Officials in the Village of Glencoe are discussing Home Rule authority and are likely to pursue a referendum in April 2021.

Based upon conversations during the August Committee of the Whole meeting, Trustees would like to actively persuade voters to provide new taxing and regulatory authority. While their intentions haven’t been explicitly stated, it appears they would like to create new taxes, expand Village debt, and create new regulations on private property. Joe Roth, Local Government Affairs Director covering the North Shore, expects to express our strong opposition during the September board meeting.

Why REALTORS® oppose Home Rule

As REALTORS®, we are committed property rights advocates. We actively engage in communities, in Springfield, and in Washington, D.C. With this type of perspective, we have seen Home Rule go wrong too times and be detrimental for too many property owners. While the current elected officials, no doubt, have good intentions, those intentions are not guaranteed nor binding. The next elected officials are especially free from promises made today. The simple fact is Home Rule allows elected officials to bypass voters in creating more debt, imposing more taxes and placing more regulations on private property. Additionally, Home Rule removes certain private property protections like property tax caps.

Real impact of Home Rule

While it is easy to fear the unknown, the impact of Home Rule is known all too well. Opposition to Home Rule is based on ideals and experience. Not only do property tax caps go away, there are near limitless new taxes each town would be able levy. Other Home Rule units have created property demolition taxes, tenant taxes, sales taxes, gasoline taxes, warehousing taxes, and the like; all while increasing property taxes. Town after town has shown dramatic increases in property taxes and new fees after gaining Home Rule power.

In addition to new taxes, new limits on private property are also in store. Most people buying a home conduct a pre-sale inspection. However, many Home Rule towns require an additional inspection (and inspection fee) and will stop or delay the sale of a home if their findings are not remedied, regardless of the buyer/seller agreement. REALTORS® have even seen cases where cosmetic issues, like old carpeting, have stopped or delayed the sale of a home. Other Home Rule regulations have included landlord licensing and expensive design requirements on home renovations.

For more information on this or other issues in north suburban Chicagoland, contact Joe Roth at [email protected]