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12 Apr 2024

Mayor Johnson Proposes $1.25B Plan For Development And Housing

Mayor Johnson Proposes $1.25B Plan For Development And Housing

Mayor Brandon Johnson introduced a revised $1.25 billion plan on Thursday, aimed at bolstering affordable housing and economic development in Chicago. Notable for its departure from reliance on TIF districts, the proposal allocates $250 million annually over five years to the Department of Planning and Development and the Department of Housing.

A significant aspect of the proposal involves the expiration of multiple TIF districts to support the bond. Additionally, projects exceeding $5 million would necessitate council approval, sparking discussions about the threshold’s rationale and its impact on project funding. While some council members suggested a lower threshold of $1 million for better oversight, others voiced support for the plan’s transparency and potential benefits.

Despite ongoing scrutiny and discussions within the City Council, there seems to be support for the bond plan among council members. According to Joe Ferguson, president of the Civic Federation, the organization views the plan as a prudent strategy to address Chicago’s excessive dependence on TIF funds. “We are at a critical juncture regarding TIF funding and require prompt action,” Ferguson stated. While acknowledging TIF’s historical importance for economic development, Ferguson emphasized the need for reform, citing recent trends in fund utilization by the city, as reported by The Chicago Sun.

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