More Financial Flim-Flam in Chicago

"Chicago sunrise 1" by Daniel Schwen - Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

“Chicago sunrise 1” by Daniel Schwen – Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

We’re getting yet another small sample of the Chicago Way of Finance that has dug such a deep hole for the city.

First, Rahm Emanuel wants to take a $20 million one time gain from a transfer tax paid when the consortium that had leased the Chicago Skyway sold their interest to a new group of investors and use it to fund a property tax rebate.

Similarly, better cash management allowed the city to take in an extra $45 million in interest last year. Great job by new city treasurer Kurt Summers. Alderman Carlos Ramirez-Rosa wants to use the money to expand Emanuel’s proposed property tax rebate.

Chicago is a city with truly epic levels of debt and unfunded pensions, yet the first instinct of its politicians is to use cash to issue property tax rebates.

Chicago politicians have been so fearful of leveling with the taxpayer about the true cost of government there that they’ve used a non-stop series of gimmicks and one time tactics to delay and delay the bill coming due to the point that there’s a gigantic mountain of liabilities that have accrued.

Even today, the one time gimmicks just keep coming.

Bad governance and citizens who keep voting over and over for business as usual. That’s Chicago’s financial problem in a nutshell.


from Aaron M. Renn


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