- Advocating for a Solution to
CPS' Budget Deficit  -
- Friday 2 - 6pm: Property Tax Help -
Also In This Issue

RANCH Third Thursday Concert
Tonight! Thursday, July 16
Adams Park
6:30 pm - 8 pm

Join RANCH Triangle for a 'School of Rock' concert at Adams Park, located at 1919 N. Seminary Ave. Fun for the whole family!


Click here for more information


Lincoln Park Merchant Association Sidewalk Sale
Saturday, 18th: 10 am-6 pm
Sunday, 19th: 10 am-5 pm

Take a stroll along the Armitage-Halsted corridor during the annual summer sidewalk sale. 


Click here for more information



Sheffield Music Festival and Garden Walk
Sat. and Sun.,  July 18 - 19
12pm - 10 pm
Sheffield and Webster

Join for the 47th Annual Sheffield Music Festival & Garden Walk, sponsored by the  Sheffield Neighborhood Association.


Dearborn Garden Walk
Sunday, July 19
12 pm - 5 PM
Entry at The Latin Middle School (45 W. North Blvd)

Gardening enthusiasts can explore a stunning collection of diverse gardens behind the greystones that line the streets of Chicago's Near North Side and Gold Coast neighborhoods.


43rd Ward Office

2523 N. Halsted


Office Hours:






Contact us:


Dear Neighbors,


As most of you know, the Chicago Public Schools face a crushing deficit of $1.1 billion.  This intolerable situation developed over decades and is a crisis our city must now confront. 


On Friday, July 10th, I joined with elected officials and community leaders from Chicago and throughout Illinois to urge the passage of Senate Bill 1, which takes steps towards a comprehensive solution for school funding.  This action is needed because of the political deadlock in Springfield and because the Illinois Supreme Court has virtually tied the hands of Chicago and the Chicago Teachers Union from reforming pension plans.   


In order to balance the budget, CPS recently announced layoffs of almost 1,100 employees plus closing 300 positions. But in fact, even this budget relies on  $500 million in state aid or pension relief that is currently not in the state budget. 

While the legislative standoff continues, two facts are clear: first, school funding from the state has dropped substantially since 2010, translating to $1.4 million less for Lincoln Park High School alone. Second, pension funding has become dramatically more unfair for Chicago taxpayers.  

Your state income taxes pay a substantial amount of the pension debt of teachers' pensions throughout Illinois, but very little of your state taxes pay for Chicago teachers' pensions.  In reality, every Chicago taxpayer pays twice for teacher pensions.


The state paid $3.4 billion last year for the pensions of teachers in every Illinois school district except Chicago. Instead, Chicago property taxes just paid $634 million in a state-mandated pension payment for our teachers, but only $62 million in state funds came back to us for pensions.  


Illinois Senate Bill 1 would change the basic school funding formula to make it more fair to Chicago.  To learn about SB 1, click here.  A summary of our recent City Council education committee meeting is reported here.


Here in the 43rd Ward, our parents are doubling down on public education - enrollments are up and school outcomes are outstanding.   Our principals are determined to make the best of these cuts.  But we as parents and taxpayers have to do more.    Join the "Funding IL's Future" coalition to change the funding formula.  Email our state representatives to urge them to adopt SB1 and to end the double taxation of Chicago residents for pensions.



Friday, July 10th event at City Hall
Property Tax Assistance

The Cook County Treasurer has mailed out 2014 second installment property tax bills to all Cook County homeowners. 

On Friday, July 17th, staff from Cook County Commissioner Gainer's Office will be available in the ward office to assist homeowners with property tax questions. Please bring your 2014 second installment property tax bill and staff will review. 

Friday, July 17th: 2pm - 6pm
43rd Ward Office: 2523 N. Halsted



Michele Signature 

Michele Smith

43rd Ward Alderman