In 1973, my first year in the Illinois House of Representatives, State Rep. Gene Hoffman, a high school teachers from DuPage County, passed the Resource Equalizer State Aid to Education law.
It included property tax relief.
It had some exceptions, but, generally, high tax school districts were required over a four-year period to reduce their real estate tax rates to that level used in the state funding formula:
- $3 per $100 of assessed valuation for unit school ditricts
- $1.95 per $100 of AV for high school districts
- $1.05 per $100 of AV for grade school districts
In 1976, that part of the Resource Equalizer was repealed without my vote.
So much for equalizing resources.
The most recent bill is so anemic on the subject that no reduction in property taxes is required.
- high tax districts can, with referendum approval, reduce their tax rates
- districts with high tax rates, but low assessed valuation, can reduce their rates with part of the money being replaced with increased state grants
It certainly is not the property tax freeze for which Governor Bruce Rauner campaigned.