By: Diane Benjamin
I’m reading through 100’s of pages of emails, I will post others at some point. This one made me stop. City Manager Pam Reece does updates for the Council. This excerpt is part of one sent April 25th:
- John and Marilyn Freese plan to donate the property to the Town of Normal. Take a guess why.
I wrote about this property last October: https://blnnews.com/2019/10/10/denied-foia-forced-this-story/
In that story is an email where the Freese’s claim the property appraised at $400,000. They are only paying property taxes on a value of $165,843.
The County records don’t show this “gift” has taken place yet. The house has been empty since last September.
Unless Normal decides to keep paying property taxes on their “gift”, the Uptown TIF will lose around $1800 a year. Unit 5 will lose around $1900, the other taxing bodies will all lose out (including Normal) because yet another property will be exempt.
Guess who needs to make up the difference? All levels of government need X dollars from property taxes. If Normal takes this “gift”, there will be one less property to spread that X amount over. Everybody else will pay more.
Creating utopia is expensive. Wait until taxpayers get the maintenance bills for their “free” property. When does one more amenity become one too many?
In Normal, never.
Is ISU too smart to accept the house themselves?