Chicago TIF revenue up 1%, down 3% in suburbs

July 11, 2013
Press Release
Real Estate and Tax

Clerk Orr announcesTIF data will be on tax bills, new TIF video
Orr urges city to declare TIF surplus


Cook County Clerk David Orr on Thursday released the 2012 TIF revenue report, which shows $723 million was collected in the 435 active tax increment financing (TIF) districts in Chicago and suburban Cook County.

Chicago will collect $457 million in TIF revenue for the 2012 tax year. Chicago’s 2012 TIF revenue represents an increase of $3.3 million or 0.74 percent over 2011. The slight growth follows two years of TIF revenue declines – an 11 percent drop in 2011 and a 2 percent dip in 2010. Since 1986, $5.5 billion has been collected from Chicago TIFs.

“The city is making some headway by cancelling nine TIF districts, not adding any to the books, and posting more TIF information online,” Orr said. “But there is a lot of room for improvement in accountability and equity, especially when so many taxpayer dollars are diverted into the Loop.”

For example, Orr would like to see a comprehensive report on all Chicago TIFs that clearly demonstrates how much of the $5.5 billion has been spent, how much is earmarked, and how much is unencumbered. The report could break down the distribution of dollars by project type: schools, parks, libraries, infrastructure, streetscape, commercial, etc.

Orr also urges Mayor Emanuel and the City Council to declare a TIF surplus – sooner rather than later – so Chicago Public Schools can get a much-needed funding infusion.

 “How do we explain to school kids that gym, music and art classes are cancelled while profitable businesses are tapping into the city's tax base?” Orr said. “TIFs may have helped make downtown Chicago beautiful, but not enough is being done with TIF funds in the neighborhoods where they are needed most.”

Chicago has returned $182 million in TIF surplus to Chicago Public Schools in the last five years, including $10.5 million last year. Orr said the city should be able to return more TIF money this summer to help plug CPS’s budget hole.

Two years ago, Emanuel’s TIF Reform Panel made recommendations to improve the city’s use of TIFs, including matrices for determining surpluses, benchmarking performance, and periodic reviews to determine if a TIF should be continued or revised. Orr said he is hopeful the city is moving toward these goals.

To view data on each TIF district, see these PDF sections of the TIF Report: Countywide summary, Chicago summary, Suburban summary, Tax Increment Agency Report.

Previous TIF reports, the TIF property search tool, and TIF maps can be found at


NEW! TIF info on tax bills, informational video

With the release of the TIF report, Orr also announced plans to put TIF data on property tax bills beginning with the 2013 second installment bill, which will be mailed summer 2014. Orr also released a new video, “Understanding TIFs.”

“As a longtime advocate for making TIF information more transparent, I am pleased to offer more tools for understanding TIFs,” Orr said. “Property tax bills will display how much of an individual tax bill is going into a TIF fund. And our new video is a primer that not only explains TIFs, but raises questions about how TIFs are managed and used.”

The TIF video (found at the bottom of this release) calls attention to the following common criticisms of TIFs:         


·         “Blighted” applied too loosely

·         Parallel or secret budgets

·         Is there a better use of TIF money?

·         Lack of transparency

·         Not enough oversight

·         Porting

·         Should downtown reap most of the benefits?

·         Should multi-million dollar corporations be eligible for TIF funds?

·         How is “success” gauged?


Orr’s website,, already provides reports, maps and a TIF property search tool that allows taxpayers to see if they are in a TIF and the portion of their bill that was diverted to that TIF fund.

Key Chicago highlights from Orr’s report:

·         Since 1986, $5.5 billion has been collected from all Chicago TIFs.

·         Nine Chicago TIFs were cancelled in 2012 (see Chart A).

·         No new Chicago TIFs were added.

·         The largest Chicago TIFs in 2012 by revenue are: Near South ($65.3 million); LaSalle Central ($20 million); Canal/Congress ($19.6 million); Chicago/Kingsbury ($18.9 million); Kinzie Conservation ($18.5 million).

·         48 TIFs had revenue increases. The 83rd/Stewart TIF revenue jumped 153%, from $402,768 in 2011 to just more than $1 million in 2012.

·         26 TIFs – including nine that were terminated – did not collect any revenue.

·         89 TIFs saw revenue decline. The steepest decline was the Harrison/Central TIF, which will collect 93 percent less in 2012 than the year before.



Suburban Cook County

In recent years, the number of TIF districts in suburban Cook County has steadily grown. There are now 281 suburban TIFs in 93 municipalities. That means there is at least one TIF in 69 percent of suburban villages and cities.

“The need for greater transparency and accountability is just as vital in the suburbs as it is in the city,” Orr said.


Suburban TIF revenue in 2012 decreased by 3 percent, from $275 million in 2011 to $266 million in 2012. Six suburban municipalities collected more than $10 million in total TIF revenue in 2012: Rosemont ($32.2 million), Glenview ($27.9 million), Hoffman Estates ($26 million), Cicero ($11.5 million), Oak Park ($10.2 million), Palatine ($10.1 million).

Other suburban Cook County TIF highlights:

·         The largest suburban TIFs are: Glenview-Naval Air Station ($27.9 million); Hoffman Estates-Sears ($25.2 million); Rosemont-1 ($16.8 million); Rosemont-River Road ($12 million); and Cicero-1 ($10.6 million).

·         85 TIFs had revenue increases. The East Hazel Crest-Tollway TIF experienced the greatest spike, from $3,575 in 2011 to $124,678 in 2012. Other notable increases include Markham-Dixie Highway (up 71% to $2.7 million) and South Holland-Interstate 80 (up 66% to $1.2 million).

·         127 TIFs had revenue declines.

·        76 TIFs did not collect any revenue in 2012.

·       Six new TIFs were created in East Dundee, Evanston, Hoffman Estates, Morton Grove, Oak Forest and Palatine (see Chart B).

  • Eight TIFs were expanded to include new parcels while five TIFs were cancelled or had parcels removed (see Chart B).


New/Terminated Chicago TIFs for 2012 Tax Year



New TIFs – City of Chicago
*No New TIFs in the City of Chicago for 2012 tax year                                          0 parcels                                             


Terminated TIFs – City of Chicago for 2012 tax year
TIF City of Chicago – 72nd St/Cicero                                                                             5 parcels
TIF City of Chicago – 73rd/Kedzie                                                                                  7 parcels
TIF City of Chicago – Division/Hooker                                                                         3 parcels
TIF City of Chicago – Division/North Branch                                                               1 parcel
TIF City of Chicago – Eastman/North Branch                                                          10 parcels
TIF City of Chicago – Homan/Grand Trunk                                                                  4 parcels
TIF City of Chicago – Howard/Paulina                                                                      152 parcels
TIF City of Chicago – Lakeside/Clarendon                                                                 20 parcels
TIF City of Chicago – West Grand                                                                                    2 parcels
Total PINs removed from City of Chicago TIFs for 2012 tax year                   204 parcels



New/Terminated Suburban TIFs for 2012 Tax Year


New TIFs – Suburban
TIF Village of East Dundee                                                                                              2 parcels
TIF City of Evanston – Dempster/Dodge                                                                      1 parcel
TIF Village Hoffman Estates – Higgins/Hassell                                                      10 parcels
TIF Village of Morton Grove – Dempster/Waukegan                                         55 parcels
TIF City of Oak Forest – 4                                                                                                  5 parcels
TIF Village of Palatine – Rand/Lake Cook                                                               51 parcels

Attach to existing TIF City of Blue Island – 5                                                        115 parcels
Attach to existing TIF Village of Lansing – Bernice Rd                                        39 parcels
Attach to existing TIF City of Markham – (aka Canterbury)                                  1 parcel
Attach to existing TIF City of Northlake – Wolf Rd SW Comm                             1 parcel
Attach to existing TIF Village of Oak Lawn – Triangle                                            9 parcels
Attach to existing TIF Village of Oak Lawn – 111th/Cicero                                    1 parcel
Attach to existing TIF Village of Rosemont – South River Rd                               1 parcel
Attach to existing TIF Village of Summit – 63rd/Archer                                        6 parcels
Total PINs added to Suburban TIFs for 2012 tax year                                         297 parcels


Terminated TIFs – Suburban 
TIF Village of Hazelcrest                                                                                                        10 parcels
TIF Village of Midlothian – 147th/Cicero                                                                             26 parcels
TIF Village of Richton Park – Crossings                                                                          140 parcels
TIF City of Rolling Meadows                                                                                                   3 parcels
TIF Village of Sauk Village – Sauk Plaza                                                                              2 parcels
Total PINs removed from Sububan TIFs for 2012 tax year                                           181 parcels