CHICAGO – Legislation backed by state Rep. Yehiel “Mark” Kalish, D-Chicago, which would make it easier for Cook County seniors to receive cost-saving exemptions awaits Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s signature.
“Rising property taxes cause a serious burden on families throughout the district, especially on seniors who may be living on a fixed income,” Kalish said. “This proposal streamlines the exemption process and will help ensure that seniors in Cook County are receiving the savings on their property tax bill that they deserve.”
Kalish backed House Bill 833, which creates a five-year pilot program from 2020 to 2024 for qualifying seniors to continue receiving their Senior Citizen Homestead Exemption without having to reapply each year. Cook County is currently the only county in Illinois where older homeowners are forced to annually go through the burdensome application process in order to receive their senior property tax exemption.
According to the Cook County Treasurer’s office, as many as 26,000 local seniors in Cook County didn’t reapply for annual property tax exemptions and discounts, potentially paying an estimated $45 million more than they should. Kalish’s measure would simplify the complicated exemption process, ensuring that qualifying seniors do not miss out on necessary property tax relief.
“Seniors are missing out on critical savings because of an unfair and bureaucratic process, this legislation fixes that,” Kalish said. “I’m hopeful that the governor will sign this proposal and help bring much-needed relief to seniors on their property taxes.”
Local seniors are encouraged to contact the Cook County Treasurer’s office, at 312-443-5100, to ensure they are receiving their property tax exemptions.