July 23, 2014

Chicago Tribune

Chicago Tribune
July 23, 2014

This article discusses Chicago Public School’s FY2015 budget, which the Board of Education is expected to approve at a July 23 hearing. The Civic Federation’s recent analysis of the budget shows CPS is continuing to operate with a significant structural deficit by relying heavily on reserve funds and using accounting gimmicks to close ongoing budget gaps.   

July 23, 2014

July 23, 2014

In an analysis released today, the Civic Federation announced that it cannot support the Chicago Public Schools’ (CPS) short-sighted FY2015 budget because it does nothing to address the District’s grave fiscal crisis. The proposed $6.8 billion budget is balanced only by an accounting maneuver that allows the District to book more than 12 months of revenue into a single fiscal year. The Civic Federation’s full 83-page analysis is available here.

July 23, 2014

The Civic Federation does not support Chicago Public Schools proposed $6.8 billion budget for FY2015. The short-sighted budget does nothing to address the District’s grave fiscal crisis and is balanced only by an accounting maneuver that allows the District to book more than 12 months of revenue into a single fiscal year. This one-time and non-recurring revenue will leave a gap in future budgets, contributing to deficits of over $1.0 billion in FY2016 and FY2017.

July 23, 2014

July 16, 2014

ABC 7

ABC 7
July 16, 2014

This segment covers Millennium Park’s 10 year anniversary and compares the original plan to today’s expansive public space. The Civic Federation said the park is a beautiful asset for the City, but it ended up costing much more than projected due to poor planning and lack of financial oversight.

July 17, 2014 - 10:55am


July 17, 2014

A new report by Cook County Clerk David Orr released on July 16 finds that 68.2% or 103 of Chicago’s 151 tax increment financing (TIF) districts experienced revenue declines in 2013. Only 30 TIFs reported revenue increases, while 21 of the districts did not collect any revenues at all. Suburban Cook County TIF district revenues also decreased, falling by 2% from nearly $266.3 million to $260.9 million.


We welcome any questions and feedback about the content of this blog. Please e-mail blog@civicfed.org with your query.

July 17, 2014 - 10:03am


July 17, 2014

The Illinois Supreme Court’s recent ruling on health insurance for State retirees is expected to increase State costs by approximately $128 million through FY2015, according to the Department of Central Management Services.

Although litigation is ongoing, the high court’s decision apparently means the State will bear the cost of health insurance premium increases previously charged to retirees. Officials at the Department of Central Management Services (CMS) said that those premiums amounted to $42 million in FY2014 and were expected to total $86 million in FY2015.


We welcome any questions and feedback about the content of this blog. Please e-mail blog@civicfed.org with your query.

July 13, 2014

The Chicago Tribune

The Chicago Tribune
July 13, 2014

This article details a decade of leases, deals and debts related to Millennium Park—a park originally envisioned as a $150 million open green space that would be no cost to taxpayers. The Civic Federation said the lack of financial oversight and responsible budgeting during development cost the City of Chicago much more than projected, and likely more than was necessary to build the park. 

July 10, 2014 - 4:26pm


July 10, 2014

Second installment property tax bills for Cook County residents were mailed out this month, the third year in a row that they have been sent out on time. Between tax year 1977 and tax year 2011, second installment bills were sent out late every year according to the elected officials associated with the Cook County property tax process.


We welcome any questions and feedback about the content of this blog. Please e-mail blog@civicfed.org with your query.

July 10, 2014

The Civic Federation supports the City Colleges tentative FY2015 budget totaling $723.5 million for reflecting the District’s continued commitment to sound financial practices and prudent planning. The FY2015 tentative budget holds the property tax levy relatively flat for the fifth consecutive year, increases unrestricted operating funds by only 1.0% from FY2014 and continues to maintain a healthy fund balance for contingencies.  

July 10, 2014

July 10, 2014

July 10, 2014

District continues dramatic improvement of its financial practices, planning

In an analysis released today, the Civic Federation supports the City Colleges of Chicago’s proposed FY2015 budget of $723.5 million which reflects the District’s continued commitment to sound financial practices and prudent planning. The full 47-page report is available here.

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