The first part of attorney Tim Dwyer’s tax protest suit is against McHenry County. You can read about that here.
The second section goes after excessive levies at Wonder Lake’s Harrison Grade School District 36.
As with the challenged funds of McHenry County government, Dwyer goes after property taxes levied, even though the school district has more than enough funds in the bank to finance the function for over two years.
Part of the suit observes,
No statutory authority exists for large accumulations to provide for possible emergencies, which may or may not occur, since emergencies engendered by unforeseen circumstances are amply provided for in the statute, and may not be anticipated, as no resource is ample to meet every emergency which could possibly occur.
This part of the School Code is quoted:
As to School Districts, the Illinois School Code (105 ILCS 5/17-5.1) specifically provides that
“No tax … shall be levied at a rate sufficient to accumulate funds nor shall funds for such purposes be accumulated as authorized in, said sections until the board of education or school board has by resolution ordered the submission of the proposition of accumulating funds for such purpose to the electors of the district at a regular scheduled election and the proposition has been approved by a majority of the electors voting thereon.”
Absent a referendum, the accumulation of public funds beyond the actual requirements for the particular purpose for the ensuing year is illegal and contrary to the policy of the law, as well as being an imposition upon the taxpayer, depriving him or her of funds to which he is entitled.
The suit focuses on the Wonder Lake school district’s Transportation Fund.
Dwyer points out that the Transportation Fund’s
money “exceed[s] five years’ requirements on the basis of the actual average expenditure of the three preceding years.”
The average amount spent on busing students over the last three years has been $370,000.
That is compared with the last levy of $1,808,979 and the cash on hand of $1,397,538.
Putting the two figures together gets one to $3.2 million.
That amounts to “562 days of cash on hand.”