Chicago officials may implement new taxes, fees in the city

CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) - Chicagoans are virtually certain to face a big increase in real estate property tax bills next year.

Hoping to reduce the size of that increase, the mayor and members of the City Council are looking at a laundry list of other new taxes and fees.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel also said Thursday he'll propose at least $106 million in spending cuts in his 2016 budget next month.

“I think it's ridiculous. I think we pay enough in taxes as it is,” said taxpayer Dolores Carr.

Carr urged the mayor to fire lots of highly-paid managers at City Hall, though she conceded it might not be enough to balance Chicago's way out the budget crisis.

FOX 32: Are you worried about the city budget?

“Very worried, because the mayor hasn't given us a plan,” said 22nd Ward Alderman Rick Munoz.

Ald. Munoz is a leader of the City Council's Progressive Caucus. The Munoz plan to balance the budget includes two items that must be approved by the General Assembly and Gov. Bruce Rauner: a graduated city income tax and putting marijuana on a par with alcohol.

“I'm a proponent of the legalization of cannabis and to be able to tax it. Because that is a revenue generator,” Munoz said.

FOX 32: The mayor, though, is not in favor of that.

“That's his position and we need to move him on it,” Munoz added.

Among other possible revenue generators: a fee for picking up garbage at single-family homes, a tax on sugary soda pop and a tax on smokeless tobacco.

“They might as well tax on oxygen. I mean, the city is crazy,” said taxpayer Sergio Arlandiz.

People hate taxes.

But taxes, that's what makes the United States go around. That's what keeps us running.

The mayor's office sent FOX 32 an e-mail saying he's already identified ways to save $106 million in the 2016 budget he'll propose next month, $3.3 million by ending free garbage pickup at 1,800 multi-unit buildings and $18 million from freezing downtown TIF districts.