Home / News / We endorse Larecia Tucker on behalf of the Cook County Board of Review

We endorse Larecia Tucker on behalf of the Cook County Board of Review


Cook County’s property tax system is a concern for many homeowners, especially in the less affluent southern part of the county where the burden is highest on average.

Determining the fair value of homes and businesses is critical to making the system as fair as possible. It is the job of the Cook County assessor to evaluate these values. It is the job of the lesser-known Cook County Board of Review to hear and rule on appeals from property owners who think their assessments are too high. Successful objections require the support of at least two of the three commissioners.

The board is divided into three districts, with Larry Rogers Jr.’s 3rd District covering most of Chicago’s West and South sides and most of the southern suburbs. Rogers, a commissioner since 2004, is running for re-election. His opponent is Larecia Tucker, who works as a clerk in the Rich Township assessor’s office and has lived in the south suburbs her entire life.

Rogers, who has the support of powerful local Democrats including Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle, Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson and U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, faces a challenge for the first time since joining the board. We’re pleased that 3rd District voters finally have a choice, and we support Tucker, who we think will bring a fresh perspective to the job and support for much-needed reform.

Rogers, an attorney, is waging a proxy war of sorts with Cook County Assessor Fritz Kaegi, who is trying to impose a more consistent approach to valuing commercial properties than his predecessor, Joe Berrios. Rogers opposed Kaegi’s methods and demanded lowering of trade values ​​in many cases.

The success of commercial property owners in lowering their valuations, who frequently turn to lawyers to challenge their valuations, leads to higher bills for residential taxpayers. Property taxes are a zero-sum game because tax agencies levy the taxes they approve regardless of how individual properties are assessed. Assessments determine how much each property owner contributes to these amounts. Justice is everything.

Rogers argues that Kaegi did not adequately consider the revenue generated by commercial properties after their costs were calculated, and instead placed too much weight on recent sales of similar properties in the surrounding area.

The problems become more complicated because The majority of donations funding Rogers’ campaigns come from property tax attorneys and others who represent commercial landowners before the board. Although the practice is legal, it has raised ethical concerns. Rogers vehemently defends this, saying that it does not affect his decisions, and counters that Kaegi is personally financing Rogers’ rival. He says this is a fundamental conflict of interest, given that it is the Board of Review’s job to decide objections that challenge the Assessor’s work.

Tucker says he has not and will not accept donations from property tax attorneys.

While we share commercial property owners’ concerns about how this plays out at times in practice, we agree with Kaegi’s view that there is an urgent need for more predictability in Cook County’s property tax system. We see the hard-earned money of many property owners, whether residential owners or commercial business owners, being unnecessarily siphoned off and flowing into the pockets of lawyers.

Tucker also shares Kaegi’s goal. However, it clearly states that income from commercial properties should also be included in the Board of Review decisions. “If the appraiser only looks at the last sale, that wouldn’t be right,” he says. “We need to take both into account.”

He is clearly qualified, works in an appraiser’s office, and has earned the Certified Illinois Appraiser designation. In his previous career, he was a real estate agent.

Another problem in the 3rd Region is that its housing attractiveness is relatively low compared to the other two districts. Cook County’s property tax system is so outdated that homeowners are routinely advised to appeal their assessments. 3. Small numbers of District 3 residents do this, causing already high tax bills to increase even further. We think Tucker, who had to sell his Park Forest home in 2012 due to property tax bills he couldn’t pay, will do more to get the word out to area homeowners.

All this being said, we accept Rogers’ view that Kaegi’s massive financial support for his rival is concerning. If Tucker wins the seat, we expect him to make an effort to demonstrate his independence from the assessor.

However, the need for change and progress to make the county’s property tax system fairer and more predictable is our overriding concern.

Larecia Tucker has our support.


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