Assessor Services

“Oak Park Township Assessor Services can answer many questions on real estate assessment and property tax bills. Property values are determined by the Cook County Assessor’s office.”

Assessor Updates

COOK COUNTY BOARD OF REVIEW ACCEPTING ASSESSMENT
APPEALS FROM OAK PARK BETWEEN
DECEMBER 6, 2021 AND JANUARY 4, 2022

 

Contact Person: Ali ElSaffar, Oak Park Township Assessor
(708) 383-8005


Oak Park property owners concerned about their property taxes have a chance to do something about next year’s tax bills, but they will have to act during the holiday season.  According to Oak Park Township Assessor Ali ElSaffar, Oak Park taxpayers will be able to file 2021 assessment appeals with the Cook County Board of Review between December 6, 2021 and January 4, 2022. 

During the appeal period, the Oak Park Township Assessor's office will be available to assist local residents in preparing evidence to substantiate their appeals.  Residents seeking help should call the Township Assessor's office during business hours at (708) 383-8005 to set up appointments.  Most appointments will be conducted over the phone, but there will be a limited number of in-person appointments available for those who request them.

Oak Park properties were last reassessed in 2020, and under Cook County’s three year reassessment cycle, the next reassessment for Oak Park properties will take place in 2023.  Even in non-reassessment years such as 2021, however, taxpayers can file appeals, as property values can change from year to year.  Assessor ElSaffar reminds taxpayers that the money-saving effects of successful 2021 appeals will not appear on tax bills until second installment tax bills are issued in the fall of 2022.

The opening of the Board of Review's appeal period marks the second opportunity Oak Park residents will have to appeal their 2021 assessments.  Oak Park's first appeal period was with the Cook County Assessor's office and ended in June. 

In a typical year, the Board of Review opens for Oak Park appeals in the summer.  But the Board of Review cannot begin accepting appeals from Oak Park until the Cook County Assessor certifies results from the first round of Oak Park appeals and this year, the assessor's certification did not happen until just before Thanksgiving.  The late certification arose because the county assessor is replacing its aging mainframe computer with a new system.  The changeover in computer systems led to unexpected delays and as a result, Oak Park's Board of Review appeal period is starting several months later than normal.

Release Date:  December 6, 2021

 

Ali ElSaffar
Oak Park Township Assessor
Oak Park Township
105 South Oak Park Avenue
Oak Park, Illinois 60302
Phone: 708-383-8005

Assessor News

View, print, and download the latest information from the Oak Park Township Assessor's Office.

Property Tax

Every Oak Park property pays a small share of Oak Park’s $199 million tax burden.

A property’s share of the burden is determined by comparing its assessed value to Oak Park’s overall assessed value.

Thus, a property that comprises 1% of the total assessed value of Oak Park pays 1% of Oak Park’s total tax burden.

Spending increases will raise the community’s overall tax burden, and changes in your property’s share of the burden will determine whether it pays a larger or smaller portion of the increased community-wide tax burden.

Property Tax Appeals

APPEAL PERIOD RUNS FROM JULY 30 TO AUGUST 28 

Contact:  Ali ElSaffar
Oak Park Township Assessor
(708) 383-8005

Taxpayers requesting assistance with their appeals may call 708-383-8005 to request a phone appointment.  

Effective:  July 30, 2020

Property Tax Exemptions

Senior Property Tax Exemptions

Applications for Senior Property Tax Exemptions have been mailed.  

A new law in 2019 provides automatic renewal for the Senior Exemption; it is available to all homeowners 65 years of age or older, regardless of income.

Disabled Veterans Property Tax Exemptions

All veterans who receive the Disabled Veterans Exemption are entitled to property tax savings.

A new law in 2016 allows veterans of the US Armed Forces who were severely wounded and while serving their country and who are at least 70% disabled complete exemption from property taxes

Frequently Asked Questions

In 2017, the state legislature approved a new program that provides state aid to school districts with very high property tax rates.  This year, twenty-eight Illinois school districts, including Oak Park and River Forest High School, qualified for financial aid under the new program.  The program provided the high school an extra $3.8 million in state aid this year, but in exchange, the school had to reduce its property tax levy.  This year’s levy is $4.5 million less than the levy from last year.

Ordinarily, the high school and most other taxing districts have the right to increase their tax levies by an amount equaling the annual rate of inflation.  If the school had not received the extra money from the state, it would have sought an inflation-level tax increase this year, and the result would have been a 4.4% tax increase for most property owners in Oak Park.  Thanks to the extra state money, however, the typical tax increase in Oak Park is just 2.1%. 

Local taxpayers should enjoy the tax relief provided by the new state program, but understand that it may not last.  The high school should remain eligible for this increased aid from the state for a number of years, but the additional money is not guaranteed, as the state could fail to fund the program or alter the eligibility rules.  In addition, program rules require the school district to reduce its tax levies in the initial year of the program, but apparently, do not require tax reductions in subsequent years.  Thus the duration of this year’s tax relief depends on decisions of the state legislature and the high school board. 

The reduction in the high school’s levy was offset by tax increases from local governments that did not receive new state aid targeted at reducing property taxes.  These increases, however, were generally moderate.  For example, the Township, the Park District, and Oak Park’s Village government each posted tax increases of about 3%.

The biggest local tax increase this year came from elementary school district 97.  The primary reason for its 4.1% increase relates to the continuing impact of an error made two years ago, when the school district received $2.6 million more from a referendum than it expected.  To make up for overtaxing two years ago, the school reduced its tax levies last year.  With a 4.1% tax increase this year, District 97’s overall levy is now close to the level it would have reached if the district had collected the correct amount of money in 2017, and then received inflation-level tax increases in the next two years.

If you are eligible for a homeowner, senior citizen or other exemption but did not receive one, the Township Assessor’s office can assist you in obtaining a revised bill for a smaller amount.  If you have received all exemptions for which you are eligible, you likely will not be able to do anything about your current bill.

Between July 1 and July 30, the Cook County Board of Review will be accepting appeals from Oak Park residents for next year’s taxes.  Residents may call the Oak Park Township Assessor’s office during the appeal period to schedule an appointment for help in preparing an appeal.  Alternatively, residents can get help at the end of the appeal period by attending a tax appeal seminar sponsored by the Board of Review.  The seminar will take place on July 30 at 6:30 PM at the auditorium of Percy Julian Middle School, located at 416 S. Ridgeland Avenue in Oak Park. 

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