Governor Pritzker Signs PTELL Amendment to Recapture Refunds While the Bill’s Sponsor Seeks to Repeal and Replace

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Governor Pritzker Signs PTELL Amendment to Recapture Refunds While the Bill’s Sponsor Seeks to Repeal and Replace

Aug 23, 2021

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On August 20, 2021, Governor Pritzker signed Senate Bill 508 (“SB 508”) into law as Public Act 102-0519 (“P.A. 102-0519”).  Among other things, this new law amends the Property Tax Extension Limitation Law (“PTELL”) by creating Section 35 ILCS 200/18-233.  Under Section 18-233, all tax-capped taxing districts’ levies “shall by increased by a prior year adjustment” to make the taxing district whole for revenue lost as the result of property tax assessment appeal refunds.  Section 18-233 purports to automatically increase the extension for all tax-capped taxing districts by the amount lost to Property Tax Appeal Board (“PTAB”) reductions, Circuit Court Orders in assessment cases, and Certificates of Errors resulting from assessment mistakes. Under the new law, the county treasurer will certify the aggregate refund paid during the prior 12-month period, and this amount will be added to the annual tax extension. 

Although now law, the Governor’s signature on SB 508 may not be the end of this story.  At almost the exact same time that Governor Pritzker signed SB 508, the Bill’s sponsor, House Finance Committee Chairman Representative Michael J. Zalewski, muddied the waters by introducing House Bill 4130 (“HB 4130”), which would entirely repeal the brand new Section 18-233 and replace the refund recapture provisions.  Rather than increase the levy automatically, under HB 4130 the addition to the levy would be optional.  If enacted, taxing districts would need to adopt a “recapture levy” seeking additional funds to make up for the lost revenue.  The total amount may be extended in up to three successive annual installments under a “separate line item in the district’s regular levy ordinance.”  Further, taxpayers that have been issued refunds will have the option to have their taxes abated for the proportionate amount of the recapture levy.  Finally, HB 4130 would apply to all taxing districts rather than just those subject to tax caps. P.A. 102-0519 goes into effect immediately.  Together, P.A. 102-0519 and HB 4130 raise several questions for PTELL and non-PTELL districts alike that will need to be answered prior to the December 2021 levies.  The General Assembly plans on meeting by the end of August to discuss redistricting, and then the veto session is currently scheduled for late October.  We will be following this legislation closely at both the local level and in Springfield as the details are ironed out and as it works its way through the legislative process.  Please contact your Robbins Schwartz attorney with any questions.