Auditor: Here's How Kane's Value to Taxpayers Stacks Up To Other Collar Counties

Auditor: Here’s How Kane’s Value to Taxpayers Stacks Up To Other Collar Counties

Kane County Auditor Terry Hunt

Kane County Auditor Terry Hunt

Kane County Auditor Terry Hunt has come up with new ways to measure and compare the cost effectiveness of county government.

In a press release issued Tuesday, Nov. 25, Hunt showcased what he calls an “Effective Tax Rate,” which is calculated by dividing a county’s total property value by its levy request.

Hunt also presented a cost-per-resident measurement, which he says is another simple way to illustrate what kind of bang residents are getting for their property-tax buck.

The measurements make it easy to see “just how Kane County stacks up against the other collar counties in very simple, straightforward terms,” Hunt said, and he created charts that show comparisons of five collar counties: DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry and Will for the tax year 2013 payable in 2014.

Hunt started the release by noting that the aggregate Kane County property tax levy will remain frozen for a fourth consecutive year, following the recent approval of the 2015 budget. He illustrated that point in the following chart, which he presented in his report to committee members at Nov. 21 Finance and Budget Committee meeting.

Screen Shot 2014-11-26 at 2.41.55 PM

“While the chart clearly shows that the county has been successful in its commitment to maintaining a frozen tax levy, there is another part of the story that is meaningful to taxpayers in Kane County,” Hunt said.

To illustrate those comparisons, Hunt developed the following schedule and charts:

Kane County Tax Effectiveness Charts

“The schedule and charts compare, in very simple terms, the cost of county-provided services for the five collar counties,” Hunt said, adding that the figures for the tax year 2013 payable 2014 were “the most-current, complete-year data available for every county.”

The cost-per-resident figures were calculated by dividing the total property tax levy request by the county’s population.

Among the five collar counties, Kane has the lowest total property tax levy, and was second-lowest in both the effective tax rate and cost per resident, Hunt said.

“Kane County residents clearly have benefited from the mutual commitment by the chairman and the County Board to maintaining a frozen tax levy,” Hunt said.