It’s a rare occasion these days in Illinois when a taxing body reverses a policy aimed at taking in more revenue. Due to the dedicated efforts of the residents of Hinsdale High School District 86, that is exactly what the school board voted to do last night.
The issue is the Property Tax Appeals Board, better known as PTAB. In the past, whenever a resident of District 86 appealed their property tax assessment to the appeals board, the District would have a lawyer intervene on the District’s behalf. This was done in fear that District 86 would lose tax receipts. While not alone, District 86 was the only district to pursue residential appeals as a strict matter of policy. The practice has led to bad blood between the district and some residents as was evident in some of the school board meetings held this summer. With each meeting, more and more taxpayers attended and voiced their concerns that the District 86 school board saw the taxpayer’s money as the district’s money.
Back in July the public outcry against this attack on the taxpayers of Hinsdale, Burr Ridge, Oakbrook, and other district residents caused the school board to table their vote for 60 days. In the meantime, a special meeting with Downers Grove Township Assessor was held for the purpose of educating the board and the public on the issues of PTAB. During this meeting, not ONE person came forward to defend the school board’s practice of intervening against the residents. As a result of the overwhelming will of the taxpayers, District 86 Board President Dennis Brennan introduced a resolution to cease all PTAB challenges on residential properties. That resolution passed by a vote of six to one!
It’s time to smile Hinsdale High School District 86. You won!