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County to waive late fees on property taxes

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Evanston property owners would be able to delay their second installment tax payments by nearly two months without incurring late fees under a plan announced by County Board President Toni Preckwinkle today.

“These are incredibly difficult times for our residents and this measure creates much-needed breathing room for Cook County property owners,” Preckwinkle said. 

Under the proposed relief ordinance, interest penalties for late payments of the second installment of property taxes, which are normally due August 3, will now be postponed until October 1.

Any payments made on or before October 1 for property tax second installments will be considered filed and paid on time by Cook County Treasurer Maria Pappas. Under state law, late property tax payments are charged 1.5 percent of the total property taxes owed per month, which is collected by the county treasurer.

“We’re in the midst of a national crisis with lives and livelihoods at stake,” said Cook County Assessor Fritz Kaegi. “In a time of financial hardship for County taxpayers, this decision provides relief to those most in need of it.”

The property tax relief ordinance will be presented at the next full meeting of the Cook County Board of Commissioners scheduled for May 21.

“This initiative is something we can do immediately that offers much-needed tax relief during these unprecedented and challenging times,” Preckwinkle added. “It is our hope this measure can help alleviate some of the financial strain and anxiety being experienced by residents and businesses, while balancing the fiscal needs of our underlying taxing districts.”

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