What May Have Started As A Good Idea Has Degenerated into a Justification for a
Boondoggle and has Become a Corrupt Political Process
What is a TIF district?
Tax Increment Financing (TIF) is a favorite government tool used to spur economic development in areas identified as legally blighted or underperforming. Elmhurst currently has three TIF districts and is considering a fourth to assist the north side of town.
How do TIF districts work?
City Hall provides developers and businesses with subsidies to lure them into town or to improve existing properties. At the most basic level, when a TIF district is created property tax revenues that are collected over a certain base amount are redirected to City Hall for its exclusive use within the TIF district for a period of 23 - 35 years rather than being distributed to numerous taxing bodies like the school district and park district. The diversion of property tax dollars away from the other taxing bodies and into the TIF district creates a TIF “piggy bank.”
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