CITY HALL — Mayor Rahm Emanuel got the property-tax hike he asked for at Wednesday's City Council meeting, but a handful of aldermen resisted the plan.
Fourteen aldermen said no to Emanuel's budget, which included a record $589 million property-tax increase scheduled to hit Chicagoans next summer.
Ald. Carlos Ramirez-Rosa (35th) issued a statement prior to his "no" vote Wednesday, calling city leaders "bullies" for asking Chicagoans to pay instead of cutting their own hefty paychecks or turning to high-rolling donors.
"It takes courage to cut your six-figure pay," he said in a statement. "It takes courage to turn to your big and powerful corporate donors and ask them to pay. It's easy to turn to those with the least power and ask them to empty their pockets; that's what bullies do every day. City Hall should have cut its six-figure salaries and emptied out hundreds of millions in TIF funds before raising property taxes and fees on Chicago's working families."
Former Chicago Public Schools teacher Ald. Susan Sadlowski Garza (10th) echoed those sentiments in a statement. She also rejected the budget.
“It isn't fair to stick homeowners with the bill," Garza said. "From parking-meter deals, CPS no-bid contracts, to top-heavy city departments — city government sure finds way to waste and mismanagement money, and now homeowners are left to clean up the mess."
Ald. Jason Ervin (28th) pounded his desk during Wednesday's City Council debate to press home his point that a proposed $9.50-a-month garbage fee was "regressive," adding, "I want better." He too voted against the budget.
Other "no" votes included: Ald. Scott Waguespack (32nd), Ald. Brendan Reilly (42nd), Ald. Debra Silverstein (50th), Ald. Brian Hopkins (2nd), Ald. Harry Osterman (48th), Ald. Deb Mell (33rd), Ald. Anthony Napolitano (41st), Ald. Chris Taliaferro (29th), Ald. Milly Santiago (31st), Ald. Roberto Maldonado (26th) and Ald. Gilbert Villegas (36th).
Ald. David Moore (17th) voted for the budget, but then sought to separate out a vote against the garbage fee. When the council wouldn't allow that, he voted against a complementary spending resolution including the tax and fee increases.
Only four aldermen voted against Emanuel's budget last year. The last time the city made a major increase in property taxes, $87.9 million in the 2008 budget under Mayor Richard M. Daley, the final vote was 29-21.
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