Members of the City Council’s Black and Latino Caucuses are more concerned with the Mayor’s plan to slap a $9.50 monthly garbage fee on homeowners’ water bills than the proposed property tax hike plan, according to sources present at closed-door Caucus meetings yesterday.
Our sources say that at the Black Caucus meeting, aldermen were less concerned with the property tax hike, because most of their constituents are renters, or would fall under Mayor Emanuel’s proposed exemption for homes valued $250,000 and less.
We were also told members of the Latino Caucus aren’t thrilled with the garbage fee either, mainly because it would be added to a homeowner’s water bill instead of their property tax bill. By including the garbage fee on the water bill, the city can enforce the fee by shutting off the water if a homeowner refuses to pay.
And several members of the Paul Douglas Alliance, who met before the full Council meeting Thursday, signed on as co-sponsors to Ald. Joe Moreno’s property tax rebate plan, because they see it as a Plan B should the Mayor’s exemption plan fail in Springfield.
But Mayor Rahm Emanuel doesn’t think the two rebate plans introduced in Council yesterday will help much. When reporters asked the Mayor why he would rely on Springfield’s help to get a property tax exemption instead of backing one of the aldermanic rebate plans, Mayor Emanuel said rebates add additional bureaucracy and still require a full payment up front, rather than the immediate discount an exemption offers.