Wednesday, March 20, 2013

I just got my property tax rebate check in the mail. Thanks Mayor! Hoorah!

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Ok Mayor Dan McLaughlin, you have GOT my vote.

I just got my tax rebate check in the mail. Alright, it was only $155.55, but still, it is the principle. Four years ago I was a little angry with da Mayor. He had long ago promised to off-set an increase in the local sales tax that he proposed by promising residents he would rebate our share of property taxes. And then, a few years later, he stopped it. Boo!

But he reinstated it. So yea! That's what it means to be a fickle voter.

This rebate check came just in time for the April 9 election, which only goes to prove that just before election time is the best time to make demands of our government officials.

I won't complain, too much, though. I mean, the last check I got was about $215. That was four years ago or so. (I could be off but for sure, the last full rebate check I got was way bigger.) And that means that this check doesn't even come close to what we should be getting back.

The Village of Orland Park raised the sales tax, which I dutifully pay when I buy things in Orland Park, and promised -- promised -- to rebate our village portion of our property taxes to off-set that increase. The idea was a good one and I give Mayor Dan credit for that. The sales tax would hit outsiders, non-Orland Park residents who come to this area to shop. Orland Park has a large commercial base in addition to the Mall -- although the Mall is getting a little skanky, face-lift or not.

Technically, had the Village NOT have stopped the rebate when they did and continued it each year at the same rate, I probably would have gotten $300 back this year. 

So, in a way, it's not the full rebate.

But that's ok. I like Dan McLaughlin. I've known him a long time, from when he was just a trustee. He can't control everything in Orland Park and he can't be blamed for everything. The trustees have a lot to do with it, too. They're the votes that cast votes, not Dan.

So I don't fault Mayor McLaughlin and I wish him luck in this election, although he won't need it. No one is running against him. And with only one exception, there isn't anyone I would have backed to take his place. He would have gotten my vote anyway, most likely.

I saw the mayor the other day. It was good to see him. He's done a lot of good for Orland Park, though I have some issues with Ninety 7 Fifty and its financing. Still, Orland Park is the place I always wanted to live and make a home and I did that around 1985 and have been loving it ever since. And for the most part, it's great in a large part because of Mayor McLaughlin's vision.

I'm not being critical, just honest. It's tough being a politician. I know because I work with a lot of them. I only work with the ones I like and McLaughlin is easily in that group.

So come April 9, I hope everyone backs Mayor McLaughlin, not just because he was able to reinstate the property tax rebate, but because given everything that politicians and government officials have to do and put up with, McLaughlin has done a good job.

-- Ray Hanania

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