Thank you to all who participated in the push to refund the surplus Tax Incremental Finance (TIF) to the original taxing bodies. Our efforts continue to pay off.
In his final budget address on Wednesday, Mayor Daley for the first time proposed declaring a surplus in the TIF district funds, which would result in over $90 million to CPS.
“By declaring $180 million in once-sacred tax increment finance district funds as surplus, $38 million would be pumped into city coffers. The balance would go toChicago Public Schools and other local governments.” – Chicago Tribune
While this is a monumental move by the Mayor, the City Council still needs to vote to approve his proposed budget. This means that the people of Chicago must continue to put pressure on local Alderman and the Mayor by going to www.noto37.org and make your voice heard.
The Raise Your Hand Coalition has worked hard to illuminate the TIF issue. This has historically been an off-limits topic with Mayor Daley. When RYH first broached the TIF topic with political insiders, CPS officials and others, many believed that although it was a bold endeavor, they doubted our ability to have any impact. Well, we proved them wrong!
Below is a summary of key TIF initiatives from RYH:
June - RYH spoke at the June CPS board meeting and boldly put the TIF question on the table.
June - RYH launches TIF reform petition using www.NoTo37.org.
June - RYH holds rally at City Hall/Thompson Center regarding TIF surplus and delivers 1,200 letter to Mayor Daley.
June - RYH invited TIF expert Ben Joravsky from the Chicago Reader to educate RYH membership about the dynamics of TIF.
July - RYH met with CPS CEO Ron Huberman and CPS CFO Diana Ferguson to discuss TIF and other education funding issues.
August - RYH participated in a joint press conference with CTU regarding TIF.
August - RYH met with Gene Saffold, CFO of the city, to discuss the return of the TIF surplus.
September – RYH renews TIF campaign – and has sent out over 3,400 emails to Aldermen and Mayor regarding the need to return the TIF surplus.
October - Mayor Daley proposes $90 Million in TIF Surplus be used for
Together we can continue to make a difference. We need to keep the pressure on all our government officials to start taking education funding seriously. While the $90 million will help the current CPS budget crisis, we must recognize that this is a one-time deal and not a long term solution. Thank you for your continued involvement with RYH!
Join Us! Please become a member and help us improve education in Illinois.