* I’m not a fan of holding press conferences in front of candidates’ homes, but such is life I suppose…
“It’s one set of rules for people like J.B. Pritzker, and another set of rules for the rest of us. J.B. Pritzker is a typical Chicago politician who engages in a con game to benefit himself at the expense of Chicago schoolchildren.” – Former ILGOP Chairman Pat Brady
Today, former ILGOP Chairman Pat Brady held a press conference at J.B. Pritzker’s “uninhabitable” mansion in Chicago’s Gold Coast neighborhood to highlight Pritzker’s property tax scam.
This weekend, the Chicago Sun-Times ran a front-page story detailing how Pritzker is abusing vacancy laws to slash his property tax bill. The billionaire has gotten nearly a quarter million dollars back in property tax breaks and refunds, taking money from Chicago Public Schools and other city services by claiming that a $3.7 million Chicago mansion is “uninhabitable”.
But interior photos from when Pritzker bought the $3.7 million mansion show a luxurious home that is far from uninhabitable.
Click here to see the pics, which were taken in 2007 when Pritzker bought the place. That used to be one seriously nice abode until Pritzker deliberately gutted it and then let it go to seed.
* The Pritzker campaign responded…
Today, the Illinois GOP held a press conference in front of JB Pritzker’s home, in an attempt to highlight the fact that JB appealed his property taxes.
Given that Governor Rauner has failed to pass a budget for two and half years and has few successes to point to in office perhaps they think it a good use of their time to bring attention to a process used by over 50,000 Cook County residents yearly, including Governor Rauner himself.
A memo leaked today revealed how far Rauner and the GOP are willing to go to distract attention from his failures as Governor:
Press conferences at condos Rauner owns at 340 E. Randolph St where his property taxes were appealed 6 times.
Drive by visits to multiple parking spaces Rauner owns at 340 E. Randolph where his property taxes were appealed 16 times.
Meet and greets with the 50,000+ Cook County residents who appeal their property taxes yearly.
HOLD INDEFINITELY: Press conference celebrating the passage of a budget or social service agencies thriving under Governor Rauner’s leadership.
As we’ve discussed before, Rauner’s condo association made those appeals, not Rauner himself.
* But, wait. There’s more. From a rival campaign…
To mitigate the damage from the property tax story, JB’s campaign said:
It’s worth noting that unlike his neighbors and many residents of Cook county (including Bruce Rauner), JB’s 2015 appeal is the only time he has appealed his taxes since he bought the property in 2006.
· Chris Kennedy has also appealed his property tax assessment for his Kenilworth home to the Board of Review and the Board ruled in his favor. (158 Melrose Avenue)
· In 2012, 2014, and 2015, Rauner appealed his assessment for his Randolph Street Penthouse. (340 E. Randolph Street, 61-PHE)
· In 2012, 2014, and 2015, Rauner appealed his assessment for his Randolph Street condo. (340 E. Randolph Street, #4103)
· In 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015, Rauner also appealed his assessment for three parking spots (Space P1-28, Space P2-30, Space P2-36)
The problem with that is that Pritzker’s Astor Street LLC which owned the side-by-side mansions also owns a condo and parking spot a block away at 1445 N. State (see links and attachments from Cook County Property Info - show ownership by Astor Street LLC, with a mailing address of Pritzker’s office at 111 S Wacker #4000)
Recorder of Deeds records show that Astor Street purchased the condo & parking spot for $385,000 in December 2006.
Assessor and Board of Review records (attached) show that the taxes for the condo and parking spot were appealed in 2009, 2011, 2012, 2015, and 2016.
Therefore, they are being dishonest by bringing up Rauner’s appeals of his condos and parking spots when JB has done it just as often.
In fact, unlike Rauner, who didn’t get reductions, the Assessor and Board of Review reduced the Assessment for Pritzker’s Condo and parking space multiple times.
The Assessor reduced the taxes in 2012 and 2015. The Board of Review reduced the taxes in 2009, 2012, 2015, and 2016.
Even if the appeals were carried out by the Condo Assn - that’s what happened in Rauner’s case, and JB used that as the basis to attack him for this.
* In response, the Pritzker campaign released this statement…
It seems that Bruce Rauner and JB Pritzker were two of the over 50,000 Cook County residents who appeal their property taxes each year.
And, just as an FYI, that raw oppo I posted wasn’t from Team Rauner.