Tax-increment financing districts raked in $1.6 billion in 2021, accounting for nearly 10 cents of every dollar in taxes paid by Cook County property owners last year.
Alex Nitkin is a solutions reporter conducting investigations on efforts to fix broken systems in Chicago, Cook County and Illinois government. Before joining Illinois Answers, he worked as a reporter and editor for The Daily Line covering Cook County and Chicago government. He previously worked at The Real Deal Chicago, where he covered local real estate news, and DNAinfo Chicago, where he worked as a breaking news reporter and then as a neighborhood reporter covering the city's Northwest Side. A New York City native who grew up in Connecticut, Alex graduated Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism with a bachelor’s degree.
What would the end of cash bail mean for Illinois? New Jersey offers a preview.
As the Illinois Supreme Court considers the fate of the law, bail reform experiments elsewhere consistently show promising results. But the political backlash remains intense everywhere.
As many Latino homeowners get hit with big property tax increases, local politicians scramble for fixes
Several ideas are being floated, but policymakers agree it’ll take big changes in Springfield to tame property taxes.
Cook County Office Looks to Shed Anti-Patronage Monitor as Watchdog Raises Alarm
Clerk Karen Yarbrough says her office has rooted out clout-based hiring. Attorney Michael Shakman isn’t so sure.
Towns, School Districts Getting Millions of More Dollars in Property Taxes Thanks to a New, Little-Known State Law
For the first time this year, taxing bodies will automatically charge property owners for governments’ taxation errors.
Lightfoot administration pushing TIF renewals to funnel billions in tax dollars into hot neighborhoods
The mayor campaigned on reining in tax-increment financing and has in some instances but is continuing the controversial practice in some affluent areas that critics say don’t need them.
North-Suburban Tax Assessments Point To Trouble for Homeowners, Potential Relief for Businesses
Assessor Fritz Kaegi says a new round of tax assessments shows his policies are working. But the picture for north-suburban homeowners is more complicated.
Here’s What the Bring Chicago Home Measure Would Do
The proposal would raise the city’s tax on the sale of pricey homes to help fight homelessness. An effort to get it on the February ballot fizzled this week, but advocates say their fight isn’t over.
Is It Working? Cook County’s Domestic Violence Court Strains to Improve and Expand a Year After a Reckoning
As officials work to overhaul an overloaded and flawed court system, advocates and survivors say the finish line is a long way off.
City Council Weighs Stalling CTA Funds Amid Service and Safety Questions
City Council members may finally get their crack at questioning CTA President Dorval Carter on Thursday.