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GOP AG candidate asks feds to look into suspect Cook County property tax system



GOP candidate asks feds to look into Cook County Assessor Joe Berrios' (above) office

COOK COUNTY – A multi-story report alleging lack of transparency and possible corruption within Cook County Assessor Joe Berrios' office needs to be investigated by federal law enforcement, Republican candidate for attorney general Gary Grasso said this week. 

Grasso sent a letter to United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions, he says, requesting an official investigation into alleged practices of corruption within the Cook County property tax assessment system.

Within the one page letter, Grasso focused upon recent media reports that revealed an odious property tax scheme where connected insiders can get property tax reductions by retaining law firms that happen to employ elected officials with insider connections to County officials making the decisions in property tax appeals.

One firm property tax owners use most often to successfully appeal their taxes is a law firm partnership part-owned by Democrat Party Chairman and Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan. Another includes Senate President John Cullerton.

“Cook County in Illinois is ground zero for this property tax scheme,” attorney Grasso said. "In fact, in a front-page story in the Chicago Tribune on Feb.1 stated, 'highly inaccurate assessments wound up handing unsanctioned property tax breaks to well-off homeowners while punishing those who have the least, particularly people living in minority communities.'"

The series – of which investigative reporter Jason Grotto has a key part – is also available on Pro Publica Illinois: 


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  1. No Republicans are running for Cook Co. assessor, clerk, sheriff, or treasurer. This Mon., the Cook Co. Republican Central Committee will hold a meeting. I hope that they’ll slate candidates for all of those races, so that the candidates can start collecting signatures as soon as possible.