Now is the time to expect our local governments (Village, Park and Schools) to operate in a lean and efficient manner.
Now is the time to expect our elected officials to exhibit prudent fiscal management and cost control measurers.
And now is the time our elected officials should embrace a culture that promotes fiscal responsibility by adopting annual tax increases ONLY AS A MEASURE OF LAST RESORT.
Consider attending the following upcoming meetings when our Village, Park District and School Districts vote on their annual tax increases. There is a portion at the beginning of the meeting where anyone can speak to our elected officials. Below are the dates, times, and the tax increase for tax capped funds being considered by each entity.
School District 181 (2.79% increase) Monday, December 9th 7:00pm Elm School – 6010 S. Elm Street, Burr Ridge
Clarendon Hills Park District (2.66% increase) Thursday, December 12th 7:00pm Park District – 315 Chicago Avenue
Clarendon Hills Village Board (2.86% increase) Monday, December 16th 7:00pm Village Hall
School District 86 (0% No Increase) Monday, December 16th 7:00pm Hinsdale South – 7401 Clarendon Hills Rd, Darien
Citizens for Clarendon Hills strongly recommends a flat property tax levy (0% increase) for the next fiscal year, for all local taxing jurisdictions.
Our recommendation is based upon the following principles and represents an emphasis in a governing culture of fiscal transparency and accountability.
- Hold the line on staffing costs & eliminate non-essential personnel
- Challenge & justify operating costs and all cost increases
- Eliminate excessive & unjustifiable reserve balances
Adherence to a these 3 principles is required for a shift away from the long overdue, ”spend-it-or-lose-it”culture. A strong governing culture of fiscal transparency and accountability will only occur when demanded by residents and taxpayers through your presence and voices at local board meetings - and at the voting booth.
Sound policies must restrict increases in levies/property taxes only as a tactic of last resort. In order for civil servants to increase the level of accountability and transparency to taxpayers, actual spending must be challenged line by line. Justification by civil servants to extract additional tax dollars based merely on the Consumer Price Index (CPI) increases, is irresponsible.
A flat property tax levy (0% increase) is possible without cutting service levels in schools and local governments. Non-specific scare tactics which threaten the possibility of drastic service cuts have been the traditional means to maintain the ”tax and spend”culture. Fear should not be used as a tool against the challenge and success of operational efficiencies, cost containment, staffing efficiencies, process improvements and shared services. We can maintain services and improve quality in government, in the exact same manner as the private sector - via smart work and hard work.
Taxpayers must educate themselves to avoid diversionary tactics used by civil servants to inoculate against negative reactions to their tax increases. A common example is: ”The average homeowner should only see a $ ### increase in their annual property tax bill”. Any unnecessary increase is a bad increase -which compounds year after year.
C4CH invites taxpayers, residents and business owners attend local school, village and park district board meetings to show support for a flat property tax levy (0% increase) and demand transparency and accountability with our tax dollars.