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Where do your property taxes go? Pensions, more pensions and payroll hikes, says Illinois Policy Institute




CHICAGO – Most property taxpayers grin and bear tax hikes, thinking they're paying for municipality services or better taxpayer-funded schools for the kids. Illinois Policy Institute released a new study Wednesday stripping away the confusion about property taxes, how they've hiked in Illinois over the last decade and how they were spent. 

Analysis of state and local government records over the last two decades reveals most of the property tax increase between 1996 and 2016 was caused by:

  • State education funds being diverted to teachers’ pensions
  • Growth in local government employee pensions and benefits
  • Expanded local government spending – which includes additional payroll, increased salaries and added services

"Traditionally, residents expect property taxes to fund services that improve neighborhoods and raise home values," Illinois Policy Institute writes. "Instead, this report finds that less than half of every additional dollar levied in property taxes since 1996 went to the delivery of services that improve home values."

Less than half of ever additional dollar went to services. Does that matter?  Read on … and demand change.

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