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Published on February 22, 2024
Union County Maintains Equalization Rate at 1.0000; Property Taxes Unchanged, Says Illinois Revenue DirectorSource: Google Street View

Union County homeowners can breathe easily for now, as the Illinois Department of Revenue has handed down a tentative property assessment equalization factor of 1.0000, essentially maintaining the status quo for local property taxes, David Harris, IDOR director, confirmed.

What this no-frills number means is Union County's property values hang in a delicate balance, assessed at a hair over the ideal one-third of their market value, a minute uptick to 33.34% based on property sales over the past three years, but here's the truth, this magic 'multiplier' is the key to equitable taxes across Illinois's patchwork of counties.

The nuts and bolts of it get down to this: the equalization factor ensures taxpayers with similar properties aren't getting an uneven shake when it comes to their tax bills, especially since some regions dip their toes into multiple county jurisdictions, think school and fire districts. For farm folks, their land and buildings get a different tax treatment, pegged on productivity, but their homes stay in line with regular procedures.

It's not set in stone though, this 1.0000 multiplier is a tentative number, it could shuffle up or down after a public hearing, which must be held within 20 to 30 days after the announcement, and if any big shifts happen in the County Board of Review or if new data crawls out of the woodwork, suggesting adjustments are due.

It is important to note that even in the event of an equalization factor shift, there will be no direct impact on the total tax bill. The responsibility for this rests with local taxing authorities, who determine the funding required to support essential community services. Unless these authorities request additional funding, any increase in assessments will not translate to higher taxes.

The allocation of taxes based on the valuation of an individual's property remains unaffected by the multiplier. Rather, it is determined by the proportion of the total tax burden that one must bear. It is noteworthy that the Union County equalization factor for the previous year was also a plain 1.0000, according to the official press release.