Tax Dollars And Sense

Progress report: TIF reform

By Celeste Meiffren
Field Director

It has been over 90 days (93 to be exact) since Mayor Emanuel's TIF Task Force released their recommendations on how to reform the broken system of economic development. And when they did, the Mayor said that he planned to fully implement them.

So, how much progress has been made so far? Very little.

Chicago's TIF program has wandered far off track, becoming a $500 million-a-year slush fund instead of a targeted redevelopment program and is in desperate need of reform. And the improvements recommended by the TIF Task Force would take Chicago a long way towards solving the problems with its TIF program. They won't fix the whole problem, but they are a good first step.

But it's not enough to just have these ideas on paper, they need to be rigorously implemented if we are going to see real change.

Mayor Emanuel should begin implementing these reforms as soon as possible, before more of our tax dollars are wasted.

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