SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
CapitolFax.com
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
The great divide

Wednesday, Jan 22, 2014

* The Daily Herald looks at the vast disparity in suburban school property taxes

The gap between the top and bottom suburban districts is vast. On one end of the spectrum is Rondout Elementary District 72 in Lake Forest, which will collect $30,381 in property taxes per student this year. On the opposite end is East Aurora Unit District 131, which has a property tax collection level of $2,816 per student, according to district budget documents submitted to the state.

“The main reason for the huge differences has to do with property tax wealth,” said Larry Joseph, director of fiscal policy at Chicago-based Voices for Illinois Children. “The heavy reliance on property taxes to fund schools combined with the weak support from the state just makes for very large fiscal disparities.”

Discuss.

- Posted by Rich Miller        


31 Comments
  1. - Bill White - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 11:31 am:

    I have mixed feelings about this.

    Yes, there is disparity but Michigan moving away from property taxes a few decades ago has now given Governor Snyder and the MI GOP the ability to slash ALL education funding.

    I would like to see increased state aid to less wealthy districts but I also am nervous about transferring control over all education funding to Springfield.


  2. - OneMan - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 11:35 am:

    This actually plays a bit into one of the Ruaner comments that some kids are not our problem…

    It would be interesting to see how people would react if their district had to merge with other nearby poorer districts. So if the Naperville and Oswego districts that touch the East Aurora had to merge into one superdistrict as it were…


  3. - medium rare - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 11:56 am:

    Yes, we definitely need to look at changing how we fund schools in this state. Current system is not working. This is a very good article.


  4. - Pete - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 12:01 pm:

    How about the school districts follow the state house districts?


  5. - Downstate GOP voter - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 12:03 pm:

    I fully agree that the value of property in a school district is an important factor in setting property tax rates. However, Rondout Elementary District 72 is an elementary school district and East Aurora Unit District 131 is a unit school district. These two type of school districts have different cost structures which in turn requires different revenues.

    First, unit and elementary districts pay their staff, mainly teachers, differently and other educational expenses at the two types of school districts are also different. For example, few if any elementary districts have football stadiums or chemistry labs.

    Second, Rondout Elementary District 72, as with any elementary district, ‘feeds’ its students to a secondary school district in the same community. The existence of two overlaying school districts implies that there are two sets of overheads, for example two boards of education and pay for two superintendents, that will also impact the cost structures of and elementary district vs a unit district.

    I think that a better comparison would be between two elementary districts or between two unit districts.


  6. - Carl Nyberg - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 12:04 pm:

    Then there’s the example of Proviso Township High Schools that has a strong property tax base and is well funded and the test scores suck.

    Which has stronger correlation to student test scores?

    a. good property tax base
    b. high per pupil spending
    c. student income level
    d. demographics

    My take looking through the scores was as follows:

    If the district spent in the top third and the White plus Asian was over 90% the school district had high test scores.

    If the district had Black plus Latino over 90%, the school district had low scores, no matter what.

    A couple districts deserved positive recognition. Evanston Township High School was the only district where the percent of students who didn’t meet standards was lower than the % of students who qualified for free and reduced lunch.

    Also, Elmwood Park HS had a high percentage of Latino students of moderate income level, but a high rate of students being at or above standards.


  7. - Ghost - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 12:09 pm:

    There is no fix. short answer, if you homogenized all property tax money for schools, you would still have schools where individuals donated money to the school so the school was better funded.

    I do think they should implement more of a flat fee either per persone or per household for schools, divide that money up equally, and if individuals want to contribute to a school so be it. uniform public funding and then whatever the schools can capture on their own.


  8. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 12:11 pm:

    ===There is no fix. short answer, if you homogenized all property tax money for schools, you would still have schools where individuals donated money to the school so the school was better funded.===

    That’s not really a valid argument for why there is “no fix” for this.


  9. - Carl Nyberg - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 12:14 pm:

    What would a “fixed” public education system look like?

    These conversations pretend that what we want in public education is self evident.

    OK. Here’s my challenge.

    Explain what a quality public education system would look like in Illinois.


  10. - MrJM - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 12:14 pm:

    I miss Dawn Clark Netsch…

    – MrJM


  11. - anonxx - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 12:21 pm:

    If we move away from local funding and toward a statewide approach to raising and distributing education funding, more tax dollars from the Chicago area will be sent downstate to support schools. Is this the right approach or the wrong approach, I don’t know.


  12. - Ghost - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 12:25 pm:

    let me rephrase :) There is a fix to the property tax disparity. you can equalize, and we should equalize, the money given to each school to operate per student.

    That will not however change the exitsance of better funded schools, it will just change the source of how the money is directed to the schools. You can better fund all schools, and come up with a system that provides every school the same amount of public tax dollars, which we should. But at the end of the day there will still be school with a lot better funding based on the abilty of individuals with more liquid assets to direct additional resoruces and money to schools of their choice.


  13. - Wensicia - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 12:26 pm:

    It’s even harder to understand this inequality when some of the wealthiest districts are fewer than 10 miles away from some of the poorest, like Lake Forest and Highland Park are to North Chicago and Waukegan.


  14. - medium rare - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 12:30 pm:

    “Explain what a quality public education system would look like in Illinois”

    very challenging to do, Nyburg. You’re right.

    Look, I think we can agree that there will be no perfect solutions to public school funding in Illinois…..however, that does not preclude us from striving to do better than we are currently.


  15. - Hit or Miss - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 12:37 pm:

    I just checked the ISBE report card data for 2013. This is for 2013, the most recent data online for Rondout Elementary District 72 and East Aurora Unit District 13.

    According to the ISBE Rondout spends $25,189 per year per student and has only 158 students in the district. East Aurora spends $10,292 per student per year and has 14,758 students in the district.

    The State of Illinois funds just over $900 per student per year of the cost in Rondout and about $6450 per student per year of the cost in East Aurora.

    The question in my mind is not why the property tax collections are so different by why is the State of Illinois funding such different amounts. What factor or factors can cause this more than 6:1 difference?


  16. - k3 - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 12:37 pm:

    I would like a quality public education system that prepared our kids for what is after school. I don’t think test scores matter. Can you help my kid be ready for college and even after by teaching critical thinking, problem solving and collaboration? Or teach the same thing and prepare them to enter the trades? That’s obviously not being done now, and is funding really the answer? Maybe it’s about re-prioritization.


  17. - Under Influenced - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 12:58 pm:

    Senate has a committee that has been holding hearings on ed funding:

    http://educationfundingreform.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=section&layout=blog&id=1&Itemid=106


  18. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 1:01 pm:

    ==The question in my mind is not why the property tax collections are so different by why is the State of Illinois funding such different amounts.==

    The more local wealth you have the less you get from the state. Why wouldn’t that be the case? Why are you going to give a locally wealthy district the same amount of money from the state as a district with little local tax base???


  19. - Formerly Known As... - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 1:04 pm:

    Even the most altruistic parents in the better funded districts seem highly unlikely to say: “Yes, please give my children’s school less money”.

    It means giving some of the underfunded schools more funding, which is a good thing.

    It also means involuntarily taking a dollar from their child’s education and giving it to someone else, which suddenly becomes quite a personal thing.


  20. - Ghost - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 1:13 pm:

    lets create a funding source for education, maybe something connected to gambling…lets legalize the numbers racket and have the State run it. We will then committ the money to education. But then lets sell that enterprise to an outsider for quick cash, and cap the money for education so that over time we reduce what we provide education.


  21. - lakecounty - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 1:17 pm:

    - Hit or Miss - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 12:37 pm:
    Note that Illinois has a foundation level of funding that is dependent on a school’s poverty rate, etc. Higher need schools receive higher amounts of foundation funding, while schools with high property tax receipts receive less. Funding for the foundation level comes from Illinois taxes (not property taxes). This link will provide you with an explanation:
    http://www.isbe.state.il.us/budget/FY14/fact-sheet4-efab.pdf
    Illinois has not completely funded to the recommended foundation level since 2002. This year recommended funding was $8,672 vs actual of $6119 for high poverty schools. Kinda like the pensions, oh well, so what else is new.


  22. - mythoughtis - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 1:21 pm:

    ==If we move away from local funding and toward a statewide approach to raising and distributing education funding, more tax dollars from the Chicago area will be sent downstate to support schools==

    Given the fact that the people you most likely interact with during your adulthood did not graduate from the district that you pay taxes into during the time you paid taxes, then what’s the problem with that scenario?

    I want my doctors, dentists, nurses, accountants, retail and service clerks, home health care workers, and so forth to be properly educated. Given what I just said, I should expect that some of the money I pay for schools goes somewhere other than my district.


  23. - Bill White - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 1:34 pm:

    I support funding downstate schools (and schools in the less affluent Chicagoland districts) from general state revenues. However, I am less supportive of having all education funding pass through Springfield.

    Full funding of the foundation level @lakecounty refers to would be a place to start.


  24. - Arizona Bob - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 1:36 pm:

    Here’s an idea, though it will never happen.

    Fund the student, not the system.

    Have the state charge a Luxury Tax on districts that are overfunded enough to pay obscene salaries to staff.

    If your staff is paid at state average, you’re OK.

    If you can afford to pay 10% above average in salary and benefits, you pay a percentage of the overage to the state who redistributes it to those paying 10% LESS than state average, indexed to local cost of living, of course.

    In Arizona, we can get up to a $400 tax CREDIT for contributing to a school of our choice. That way the money can go to deserving, TRULY underfunded schools near a community.

    It would be interesting to see if those Lake Forest liberals would give it to their local overfunded schools or to the neediest in the state.

    What do think about doing that in Illinois?


  25. - Arizona Bob - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 1:41 pm:

    Bill, there has to be a criterion other than property value in rural areas to establish fair state funding.

    For example, a rich farming community could well afford to pay suburban levels of funding to education, but they get off easy since the state takes from the burbs to give it downstate schools for them. The money leaves our pockets, and STAYS in theirs unfairly.

    Community net income might be a better way to determine redistribution.


  26. - Formerly Known As... - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 1:53 pm:

    @Ghost @1:13 - Comment of the day.


  27. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 2:17 pm:

    ==there has to be a criterion other than property value in rural areas to establish fair state funding==

    Funding comes from property taxes so I’m not sure how anything other than property values would be a relevant measure.

    ==The money leaves our pockets, and STAYS in theirs unfairly.==

    You could make that argument for anything where taxes are concerned. Are you advocating that your area always gets back what they pay in state taxes? Taxes are inherently redistributive because they are used by the state for the ENTIRE state.


  28. - Confused - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 2:18 pm:

    Living in Highland Park, I want to throw my support behind any effort to make my property tax more equitable. How about we just let me pay the average assessment across the state?


  29. - Upon Further Review - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 2:19 pm:

    Evanston spends large amounts of money on each pupil, but the disparity in test scores and grade point averages continues to defy efforts to bridge the gap between the rich and the poor kids. The honors program at ETHS was under attack for being too white.


  30. - Judgment Day - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 3:03 pm:

    Following observations:

    First: “Schools funded primarily from local property taxes, under administration from State of Illinois”.

    Ok, but you’re already halfway there, and from the posts, it’s pretty clear nobody’s really impressed by the results. All local property taxation power comes from the State of Illinois (See Property Tax Code of 1993, as Amended), and things work - eventually, kinda, sorta, maybe, sometimes - you get the drift.

    You really sure you want to give the State MORE control over the process? IL DOR is already buried, as if Property Tax Appeal Board. Now multiply than 102 times over (102 = # of IL Counties).

    We already have a local property tax environment where we have active Township involvement (Assessors), tax district(s) involvement (levies, bonds, etc.); County involvement (Assessor/Chief Co. Assessment Officials; County Clerks, and County Treasurers); outside vendors who provide data processing services that are virtually all legacy Windows 32 bit client-server software that is all customized, and is on the verge of becoming obsolete, with a number of different reporting processes (wonderfully complex) to IL DOR at different point in the process, all before the locals can get tax bills printed and out.

    IMO, it’s a miracle it works at all.

    So, before you decide to ‘reform’ the local property tax system even more, you might want to learn a lesson from ACA before you start - things can get worse.

    Just a thought.


  31. - lakecounty - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 8:16 pm:

    - Arizona Bob - Wednesday, Jan 22, 14 @ 1:41 pm:
    “It would be interesting to see if those Lake Forest liberals would give it to their local overfunded schools or to the neediest in the state.”

    If you were from Illinois or living in Lake County you would know there are very few liberals in Lake Forest!


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


* Durbin's back to the future?
* Rauner bites back at union leaders
* Finally, some good Illinois news
* Question of the day
* Attorney General's office says plaintiffs can't back out of Duckworth settlement
* Can't win for losing
* Rauner claims he's meeting with Dem legislators today
* *** LIVE COVERAGE *** Rauner press conference
* *** UPDATED x1 - Gov. Rauner slams story *** Report that Mrs. Rauner wants no reelection is disputed
* Another judge rules that IDPH director violated due process rights
* "It’s not even close to being balanced"
* Kirk campaign admits contact with "whistleblowers" after Duckworth settlement
* Durbin attacks Rauner, says he'll decide about run after November
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Supplement to today’s edition
* *** LIVE COVERAGE *** Democratic National Convention
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Today's edition of Capitol Fax (use all CAPS in password)
* *** UPDATED x1 - Emanuel responds *** Right under the bus he goes
* Yesterday's blog posts

Support CapitolFax.com
Visit our advertisers...

...............

...............

...............

...............

...............

...............
<


Search This Blog...

Search the 98th General Assembly By Bill Number
(example: HB0001)

Search the 98th General Assembly By Keyword

  
* Galaxy A8 (2016) found on GFXBench as a 2015 flagship
* Redmi Pro OLED screens are from China, not Samsung
* iPhone 7 Lightning adapter for headphones seemingly found in Vietnam
* SurveyMonkey study finds social media apps ruled mobile in first half of 2016
* What’s this whole email thing about, anyway?
* Microsoft staff cuts grow to 4,700 for the next year
* Best multiplayer games

* Fulmer atop White Sox prospects list
* Ventura keeps focus on field, off trade winds
* Anthony Ranaudo's debut dragged down by White Sox stuff
* White Sox Rumors: Interest in James Shields is increasing
* Ranaudo flirts with no-no before Sox falter late
* Ranaudo the first AL pitcher to homer in 2016
* Midseason update: White Sox Top 30 Prospects list

...............


Main Menu
Home
Illinois
YouTube
Pundit rankings
Obama
Subscriber Content
Durbin
Burris
Blagojevich Trial
Advertising
Updated Posts
Polls

Archives
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004

Blog*Spot Archives
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005

Syndication

RSS Feed 2.0
Comments RSS 2.0
WordPress

Loading


* House Republicans Tap Breen to Fill Vacancy on .....
* Editorial: A chance to boost democracy — and sa.....
* Observations on the 2016 conventions' money tra.....
* Durbin rips Rauner, says governor tries to divi.....
* Durbin rips Rauner, says governor tries to divi.....
* Durbin rips Rauner, says governor tries to divi.....
* Durbin rips Rauner, says governor tries to divi.....
* Durbin rips Rauner, says governor tries to divi.....
* Durbin rips Rauner, says governor tries to divi.....
* Durbin rips Rauner, says governor tries to divi.....


* Illinois AG: Duckworth lawsuit settlement final
* Illinois seeking new private manager for state's lottery
* Wounded officers struggle with news of Hinckley's release
* 'The House on Mango Street' novel turned into art exhibit
* Standing Rock Sioux sues Corps over oil pipeline permits
* Fire erupts at Gurnee propane plant
* Illinois towns seek solutions to Lake Michigan sand erosion
* Gary woman found stabbed to death with man identified
* East Chicago residents advised to leave complex due to lead
* Illinois seeking new private manager for state's lottery

* Illinois seeking new private manager for state's lottery
* Duckworth lawsuit settlement final, attorney general says
* Attorney General: Duckworth lawsuit settlement final
* Health-care hiring keeps local unemployment at lowest in state
* Local unemployment again lowest in state for June
* Durbin rips Rauner, says governor tries to divide Illinois
* Illinois seeking new private manager for state's lotter
* Chicago-area man convicted of $4.7 million Medicaid fraud
* Blagojevich won't attend resentencing, to take part by video
* Chicago-area man convicted of bilking Medicaid for millions

* Huron to buy health care IT consultancy
* Fire erupts at Gurnee propane plant
* This artist is working to make children's hospital wards a little brighter
* Americans blow $27.8 billion a year by being lazy
* U.S. opposes Anthem push for a quick trial in Cigna merger case


* Person shot by CPD officer in South Shore
* Man shot by Chicago Police in Englewood
* Observations on the 2016 conventions’ money trail
* 2 shot dead in parking dispute; girl, 16, dies from asthma attack
* 19-year-old woman shot, critically wounded in Roseland
* Clinton’s acceptance speech: ‘Stronger Together’
* Edible balloons, frozen treats: Ice Cream Museum is coolest
* Sheriff: Detainees take over tier of Cook County Jail
* Duckworth takes national spotlight, skips Kirk bashing
* Renteria keeps emotion out of it in return to Wrigley


* Cubs lead White Sox 2-1
* Hostage situation at Cook County Jail resolved
* Man taken to hospital after shots fired by police on South Side
* Jackson Park a good choice for Obama library, but major challenges loom
* Huge crowd at Polish shrine hears pope hail their faith
* Live Blog: Rain clears for opening day of Lollapalooza
* Cubs pitcher Aroldis Chapman: a math problem in a baseball uniform
* Trump has a record of siding with Putin on key issues
* The Trump-Putin bromance - recipe for heartache
* Duckworth: Trump 'not fit to be commander in chief'


* Illinois seeking new private manager for state's lottery
* Duckworth lawsuit settlement final, attorney general says
* Attorney General: Duckworth lawsuit settlement final
* Health-care hiring keeps local unemployment at lowest in state
* Local unemployment again lowest in state for June
* Durbin rips Rauner, says governor tries to divide Illinois
* Chicago-area man convicted of $4.7 million Medicaid fraud
* Blagojevich won't attend resentencing, to take part by video
* Bernard Schoenburg: Durbin leads a very early 2018 gubernatorial poll
* George Will: The path ahead for Clinton


* PODCAST: Sports Talk 07-28-16
* Police checking on connection among robberies
* Illinois seeking new private manager for state's lottery
* Giraffe born Monday at Peoria Zoo
* UPDATED: Man charged, bond set at $5 million over shots fired at deputies
* Intuition led to arrest, conviction
* Carbondale man sentenced to prison for biting son's arm
* 07-28-16 Jim Turpin with the Cast of Oklahoma from the Champaign Urbana Theatre Company @cutheatreco @thevirginia
* 07-28-16 Penny for Your Thoughts
* Small plane crashes near Dwight Airport


* Rauner: Illinois Lottery looking for new private manager
* Animals dominate second day of DuPage County Fair
* Rain washes out Prairie Fest opening night
* Gurnee propane plant fire, explosion force evacuations, road closures
* Like riding a bike: Rams veterans roll up to training camp

* House lawmakers overcome hurdle on key tra...
* Rodney Davis talks funding with Bloomingto...
* The agency that fought Illiana gets a new ...
* Rep. Dold takes educational cruise down Ch...
* Lawmakers decry high turnover rate of VA h...
* CBD Oil, and politics
* Simon considering state Senate bid
* Killer Congressman Tom MacArthur trying to...
* Shutdown? State may not notice
* Rep. Bob Dold

* Durbin rips Rauner, says governor tries to......
* Durbin rips Rauner, says governor tries to......
* Durbin rips Rauner, says governor tries to......
* Durbin rips Rauner, says governor tries to......

* Two US Senate candidates fail to gather ne......
* 2 US Senate candidates fail to get on Illi......
* 2 U.S. Senate candidates fail to get on Il......
* 2 U.S. Senate candidates fail to get on Il......

* Police Shootings and Race
* House Republicans Tap Breen to Fill Vacancy on Bipartisan Reform Working Group
* Rogue Tickets? Watch Your Car For 7-Day Tow Notices
* #TBT - November 2009: Maryville Site In Development Talks
* Graphic For 'Utilities Pay Up' Report
* IPS Graphic
* Cartoon of the Day - 7/28/16 Trump and Putin DNC emails
* Sign At Chicago 'Freedom Square' Encampment
* 'Freedom Square' Tent City
* Chicago Activists At 'Freedom Square' Encampment


* Governor Rauner and Illinois Lottery Seek New Management Partner
* Governor Takes Bill Action
* Governor Visits Quincy Veterans Home Following New Cases of Legionnaires’ Disease
* Zika Virus And The 2016 Summer Olympics - Travel guidance for those heading to Brazil for the Olympics
* Two Cases of Legionnaires’ Disease Identified in Adams County - New admissions to Quincy Veterans' Home halted




Hosted by MCS -- CapitolFax.com Privacy Policy -- SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax -- Advertise Here -- Mobile Version -- Contact Rich Miller