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Bush supports fair school funding, property tax relief for Lake County school districts

bush 022817SPRINGFIELD – Lake County school districts, some of which have been shortchanged for decades under Illinois’ worst-in-the-nation education funding formula, will see a significant influx of funding under a landmark school funding reform measure that passed in Springfield last week.

“All children should have access to a quality education regardless of their zip code,” said Senator Melinda Bush (D-Grayslake). “With Senate Bill 1, we created a more equitable school funding formula to aid school districts desperately in need of additional dollars, while ensuring that at a minimum we guaranteed current funding levels for every school district.”

Senate Bill 1 has strong support from thousands of school administrators, superintendents, principals, educators, taxpayers and advocates for fair school funding. Illinois’ school funding formula has not been updated in more than 20 years and is considered one of the worst in the nation because it relies so heavily on local property wealth.

“Senate Bill 1 not only ensures schools will be funded more equitably, it also provides property tax relief for high tax school districts,” Bush said. “Lake County has some of the highest property taxes in the country. I urge Governor Rauner to provide property tax relief for Lake County residents by signing Senate Bill 1 into law.”

Funding Illinois’ Future – a coalition that advocates for school funding reform – released an analysis of Illinois State Board of Education figures last week. The analysis showed potential funding increases for local school districts under Senate Bill 1, an evidence-based model that accounts for factors such as students with disabilities, English language learners and low-income students.

It also provides extra support for the neediest districts in the quest for adequate funding, and it offers property tax relief.

Again, no school district would receive less funding under Senate Bill 1 than they have received under Illinois’ current school funding formula.

The estimated overall gain some area school districts would experience under the Funding Illinois’ Future analysis of SB1 based on FY17 funding levels:

  • Round Lake Area School District 116 – $5.52 million
  • Zion-Benton Township High School District 126 – $1.95 million
  • Zion Elementary School District 6 – $1.62 million
  • Beach Park Community Consolidated School District 3 – $645,463
  • Grayslake Community Consolidated School District 46 – $353,068
  • Grayslake Community High School District 127 – $307,304
  • Warren Township High School District 121 – $282,621
  • Big Hollow School District 38 – $230,977
  • Wauconda Community Unit School District 118 – $215,152
  • Woodland Community Consolidated School District 50 – $192,036
  • Antioch Community Consolidated School District 34 – $90,190
  • Gavin School District 37 – $62,538
  • Millburn Community Consolidated School District 24 – $40,925
  • Winthrop Harbor School District 1 – $22,473

In addition, under Senate Bill 1, those that live in the school districts with the highest property taxes would be eligible for property tax relief up to 1 percent of their EAV. The following districts are projected to qualify for property tax relief:

  • Grayslake Community Consolidated School District 46 – $3.96 million
  • Round Lake Area School District 116 – $3.61 million
  • Grayslake Community High School District 127 – $2.71 million
  • Beach Park Community Consolidated School District 3 – $2.27 million
  • Zion-Benton Township High School District 126 – $1.82 million
  • Zion Elementary School District 6 – $1.05 million
  • Wauconda Community Unit School District – $109,162

These estimates are based on the funding levels proposed by the Illinois House of Representatives. As a result, these numbers may be higher than what the school districts will receive. To review the Funding Illinois’ Future analysis, visit fundingilfuture.org.

Harris: South Suburban communities would benefit greatly under new education funding formula

harris 030917SPRINGFIELD – High-poverty suburban school districts, shortchanged for decades under Illinois’ worst-in-the-nation education funding formula, could see a significant influx of funding to level the playing field with wealthier suburban districts under a landmark school funding reform measure that recently passed in both houses of the legislature.

“I eagerly joined my colleagues in support of a plan that fixes the inequitable way we fund public schools in. It also makes sure no schools see any loss of funding and offers property task relief to struggling homeowners. There is no reason Governor Rauner should not sign this legislation as soon as it gets to his desk,” Illinois said State Senator Napoleon Harris (D-Harvey).

Senate Bill 1 has strong support from thousands of school administrators, superintendents, principals, educators, taxpayers and advocates for fair school funding. Illinois’ school funding formula has not been updated in more than 20 years and is considered one of the worst in the nation because it relies so heavily on local property wealth.

Funding Illinois’ Future – a coalition that advocates for school funding reform – released estimates based on an analysis of Illinois State Board of Education figures. The analysis shows potential funding increases for local school districts under Senate Bill 1, an evidence-based model that accounts for factors such as students with disabilities, English language learners and low-income students.

It also provides extra support for the neediest districts in the quest for adequate funding, and it offers property tax relief.

No school district would receive less funding under Senate Bill 1 than they have received under Illinois’ current school funding formula.

The estimated overall gain some area school districts would experience under the Funding Illinois’ Future analysis of SB1 based on FY17 funding levels:

  • Bremen Community High School District 228 - $2.9 million
  • Brookwood School District 167 - $449,799
  • Crete Monee Community Unit School District 201U – $447,217
  • Dolton School District 148 – $512,762
  • Harvey School District 152 - $626,447
  • Hazel Crest School District 152-5 - $381,697
  • Homewood School District 153 – $152,265
  • Midlothian School District 153 - $937,556
  • Posen-Robbins Elementary School District 143-5 - $865,816
  • South Holland School District 151 - $365,484
  • Steger School District 194 – $638,686
  • Thornton Township High School District 205 - $1.7 million
  • West Harvey-Dixmoor Public School District 147 - $558,879

In addition, under Senate Bill 1, high-tax school districts are eligible for property tax relief up to 1 percent of their EAV. Estimated property tax relief for two area school districts:

  • Bremen Community High School District 228 - $3.9 million
  • Brookwood School District 167 - $1 million
  • Crete Monee Community Unit School District 201U - $3 million
  • Dolton School District 14 - $1.1 million
  • Ford Heights School District 169 – $228,369
  • Hazel Crest School District 152-5 – $681,918
  • Homewood School District 153 - $2 million
  • South Holland School District 150 - $224,619
  • South Holland School District 151 - $1.4 million
  • Steger School District 194 - $224,619
  • Thornton Township High School District 205 - $3.8 million
  • West Harvey-Dixmoor Public School District 147 - $488,309

To review the Funding Illinois’ Future analysis, visit fundingilfuture.org.

Cunningham: Time to deliver fair education funding

cunningham 031517SPRINGFIELD – School districts throughout the southwest suburbs and the state, ignored by Illinois’ worst-in-the nation education funding formula, could soon see an increase in state aid under a reform measure that passed the Illinois General Assembly last week.

“I was proud to stand in support of Senate Bill 1, a measure that will fix the worst funding formula in our country. We needed a real solution that not only properly funded our schools but also delivered property tax relief to high-tax districts—and we have done that with this legislation,” said State Senator Bill Cunningham.

Senate Bill 1 was vetted by multiple organizations throughout the state. It had the support of superintendents, school boards and teachers. If signed by the governor, it would be the first significant update to the funding formula in more than 20 years.

Earlier this week, the Illinois State Board of Education released estimates for each school district and showed that no school district in the state would see less state funding under Senate Bill 1 when compared to the current funding formula.

It also provided extra support for those in need and offered additional property tax relief.

The estimated overall gain that area school districts would experience under Senate Bill 1 based on the current-year funding levels:

  • Chicago Ridge School District 127-5 -- $880,000
  • Community High School District 218 -- $409,448
  • Cons High School District 230 -- $209,950
  • North Palos School District 117 -- $315,924
  • Oak Lawn Community HS District 229 -- $135,174
  • Oak Lawn-Hometown School District 123 -- $146,644
  • Worth School District 127 -- $193,129

In addition, Senate Bill 1, high-tax school districts would be eligible for property tax relief up to 1 percent of their EAV. Estimated relief for five area school districts:

  • Chicago Ridge School District 127-5 -- $573,844
  • Community High School District 218 -- $6.62 million
  • North Palos School District 117-- $4.01 million
  • Oak Lawn Community HS District 229 -- $2.51 million
  • Worth School District 127 -- $1.11 million

Senator Cunningham represents portions of Worth, Orland and Palos Townships in the southwest suburbs and the neighborhoods of Mt. Greenwood, Beverly, Morgan Park and Auburn-Gresham in Chicago. 

Hastings passes key government consolidation initiative

hastings 011017SPRINGFIELD- To start consolidating the more than 7,000 outdated government entities, State Senator Michael E. Hastings (D-Tinley Park) passed Senate Bill 3.

Senate Bill 3 allows counties to dissolve certain units of local government through a voter referendum.

“The goal is to save money, reduce taxes and make sure government is working for the people,” Hastings said. “It’s important that we continue to explore different ways to make sure government is working for the citizens of Illinois.”

Senate Bill 3 expands the ability of townships to consolidate and create greater efficiencies for taxpayers. The plan allows adjacent townships to merge, allows townships to take over the duties of smaller township road districts, removes the current cap on township size and allows voters to approve for the dissolution of townships that are coterminous with a municipality.

“This is one small step we can take to reduce taxes without sacrificing the quality of government service,” Hastings said.

The Illinois Senate has passed structural reforms in hopes the governor will compromise and pass a bipartisan budget that will be kind and compassionate toward the residents of the Southland. 

Hastings hopes the passage of the structural reforms leads the governor back to the table for budget negotiations to pass a balanced budget.