Suffredin- Changing County Government  
 

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:  
   
 
 

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

   
 

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

   
  The Cook County Law Library is the second largest County law library in the nation.
   
     
     
     



Some properties still mislabled as 'Vacant' on tax rolls

Friday, August 02, 2013
CBS2
by Pam Zekman

If you live in Cook County, your property taxes were due this week.

Some residents pay higher taxes than their neighbors because some developed properties are mistakenly listed as “vacant.” Those mistakes were supposed to be cleared up years ago after a CBS 2 investigation by Pam Zekman.

Now, she’s finding more problems. 

And even though a photograph on the Cook County Assessors website shows the home was there in 2008, it is still described it as vacant land and assessed that way. And that’s what infuriates neighbors who complained to CBS 2 that these homeowners are only paying $1,200 to $1,700 a year – not their fair share of property taxes.

That’s jaw-dropping to Cathy Demar, who pays up to $9,000 per year. “It’s not fair to all other homeowners around here. We are getting ripped off,” Demar says.

Chicago Police Sgt. Joseph Mark owns the home. Mark says he told the assessor’s office the house was finished but never got a corrected tax bill. “Some things I guess fall through the cracks,” he told Zekman.

As a result of CBS 2’s inquiry, the property has been reassessed with estimated taxes of $6,700. Mark will be charged for three years of back taxes. He says he’ll pay.

Still, the lapse aggravates owners of comparable home like Renee Megaro, who have been paying that all along. “I blame the politicians. They need to do something about this,” she says.

After CBS 2 disclosed in 2010 that houses all over the county were incorrectly assessed as vacant land, corrections were made and the proper taxes paid. Former assessor James Houlihan ordered a review of all vacant land. It was finished by his successor, Joseph Berrios.

The results? Four hundred and one buildings were added to the tax rolls with more than $2.2 million in taxes due.

But they missed a million-dollar home in Glenview that was assessed as vacant land for the three years the former owner lived there. His taxes were $4,000 to $5,000 when it should have been about $14,000.

The assessor says the mistakes happened because his office was not notified about the permits for the new houses by their building departments or township assessor.

That process helps flag properties that will require reassessment. Berrios also wants your help. His office fields anonymous tips online in hopes of learning about under-assessments http://whistleblowing.cookcountyassessor.com/

For people who purposely avoid paying their fair share, he says: “If we catch you, we will not only tax you we will go back three years and you will pay interest and penalties on that tax.”



Recent Headlines

Preckwinkle counters IG report on Cook hospitals, says system continues 'to reform and modernize'
Thursday, May 17, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Clerk Brown, vendors discuss e-filing users’ first steps in Cook County
Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Wilmette to reconsider adopting Cook County minimum wage, sick time laws next month
Wednesday, May 16, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Bill to keep pregnant women out of jail while they await trial reaches governor's desk
Tuesday, May 15, 2018
Chicago Tribune

2018 ASIAN AMERICAN PACIFIC ISLANDER HERITAGE MONTH OBSERVANCE MAY 01 – MAY 31, 2018
Tuesday, May 15, 2018
Special to suffredin.org

Inspector general: Cook County hospitals lost roughly $165 million due to widespread errors
Tuesday, May 15, 2018
Chicago Tribune

3 Cook County police vehicles damaged in Oak Forest crashes
Sunday, May 13, 2018
Daily Southtown

Seattle Soda Tax Revenue Is Exceeding Projections
Friday, May 11, 2018
Governing Magazin

Facebook: Cook County data mining lawsuit designed to benefit only county government, its hired lawyers
Thursday, May 10, 2018
Cook County Record

Cutting court interpreters threatens due process rights, even victim safety, union says
Thursday, May 10, 2018
Chicago Reader

Assessor’s Office new residential property assessment model unveiled for Tax Year 2018 reassessment
Wednesday, May 02, 2018
Special to suffredin.org

CEDA scholarships
Tuesday, May 01, 2018
Special to suffredin.org

County’s ‘Scavenger’ Sale To Boost Blighted Neighborhoods
Tuesday, May 01, 2018
WBEZ Public Radio

Cook County selling nearly 3,200 vacant lots to encourage redevelopment
Tuesday, May 01, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Cook County property owners with past-due tax bills could face steeper payments after Friday
Monday, April 30, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Cook Sheriff: Backpage, attorneys owe Cook County for 'hoax' suit over sheriff's credit card squeeze
Friday, April 27, 2018
Cook County Record

Two Cook County branch courthouses could close in budget cuts that followed pop tax repeal
Thursday, April 26, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Western Springs Board votes to follow county ordinance, raising minimum wage to $11 this year
Tuesday, April 24, 2018
Pioneer Press

Mother files complaint, says while she was at Daley Center for jury duty, staff sent her to men’s room to pump breast milk
Monday, April 23, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Challenge to filing fee has some worth
Monday, April 16, 2018
Chicago Daily law Bulletin

all news items

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