After the boards of review adjourn, assessment books are given to county clerks so tax bills can be computed based on levies received from taxing districts. The process of billing taxes is called extension. Each year, taxing bodies must levy the tax needed for the upcoming collection year. Levies are submitted to the Rock Island County Clerk by the last Tuesday of December each year.
Taxing bodies consist of Townships, Township Road and Bridge, County, Forest Preserve, Metropolitan Transit Authority, Metropolitan Airport Authority, Illini Hospital, Flood Protection Districts, Sanitary Districts, Park Districts, Multi-Townships, Special Service Areas, Libraries, Fire Protection Districts, Schools and Municipalities.
Taxing bodies that levy for more than 105% over the previous year's certified-to-collect amount must hold a Truth in Taxation Hearing to inform the people in their district of their intent.
Each levy consists of funds needed to perform the various functions within their district. Each fund has a maximum rate mandated by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity. Monies levied for each fund cannot exceed the maximum rate allowed.
Maximum rates are set by Illinois State Statute, and in some instances can only be increased by referendum or backdoor referendum, a copy of which must be filed with the tax levy.
The rate is calculated by dividing the dollar amount needed by the Equalized Assessed Valuation for the district and then multiplying by One Hundred (100). That amount is the tax rate for that fund. If the rate is greater than the maximum statutory limit, the County Clerk will only extend taxes to an amount within the tax limit.
Truth in Taxation Law
The Truth-in-Taxation Law establishes the procedures that taxing districts must follow when they adopt their levies. If a taxing district proposes an aggregate levy that is more than five % (5%) higher than the total amount of taxes it billed in the previous year, it must publish the required notice in a local newspaper and hold a public hearing.
At the public hearing, the taxing district must explain the reasons for its levy and proposed increase. Anyone who wants to present testimony must be given the opportunity to do so. After the hearing, the taxing district may adopt the tax levy.
The Truth-in-Taxation Law also requires a taxing district to publish a notice within 15 days of its levy adoption if its final aggregate levy is higher than the amount stated in the published notice or, if the taxing district was not required to publish a notice and hold a Truth-in-Taxation hearing, the final aggregate levy is 5% higher than the previous year's final aggregate levy.
Each taxing district must certify to the county clerk that it has complied with all Truth-in-Taxation publication, notice, and hearing requirements when it certifies its levy to the county clerk. If a taxing district does not comply with the requirements of the Truth-in-Taxation Law, the county clerk must limit the levy increase to 5%.
If you should have any questions regarding the "tax extension" process, you can contact the Rock Island County Clerk's Office at 309-558-3559.