Oct 26, 2022 - News

Tax bill headaches hit Cook County

Photo of a man answering questions at a desk.

Cook County Assessor Fritz Kaegi during a 2021 interview at his office. Photo: Christopher Dilts/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The second installment of the 2021 Cook County property taxes is expected to be delivered by Dec. 1, with a due date of Dec. 31.

Why it matters: Technical problems and internal squabbles delayed the second installment this year from August to December.

  • If property taxes are delayed into 2023, homeowners won't be able to write them off on their income tax.

Flashback: The Cook County Assessor's office reportedly modernized its technology this year, but the process slowed to a crawl after the Cook County Board of Review did not.

  • With the process completed, the Cook County Clerk and Treasurer's office should be able to send out bills.

The intrigue: This will be the first tax bill for Chicago residents based on Assessor Fritz Kaegi's new formula.

Zoom in: The Cook County Board President's Office says 49 taxing districts have applied for loans through the Cook County Bridge Fund program to cover costs until the tax money is collected.

  • For residents, the delay is skewing escrow accounts and savings plans and jeopardizing securing home loans.

What they're saying: "This impacts sellers buying new homes, because they have to put more funds into escrow for taxes until bills are released," mortgage broker David Hochberg tells Axios.

  • "People will have less funds to purchase new homes."

What we're watching: Some worry the delay will cascade into next year's first bill, which usually comes out in February. Could the county delay the tax bill again?

  • Cook County Treasurer Maria Pappas said on the Steve Cochran Show last week that the bill will probably be pushed to April, which could cause a ripple effect through year-end.

What they're saying: "Taxpayers are encouraged to continue budgeting for anticipated taxes owed," a spokesperson for the Cook County Board President tells Axios.

  • "The president's office supports a coordinated communication strategy so that taxpayers understand the timing of tax bills as soon as the information is available."

Get more local stories in your inbox with Axios Chicago.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more

More Chicago stories

No stories could be found


Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Chicago.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more