Tax Hikers Call Saying Voting Yes Will Save Tax Dollars. Sure. And Glass Is as Valuable of Diamonds

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Editor’s note: I’m leaving this story near the top because I am so infuriated at the misleading recorded telephone call I received Friday night asking me to vote for the 10 cent per $100 of assessed valuation tax increase. I don’t mind emotional pitches, but saying voting for a tax will save us money is too, too outrageous to let pass unnoticed.

Since writing this, Fox River Grove Republican Precinct Committeeman has published the table you see below on his blog.

Look near the bottom and, then, the right hand column.

You will see residents in McHenry County are the 25th highest taxed in the whole country when taxes are compared to income.  We have the 29th highest property taxes.

McHenry County homes are the 26th highest in the country.

McHenry County homes are the 26th highest in the country.

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Written Thursday night, April 4th-

Even as I was listening to the 377 Board tax hike robo-call, I couldn’t believe my ears.

Misleading at best and deliberately deceitful at worst, I concluded.

I dealt with the frustrations of parents with developmentally disabled children the entire sixteen years I served as State Representative, eight years in the 1970’s and eight years in the 1990’s.

"Vote No, Tax Referendum," reads the generic sign.

“Vote No, Tax Referendum,” reads the generic sign.

I know that the state employees union, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), does everything it can to protect state employee’s jobs.

Even if it means housing DD individuals in state facilities which cost $100,000 a year per person, as the robo-caller said.

Cost-benefit analysis does not make any difference to such unions.

It certainly is cheaper, but, more importantly, more humane, to house those who cannot fully take care of themselves in neighborhood locations.

Whether it costs the small amount (which I did not jot down, but seemed low to me ) asserted in the robo-call is true or not, I do not know.

I do know it is not the job of taxpayers in McHenry County to pay for services State government should be providing.

The admonition of the robo-caller to “keep tax dollars right her in McHenry County rather than send[ing] them off to Springfield” is made of the stuff that used to be below my grandmother’s outhouse in Crumpton, Maryland.

No one is going to reduce State taxes on McHenry County residents if people vote to raise their property taxes by ten cents for every $100 of assessed valuation.

And our real estate taxes don’t get sent to Springfield.

The quoted assertion above would never hold up in an open forum.

It is too ridiculous.

It is meant to delude the–what do the pundits call them?–low information voters.

If people vote “Yes” on the 377 Board referendum, State taxes will not be cut for us.

But that is what the robo-caller wants people to believe.

Passage of the referendum will mean property taxes will be increased $9 million next year, with more to come every year thereafter.

$60 for a $200,000 home to start; $90 for a $300,000 home.

More if the real estate market increases the value of your home.

My memory of sixteen years in the Illinois General Assembly tells me that raising taxes in McHenry County for the 708 Mental Health Board encouraged Springfield decision makers to send us less than our fair share.

That’s because State bureaucrats perceived that other parts of the state without local funding needed the state subsidies more.

So, by increasing our property taxes still more for purposes for which the 708 Board funding was created, we will probably be contributing to our getting even less than comes now.

Let me give another reminder of the pushers of this tax hike with memories that do not go back to the late 1960’s when the Mental Health Board was created by referendum.

It was supported by both those seeking mental health funding and those seeking funding for those who were then called “retarded.”

As McHenry County Treasurer, when tax anticipation warrants were issued after the first tax levy was passed, I personally took $25,000 checks to both Pioneer Center, then housed in the old Terra Cotta School, and to Family Services, headquarted down the street toward the Fox River from McHenry East High School’s campus.

The 708 Board got about $15 million last year.

If half of it did not got for DD services, why did the McHenry County Board approve its budget?

The Board members certainly did not have to.

And, if this referendum fails, as I hope it will, the County Board can tell the 708 Board what type of a budget it will approve and what will be unacceptable.

By the way, I fought to shift money from such DD state institutions to community care, finally seeing Governor George Ryan’s Mental Health and DD Department Director Ann Patla, a former head of Pioneer Center, submit such a budget.

That’s the fight proponents of this referendum should be fighting…rather than trying to pry money out of our pockets.


Tax Hikers Call Saying Voting Yes Will Save Tax Dollars. Sure. And Glass Is as Valuable of Diamonds — 16 Comments

  1. I have not received this phone call yet.

    The silence is deafening… no formal leadership has taken a position on this – for or against…

    Only a few committeemen are actually working in the open against it – many are privately for it.

    Its world we live in here in McGOP.

    Andrew Gasser

  2. This is bad news for McHenry County residents…need to get the word out to vote against it!

  3. 708 Mental Health Board was a mess and this would be as well.

    708 has a $15 million budget.

    1/2 is supposed to go to the disabled and has not

    The 708 budget should not be approved unless in provides the 7 1/2 million that should go to the disabled.

    Problem solved.

    No need for another board.

    Do we EVER learn by our mistakes???

  4. How many citizens who have a developmental disability do not receive SSD?


    How many caregivers receive payments of tax dollars to provide for developmentally disabled?

    Maybe Walkup can advise as Social Security benefits are his specialty?

    he web site supporting the referendum – (paid for with donated and tax dollars?) and the phone calls are a disgrace!

  5. Next time you are sitting in a long line of stopped cars at your favorite coffee joint, waiting for your double caramel latte with extra shots of whatever that is they sell you for extra $$$, think about the the developmentally disabled men, women and children in McHenry County that you could help.

    You think SSI and SSD go very far?

    If you do, it’s because you don’t care for a disabled person.

    Vote YES for the 377 Board.

    And, if you really are concerned about how the money will be distributed, serve on the Board or on a Committee, instead of whining through your keyboard.

  6. I have knocked on over 1,000 doors now personally in trying to kill this.

    Apparently – there are very few people who will stand up and say enough is enough.

    The majority of people I talk are against it.

    Some who have children with special needs are for it.

    I met one today – I wish she was on the 708 board instead of some of the jokers we had on in the past.

    Its a mess.

    I knocked on a door today and I said I was against 377 and why.

    I then said there were five current foreclosures.

    To my shock and horror the woman said, “Yep – this house is one of them. Please come in.”

    It really is sobering when you knock on someone’s door – and they invite you in.

    They then proceed to break down and cry as they explain how they just cannot afford to live in Fox River Grove anymore.

    People have no idea how destructive our taxes are here in McHenry County.

    This pic has over 1,500 views on facebook.

    McHenry County is the 29th worst state in the United States when it comes to taxes and no one wants to stand up and say enough.

    I will – enough.

    Andrew Gasser

  7. Hopefully Gus will read Andrew’s post.

    Reality bite Gus!

    This society has stretched the social welfare net to the breaking point!

    Why have so many people been able to drop out of the workforce?

    The social welfare net has caught them! You are entitled to your opinion Gus but it is woefully ignorant of the facts.

  8. Gus, knowing some seriously disabled people, having worked with some I can tell you this.- just like the 708, the money will not go where it should.

    708 was cleared out of some bums.

    Now they are trying to get another board to put them on.

    It tugs at heartstrings, but the truth is, we will be scammed.

    Give donations to these organizations and the money will be used as it should.

    Make the new 708 board accountable and be sure the 7 1/2 million goes to these people and do not pass the budget without it.

    This new board is not the answer.

    Un emotional decisions are what is needed here.

    Sensible action would produce the best result.

  9. Gus is a RENTER and loves to promote spending money for the welfare and gimmie crowd. This whole nanny state of mental health prevents me from working so someone please provide for me needs to stop. When these tax hikes go through, I hope Gus’s landlord boosts his rent twice as much to pay the bill. Gus, if you support this cause, then donate your money, don’t ask forf mine.

    I wish the Northwest Herald would have the guts to publish this chart. Their “news” is always biased and they will promote the leftist side. Regardless of the taxing body with its hand out I say NO. It is a revolving door of referendums. Regardless of the entity, they will keep running them over and over and won’t take NO for an answer. How about saying no.

    I know it is a different issue but it’s like the schools eating up 70 plus percent of the tax bill and teachers getting inflated salaries for 180 days of work and each yerar asking for more “FOR THE KIDS”. I’ve had enough, I am preparing to move from this county becuase I can’t afford the property taxes which are higher than most mortgage payments.

    These taxing boards always try and argue they have not reveived a tax increase. Again look at the schools, they take 70 pecrent of the tax pie and that pie is getting bigger and bigger each year so their slice is getting bigger and bigger. Property values go down and taxes go up. This is wrong.

    People need to stand up against these taxing bodies and vote NO plus vote out the board members and vote in people that will bring some common sense to operating the entity. This applies from the State, County,Schools all the way down to the township.

  10. I cannot knock on every door in McHenry… Physics. But you can do something.

    You can call your family, friends, and neighbors.

    You can email.

    You can Facebook.

    We simply do not have the big bucks for signs and billboards.

    Everyone is silent on the issue – whether you are for this or against it (well except me).

    Simply put – we could really use your support.

    If you need any help with this feel free to hit up my blog. I have a lot of information on this.

    Finally, those who may disagree with me on this issue… it is nothing personal.

    Good people can disagree.

    I hope we can all work together to make McHenry County a better place to live… and move us down the list from the 29th most expensive county in the nation to around 1000… that would be a good start.

    Andrew Gasser

  11. I generally refrain from personal attacks, but Glenn is a jerk.

    And, further, he is a coward for not associating his first and last real names with his comment.

    Renters pay taxes, but Glenn knows that.

    I challenge Glenn to reveal his identity. Will he?

  12. Guss, the point here is not that the money is needed, its the fact that as tax payers we are being told who to give money too.

    If you want to help then by all means donate.

    But to be coerced into giving money that may lead to people losing homes is plain wrong.

    Where is the end game here.

    Lets hava a board for the ASPCA, Cancer etc. the list would be endless.

    VOTE NO!

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