Ads and mailings funded by Illinois REALTORS® explaining the dangers of Home Rule have been used in four communities in the state where voters will cast ballots on April 4.
The ads appeared online in Lynwood, Creve Coeur, Ottawa and Coal City.
In Ottawa and Coal City, online advertising was supplemented by a series of full-page newspaper advertisements warning residents about the potential costs of allowing elected officials to take their communities to Home Rule status.
In each of the four communities, a series of mailings slammed home the message that Home Rule would be a bad move for property owners. The fight was a joint effort by Illinois REALTORS®, Real Property Alliance and local REALTOR® associations.
Home Rule ballot initiatives pose a number of threats for communities which have fewer than 25,000 residents.
If voters were to sanction the change, elected officials would have more say in taxation and the amount of debt a community could take on. Often, that power can directly translate into higher property taxes and even additional fees for property owners.
Illinois REALTORS® and its partners have worked closely to explain the pitfalls of Home Rule to communities considering Home Rule. The organizations have been involved in several communities where ballot initiatives have been torpedoed as a result of wary property owners voting to make sure they keep a say in tax policy.