Al Zielinski’s Alleged Sales Chasing Creates Fireworks

Al Zielinski

Detailed research by Grafton Township resident reveals highly questionable practices by Assessor Zielinski

This video from this month’s Grafton Township board meeting says it all concerning the race in Grafton Township assessor to be decided at tomorrow’s Republican primary.

Two-term Assessor Al Zielinski of Lakewood faces Terra de Baltz of Huntley.

Lake in the Hills resident John Mueller presents evidence to the township board alleging Zielinski actively does “sales chasing”.

The video, just over 30 minutes, speaks for itself, and all can see Zielinski’s response.


Al Zielinski’s Alleged Sales Chasing Creates Fireworks — 9 Comments

  1. Al got caught again, caught lying, falsifying and fake justifying.

    These township pukes know no decency.

    They get lowball assessments for themselves and friends and sky high assessment for their political enemies.

    It’s called corruption.

  2. wow a few of those are like Madigan!

    Raise the taxes, then have a tax contestment business

  3. Phil Collins had a song “Both Sides of the Story.”

    All viewers will see by watching the posted video is one side of the story presented by someone with no training or experience in any form of real property valuation.

    To my knowledge, the author of this post shares the same vacuum of valuation training, experience and credentials.

    The give-away is neither the aggressor in the video or the author of this post have a clue that “sales chasing” is an impossibility when using the Market Approach to set valuations.

    The basis?

    Just an Illinois Supreme Court ruling.

    “Illinois courts have consistently held that “a contemporaneous sale between parties dealing at arm’s length is not only relevant to the question of fair cash market value but would be practically conclusive on the issue of whether an assessment was at full value.”

    Residential Real Estate Co. v. Illinois Property Tax Appeal Board, 188 Ill. App.3d 232, 241, 135 Ill. Dec. 611, 543 N.E.2d 1358 (1989).

    So to state “This video … says it all” nullifies the post’s validity from the onset.

    If this blog’s readers are interested in learning more of the facts, i.e. the other side of the story, please read my comments on this blog’s link:

    An added feature is that post contains my opponent’s open admission she’s not planning to leave her Elgin Township job at all.

    “Though I intend to be present as much as possible, I am confident that the implementation of select new processes and my high expectations of my staff to properly communicate with the taxpayers as well as myself, will allow the office to run smoothly full time even in my absence.”

    This will be my final comment because I’m content to let the level-headed, educated voters of Grafton Township decide their future.

    Option A: Alan Zielinski. Qualified, experienced, proven (by IDoR and Property Tax Code standards) and will actually set foot in the Grafton office.

    Option B: the alternative. Minimally qualified, inexperienced, will spend normal hours at Elgin Township and plans to let Grafton’s roughly 22,000 parcel owners rely on some “staff” who will magically appear on 1/3/2022.

  4. Here is an exchange Al had with a County Assessor last summer after being called out for “sales chasing ever since you took office” which originally started out in an exchange about the “clerical errors” that helped to lower the Lakewood President’s home about 46% and how the County was looking to raise it back to where it should have been before the “errors”.

    This was not just a resident calling him out about sales chasing, it is the County guy who I believe happened to work for him years earlier in Grafton.

    Many more emails to post, just need to find out who is fat man and who is little boy?

    I do know that Grafton is the Nagasaki ever since he showed up though.

    At the end, you can see that Al knows he is cornered and then deflects blame on his “field work that he inherited”.

    Good manager, assess your own subdivision and then blame the errors on your underlings field work.

    I am glad I don’t work there, I would be in fat man’s office having a little talk.

    From: []
    Sent: Tuesday, August 11, 2020 7:15 PM
    To: Alejandro Benitez
    Subject: RE: [EXTERNAL] FW: 9619 S Muirfield Dr – Steffan/ Home Value


    No offense taken.

    I view our discussions as two highly intelligent professionals expressing alternative perspectives much two physicists discussing the merits of Fat Man vs. Little Boy.

    As long as you don’t call me a dog-turd-eating-moron, I’ll maintain my appreciation of your insights (and even contrarian views).

    “The first is that you have been singling out sales ever since you took office.”

    As a fellow appraiser, I didn’t think you would find that surprising.

    Why would I value a property differently as an assessor than I would as an appraiser?

    That’s I installed the Market Approach when I took office: it’s the most accurate means of determining value when the data are available.

    In just about all cases, they are.

    As to sale price setting value, I’ll further rely on the Illinois Supreme Court’s germane ruling in Residential Real Estate.

    “Fair cash value is normally associated with fair market value, i.e. what the property would bring at a voluntary sale where the owner is ready, willing and able to sell, but not compelled to do so, and the buyer is likewise ready, willing and able to buy, but not forced to do so. See, e.g., People ex rel. McGaughey v. Wilson, 367 Ill. 494, 12 N.E.2d 5 (1937). Illinois courts have consistently held that “a contemporaneous sale between parties dealing at arm’s length is not only relevant to the question of fair cash market value but would be practically conclusive on the issue of whether an assessment was at full value.” Residential Real Estate Co. v. Illinois Property Tax Appeal Board, 188 Ill. App.3d 232, 241, 135 Ill. Dec. 611, 543 N.E.2d 1358 (1989).” Walsh v. State Property Tax Appeal Board 286 Ill. App.3d 895, 222 Ill. Dec. 286, 677 N.E.2d 491 (1997).

    Regarding uniformity, because all residential parcels from all neighborhoods in Grafton Township use the exact same market-based approach, uniformity is assured not only on a neighborhood basis but even a township-wide basis.

    “Your model did not really capture the nuanced values of ranch homes in this specific market.”

    A major disconnect between the Board and me.

    In a land of custom homes functional utility, not design, reigns supreme.

    A 2,500 sf two-story has equivalent functional utility to a 2,500 sf ranch (all other functional utility elements being equal which they are either via multiple regression or manual adjustments for simple regression).

    We will reconfirm the GLAs for both parcels, thank you for your suggestion.

    Perhaps I’ve been too trusting of all the field work I inherited.

    In closing, attached is some tequila reading material.

    I wrote the brief back in 2014 in response to some shenanigans dealing with the treatment of another “special” parcel.

    It’d be a pleasure to discuss it in detail over said tequila some evening (or weekend afternoon) with (I redacted wife) and you.

  5. Sorry Al, Anyone that values an all brick home with a finished, walk out basement and a pool on a golf course lot so low that it drops the tax bill from $14,000 to $7,000 per year is NOT qualified for the position of assessor.

  6. Here is some more fun for the class.

    For January’s Grafton Township meeting, Al was taken to task because he valued a Grafton Township home at $300k for a bank appraisal, but assessed it at $487k. A full $187k difference. Then when the homeowners turned in said appraisal for an appeal, Al fought and tried discredit his own appraisal.

    So…Al was arguing with himself.

    Oh, and he is not supposed to be appraising where he’s an assessor.

    Also…he didn’t disclose on the bank appraisal that he was also assessor.

    No level of schooling or training can account for that level of dumbassery.

  7. GTLA, isn’t that like being the prosecutor and the public defender for the same defendant?

    Hypo….Judge Ross at the hearing asks, how should I decide this case?

    Public Defender Zielinski stands up, responds, your Honor, I appraised this and I believe you should rule in favor of my client in the amount of 300k.

    Judge Ross then looks at the prosecutor’s table and asks what he should do?

    Zielinski drops his hat, runs over to the Prosecutor’s table and puts on the Prosecutors hat and says, Judge, Prosecutor Zielinski here, I believe you should rule in favor of the ASSessor because a tradesman was seen in the driveway at the defendant’s house recently so I believe you should rule with my Guessessment in the amount of 487k.

    Judge Ross shakes his head, slams his gavel down and admonishes Zielinski for trying to have it both ways….Next case

  8. Good riddance Al. Fat Al Jourdan can’t protect you now.

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