Local News

A major concession from House Democrats but it may be too soon to use the word optimism in the final days of the special session. House Democrats have signed on to the four-year property freeze that Gov. Bruce Rauner has been demanding, but there’s a big catch. The concession comes with a number of exemptions, something Rauner has objected to. Two exemptions include Chicago Public Schools and the City of Chicago. The House version exempts taxes needed by school districts and local governments to pay debt service and pensions. School districts that have been certified by the state as being in financial distress will also qualify for the exemption. Only 18 districts qualify at this point. Many democrats say they don’t like the freeze but say there is little choice to wrap up a budget deal. Republican critics say the deal doesn’t provide tax relief for everyone.

 
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