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posted: 12/7/2012 4:07 AM

County board has held line on taxes

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County board has held line on taxes

Every year, I hear from taxpayers the question, "Why do my property taxes continue to increase when my property value has decreased?" I would like to thank the Daily Herald for shining a spotlight on the issue of property taxes in Jake Griffin's recent article, "Local property tax levies up $3.5 billion since 2005." The article states that property tax levies in the suburbs and Chicago increased by nearly $3.5 billion from 2005-2010.

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As chairman of the DuPage County Finance Committee, it is important for me to point out that your DuPage County government has not been a part of any recent property tax increases. For the past five years, the county board has not increased the property tax levy to meet our financial obligations and in fact has cut the budget by more than $48.5 million and reduced head count by 97 (most through attrition) since 2009. It is worth repeating: The amount of property taxes levied on homeowners and businesses has not gone up in each of the past five years.

Plus, the DuPage County Board has kept the county's portion of your tax bill to only 2.8 percent of your total property tax bill. The rest of your tax bill is for schools at 72.5 percent, municipalities at 10 percent and the rest to townships, park districts, the forest preserve and other governmental entities. The DuPage County Board refuses to shy away from the tough financial choices that all levels of government must make to lessen the burden on property tax payers. We will continue to minimize property taxes and streamline spending while maintaining the quality of services that our residents expect and depend on.

Paul Fichtner

Finance chairman

DuPage County Board

Elmhurst

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