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Life under Rod

Friday, Jun 29, 2007

* Let’s take a look at this Chicago Reader article about TIF districts and the budget situation…

Over the last few weeks Daley and Madigan have been getting kind of chummy. Daley pulled his support from the more generous tax relief plan of senate president Emil Jones and endorsed Madigan’s watered-down home owner’s property tax exemption. Why? According to statehouse sources it’s because Madigan agreed to support an extension of the Central Loop TIF, which was created in 1984 and is set to expire this year. What’s at stake? If the General Assembly extends it, it will continue pumping hundreds of millions of dollars a year in property taxes to a slush fund controlled by Daley for another 12 years.

That has been one of the rumors floating around, and Daley certainly does want the extension…

When Blagojevich figured out what Daley and Madigan were up to, he countered by calling in Cook County commissioner Mike Quigley, until then the only elected official who had dared to criticize TIFs.

Blagojevich convened a closed-door [leaders] meeting on June 20… Quigley laid out the flaws in Daley’s TIF programs

The problem was, as I pointed out in the Capitol Fax back then, Quigley had no actual legislative plan to counter the pro-TIF argument. Nothing was even drafted. So it was all an empty exercise, designed solely to pimp the mayor and Madigan. Great idea.

What will come of all this? Probably nothing, at least in terms of TIF reform. As one gubernatorial aide told me, “If Daley and the aldermen want to shoot themselves in the head, it’s not our problem.” Madigan’s spokesman, Steve Brown, who attended the meeting, was openly contemptuous of Blagojevich and Quigley and called the session a waste of time. “It’s another day in Rod Wonderland,” says Brown. “It reminds me of a Bible-study thing where the minister comes in and talks about his favorite scripture.”

So, the governor won’t come out and oppose Daley’s TIF extension or get behind any TIF reforms. Instead, his main purpose was to gin up stories like this.

And everyone wonders why we’re still in overtime session.

* More overtime reports…

* July budget waiting, but wrangling continues

* Editorial: Air Blagojevich

* Bethany Carson: Moving right along, for now

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Lula May - Friday, Jun 29, 07 @ 9:38 am:

    Must be all that testicular virility Blogo brags about. When it comes to Daley, Blago is more George Kastansa with the shrinkage factor.

  2. - fed up - Friday, Jun 29, 07 @ 9:45 am:

    Daley has been using TIFS to make his developer friends richer for years. There is hundreds of millions of dollars that should be going tothe schools and the cta and to the city budget for pensions,but Daley gets to se it as a private bank account for handing out money to developers. Property taxes wouldnt be going up if the TIF money wasnt withheld. TIF zone are supposed to be for blighted areas but Daley puts them downtown on the north side where ever he can because he then controls the money. It is an incredible abuse of power and is costing each and every tax payer alot of money.

  3. - Jerry - Friday, Jun 29, 07 @ 10:41 am:

    Down with TIFs!

    How many millions is Daley withholding from the Schools, from the Park District, from the County even to support his slush fund?

    Can we add the TIF law to the ConCon agenda? That is, either a rewrite severely limiting their usage, or entirely illegalizing the damn things? They can be great for revitalizing bad areas, but LaSalle street ain’t exactly blighted.

  4. - Anonymous - Friday, Jun 29, 07 @ 10:45 am:

    I predict TIFS being used by Daley will be how the feds finally bring down the machine. The lack of oversite and accountability has led to some incredible abuses. The way TIF funds are doled out makes hired trucks look legit.

  5. - Anonymous - Friday, Jun 29, 07 @ 11:19 am:

    As the three previous commentors have pointed out, what other plan does Quigley need than to oppose the TIFs? Why shouldn’t everyone be treated equally when paying their property taxes?

  6. - Rich Miller - Friday, Jun 29, 07 @ 11:23 am:

    He didn’t even have a legislative plan to oppose the TIFs, Anon. It was all just a goofy show.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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