Proposed North Branch Industrial Corridor TIF: If permitted - will affect entire city & without community voices may fill wealthy developer pockets


“Mayor Emanuel and Alderman Hopkins are pushing to create a North Branch Industrial Corridor TIF (Tax Increment Financing) to payoff large developers," cautions Tom Tresser, lead organizer for the TIF Illumination Project.


Tom Tresser

"Residents from both sides of the River should use this Nov. 14 public meeting to demand, the entire project plan in writing as well as the TIF plan, before the TIF is approved." Tresser has presented on TIFs at 73 public meetings across the city, "TIFs equals 'Taking it from schools,'" comments Tresser. "And, giving $500 to $800 million in public funds to subsidize the Lincoln Yard Project while so much of our city is under stress and duress is simply unsupportable." 

The 6 p.m. Wednesday TIF meeting at Renew Chicago Church, 1001 N. Crosby St. is a public meeting that is part of the Illinois requirements for establishing a TIF. However, residents are concerned that this meeting will be a repeat of a controlled environment where presiding responders are evasive and anything but transparent. 

The letters from David L. Reifman, Commissioner Department of Planning and Development, and 2nd Ward Alderman Brian Hopkins to residents are fueling the residents' concerns. 


Reifman's letter lays out the meeting. "The format will include a presentation by Chicago Department of Planning and Development (DPD) staff and a comment period for the public to provide input or ask questions about the proposed designation, eligibility criteria and boundaries. The discussion will also include details as to how the TIF district will be used to fund infrastructure improvements, but will not review specific details. In the future, if TIF is used for infrastructure improvements they will be reviewed with the community in subsequent meetings." 

Hopkins confirmed Reifman's message, "As a reminder, this meeting will focus on details of the TIF proposal and community improvements, but WILL NOT include a presentation on the Lincoln Yards Planned Development. 

"However, next week, my office will be sending an announcement about the next scheduled Lincoln Yards Community Meeting, where updated and revised plans will be presented." 

Various public and "private meetings with community groups" have neither garnered final plans nor resulted in meaningful answers to various questions."

Additional TIF information:

Quick background for North Branch Development
Discussions about the development of the North Branch began in 2014 with the first public meeting about the former Finkl site.
In July 2017, the North Branch Industrial Corridor Ordinance had residents and Friends of the Park questioning actions being taken.
Projected plans from Sterling Bay brought out concerns from many along with other usage suggestions in April, this year.


No Property Taxes, No Project

Don't let Stirling Bay amazon the taxpayers of Chicago. After getting lathered with billions of valuable new zoning entitlements Stirling Bay is demanding that Chicago taxpayers give them another $800,000,000 in property taxes to pay for the infrastructure they need to build out, or overbuild, the site. The primary pitch for this grossly overscaled development, that will drive manufacturing out of the city, is that we are broke and it will generate new property taxes that will help pay our bills, today. How does that work if the new taxes don't get paid for 23 years?

Cortland / Chicago River TIF

Mrs. Mayor Emanuel and Alderman Hopkins, Please could you provide the definition of the word Bribery? For 30+ years in Chicago, TIF have extracted more than 5 billion from property taxes and only 50% of this money has been used to finance public needs. Reading that TIF is requested for this development is insane and is NOT tolerable. How many poor people in Chicago are going to benefit from this project? Instead this project is going to permit Developers to get richer, this is NOT acceptable. How many social housing programs these developers have built or financed in their life? This is another question that should be provided. Corruption has to be stopped in the city of Chicago. Residents have endured way to much. Thanks in advance for your answers.

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