As local public schools begin to grapple with devastating budget
cuts, community activists from across the city continue to put the
spotlight on Chicago’s tax increment financing (TIF) program.
Since its inception in 1986, the city’s TIF program has raked in about $5 billion in property tax dollars. Of that money, $2.7 billion was diverted from the school district.
return, Chicago’s TIF program looks to spur economic development in
blighted areas by providing subsidies to companies for projects, such as housing complexes or a shopping center. TIF money has also been used for school building construction projects.
at a recent TIF town hall meeting, Rogers Park residents criticized the
program, saying it has done little to generate economic development in
the 49th Ward and other struggling communities across the city.
“We need to end the TIF program,” said 49th Ward resident Don Olson at the CivicLab’s TIF forum held at Loyola Park last week. Read more »