Cook County's TIF districts collected record $1.6B in 2021, clerk's office says

ByABC7 Chicago Digital Team WLS logo
Saturday, January 14, 2023
Cook County's TIF districts collected record $1.6B in 2021
Cook County's TIF districts collected record $1.6 billion in 2021, the clerk's office said.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- A new report from the Cook County Clerk's Office shows tax increment financing, or TIF revenues, hit a major high in 2021.

The county's nearly 450 TIF districts brought in a record $1.6 billion from property taxpayers. Just a dozen of the districts, mostly in or around downtown Chicago, accounted for nearly half the haul.

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The TIF program lets cities freeze the level of property taxes that are delivered to local governments within specific areas, and divert all new tax growth into special funds that city administrators can tap for construction projects in those areas for 23 years.

Designed to kick-start private development in struggling neighborhoods, the tool is not without some criticism. Illinois Answers Project took a closer look at the report, released this month by Cook County Clerk Karen Yarbrough on TIF revenue from the 2021 tax year. You can read their findings here.