Source: Emily Zanotti
Chicago owes former President Donald Trump a million-dollar tax refund but the Cook County State’s Attorney, which is typically focused on handling the city’s crime, will mount an effort to block Trump from receiving his check.
The Hill reports that the “Cook County state’s attorney is seeking to block a $1 million tax refund that the Illinois Property Tax Appeal Board ruled is owed to former President Trump on his Chicago skyscraper’s 2011 tax bill.”
The building was “over-assessed” according to a unanimous vote of Illinois’ state property tax board, but the Cook County States Attorney says the city should not pay, since granting Trump his refund would take money out of the pockets of Chicago taxpayers — even though the money was never the city’s, to begin with.
Kim Foxx, the Cook County State’s Attorney, “filed a lawsuit this month with the Illinois Appellate Court against the refund, stating that the former president’s refund would take away taxpayer dollars from Chicago public schools and other agencies to pay for it,” per The Hill.
The Sun-Times did note that Trump’s tax refund comes as a result of work done by controversial former Chicago Ald. Ed Burke, who is under federal indictment — but the indictment is related to a separate issue.
“The Sun-Times reported that the state tax agency initially rejected Trump’s argument that his vacant storefronts did not hold any value because they had never been leased by tenants,” The Hill said. “A hearing officer for the state tax agency denied attempts by Burke to win a refund in 2018, arguing in his opinion that the law firm failed to demonstrate that Cook County had overassessed the value of the Trump building.”
“A later report written by another staff member agreed with Burke’s arguments, though the case was delayed until after Trump left the Oval Office,” The Hill said.
The Cook County States Attorney would not comment further on the issue, beyond the rationale contained in the complaint: that the refund would come out of the pockets of Cook County taxpayers, necesitating the appeal.
Foxx’s office is focused on the Trump issue, despite criticism directly from the city’s police officials, who have laid blame for the city’s shocking spike in crime at the feet of the state’s attorney’s office and its commitment to “bail reform,” according to Chicago’s CBS affiliate.
“What’s happening in the courts is creating this unsafe environment for all of us,” Chicago Police Superintendent David Brown said, following the July 4th weekend, rife with violence. “I hear a lot about what the State’s Attorney is doing. She charged these people with murder we brought before them that we’ve arrested – and the courts, the courts released them back into the community, creating an unsafe environment for all of us.”
Foxx, of course, fired back, blaming the police.
At least two dozen people were shot over the weekend in Chicago and at least one person was killed. There were 461 shootings in the month of July, Chicago’s NBC Affiliate noted Sunday, a 15% increase from last year.