Tax cap's impact addressed Friday by county officials

The impact of what is generally referred to as a tax cap was addressed at last week's regular meeting of the Union County Board of Commissioners.

The meeting was Friday morning, June 10, at the Union County Courthouse in Jonesboro.

Tax cap describes a Property Tax Extension Limitation Law which is in effect in the State of Illinois.

During discussion at Friday's county board meeting discussion about the law made reference to its abbreviation – PTELL.

The impact of PTELL was addressed during discussion about plans for the preparation of this year's Union County property tax bills.

Union County Clerk Terry Bartruff said that his office was in the process of completing the work it needs to do in connection with the preparation of the tax bills. Bartruff said that he expects the work to be completed by June 21.

Tentative plans call for tax bills to be mailed by the end of June. Bills would be payable in two installments, with the first payment tentatively due by the end of July. The second payment would be due by the end of September.

The amount of revenue generated by the tax bills for the county once again will be directly impacted by PTELL.

Union County voters approved implementation of PTELL at the local level in the early 1990s.

The Illinois Department of Revenue, IDOR, explains that PTELL "is designed to limit the increases in property tax extensions (total taxes billed) for non-home rule taxing districts. 

"Although the law is commonly referred to as 'tax caps,' use of this phrase can be misleading. The PTELL does not 'cap' either individual property tax bills or individual property assessments."

Details about the PTELL are found in a document titled "An Overview of the Property Tax Extension Limitation Law by Referendum," which is posted on IDOR's website.

Under PTELL guidelines, IDOR explains that increases in property tax extensions "are limited to the lesser of 5 percent or the increase in the national Consumer Price Index, CPI, for the year preceding the levy year."

Based on the impact of the law, the amount of revenue generated for the county's general fund will be able to increase by only .8 of a percent, or about $30,000. 

The county utilizes general fund revenues for most of its daily operations. County officials said that the $30,000 will not meet increased costs of operation.

While PTELL has a direct impact on the county's general fund, the law does not cover all of the taxing districts in Union County.

Some of the taxing districts, such as schools, overlap into neighboring counties which are not governed by PTELL. Those districts do not fall under the law's restrictions on tax increases.

The Gazette-Democrat

112 Lafayette St.
Anna, Illinois 62906
Office Number: (618) 833-2158

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