I just received my property tax bill in the mail, with another $549 dollars going to School District 308 this year.
Last year the increase was $800. This is in the worst economy in over 80 years. There is a disconnect between the taxpayer and those providing the services. No matter how many times we politely ask that the district refrain from increasing tax rates, they manage to ignore these requests and do whatever they want, they claim they need the money. Who doesn’t?
Oswego residents were already paying one of the highest property tax rates anywhere in the United States. Aside from employment in the local government arena, there are very few good paying jobs here in Kendall County.
Many of us had hoped that the new SD 308 board members would provide some relief, but it is not to be. Huge pay increases for administrators is now the direction the board has chosen.
Oswego school district is the black hole of taxpayer funds, the money is sucked in, but very little of value comes from it. It is an overpaid, underperforming, dysfunctional bureaucracy unworthy of community support or community pride.
The school district is the owner of all property and we taxpayers are simply slaves working to ensure that others have lifetime pensions, health care and COLA increases while we enjoy none of these benefits for our own families.
I think the tax cap that 80 percent of us voted for is an illusion. What cap? How can the tax rates go from 5.08 to 6.657 over two years if there is a tax cap? That is over a 31.5 percent increase when the rates were not to exceed 5 percent or the CPI, whichever is less. There is NO tax cap!
Sure education is important, but it is not more important than the roof over the heads of our children or the food we put on the table. I would happily vote to completely eliminate the entire school district if given the chance.
Privatization is starting to look real good to me, and I do not know why we would not consider it given the financial mismanagement that has led to the highest property tax rates in the country. How could this be any worse than what we have now?
We attempted to place a new board in power that we thought would attempt to start to lower the costs. Clearly they are either incompetent or simply have no clue; either way they are failing miserably at that task.
The choice is becoming clear; it’s either us or it’s them in this community. Many have given up and have left or are planning to leave the area soon, with the smartest of these realizing there is no future in living anywhere in Illinois.
Collectively, the school districts have single-handedly bankrupted the state with their early retirements, pensions and health benefits. They have literally bitten off the hand that feeds them.
The reforms at the state level represent much too little, way too late. Illinois is going bankrupt, it’s that simple and as the really productive people mass exodus this state, the situation will only get worse.
Somewhere we need to draw a line in the sand, no exceptions and no loopholes. The schools have totally abused their power to tax, so that power must be taken away. They have proven over and over that they are neither competent nor deserving of such power.
In some states school budgets must be approved by the taxpayer, how many of you would approve of what they are doing now? It’s time for major changes with privatization being the best option. Get rid of the whole thing and everyone in it and start over. This is our only hope of restoring private property rights; rights guaranteed in the Constitution but taken away by the tax and spends socialists currently running our school systems.
Greg O’Neil, Oswego