* Fran Spielman…
Mayor Lori Lightfoot acknowledged Friday she will have no choice but to raise property taxes — which were more than doubled by former Mayor Rahm Emanuel — if her agenda falls flat in the General Assembly’s fall veto session.
Lightfoot’s heavy-lift requests for a graduated real estate transfer tax and a casino gambling fix — either through city-state ownership of a Chicago casino or a revised tax structure — face long odds in Springfield amid a blockbuster corruption scandal that has spread from Chicago and the [west] suburbs to Springfield. […]
“It’ll be very difficult to avoid a property tax increase if we do not get help from Springfield. … There are limited tools that a mayor can use to generate substantial revenue. Property tax is really chief among them,” the mayor told the Sun-Times.
“It’s certainly my hope to avoid a large property tax increase. I’ve heard that message loud and clear — whether it’s people coming up to me on the street, our budget town halls, people who filled out the surveys. They don’t want a property tax increase. That has become a real sticking point for people. But if we don’t get those two things, our options are severely limited.”
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*** UPDATE *** Greg Hinz…
Mayor Lori Lightfoot is aiming at another group to help her close a yawning city budget gap: restaurants and their customers.
A few hours after unveiling a $40 million tax on rides from Uber, Lyft and other ride-sharing firms, Lightfoot’s office confirmed that she’ll also seek a $20 million new tax on restaurants.
The quarter-percentage-point levy would apply to all food and beverages sold at retail establishments. Combined with levies by other governments including Cook County and the Metropolitan Pier & Exposition Authority, the tax on restaurant bills would rise to as much as 11.75 percent.