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Niles raises property tax about $21 per average household

Wednesday, November 06, 2019
Pioneer Press
by Judith Ruiz-Branch

The Niles village board unanimously approved a 4.9% property tax increase for residents at its Oct. 22 meeting. That amounts to an increase of about $21 per average household in Niles, according to Trustee George Alpogianis.

The additional $265,332 generated from the 4.9% increase will be used to fund police and fire pensions, he said.

According to a Chicago Tribune editorial, the village of Niles has 225 employees paying into the pension fund, while 580 retirees are drawing from it. Those numbers come from Cook County Treasurer Maria Pappas’ office.

Over the last five years, the village has contributed over $35.9 million to its police and fire pensions “in an effort to address the funding issues that it, like so many other communities, face,” said Alpogianis.

and will budget the full amount of the required pension contributions again in the 2021 budget," Alpogianis added.
 

"This illustrates the village’s... relatively recent commitment to addressing this issue,” said Alpogianis.

That’s right,” said Przybylo. “The point is that it’s going to fluctuate all the time. I agree with raising it 4.9% because it’s necessary. I wonder if it’s necessary enough.”

The village faced public scrutiny last year after a University of Chicago report called it out for being one of 74 fire and police pension funds across the state that are underfunded.

The village’s decision to fully fund both pensions since 2014 sets it on track to full funding of the pensions by 2040, as required by law. In 2011, a law passed to help curb underfunded pensions across the state that requires all public safety funds to have a funding ratio of 90 percent.

The 2019 fiscal year budget for Niles showed police pensions funded at 40 percent and fire pensions at 42 percent.



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