Wilmette, News

Falling debt results in lower taxes for Wilmette Park District residents

Thanks to diminishing debt service, the Wilmette Park District can provide a bit of relief to taxpayers in 2020.

The Park Board approved Monday night, Dec. 14, the district’s tax extension, which overall is a 9 percent reduction over the previous year.

The tax levy is projected to equal $7.77 million in revenue, a decrease of $765,000.

The levy was approved at 2.3 percent, the maximum allowed by the Consumer Price Index, but the district’s complete tax picture includes other aspects, including debt service. And next year, the district’s debt payments will be reduced by 22 percent, or $2.3 million.

Executive Director Steve Wilson explained that a large chuck of funding for two major park district spends — the $25 million Mallinckrodt College purchase and the $10 million Centennial pools overhaul — is falling off.

The projects took voter-approved bond sales in 2000 and 2002, respectively, and the board said the district has been “aggressively” paying down the debt ever since.

The result is a decrease in the amount that will be served to residents on 2021 tax bills. The reduction may not lead to an overall decrease, as the park district collects just 5.4 percent of local property taxes.

joe coughlin
Joe Coughlin

Joe Coughlin is a co-founder and the editor in chief of The Record. He leads investigative reporting and reports on anything else needed. Joe has been recognized for his investigative reporting and sports reporting, feature writing and photojournalism. Follow Joe on Twitter @joec2319

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