Mark Comments on Lakewood’s Proposed TIF District

A commenter named Mark provides the following information on the proposed Lakewood Tax Increment Financing District.  (A meeting will be held at the Turnberry Country Club at 7 PM on the next two Tuesdays to discuss the SportsPlex proposed for inclusion in and subsidy by the TIF money.)

Lakewood's proposed new TIF District.

Lakewood’s proposed new TIF District includes two golf courses.

The proposed Route 47 / Route 176 TIF consists of:

– 37 tax parcels (22 vacant and 15 improved)
– 331 acres of vacant land (55% of total)
– 278 acres of improved land (45% of total)
– 45 buildings (not including ancillary structures)
– 2013 EAV of $1,796,649.
– 2037 EAV projected to be $34,000,000 – Tax year 2037 – collection year 2038.

There is no mention of how much tax revenue the 37 tax parcels has generated in the past.

For that we would want to know the tax rate for each of the 37 parcels.

SB Friedman concluded the properties within the proposed TIF were TIF eligible based on the following criteria:

– Classified a Blighted Area for the Vacant Land due to following 2 criteria
– Lack of Growth in Equalized Assessed Value (“EAV”)
– Obsolete Platting.
– Note 12 of the 22 vacant parcels totaling 294 of 331 acres throughout the RPA show evidence of obsolete platting

“Blighted areas” are those improved or vacant areas with blighting influences that are impacting the public safety, health, morals or welfare of the community, and are substantially impairing the growth of the tax base in the area.

The obsolete platting includes parcels of limited or narrow size, or configurations of parcels of irregular size or shape that would be difficult to develop on a planned basis and in a manner compatible with contemporary standards and requirements, or platting that failed to create rights-of-way for streets or alleys or that created inadequate right-of-way widths for streets, alleys or other public rights-of-way, or that omitted easements for public utilities.

– Classified as a Conservation Area for the Improved Land due to following 4 criteria
– Lack of Growth in Equalized Assessed Value (“EAV”)
– Inadequate Utilities
– Lack of Community Planning
– Presence of Structures below Minimum Code Standards
– Note 24 of 45 buildings buildings were 35 years or older.

“Conservation areas” are those Improved areas that are deteriorating and declining and soon may become blighted if the deterioration is not abated.


Comments

Mark Comments on Lakewood’s Proposed TIF District — 19 Comments

  1. Mark is definitely an asset for reform in our community.

    He knows, how to assess all of the variables making it possible for proactive assertive change in government.

  2. The proposed Lakewood Route 47 / Route 176 TIF is 609 acres.

    That’s .95 square miles.

    That’s a big area.

    Drive a mile in one direction, turn right, drive a mile, turn right, drive a mile, turn right, drive a mile, turn right.

    That’s a square mile.

    The developers could have chosen Crystal Lake instead of Lakewood to annex the TIF property, since Crystal lake also borders the TIF area.

    The TIF area will extend Lakewood northwest and is roughly Z shape bordered by Dean Street on the west, the northern leg of IL Rte 176 on the north, Haligus on the east, and Ballard on the south.

    Route 176 itself intersects with Route 47 in a Z shape, the two roads merging for about 1 mile.

    The Sportsplex is in only one portion of the TIF, bordered by Hamilton Road on the west, Pleasant Valley Road on the north, IL Route 47 on the east, and the southern boundary of Crystal Woods Golf Course on the south.

    The Sportsplex encompasses all of the area currently occupied by Crystal Woods Golf Course, plus some farmland and residential property.
    http://mchenrycountyblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/Sports-Plex-map.png

  3. Crystal Lake and Lakewood have agreed that Rt. 47 north of the southern leg of Rt.176 will be their border, so I don’t think the SportsPlex has Crystal Lake as an option.

  4. Here is the Agenda for the Village of Lakewood’s meeting Tuesday at Turnberry County Club.

    The informational meeting referenced in the January 14, 2015 Village of Lakewood Press Release is an official Village Board Meeting.

    http://www.village.lakewood.il.us/vertical/sites/%7B46B6A78E-D4CD-44FD-AD04-48899B9E3E7A%7D/uploads/2015-01-14_Special_Informational_Meeting.pdf

    http://www.village.lakewood.il.us/vertical/sites/%7B46B6A78E-D4CD-44FD-AD04-48899B9E3E7A%7D/uploads/Sportsplex_Special_Hearing_January_20_2015.pdf

    http://www.village.lakewood.il.us > Government > Board Agenda > Special Informational Meeting – January 20, 2015

    Village of Lakewood
    Special Meeting
    Before the Board of Trustees
    Agenda
    Tuesday, January 20, 2015
    7:00 P.M.
    Turnberry Country Club
    9600 Turnberry Trail
    Village of Lakewood, IL

    RE: Presentation by Chicagoland Sportsplex Inc., N.F.P. for a Development at the Southwest Intersection of Illinois Route 47 and Illinois Route 176.

    1. Roll Call – Establish Quorum

    2. Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag

    3. Informational Presentation: Presentation by Chicagoland Sportsplex Inc., N.F.P. for a Development at
    the Southwest Intersection of Illinois Route 47 and Illinois Route 176.

    4. Public Comments: The Public is invited to make an issue-oriented comment on any matter of public
    concern.
    The Public Comment may be no longer than 3 minutes in duration.
    Interrogation of the Village Staff, Village President, Village Board or any of their comments will
    not be allowed at this time.
    Photography taken of the Village Board or other public body shall be done from a distance of at least
    twelve feet from each member of the Board of public body.

    5. Village Board Comments

    6. Adjournment

  5. The Village of Lakewood has a Planning and Zoning Board meeting 7PM tomorrow, Monday January 19, 2015, at the Redtail Golf Club, 7900 Redtail Drive, Lakewood.

    The village hall is located at 2500 Lake Avenue, Village of Lakewood, IL.

    It’s not listed as a closed meeting so the public can attend.

    Not sure if public comments will be allowed prior to or after the meeting.

    Since the TIF and Chicagoland Sportsplex involve planning and zoning, this would be a critical meeting to attend for those interested in the project.

    http://www.village.lakewood.il.us/vertical/sites/%7B46B6A78E-D4CD-44FD-AD04-48899B9E3E7A%7D/uploads/Planning_and_Zoning_Commission_2015_calendar.pdf

    http://www.village.lakewood.il.us > Government > Planning and Zoning Calendar

  6. When is a Conservation District not opposed to a development project which would displace and destroy significant amounts of natural open space land?

    When development is in a tif district which upon creation will enable the Conservation District to issue an estimated $585,000 of new, non-referendum debt!

    (Source, Tif Eligibility Study, page 35 predicts $34 million new EAV,
    MCCD has statutory right to borrow up to 1.725 of EAV. Now EAV will be higher and they can borrow that much more.)

  7. When is a (Woodstock)School District not objecting to absorbing the burden of untold new student population to be funded entirely by existing property-taxpayers?

    When is a (Woodstock) School District not raising the very natural objection to accepting COST BURDEN of brand new students from new development, when the municipality (Lakewood) which owns all the monetary PROFITS from the new development currently uses a different School District entirely?

    I give up.

    When?

    Is $4,700,000 of new non-referendum borrowing ability* worth selling out all the taxpaying homeowners who now pay 2.73% of their total home value JUST to this School District?

    *(statutory 13.8% rate of EAV, EAV predicted to 34 million in tif eligibility study)

  8. To expand on that.

    Here are more details on the current and projected EAV increase listed in the TIF study available on the home page of the Village of Lakewood website.

    Note that RPA is the area being re-developed.
    TIF is the financing for the area to be developed.

    RPA = Tax Increment Financing
    TIF = Redevelopment Project Area

    “Most Recent EAV of Properties in the Redevelopment Project Area

    The purpose of identifying the most recent equalized assessed value (“EAV”) of the RPA is to provide an estimate of the initial EAV, which the McHenry County Clerk will certify for the purpose of annually calculating the incremental EAV and incremental property taxes of the RPA.

    The 2013 EAV (the most recent year in which assessed values and the equalizer were available) of all taxable parcels in the RPA is approximately $1,796,000. This total EAV amount by PIN is summarized in Appendix 2.

    The EAV is subject to verification by the McHenry County Clerk. After verification, the final figure shall be certified by the McHenry County Clerk, and shall become the Certified Initial EAV from which all incremental property taxes in the Redevelopment Project Area will be calculated by McHenry County.

    Anticipated Equalized Assessed Value

    By tax year 2037 (collection year 2038), the EAV for the RPA will be approximately $34,000,000.

    This estimate assumes substantial development of commercial, entertainment and other uses within the RPA.”

    – page 37 (page 35 of pdf) of the document, “Village of Lakewood, IL, Tax Increment Financing (“TIF”) Eligibility Study and Redevelopment Plan and Project, Illinois Route 47 & Illinois Route 176 Redevelopment Project Area, Final Report: November 12, 2014”

    http://www.village.lakewood.il.us/vertical/sites/%7B46B6A78E-D4CD-44FD-AD04-48899B9E3E7A%7D/uploads/TIF_Document.pdf

    So that’s one reason why some taxing districts such as schools, park districts, libraries, etc. don’t object to their tax revenues during the lifespan of the TIF being diverted to develop infrastructure for the TIF district.

    Because they hope to recoup their investment plus more at the conclusion of the TIF.

    In that case the public is financing private development.

    From a taxing district perspective, this TIF can be thought of as a 23 year loan from the taxing districts to the property developer or Lakewood.

    The taxing districts do not recoup their investment until after 23 years, and then only if EAV increases so tax revenue generated is greater than tax revenue lost, and who knows how long that takes.

    But there’s also the notion the taxing districts don’t lose all the diverted revenue, as taxing districts sometimes raise taxes to property owners outside the TIF area to compensate for lost TIF revenue.

    TIF revenue is a gift, free money.

    Generally TIF developers say that if the TIF is not created, their project cannot move forward.

    Which means the cost to the developer to obtain private financing is too high or non existent.

    Haven’t seen a comprehensive study on the success of TIF’s in suburban Chicago, comparing lost incremental revenue to gained revenue at the conclusion of the TIF.

    In other words, a basic cost / benefit analyses as to whether TIFs are successful or not.

    There are cherry picked success stories, but not a robust comprehensive cost benefit analyses.

    In fact, there is not a basic upfront cost / benefit analyses in this TIF study.

    Just the estimation of projected EAV, not supported by more precise figures.

    Meaning how did SB Friedman come up with $34 million?

    Where’s the breakdown?

    They must have a breakdown.

    SB Friedman is a development adviser and author of the Lakewood Rte 47 / Rte 176 TIF study.

    How accurate have their projections, and the projections of other TIF consultants / development advisers, been in the past, using all projections not just cherry picked projections?

    It would be a good exercise to list current and past McHenry County TIFs on a spreadsheet, listing actual EAV for each year of the TIF, and projected EAV at the end of the TIF.

    In other words, how has EAV been increasing in existing TIFs?

    Note this Lakewood proposed TIF “redevelops” farmland, two private golf courses, some farm buildings, some residential structures, and some other property.

    How many other Chicagoland private golf courses have been included in a TIF?

    If you have an unprofitable business (not saying the Crystal and Craig Woods golf courses are unprofitable), contact a development adviser / TIF consultant, municipality, or developer to propose creating a TIF.

    Seems likely you can get a better price for your property if improvements are financed by taxing districts (TIF diverts taxing district revenue to developers).

    As far as this area being blighted.

    This TIF study would have concluded Randall Road was blighted before it was developed.

    The methodology used in this TIF study would have concluded farms eveyrwhere are blighted.

  9. Here’s an article from another citizen skeptical about the types of properties that are being included in TIF districts.

    Newton is in southeast Illinois in Jasper County, which borders Effingham County.

    “How Newton Illinois TIF district is costing Jasper County School District”

    “Some of the blighted areas that were included in Newton’s TIF are a Brand new Napa store that was just completed before the TIF went in, a brand new Industrial park, an Industrial park that is less than 20 years old, and farm land.

    “This is blight?”

    http://www.newtonil.com/tifletter.html

  10. Furthermore, the tifs by definition encourage blight everywhere outside the tif.

    All the revenue from all other retail stores will be diminished by competition from tif commercial development.

    The existing stores and homes fall into disrepair, as by Lakewood’s own argument: Nobody would ever invest a dime in any project outside or absent a tif.

    Blight is further exacerbated by tax rates climbing to subsidize the profits of tif developers. Money from tif is distributed at sole discretion of Lakewood municipal rulers.

    Another vicious death spiral is created, pitting Lakewood against the people in the school district whom they are throwing under the (school) bus.

    (btw, in 23 years they ask for and get another 7 years. So in 30 years, the school district gets no ‘payoff’, it just gets to start taxing 30 year old property within tif.)

  11. In the SB Friedman TIF Study, the Crystal Woods and Craig Woods Golf Courses are referred to as “Open Space / Recreation.”

    Farmland, marshland, and water is referred to as “Vacant Land.”

    You can compare the TIF Study Map to Google Maps to see for yourself.

    SB Friedman TIF Study, Map 2, RPA Boundary and Existing Land Use
    http://mchenrycountyblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/Lakewood-TIF-with-buildings-12-14.png

    Google Maps, Illinois 47 & Illinois 176
    https://www.google.com/maps/place/IL-47+%26+IL-176,+Woodstock,+IL+60098/@42.2453506,-88.4228543,1657m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m2!3m1!1s0x880f6b156323d88b:0xf2d564df1ceda9d9

    So if you don’t know TIF vocabulary, you would never know there is farmland in the TIF.

    In fact, the TIF study does not mention “farm”, “crop”, “agriculture”, no pictures of farms, or anything else that indicates the current actual use of farmland.

    Do a “find” in the 45 page SB Friedman TIF Eligibility Stud to see for yourself.

    Village of Lakewood, IL, Tax Increment Financing (“TIF”), Eligibility Study and Redevelopment Plan and Project, Illinois Route 47 & Illinois Route 176, Redevelopment Project Area, Final Report: November 12, 2014
    http://www.village.lakewood.il.us/vertical/sites/%7B46B6A78E-D4CD-44FD-AD04-48899B9E3E7A%7D/uploads/TIF_Document.pdf

    Obviously farmland will increase in EAV after developed.

    Farmland is taxed at a lesser rate than residential, commercial, and industrial (not sure about railroads and minerals).

    For farmland, each soil type in the state is rated by the University of Illinois College of Agricultural, Consumers, and Environmental Sciences according to its ability to produce crops.

    This rating is called the “soil productivity index.”

    – The Illinois Department of Revenue, the Illinois Property Tax System – A General Guide to the Local Property Tax Cycle, rev October 2014.
    http://revenue.illinois.gov/Publications/LocalGovernment/PTAX1004.pdf

    The following is how much revenue, and the percentages, for the various classifications of property tax extensions in 2012.

    Illinois Department of Revenue
    2012 Property Tax Statistics
    Extensions by Class
    Residential: 65.47% – $17,524,821,527
    Commercial: 22.02% – $5,895,024,512
    Industrial: 8.90% – $2,381,236,402
    Farm B: 1.74% – $465,384,651
    Farm A: 1.37% – $367,113,067
    Railroad: 0.39% – $104,095,506
    Total: $26,737,675,665

    So there were $26.7 Billion Dollars in Illinois Property Tax Extensions in 2012.
    The revenue collected would likely be at least a bit less than the revenue extended, since not everyone pays their property taxes for whatever reason.
    No clue why adding the percentages equals 99.89% rather than 100%.
    http://www.tax.illinois.gov/AboutIdor/TaxStats/PropertyTaxStats/2012/Y2012TblC.xlsx

    Since farmland accounts for far more acreage than the other classifications in Illinois, you have a point of reference that farmland is in fact taxed at a far lower rate than residential, commercial, and industrial.

    So the TIF study is misleading by not highlighting the percentage of farmland that is a portion of the TIF, especially when comparing current EAV with farmland, to future EAV without farmland.

    They may not be required to do so by law, but they are omitting key facts.

  12. That would be another point in a McHenry County TIF study, after how many years is the TIF retired.

    Early, on time, or extended.

    TIFs don’t have to be for 23 years, some are for less.

  13. The comments in this post contains some more information for TIF research.

    Crystal Lake’s $64,000 Question
    11/08/2011
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2011/11/08/crystal-lakes-64000-question/

    A State of Illinois Comptroller report dated June 8, 2011 indicates there are here are 11 active TIFs in McHenry County.

    Arrowhead Industrial Park – Harvard
    Downtown – Harvard
    U.S. Rt. 14 & Airport Road – Harvard
    US Route 14/St Route 22 – Fox River Grove
    Main and Crystal Lake – Crystal Lake
    Virginia Street Corridor – Crystal Lake
    Vulcan Lake – Crystal Lake
    Downtown TIF – McHenry
    Downtown RPA – Woodstock
    RPA 1 – Huntley
    TIF 1 – Cary

    We can compare that Comptroller’s 2011 list of TIFs in Illinois to the 2014 list.
    http://www.ioc.state.il.us/comptroller/assets/File/MunicipalitiesWithTIFDistricts_07162014.pdf

    If passed, the Lakewood Route 47 / Route 176 TIF would be added to the list.

  14. The Village of Lakewood has cancelled the Planning and Zoning Board meeting 7PM tomorrow, Monday January 19, 2015, at the Redtail Golf Club, 7900 Redtail Drive, Lakewood.

    The next Planning and Zoning meeting is February 16, 2015.

    Thus, the Lakewood State Route 47 & State Route 176 TIF is likely a done deal unless something drastic occurs.

    The Lakewood State Route 47 & State Route 176 TIF & / or Chicagoland Sportsplex approval timetable is:

    Tuesday, January 20, 2015: Lakewood Village Board Meeting at 7PM at the the Turnberry Country Club, 9600 Turnberry Trail.

    Presentation by Chicagoland Sportsplex Inc., N.F.P. for a development at the Southwest Intersection of Illinois Route 47 and Illinois Route 176.

    Next meeting.

    Tuesday, January 27, 2015: Lakewood Village Board Meeting at 7PM at the Turnberry Country Club, 9600 Turnberry Trail.

    The Board will consider if they will approve the “proposal” that being the “proposal for a development at the southwest corner of the intersection of Illinois Route 47 and Illinois Route 176.

    http://www.village.lakewood.il.us/vertical/sites/%7B46B6A78E-D4CD-44FD-AD04-48899B9E3E7A%7D/uploads/2015-01-14_Special_Informational_Meeting.pdf

    So does mean the Board will consider for approval both the TIF District and the Sportsplex project at the same January 27th meeting?

    They are not one and the same.

    The proposed Chicagoland Sportsplex encompasses about 1/3 of the proposed Lakewood 176 & 47 TIF.

    Plus about 1/3 of the proposed Chicagoland Sportsplex includes an area outside the Lakewood 176 and 47 TIF.

    Be sure to obtain a copy of any handouts or presentations at the meeting.

    You can submit a FOIA request to obtain a copy of any Powerpoint presentations given at public board meetings, for example.

    Although not required by law, for transparency sake, villages, school districts, park districts, libraries, community colleges, etc. should place for permanent archive on their website any powerpoint presentations given at public board meetings, ditto any handouts, etc.

    And observe if the Board members are provided any information at these meetings that is not provided to the public.

    If the Board members are provided information which the public is not provided, what are they trying to hide.

    If it’s at a public meeting, any documents board members are considering should be available to the public via FOIA if by no other method.

  15. McHenry County TIF Survey.

    A State of Illinois Comptroller report dated June 8, 2011 indicates there are here are 11 active TIFs in McHenry County.
    Cary: TIF 1
    Crystal Lake (3): Main and Crystal Lake, Virgina Street Corridor, Vulcan Lake
    Fox River Grove (1): US Route 14/St Route 22
    Harvard (3): Arrowhead Industrial Park, Downtown, US Rte 14 & Airport Road
    Huntley (1): RPA 1
    McHenry (1): Downtown TIF
    Woodstock (1): Downtown RPA
    Total: 11
    That report is nowhere to be found on the Comptroller’s website, it was scrubbed or buried.

    Flash forward to July 14, 2014 report on the Illinois Comptrollers website.
    Cary (2): TIF 1, TIF 2
    Crystal Lake (3): Main and Crystal Lake, Virgina Street Corridor, Vulcan Lake
    Fox River Grove (2): US Route 14 / IL Route 22, Downtown TIF
    Harvard (3): Arrowhead Industrial Park, Downtown, US Route 14 & Airport Road
    Huntley (2): Downtown, RPA 1
    Marengo (3): Downtown, Eastern Corridor, Northside
    McHenry (1): Downtown TIF
    Woodstock (1): Downtown RPA
    Total: 17

    Summary:
    2011: 11 TIFs
    2014: 17 TIFs

    Thus, there was a 54% increase in McHenry County TIFs from 2011 to 2014.

    Between 2011 and 2014 (6) new TIF Districts were created in:
    Cary (1): TIF 2
    Fox River Grove (1): Downtown TIF
    Huntley (1): Downtown
    Marengo (3): Downtown, Eastern Corridor, Northside

    Disclaimer.

    The above analysis is only as good as the data.

    If there were any errors in the municipality reporting a TIF to the State of Illinois Office of Comptroller, or if the Comptroller’s office did not correctly report a TIF, there would thus be errors in the above data.

    That is not unheard of.

    There have been many violations statewide of municipalities not reporting TIF data to the State Comptroller’s office.

    There appears to be no consequence to the violations.

  16. Some or all of the property in the proposed Lakewood IL Route 47 / IL Route 176 TIF is not currently in Lakewood but unincorporated Woodstock.

    So will the EAV in that area shift from the McHenry County to the Village of Lakewood?

  17. McHenry County Blog History of the Lakewood IL Route 47 / IL Route 76 TIF and Chicagoland Sportsplex (formerly McHenry County Sportsplex).

    Lakewood Sets Meeting for SportsPlex, etc., Property
    01/14/2015
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2015/01/14/lakewood-sets-meeting-for-sportsplex-etc-property

    No Board Opposition to Lakewood TIF District
    01/13/2015
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2015/01/13/lakewood-passes-tif-district

    Sports Plex Rising from the Grave
    01/13/2015
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2015/01/13/sports-plex-rising-from-the-grave

    Erin Smith’s Winter Letter to Lakewood Residents
    12/26/2014
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2014/12/26/erin-smiths-winter-letter-to-lakewood-residents

    U.S. Senator Tom Coburn, Critic of McHenry County Board’s Lakewood SportsPlex Stimulus Loan, Retiring
    01/17/2014
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2014/01/17/u-s-senator-tom-coburn-critique-of-mchenry-county-boards-lakewood-sportsplex-stimulus-loan-retiring

    West Dundee Ice Rink Non-Profit had “No Skin in the Game,” Will MCC Health Club Operator?
    01/29/2013
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2013/01/29/west-dundee-ice-rink-non-profit-had-no-skin-in-the-game

    Another Example of Baseball Fields Not Being a Dream for Taxpayers
    11/25/2012
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2015/01/17/mark-comments-on-lakewoods-proposed-tif-district/comment-page-1/#comment-417059

    Erin Smith Endorses Ken Koehler for McHenry County Board
    03/16/2012
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2012/03/16/erin-smith-endorses-ken-koehler-of-mchenry-county-board

    Has the McHenry County SportsPlex Gotten Competition?
    10/31/2011
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2011/10/31/has-the-mchenry-county-sportsplex-gotten-competition

    McHenry County SportsPlex Still Seeking Investors
    10/20/2011
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2011/10/20/mchenry-county-sportsplex-still-seeking-investors

    http://www.stopmcsportsplex.webs.com

    Lakewood Considering Referendum to Allow Bulk Purchase of Electricty
    09/19/2011
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2011/09/19/lakewood-considering-referendum-to-allow-bulk-purchase-of-electricty

    Lakewood Trustee Ken Santowski Wakens from Summer Siesta and Reports to Constituents – 2nd July Meeting
    08/21/2011
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2011/08/21/lakewood-trustee-ken-santowski-wakens-from-summer-siesta-and-reports-to-constituents-2nd-july-meeting

    Lakewood SportsPlex Gets 6 More Months to Get Financing by 4-3 Vote
    07/26/2011
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2011/07/26/lakewood-sportsplex-gets-6-more-months-to-get-financing-by-4-3-vote

    SportsPlex Developers Fail to Find Financing, Seek Extension from Lakewood Village Board
    07/26/2011
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2011/07/26/sportsplex-developers-fail-to-find-financing-seek-extension-from-lakewood-village-board

    Lakewood Village Trustee Ken Santowski Entertains Dreams of Running for President
    07/03/2011
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2011/07/03/lakewood-village-trustee-ken-santowski-entertains-dreams-of-running-for-president

    Republicans at War
    04/11/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/04/11/republicans-at-war

    SportsPlex Second Bonding Authority Runs Out
    02/28/2011
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2011/02/28/sportsplex-second-bonding-authority-runs-out

    McHenry County SportsPlex Analaysis – Part 3 – Financials
    02/27/2011
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2011/02/27/mchenry-county-sportsplex-analaysis-part-3-financials/

    McHenry County SportsPlex Analysis – Part 2 – Comparisons with Other Sport Complexes
    02/26/2011
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2011/02/26/mchenry-county-sportsplex-analysis-part-2-comparisons-with-other-sport-complexes

    McHenry County SportsPlex Analysis – Part 1 – Demographics
    02/25/2011
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2011/02/25/mchenry-county-sportsplex-analysis-part-1-demographics

    Ken Santowski Reports to Lakewood Constituents
    02/02/2011
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2011/02/02/ken-santowski-reports-to-lakewood-constituents/

    Lakewood Newsletter from President Erin Smith
    01/29/2011
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2011/01/29/lakewood-newsletter-from-president-erin-smith

    Lakewood Village Trustee Writes
    Posted on 01/03/2011 by Cal Skinner
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2011/01/03/lakewood-village-trustee-writes

    SportsPlex Opponents Appeal to Attorney General’s Public Access Counselor
    12/14/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/12/14/sportsplex-opponents-appeal-to-attorney-generals-public-access-counselor

    Lakewood Trustee Shares Thoughts on Village Board Meeting – Part 2
    11/20/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/11/20/lakewood-trustee-shares-thoughts-on-village-board-meeting-part-2

    Lakewood Trustee Shares Thoughts on Village Board Meeting – Part 1
    11/19/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/11/19/lakewood-trustee-shares-thoughts-on-village-board-meeting-part-1

    WGN-TV Running Story on Lakewood’s SportsPlex Tonight
    11/19/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/11/19/wgn-tv-running-story-on-lakewoods-sportsplex-tonight

    SportsPlex Opponents Mail Second Postcard
    11/15/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/11/15/sportsplex-opponents-mail-second-postcard

    Politcal Ads Aren’t Over
    11/14/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/11/14/politcal-ads-arent-over

    Lakewood Village President Sends Letter About SportsPlex
    11/01/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/11/01/lakewood-village-president-sends-letter-about-sportsplex

    Lakewood’s Fall Newsletter Brings News on SportsPlex
    10/26/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/10/26/lakewoods-fall-newsletter-brings-news-on-sportsplex

    SportsPlex Opponents Warn Lakewood Residents of Tax Consequences of SportsPlex
    10/22/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/10/22/sportsplex-opponents-warn-lakewood-residents-of-tax-consequences-of-sportsplex

    Lakewood Trustee Ken Santowski Reports Again
    10/04/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/10/04/20438

    Libertyville Sportsplex $18 Million in Debt
    09/27/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/09/27/libertyville-sportsplex-18-million-in-debt

    The County Board SportsPlex Debate
    09/08/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/09/08/the-county-board-sportsplex-debate

    County Board Gives SportsPlex, Baseball Stadium, Wonder Lake Dredging More Time to Borrow Money
    09/07/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/09/07/county-board-gives-sportsplex-baseball-stadium-wonder-lake-dredging-more-time-to-borrow-money

    Village President Urges Lakewood Residents to Attend County Board Meeting Sept. 7th
    09/07/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/09/07/village-president-urges-lakewood-residents-to-attend-county-board-meeting-sept-7th

    Lakewood Village Trustee Offers Update
    09/07/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/09/07/19225

    Lakewood Village Trustee Gives View of SportsPlex Meeting
    07/30/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/07/30/lakewood-village-trustee-gives-view-of-sportsplex-meeting

    Lakewood Approves McHenry County SportsPlex
    07/28/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/07/28/lakewood-approves-mchenry-county-sportsplex

    Second Leaflet Surfaces Opposing SportsPlex
    07/27/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/07/27/second-leaflet-surfaces-opposing-sportsplex

    Approval of Lakewood SportsPlex Planned for Tuesday Night at 6
    07/26/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/07/26/approval-of-lakewood-sportsplex-planned-for-tuesday-night-at-6

    Big Zoning Doings in Lakewood Tuesday Night
    06/08/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/06/08/big-zoning-doings-in-lakewood-tuesday-night

    Lakewood Gains New Economic Development Tool
    03/01/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/03/01/lakewood-gains-new-economic-development-tool

    Lakewood SportsPlex Proposal Getting Curiouser and Curiouser
    02/19/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/02/19/lakewood-sportsplex-proposal-getting-curiouser-and-curiouser

    Thoughts on “Money in the Bank”
    02/15/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/02/15/thoughts-on-money-in-the-bank

    Investment Bank Announces Commitment to SportsPlex, If
    02/12/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/02/12/investment-bank-announces-commitment-to-sportsplex-if

    Chicagoland Foreign Investment Group Sends SportsPlex Investment Letter
    02/10/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/02/10/chicagoland-foreign-investment-group-send-sportsplex-investment-letter

    First Electric Newspaper Finds Potential Snag in Lakewood SportsPlex
    01/26/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/01/26/first-electric-newspaper-finds-potential-snag-in-lakewood-sportsplex

    Lakewood Village President Erin Smith Endorses Ken Koehler for County Board
    01/24/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/01/24/lakewood-village-president-endorses-ken-koehler-for-county-board

    So, You Want to Know More about the Lakewood SportsPlex?
    01/20/2010
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2010/01/20/so-you-want-to-know-more-about-the-lakewood-sportsplex

    Concept Drawings of the Proposed McHenry County Sportsplex in Lakewood
    12/22/2009
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2009/12/22/concept-photos-of-the-proposed-mchenry-county-sportsplex-in-lakewood

    $18 Million Federal Stimulus Request for $40 Million Route 47 & 176 Lakewood Recreational Complex on County Board Finance Committee’s Agenda Tuesday
    12/21/2009
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2009/12/21/28-million-federal-stimulus-request-for-40-million-route-47-176-lakewood-recreational-complex-on-county-board-finance-committees-agenda-monday

    Lake Barrington Sports Complex Might Provide Template for Lakewood’s
    09/25/2009
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2009/09/25/lake-barrington-sports-complex-might-provide-template-for-lakewoods

    Big Lakewood Sports Complex at Routes 176 and 47, Ancillary Uses in Second Phase
    09/24/2009
    http://www.mchenrycountyblog.com/2009/09/24/big-lakewood-sports-complex-at-routes-176-and-47-ancillary-uses-in-second-phase

  18. Numbers are worse in Woodstock CUSD 200.

    This is where Lakewood will insert the children of the tif, to be entirely paid for by taxpayers outside Lakewood –taxpayers who receive zero benefit from the tif money.

    tifs benefit from HIGH tax RATES. They are rewarded for rising tax rates, as they are paid tax rate multiplied by their incremental EAV each year.

    Woodstock D200 increased extension by 17% in these years…

    Numbers are worse in Woodstock CUSD 200.

    This is where Lakewood will insert the children of the tif, to be entirely paid for by taxpayers outside Lakewood –taxpayers who receive zero benefit from the tif money.

    tifs benefit from HIGH tax RATES. They are rewarded for rising tax rates, as they are paid tax rate multiplied by their incremental EAV each year.

    Woodstock D200 increased extension by 17% in these years….

    Woodstock District 200 taxes extended:

    2007/2008: $49,755,767

    2008/2009: $52,938,640

    2009/2010: $53,532,740

    2010/2011: $54,544,456

    2011/2012: $55,765,915

    2012/2013: $58,177,079

    As property values sharply declined…

    EAV of District by Levy Year:

    2008: $1,128,047,545

    2009: $1,117,370,497

    2010: $$1,066,023,673

    2011: $953,072,406

    2012: $843,158, 926

    (Page 19)

    So tax RATES rose sharply…

    Woodstock D200 Tax Rates:

    2008: 4.6929%

    2009: 4.7909%

    2010: 5.1166%

    2011: 5.8511%

    2012: 6.8998%

    2013: 7.74%

    2014: 8.18%

    (Numbers above show a 65% increase in tax rate from 2008 to 2013)

    (Page 20)

    As District homeowners found themselves encumbered by debt far in excess of statutory caps meant to protect them…

    2012 EAV of the school District, in 2012: $843,158,926

    2012 estimated full value of taxable property: $2,529,476,778

    2014 General Obligation Bonded Debt: $124,700,940 ( principal only, not including accrued unpaid interest debt)

    2014 other direct GO debt: $657,922

    Population estimate: 24770

    Percentage to full value of Taxable Property: 4.96% ( not considering accrued and owed interest)

    Per capita debt: $5061 ( again not considering interest accrued and owed)

    Statutory debt limit ( including existing Woodstock tif property) at 13.8% of 2012 EAV: $117,109,917

    GO Bonded debt: $124,700,940

    GO Other Debt: $657,922

    (Significance?

    D200 EAV has dropped sharply since 2012. Borrowing ability of D200 is tied to EAV. Borrowing ability is currently hampered by pesky 13.8% statutory cap. Tif will sharply escalate EAV for District– but falsely, since no portion of elevated EAV may be taxed by District. However, it can be borrowed against.)

    (D200 taxpayers currently owe 4.96% of 2012 assessed total property value ($5061 per capita) on behalf of D200 debt. …but that’s just principal. When you include total debt service, that is principal plus INTEREST,…do the math on figures cited below…

    (Page 18)

    Direct GO Bonded Debt (Principal Only): total $124,700,940

    (Page 15)

    Direct GO Bonded Debt (Principal and Interest): total $225,955,186
    (page 16)

    SOURCES: Official Statement of 2014 General Obligation Bonds issued by D200. The Official Statement in turn cites sources such as McHenry County Clerk, Treasurer, or the School District itself. Page numbers below refer to pages within the Official Statement.

  19. Once again the taxpayers are lacking basic information from a taxing district, in this case Lakewood.

    How many residential units are proposed in the TIF.

    How many children are those parcels estimated to generate?

    Are they single family, duplex, townhouse, apartment, or what?

    Presumably Woodstock District 200 asked for and received that information.

    If the TIF district generates even 1 more kid, that’s a losing proposition for Woodstock District 200, because Woodstock District 200 is getting the exact same property tax revenue from that TIF for 23 years.

    That’s what a TIF does to a school district; that’s the result of freezing EAV.

    District 200 would just hope to recoup their investment after 23 years and if neighboring developments spring up which are not TIFs.

    And speaking directly to the above article, irregardless if EAV and/or tax rate decrease or increase, tax extension goes up, thus your taxes go up.

    How can the taxing district compensate for lost revenue?

    Because the TIF area would have produced more tax revenue even if the TIF area was not developed and did not become a TIF thanks to Tax extensions.

    Which is one reason people say that a TIF results in increased taxes for people outside the TIF.

    The extension doesn’t know a TIF has been created and doesn’t care.

    Also, taxing districts (such as Woodstock District 200) have other sources of revenues such as bonds, both referendum bonds and non referendum bonds.

    So if the taxing district wants more money, it can get it without your permission by issuing non-referendum bonds, as long as they are under their non referendum bond cap.

    There is a lot of pressure to increase your property and income taxes due to largely hidden costs in unfunded pension liabilities, unfunded retiree healthcare liabilities, bond debt service, and TIFs.

    Hidden in the sense when is that last time your taxing district told you in plain English that you can actually understand how much you owe in unfunded pension liabilities, unfunded retiree healthcare liabilities, bond debt service, and lost TIF money.

    The taxing districts are very good at telling you how much you owe them for the non-hidden costs, but don’t bother to tell you how much owe in the future in hidden costs.

    Because that’s one of the purposes of hiding future costs, to make present costs lower.

    The legislative pension and retiree healthcare hikes since one sentence was added to the Illinois State Constitution in 1970 stating pensions and retirement system benefits are contractual and cannot be diminished or impaired has proved disastrous.

    Note in the Kanerva 2014 decision the IL Supreme Court decided retiree healthcare costs also cannot be diminished or impaired according to that same sentence in the Illinois State Constitution.

    Note the same sentence in the Illinois State Constitution also allows and unlimited number of pensions and retiree healthcare hikes at an unlimited cost all guaranteed by Illinois taxpayers.

    Here is the sentence.

    Illinois State Constitution
    Approved by voters at a December 15, 1970 referendum election
    Article XIII – General Provisions
    Section 5. Pension and Retirement Rights
    Membership in any pension or retirement system of the State, any unit of local government or school District, or any agency or instrumentality thereof, shall be an enforceable contractual relationship, the
    benefits of which shall not be diminished or impaired.

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