Some Clarification on Pingree Grove's Tax Levy, Tax Rate and PTELL

Some Clarification on Pingree Grove’s Tax Levy, Tax Rate and PTELL

In yesterday’s Tax Bill FAQ article, Which Cities/Villages Held Tax Levies Flat? Which Didn’t?, we ran the traditional, annual FAQ graphic showing the various tax levies of Kane County municipalities.

The biggest year-over-year percentage increase (between the 2013 extended levy and the 2014 extended levy) was in Pingree Grove, which was up 12.76 percent.

After receiving more than a few phone calls, Pingree Grove Director of Finance Thomas G. Walter contacted Kane County Connects with a quick explanation that Pingree Grove’s levy increase had a lot to do with new growth and an expanded tax base:

“Under the Property Tax Extension Limitation Law (PTELL), taxing municipalities are limited to increasing annual levies by a combination of the Consumer Price Index, a state defined multiplier and the addition of new property,” Walter said. “When calculating fund levies, all three of these variables must be defined and incorporated into the PTELL calculation.

“The village of Pingree Grove had new property added totaling $12,095,272 for the tax extension levy.  The addition of new property is what lead to a double-digit increase in the amount of the levy.

“Your numbers as stated in your blog report accurately reflect the levy variances but failed to explain why the increase exceeded 12 percent.  I hope my explanation of the PTELL clarifies the increase.

“I want to assure the residents of Pingree Grove that the tax rates are fairly and transparently reported.

“As finance director, the Village Board of Pingree Grove has instructed me to insure that we maintain a solid and conservative calculation on the tax rates of the village.”

Walter further pointed out the village’s relatively low tax rate, which was .2514 for 2014. The property taxpayer with an equalized assessed value of $100,000, he said, would pay $251.40 as the village’s portion of the property-tax bill.

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More on PTELL

SOURCE: Illinois Department of Revenue

What is the Property Tax Extension Limitation Law (PTELL)?

The PTELL is designed to limit the increases in property tax extensions (total taxes billed) for non-home-rule taxing districts.

Although the law is commonly referred to as “tax caps,” use of this phrase can be misleading. The PTELL does not “cap” either individual property tax bills or individual property assessments. Instead, the PTELL allows a taxing district to receive a limited inflationary increase in tax extensions on existing property, plus an additional amount for new construction.

The limit slows the growth of revenues to taxing districts when property values and assessments are increasing faster than the rate of inflation. As a whole, property owners have some protection from tax bills that increase only because the market value of their property is rising rapidly.

Payments for bonds issued without voter approval are subject to strict limitations. If a taxing district determines that it needs more money than is allowed by the limitation, it can ask the voters to approve an increase.

The collar counties (DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry, and Will) became subject to the PTELL for the 1991 levy year for taxes paid in 1992; Cook County was added for the 1994 levy year for taxes paid in 1995. Public Act 89-510 allows county boards to give voters in all other counties the opportunity to decide if the PTELL should apply to their counties. In addition, Public Act 89-718 allows county boards of counties that are subject to the PTELL by referendum to give voters the opportunity to rescind the PTELL using the same referendum process.

Public Act 94-976 amended PTELL effective June 30, 2006. The significant amendments include:

  • New supplemental ballot and election notice information.
  • Additional taxing district voter-approved referenda and other referenda changes.
  • Authority for taxing districts in some instances to exceed a voter-approved rate limit for a fund as long as the sum of all the rates for funds subject to PTELL, does not exceed the limiting rate.

What Is the “Limitation”?

Increases in property tax extensions are limited to the lesser of 5 percent or the increase in the national Consumer Price Index for the year preceding the levy year. The limitation can be increased for a taxing body with voter approval.

The CPI used is for all urban consumers for all items as published by the United States Department of Labor. A CPI history of the limitation is available at

For More Information

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