The Illinois House of Representatives passed a bill today that will raise property taxes for most taxpayers in McLean County. State Representative Dan Caulkins (R-Decatur) voted against the bill to require all McLean County property owners to pay for the costs associated with the Central Illinois Regional Airport in Bloomington.
“I am opposed to this legislation as it increases property taxes for most property owners in McLean County,” said Rep. Caulkins. “This legislation circumvents the law by not allowing the taxpayers an opportunity to consider the creation of this new taxing body. A decision that should be made by the voters in McLean County, not the Illinois legislature.”
The legislation (Senate Bill 684) amends the Airport Authorities Act to create the Central Illinois Regional Airport Authority to encompass all of McLean County. If this legislation becomes law it would dissolve the current Bloomington-Normal Airport Authority and the new authority would assume its powers, assets, and liabilities. The new airport authority powers would include a property tax levy expanded to all of McLean County and allow the newly created airport authority to issue bonds; rents, tolls, fees, and eminent domain.
Four of the five House lawmakers representing McLean County which include State Representatives Dan Caulkins, Jason Bunting, William Hauter, and Dennis Tipsword voted against the potential property tax hike. Rep. Chung voted in favor.
SB 684 now heads to the State Senate, leaving the Senate only three days left to consider the legislation before they are scheduled to adjourn on Friday, May, 19.