Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot released her annual budget proposal Wednesday, revealing for the first time her plan that includes a property tax increase to tackle the city's estimated $1.2 billion shortfall.
In addition to $537 million in layoffs, vacancy eliminations, furloughs and other savings, plus $501 million in debt refinancing and restructuring accounts, the budget relies on $93.9 million collected via a property tax increase.
The tax hike will have an estimated impact of roughly $56 a year on a median home valued at $250,000, Lightfoot said.
Lightfoot also proposed an increase on the city's gas tax by $0.03 per gallon, as well as an increase to the personal property lease tax applied to computer leases of cloud software and infrastructure.
Lightfoot said the $12.8 billion budget proposal closes the $1.2 billion gap, 65% of which was tied to the coronavirus pandemic that has cratered revenues like sales tax and more as shutdowns to prevent the spread of the deadly virus have caused widespread economic devastation.
Her proposal also includes $76 million in TIF surplus funding and taking $30 million from the city's Rainy Day Fund.
"To be clear folks, we are not experiencing just a rainy day. It is a rainy season," Lightfoot said during her address Wednesday.
Chicago's City Council will next hold hearing on the proposed budget, with a deadline of Dec. 31 to approved a balanced budget.