Pilsen residents protest higher property taxes, gentrification: ‘This is home’

Pilsen residents and other interested citizens gathered in the Loop on Friday to protest the neighborhood’s property tax hike.

The tax hike could drive out longtime residents and contribute to gentrification, they said at a press conference outside the Cook County building.

That Protest Is Made As The Gentrification Of The Latino Community Is Seen Property tax rises sharply, sometimes more than three times the previous year. The second installment payment of property tax is by midnight Friday.

A caravan of about 20 cars set off in Pilsen, headed for the Loop, honked its horn, and circled the building for nearly 30 minutes as speakers addressed a crowd of about 20 people.

Laura Paz, a member of the Pilsen Alliance, a new coalition of concerned residents, said there was more to it than money. The legacy of generations of Hispanic immigrants could be lost.

“We are Chicago’s premier Mexican cultural and intellectual center, and we can’t lose that,” Paz said. “Being scattered means we lose power.”

Laura Paz speaks at a press conference at The Loop on Friday. Aldo joins her and the other Pilsen residents. Byron Sigcho-Lopez (25th) was there to protest a sharp increase in property tax bills.

“This is home,” Paz said.

“We put our roots down and feel we belong,” Paz told The Sun-Times, his voice quivering, before the caravan began. sees it as a commodity, something you buy and sell to make money.”

This issue affects both homeowners and local businesses.

Juan Giron, a lifelong resident of Pilsen, owns Jiron Books nearby. He said property taxes in 2021 could more than triple his from $26,000 to $85,000, forcing the store to move again.

“You can’t keep bookstores open,” Giron told reporters. “We can’t just stay in business.”

Juan Manuel Giron, owner of Giron Books, Pilsen, at the Loop press conference on Friday 30 December 2022.

Juan Manuel Giron, owner of Giron Books in Pilsen, said his bookstore’s property taxes have more than tripled.

Part of the problem is adjustment Created by the Cook County Board of Review.

For 2021 property taxes, the Cook County Assessor’s Office initially calculated that Chicago residential properties contributed 46.2% of the property tax burden, with the remainder coming from non-residential properties. This will cut the homeowner’s property tax by nearly 6% compared to 2020, according to the appraisal office.

After several appeals from “large commercial apartments, corporate offices and data centers,” including one in Ashland Block 2600, Pilsen, the review board shifted its burden. Did. It bears 52.8% of the tax burden.

Smith said Cook County Assessor Fritz Kaegi We are currently reviewing the cuts made by the Board to consider ways to avoid this in the future.


Laura Paz speaks Friday outside City Hall with Pilsen residents and Ald. Byron Sigcho-Lopez (No. 25) protested a sharp increase in Cook County’s property tax bill.

Two of the three members of the judging panel (Michael Cabonargi and Tammy Wendt) were voted out in November.

Samantha Steele, District 2 Commissioner of the Review Board, said the previously granted appeal was ” [city’s] The retail and office space market has been devastated in recent years, with many buildings vacant due to the pandemic.

Steele said the new commissioner is focused on creating a new algorithm for valuing assets with greater transparency. Its new system looks at recent home sales and “significant” renovations, but excludes gentrified buildings from the equation.

However, when it comes to the 2021 property tax, Smith said any changes would need to be made in legislation.

Still, the Paz and Pilsen alliances were unstoppable. Among other things, they want the Cook County Treasurer to stop collecting late fees on his 2021 property tax payments.

“This community has been given nothing. It’s all been fought for,” Paz said. “[And] People are trying to fight this. ” Pilsen residents protest higher property taxes, gentrification: ‘This is home’

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