A hearing is planned for next month on a proposal to establish a special service area taxing district for the Dempster and Main streets shopping corridor along Chicago Avenue in Evanston.

The City Council tonight is expected to set the hearing for April 13. The special service area, sometimes referred to as a business improvement district, would impose an extra property tax, capped at 0.45 percent of equalized assessed value, on properties within the district boundaries.

The funds would be used to market the business district as well as to provide aesthetic improvements that could include signage, more planters and litter pickup.

Nearly 180 properties are included in the district although about 30 of them are tax exempt. With a total equalized assessed valuation of roughly $60 million, the district could generate revenue of about $270,000 a year if the maximum levy was collected.

By comparison, the special service area tax that supports the operations of Downtown Evanston is expected to generate about $320,000 this year.

For the owner of a taxable property in the district with an average value of about $400,000, the 0.45 percent SSA tax would add $1,800 to the annual tax bill.

A group of merchants in the area have been seeking approval of the tax district. Once the public hearing is held, unless 51 percent of the property owners in the area file petitions objecting to the district, it could be adopted by the City Council and in place in time for taxes for it to be collected next year.

Related stories

Consultant hired for Chicago Avenue tax district (10/28/14)

Merchants push for business improvement tax (4/30/14)

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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1 Comment

  1. More tax and spend
    Any time the Council talks of “..aesthetic improvements…” and ‘taxing districts’ hold on to your wallet.
    It will be the property owners who will pay the tax—and I’m sure it will keep increasing.
    One more reason people won’t want to buy there.

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