With a largely newly-consituted Board of Trustees, the question taxpayers in which taxpayers should be interested is whether the McHenry County College property tax levy will remain constant next year.
Ever since Tom Wilbeck, Karen Tirio and Chris Jenner won election six years ago, no additional money has been extracted from real estate taxpayers each year.
The College bragged about the accomplishment in a press release last year.
This sentence was in the press release:
“Based on the overall average cost per parcel of $186.04, based on 2017 McHenry County data, this $22.20 savings per parcel represents a cut in taxes of about 11.9 percent.”
But because new growth expanded the tax base, the tax cut is even better than that.
“When factoring in the new property growth savings the total actual average savings jumps to $28.39 or a 15.3 percent tax savings. [emphasis added]”
The three out-front tax fighters joined incumbent Ron Parrish and newcomer Molly Walsh to form a bloc dedicated to protecting taxpayers.
Largely the same coalition, then led by Jenner, found a way to force students, instead of taxpayers, to finance the new science building.
Looking at Report 19-138 (a bit more than halfway down the agenda), it is clear the spenders are back in control of the Board.
The maximum an Illinois tax district can take this year because of the Tax Cap (called PTELL) by the technocrats, is 1.9%.
That’s the increase in the Consumer Price Indexfor last year.
The resolution on the Board agenda, is entitled,
“RESOLUTION REGARDING ESTIMATED AMOUNTS NECESSARY TO BE LEVIED FOR THE YEAR 2019: [emphasis added].”
MCC is back to the matra uttered by its Chief Financial Officer Robert Tenuta in 2013.
Six years ago, Tenuta argued that the college should grab every dime it was allowed by law.
To be specific, he said, “If we don’t capture growth as it comes in we lose it forever.”
That is the line that most educational institutions take and, by doing so, they guarantee that people’s taxes cannot go down.
For the entire fall of 2013, Tenuta talked gloom and doom.
I observed last year, “It is wonderful that he (Tenuta) has finally gotten in touch with the taxpayer-sensitive MCC Trustees.”
Well, new Trustees are in charge now, headed by Lakewood’s President Mike Smith, and the “tax the maximum or lose it forever” argument has apparently resonated favorably.
Gone are the days of “don’t tax the max and the taxpayers save it forever.”
The tax take last year was $27,966,936.
For next year, it could increase 2.4% to $28,697,502, assuming the resolution is passed, and growth is as high as college administrstors project.
An accompanying memo estimates the average homeowner will only see a 43 cent a month tax increase or $5.15 for the year.
The tax hike justification memo was signed by President Clifford Gabbard.
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