SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – In response to media reports that DuPage Airport Authority tenants owe nearly $770,000 in overdue property tax payments, state Rep. Terra Costa Howard, D-Glen Ellyn, is spearheading legislation to close a loophole in state property tax law that allows companies to avoid paying property taxes.
“Currently there is no penalty for airport authority tenants that refuse to pay their property tax bill. When these companies fail to pay their bills, the families and small businesses in our community pay the price in higher property tax bills and our schools, libraries, public safety and municipalities pay the price in lost revenue,” said Costa Howard. “These tenants have entered into leases agreeing to pay for assessed taxes, but there’s no mechanism to enforce payment, so they simply skip out and don’t pay the bill. If my family refused to pay our property tax bill, we’d lose our home. These companies shouldn’t get special treatment.”
Costa Howard’s House Bill 3426 would penalize tenants that are liable for property taxes but refuse to pay and hold businesses that operate on public airport authority property accountable by making tenants liable for a fine equal to the amount of taxes owed. The measure, backed by the Illinois Municipal League and DuPage County, passed out of the Illinois House of Representatives today with overwhelming bipartisan support.
“This bill is about basic fairness and ensuring that these businesses are paying what they owe,” Costa Howard added. “DuPage County families already pay some of the highest property taxes in the state, and these loopholes only help to guarantee that they continue to pay more.”