That’s about the ratio of the sales tax increase vs. the property tax rebate granted in a special session of the County Board Saturday. Two of our three board members (Bennington and McMahon) did not show up at all. Nice job on doing your jobs, boys: last time anyone looked, you are both on the payroll. Try acting like it.
The Daily Herald’s Jake Griffin reports:
DuPage property owners will see about $3 knocked off the county portion of their tax bills this year.
That translates to $1 million being shaved off the pool of cash being sought by various county departments for budget increases.
The county board voted 11-2 at a special Saturday meeting to abate this year’s property tax rate, but then tabled discussion on amending the current budget that could have added roughly $6 million to departmental budgets and increased pay for all county employees.
If you are counting, 5 members of the board did not attend the meeting. Why is that? On vacation during a financial crisis? Will not give up weekends?
$1 million dollars in Dupage County is not much money. In the past, Chairman Bob Schillerstrom has had almost that much in his campaign fund. So we get $3 back in a meeting where board members, having met an extraordinary three times this month, will pocket an average of $1,350 for each of those three meetings. Oh, and the ones that were not there get paid too.
After meeting for nearly four hours Wednesday to debate amending the budget, a $5 million deficit remained. Schillerstrom presented a balanced budget proposal to the board Friday afternoon and had hoped to have it passed Saturday.
The board voted 7-6 to table the issue until its April 8 meeting.
Board member Jeff Redick said there’s no need to rush.
Keep in mind this is after adding $20 million to a budget that was a textbook example of outrageous deficit spending, where both County Attorny Joe “Guilty Until Proven Innocent” Birkett, and County Sheriff John “Donuts” Zaruba, both said their departments simply could not operate with available taxpayer money-they had to have more more more.
And King Bob agrees, saying:
“I’m disappointed,” Chairman Robert Schillerstrom said. “We need to amend the budget so the departments know what they have to spend.”
What he means is : We need to lock in the lard, so they know how much more they have to spend. Keep in mind, the biggest consumer of tax dollars in DuPage County is the government itself-not fixing roads, not funding a bus system or any other transportation project, not helping the elderly, not anything outside of the entity of the county itself. The money goes in, and almost half of it never comes back out in the form of functions and services that serve the populace.
“There are five people who aren’t here today to take part in this discussion, and we’re also meeting on a Saturday when most residents aren’t aware that we’re here today doing this,”
said Jeff Redick, District 2 (our north side) representative. If most residents were aware of how the board did things, hardly any of the current board would be there, they would be voted out of office.
DuPage County and King Bob have taken an unwarranted tax windfall, a massive burden placed squarely on our shoulders, and now cannot figure out how the extra $20 million can satisfy their need.
Read the rest of how our county government will get bigger and more expensive on a permanent basis here.
And then ask yourself, how much is enough? Will we ever see county government do anything but grow and get heavier on our shoulders?
Will next year’s extra $47 million estimated tax burden on DuPage residents be enough? That translates into every man, woman, and child in DuPage County coughing up $50. Each household will get back $3.