Cook County’s Assessor in times past for as long as I have followed the office (starting with PJ Cullerton’s corruption in the late 1960’s), has been hide-bound, even under reformer Houlihan James.
For decades only one-fourth of the county was assessed each year. That meant three-fourths of the county was underassessed, resulting in the most recently re-assessed quadrant bearing more than its fair share of the real estate tax burden.
The inequities could have been ameliorated by using quadrant equalizing facts (commonly called “multipliers” in the rest of Illinois, but, even when I brought up the subject to my former House colleague Houlihan, who could have gotten necessary authorizing legislation enacted, nothing happened.
Then, there was a slight improvement.
From assessing one-fourth of the county each year, Cook County started assessing one-third each year.
An improvement, but not a giant step toward equity.
Trident multipliers would helped a lot, but no such effort was made.
Now, Assessor Fritz Kargi, an avowed reformer, has decided to adjust assessments on all homes this year using Coronavirus as the reason.
The Tribune story reports,
To calculate the adjusted home values, the assessor’s office estimated regional unemployment and declines in housing prices in each neighborhood in the south and west suburbs. Townships in that area that already received initial values this year will receive new numbers after the assessor’s office calculates the COVID-19 adjustment.
There’s more in the article.
I’m just thankful that Cook County is doing what pretty much every other county has been doing since I started following real estate assessments in the late 1960’s.