Why does so much of my property tax bill go to public schools?

Written By Jill Odzer,
Lake County Appeal, Commercial Analyst
 
 

As one can see on any property tax bill, public schools command the highest portion of the total tax rate.  Our clients often get angry at Lake County for that, but it’s not the county’s fault…Article 10, Section 1 of the Illinois Constitution states, in relevant part, that “The State has the primary responsibility for financing the system of public education.”  

 

In fiscal year 2019, the State of Illinois funded only 26.6% of all Illinois school district revenue, while local funding accounted for 66.4% of these costs, and federal funding accounted for 7% of revenue (Source:
https://www.illinoisreportcard.com/state.aspx?source=environment&source2=revenuepercentages&Stateid=IL).

 

Public schools need money to operate.  Illinois’ constitution requires that the state be the primary party responsible for funding, and it has failed Illinoisans and our local schools.  For many years, the state has passed the collection cups to the local level, with the result that our property taxes are some of the highest in the country.  Anyone angry?  State legislators need to step up and fix the problems.  Perhaps, you should let them know how you feel.

 

Want to see additional, albeit sometimes conflicting, numbers? I highly recommend checking out: https://educationdata.org/public-education-spending-statistics .