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Chicago’s TIF “Slush Fund” Causes Brain Freeze

Chicago Slush Fund Causes Brain Freeze
Chicago Slush Fund

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 3  Alderman Pat Dowell (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:

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