderman Rey Colon
Ward 36 Alderman Nicholas Sposato (Supports)
Ward 37 Alderman Emma Mitts
Ward 38 Alderman Timothy M. Cullerton (Supports)
Ward 39 Alderman Margaret Laurino
Ward 40 Alderman Patrick J. O’Connor
Ward 41 Alderman Mary O’Connor
Ward 42 Alderman Brendan Reilly
Ward 43 Alderman Michele Smith (Supports)
Ward 44 Alderman Thomas M. Tunney
Ward 45 Alderman John Arena (Supports)
Ward 46 Alderman James Cappleman (Supports)
Ward 47 Alderman Ameya Pawar
Ward 48 Alderman Harry Osterman
Ward 49 Alderman Joseph A. Moore (Supports)
Ward 50 Alderman Debra Silverstein
Watch the Grassroots Collaborative presenting its point of view on the way TIF funds are currently allocated and on economic justice below:
- Community Declares City Hall a Budget Crime Scene (beachwoodreporter.com)