Fulfilling a promise of offering property tax relief for Illinoisans, Gov. J.B. Pritzker Friday signed legislation easing the tax burden for some of the most vulnerable residents, including seniors, veterans, and persons with disabilities, according to the governor's office.
The legislation, which went into effect immediately, increases the general homestead exemption and senior citizens homestead exemption, reduces interest rates on tax deferrals for seniors, and allows for automatic renewal of the homestead exemption for qualified people with disabilities in Cook County, Pritzker's office said in a news release.
Over the past 20 years, property taxes have skyrocketed at a rate far surpassing the increase in home values, the governor noted, saying it's "unacceptable" and "needs to change."
"When I got elected, I promised to address rising property taxes for our residents. I am proud to sign this bill into law—taking another step towards easing the burden of property taxes for our most vulnerable residents," he said.
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Known as Senate Bill 1975, the measure allows taxing districts to opt for the lowest necessary property tax rate by permitting the districts subject to the Property Tax Extension Law Limit to levy less today without losing access to additional revenues in the future.
The process of retaining an exemption will also get easier for some.
The Veterans with Disabilities Exemption will be automatically renewed if the qualifying veteran is deemed permanently and totally disabled by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. This legislation also allows the surviving spouse of a deceased veteran to continue to receive the exemption, according to the measure.
In accordance with the law, for tax levy year 2023, counties bordering Cook County will be given a homestead exemption of $8,000. In Cook County, the maximum exemption remains the same at $10,000.
All other counties will have a maximum homestead exemption of $6,000.
Seniors in the counties bordering Cook County will see the maximum homestead exemption raised from $5,000 to $8,000, putting them on the same level as Cook County. The maximum senior homestead exemption is $5,000 in all other Illinois counties.