Upcoming Mayoral Budget Address
Dear neighbors,

On Tuesday, September 22nd, Mayor Rahm Emanuel presents his proposed 2016 Budget to the Chicago City Council. The address will take place at 10:00 a.m. in Council Chambers, at 121 N. LaSalle Street. I invite you to attend this meeting or watch the live stream here as we enter into a crucial moment in our City's history.

As we await the Mayor's proposed budget, taxpayers across our Ward are receiving new property tax assessments, some of which have increased by as much as 50%. I am already hearing from many constituents who are understandingly anxious about looming tax hikes. Please contact my office and share your concerns. I want to be armed with this information as we begin the budget process.

As we work to overcome decades of financial irresponsibility and bring the City to stability, taxpayers are entitled to know if greater efficiencies will be achieved in city government; if waste, fraud and mismanagement can be drastically eliminated; and if every potential cut and untapped source of revenue has been explored.

We do not yet have these answers.

I will not hesitate to ask these tough questions during the upcoming budget hearings. And I'm looking forward to working with Ben Winick, City Council's new Financial Analyst. I fought for the establishment of that office so that, for the first time, we'll have an independent, outside review of the 2016 Budget. This review will be essential to making the right choices for our City and our Ward, and I will share that report with you.

But I will not support a budget that is balanced solely on the backs of property taxpayers, especially those in this Ward.

There are many ways you can become involved in the upcoming budget process:
  • Call the office at 773-348-9500 or email me at yourvoice@ward43.org with the questions you want answered at budget hearings.
  • Many City Council members, including me, have asked detailed questions and sought estimates of various possible budget proposals in advance of the hearings. The  Office of Budget and Management's analysis of these items is  here. If you have additional ideas, please share them. Let me know what you think.
  • Follow us on Twitter as we provide live updates beginning with the first budget hearing on September 28th.
Your continued input is critical as we work through this defining period in our City's history and I look forward to hearing from you.


Michele Signature

 Michele Smith

 43rd Ward Alderman