Suffredin- For a Better Cook County  
 

Accountability
Forest Preserves
Public Safety
Cook County Budget
Forest Pres. Budget
Property Tax Appeal
Health & Hospitals
Land Bank Authority
Policy Resolutions
Unsung Heroine

 

   
 
   
   
 
   
     
  Office phone numbers:  
   
 
 

The Cook County Code of Ordinances are the current laws of Cook County.

   
 

Search current and proposed Cook County Legislation in Larry's exclusive legislative library.

   
  Last year more people used the County's forest preserves than visited Yellowstone National Park.
   
     
     
     



Lowering of questionable tax assessments reversed

Thursday, July 30, 2009
Chicago Sun-Times
by Lisa Donovan

Owners of several suburban Chicago businesses who caught tax breaks on their commercial properties are getting some bad news this week.

The Cook County Board of Review reversed its decisions to lower tax assessments on two hotels, a small industrial property and an antique and home furnishings store in Schaumburg in the wake of a criminal probe as well as an internal investigation into whether political favors were traded for successful tax appeals.

In April and May, the Cook County state’s attorney’s office subpoenaed Board of Review records for two dozen tax appeals, including the four cases reversed Wednesday, according to documents obtained by the Sun-Times.

And Board of Review staff have been examining whether state Rep. Paul Froehlich, along with a former staffer for Board of Review Cmsr. and Cook County Democratic Party Chair Joseph Berrios, used political muscle to obtain reductions

“Our investigation is to evaluate who is filing the appeals, to make sure they’re being properly filed and to make sure our process isn’t being compromised in any way,’’ Board of Review Cmsr. Larry Rogers Jr. told the Sun-Times.

Bimal Doshi, one of the owners of the Comfort Suites, 1100 E. Higgins Road, expects to appeal Wednesday’s decision to bump his hotel’s 2008 assessed value by 28 percent to $1,080,433. Owners had appealed the $1.3 million assessed value in 2007 and the board approved a reduction to $839,039, board records show.

Doshi’s tax break came under scrutiny this year after it was revealed he made contributions to Froehlich’s campaign.

“There was no impropriety that went on,’’ Doshi told the Sun-Times. “We made donations based on our political beliefs.’’

Mike Gray, owner of the property occupied by Treasure Hunt at 1230 N. Roselle Rd., saw the property’s assessed value increase by nearly $1 million.

His tax bill is projected to increase from $63,442 in 2008 to $235,945 in 2009.

In 2007, his assessed value was $831,035, but upon appeal it was reduced to $351,259. Now the assessed value is $1.3 million. Gray couldn’t be reached for comment.

Asked what prompted the changes, Berrios said: “There were some questions raised as to what happened last year. We called . . . [the property owners] in for a hearing and we determined where the assessment should be.’’

He declined to talk about his former employee, political operative Victor Santana, whose name came up repeatedly when property owners were asked about who they worked with to file appeals, according to hearing transcripts and board staff.

Gray testified in a June review board hearing that Santana’s fee was $1,000 apiece for his work on appeals for 2006 and 2007. But only property owners or attorneys can legally file appeals, board staff says.

Commissioners voted to ban Santana from the board’s private offices.

But Santana maintained, “I didn’t do anything wrong.’’

Froehlich also denies any wrongdoing.

“There was never any requirement, never any agreement for any compensation. It was just me helping constituents who lived in my district, asking for help,’’ said Froelich, a one-time assessor for Schaumburg Township.

“I gave advice to folks on how to do appeals, and they did so successfully up until today,’’ Froelich said Wednesday. He recently announced he will not run for re-election.



Recent Headlines

Can courts do more to force FOID card violators to give up their guns?
Monday, February 17, 2020
Chicago Tribune

Keep the Cook County Health board independent
Sunday, February 16, 2020
Crain's Chicago Business

Park Ridge looks to move 911 dispatching services to Cook County call center
Thursday, February 13, 2020
Chicago Tribune

Editorial: A report’s flaws suggest: Cook County bail reforms may have endangered the public
Thursday, February 13, 2020
Chicago Tribune

Offering rehab instead of jail time, ‘Drug Court’ gives some a second chance
Thursday, February 13, 2020
WGN News

Preckwinkle aide barred from her offices after sexual harassment incident
Tuesday, February 11, 2020
Crain's Chicago Business

New outreach group combating Cook County’s opioid crisis by offering treatment, hope
Tuesday, February 11, 2020
WGN News

Evanston Officials Eye County Grant for Construction of New Animal Shelter
Monday, February 10, 2020
Evanston RoundTable

CTA to spend $38 million studying Red Line extension
Monday, February 10, 2020
Chicago Tribune

In Illinois — the Prairie State — little prairie land remains. But work is being done to save what’s left in Cook County and restore more.
Thursday, February 06, 2020
Chicago Tribune

Brookfield Zoo chief heads for the exits
Thursday, February 06, 2020
Crain's Chicago Business

Suspect in weekend killing of Cook County inmate accused of beating another detainee in November attack captured on video
Wednesday, February 05, 2020
Chicago Tribune

MacArthur grants Cook County another $2.5 million for criminal justice reform
Wednesday, February 05, 2020
Crain's Chicago Business

Property tax hikes won’t be that bad, new report says
Wednesday, February 05, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

MacArthur Foundation donates $2.5 million to Cook County Criminal Courts
Wednesday, February 05, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

Improvements planned for Green Bay Road in Evanston as part of long-term project
Tuesday, February 04, 2020
Chicago Tribune

Cook County judicial candidate Arthur Sutton has history of disciplinary issues
Tuesday, February 04, 2020
Injustice Watch

Area legislators dish on policy plans that impact seniors
Tuesday, February 04, 2020
Chicago Tribune

Pappas and other Cook County, Chicago and federal elected officials urge residents to return the 2020 Census questionnaire
Monday, February 03, 2020
Daily Herald

Plans for new Provident Hospital paused
Monday, February 03, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

all news items

Paid for by Larry Suffredin and not at taxpayer expense. A Haymarket Production.
^ TOP