COLES COUNTY, Ill. (WCIA) – It was a heated scene in the Coles County Courthouse Tuesday night. Concerned taxpayers confronted the board about property tax hikes they say are unfair.
Attorney Sarah Hocking laid out the issue. She, and others who live among a handful of subdivisions in Lafayette Township, feel they’ve been targeted by the supervisor of assessments. They say they received notices that their homes had been reassessed and their taxes were increasing, but Hocking said for some, that meant skyrocketing rates.
Hocking said it’s normal for reassessments to happen every four years, but it’s not normal for some neighborhoods within a township to see a flat 11% increase, while others, like hers, saw 55-120% hikes.
“Come up with a solution to the problem instead of forcing us to file lawsuits,” James DiNaso said during Tuesday’s meeting.
“We all had to immediately become property tax experts overnight to figure out what was going on and how did this happen. We had some insight that something like this might happen, but I think most of us believed it never really would,” Hocking said.
That’s why people demanded answers from the county tonight. One board member acknowledged the concerns, and said he’d work to help. One member of the public asked to reconvene for a special meeting to discuss the issue further. It is not clear yet whether that will happen. People have until December 19 to appeal.