Property assessment notices arrive in mailboxes
The Winnebago County Supervisor of Assessment’s office has mailed approximately 120,000 Property Assessment Notices this week to inform taxpayers of their 2023 property assessment valuation.
Since assessments are based on real estate sales prices, which have increased wildly since 2020, most Stateline residents have seen an increase in their assessment, though not necessarily in their taxes. According to Realtor.com, the median listing home price in Winnebago County, IL is 12.1% higher than last year, reaching $184.9K in July 2023. The median home sold price was $167.5K.
“It’s important to keep in mind that while the assessed value of your property may increase a certain percentage, it does not necessarily mean that your tax bill is going to increase by that same percentage,” said Winnebago County Supervisor of Assessments Tom Hodges. “As the tax base continues to increase, driven by both new development as well as the recent housing market, many taxing districts throughout Winnebago County have made a concerted effort to hold their levies flat, which in turn has resulted in declining tax rates.”
In fact, between 2021 and 2022, tax rates went down [PDF] for every municipality and school district in Winnebago County - except for Rock Valley College, which went up 4.34%.
In the Stateline area, your property taxes pay for about ten local government services [PDF], with school tax rates being the highest. At 6.7247%, Harlem School District is the highest in the county. The Kinnikinnick School District's tax rate is about 3.8%, followed by about 2.5% for Hononegah Community High School District. Rates for North Boone, Rockford, and South Beloit school districts are all higher than 5%. In comparison, the tax rate for Winnebago County is about 0.8%, your township roads are probably less than 0.2%, while Winnebago County Forest Preserves is less than 1/10 of a percent.
Tom Hodges, Winnebago County Supervisor of Assessments, says that property owners should take time to carefully look over their assessment notice to make sure that they are "being assessed fairly and uniformly" and that they are receiving any exemptions which they may be entitled to. Common exemptions are given to seniors, veterans, and persons with disabilities or low income. If you own the home you live in, you probably qualify for a homestead exemption.
In addition to the mailing, assessed value were published in a local paper newspaper last week. Taxpayers have 30 days - until Sept. 9 - to file a Property Assessment Complaint [PDF] with the Winnebago County Board of Review if they disagree.
However, the first step is to contact your township assessor. If you feel your property is assessed too high, your Township Assessor can get you a copy of your Property Record Card, which shows the details of your property as the assessor sees it.
- The Roscoe Township Assessor is Cindy Servant. Residents of Roscoe Township can see their Property Record Card or ask assessment questions by emailing [email protected] or by calling 815-270-0591.
- The Rockton Township Assessor is Dana Adams and the Deputy Assessor is January Fry. You can reach them through their website contact form or by calling 815-624-2597.
- The Supervisor of Assessors website has a list of all township assessors. Your township is listed on your tax bill (look it up here) and may not match your mailing address. For example, residents of South Beloit are mostly in Roscoe or Rockton Townships. Many residents of the Village of Roscoe live in Roscoe Township, but others may live in Harlem Township, Owen Township, or somewhere else.
If your Property Record Card says your house is bigger or newer than it really is or shows improvements that were never made, you may wish to file a Property Assessment Complaint [PDF] with the Winnebago County Board of Review. Property Assessment Complaints must be received or postmarked by the appropriate deadline date (Sept. 9, 2023) or they will not be considered by the Board. More information can be found on the Supervisor of Assessments website or by calling (815) 319-4463.
According to an Aug. 9 announcement by Winnebago County:
Assessed Values have a direct correlation with non-farmland, open market, real estate sales within a given jurisdiction and are required by law to reflect a median assessment level of 33 1/3% of fair market value. An Equalization Factor is applied by the Supervisor of Assessment’s office to most non-farm property within each township to ensure compliance with state statute. The sales used in determining this assessment level are taken from arm’s length transactions that meet certain criteria, as specified by the Illinois Department of Revenue, which occurred from 2020 through 2022.
The assessed value of a property plays an integral role in calculating an individual property’s tax liability, but it is only one part of the equation. Whereas, the assessment process ensures that the property tax collected for a given taxing body is uniformly and equitably distributed based upon a property’s fair market value, the other half of the equation is determined by the individual taxing districts and what they project they will need to levy in order to meet their budget demands for the upcoming year. This levy, in conjunction with the total tax base within a jurisdiction, results in the tax rate for that taxing body. In general, tax rates are inversely proportional to the total equalized assessed value within a jurisdiction.
According to Stacker, Roscoe has seen the highest home prices in the Stateline - 36.1% higher than five years ago. Rockton's home prices are up 43.7% over the past five years, while South Beloit's home values have grown even faster - up 48.1% since 2018. For many Stateline taxpayers, their property value (what they can sell their house for) has increased faster than their assessed value (what they pay taxes on.)
Tax Rates in the Stateline Area (highest to lowest)
|Entity||Rate (in percent)|
|HARLEM SCHOOL DIST 122||6.7247|
|NORTH BOONE SD #200||6.1418|
|ROCKFORD SCHOOL DIST 205||5.7625|
|SOUTH BELOIT SD #320||5.7169|
|KINNIKINNICK SD #131||3.8686|
|PRAIRIE HILL SCHOOL DIST 133||3.8235|
|SHIRLAND SCHOOL DIST 134||3.5903|
|ROCKTON SCHOOL DIST 140||3.4342|
|HONONEGAH HIGH SD #207||2.4897|
|SOUTH BELOIT CITY||1.0026|
|COMMUNITY COLLEGE 511||0.4762|
|TALCOTT FREE LIBRARY||0.2744|
|NORTH SUBURBAN LIBRARY||0.273|
|SOUTH BELOIT CITY LIBRARY||0.192|
|OWEN TWSP ROAD||0.1885|
|HARRISON TWSP ROAD||0.1835|
|FOUR RIVERS SANITATION AUTHORITY||0.1593|
|ROSCOE TWSP ROAD||0.1459|
|ROCKTON TWSP ROAD||0.1441|
|SHIRLAND TWSP ROAD||0.1076|
|GREATER RKFD AIRPORT||0.0926|
|HARLEM TWSP ROAD||0.0435|
|BU/HA/SH MULTI TOWNSHIP||0.038|
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