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November 8, 2016 — Illinois Elección General
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Cook County Board of ReviewCandidato para Commissioner, Distrito 1

Photo de Marty Stack
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Marty Stack

Demócrata
Attorney
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El candidato(a) proporcionó información.

Mis 3 prioridades principales

  • As homeowners are mostly unrepresented before the Boad of Review, I seek to create a user friendly website for Homeowners to use to determine whether their property taxes were fairly assessed and then streamline the website for Homeowner appeals.
  • Eliminate the existing deadlines for Homeowners. Create a mechanism that would allow unrepresented homeowners to submit appeals year round.
  • End the politics associated with the Board of Review out reach program. It has become a political tool for Commissioners to further their goal of re-election rather than to educate property taxpayers regarding the Board of Review.

Experiencia

Experiencia

Profesión:Attorney
Private Practice, Self (2011–current)
Human Resource Director (part time), District 103 (2015–2016)
Deputy General Counsel, Cook County Sheriff's Office (2009–2011)
General Manager Labor Relations, Chicago Transit Authority (2000–2007)
Freedom of Information Officer, City of Chicago — Cargo designado (1989–2000)
Assistant States Attorney, Cook County States Attorney's Office — Cargo designado (1987–1989)

Educación

The John Marshall Law School J.D., Law School (1988)
Loyola University M.S., Industrial Relations (1982)
Saint Xavier College B.A. , Business Administration (1980)

Actividades comunitarias

Volunteer , Lyons Senior's Club (2014–current)
Volunteer, Lyons High School AV Club (Student Movie Production) (2010–2012)

¿Quién apoya a este candidato?

Featured Endorsements

  • State Representative Michael Zalewski
  • State Senator Steven Landek
  • Cook County Democratic Party

Organizaciónes (1)

  • Local 399 Operating Engineers

Preguntas y Respuestas

Preguntas de Chicago Sun-Times (5)

Is it proper for Board of Review commissioners to accept campaign contributions from lawyers who appear before the board? 
Respuesta de Marty Stack:

Fund raising as it pertains to the Board of Review needs to be reset. We all know that fund raising is an adjunct when running for elective office. That doesnt mean it should be abused. Preventing anyone or any group  from donating may create other problems. Let's face it, if the property tax appeals bar is unable to contribute, they may just shift that burden on to their clients or disguise their contributions. Worse, a system of unregistered and illegal donations maybe created. Donations should be capped at some reasonable amount-let's say maybe $500 per person, per year from those registered to practice before the Board. Amassing a half million dollars in donations is wrong and calls into question the integrity of the entire Board. This amassing of contributions for this office has to be limited. Rules need to be created and codified. There should be sanctions for those Board registered attorneys who are found to be in violation of contribution limits. Commissioners should be publically censured, fined and made to return funds improperly obtained. Criminal activity needs to be prosecuted.

The property tax system in Cook County long has been marred by accusations that lawyers with clout win significant tax reductions for their clients, which drives up costs for everyone else. Do you agree? If so, what would you do to prevent it?
Respuesta de Marty Stack:

The Board of Review needs to abandon practices that cause suspicion. The largest commercial property owners to the smallest of homeowners need to be treated equally and fairly and with respect. I have seen no empirical data to suggest that by giving commercial property owners tax reductions results in a corresponding increase in homeowner taxes. That is, however, the general perception. Homeowners should be able to log on to the Board of Review's web site and obtain comparables without having to hunt all over the internet to find them. Property comparisons should be provided by the Board of Review. Lake County has a wonderful web site that Cook County could learn from. The Lake County site actually searches property comparables for the homeowner to use in their appeal. Cook County's site should do no less.

The Board should move to eliminate the existing deadlines for homeowners or at the very least greatly expand the period homeowners have to submit appeals to the Board of Review.

 

The Board, on its web page, should categorize by township, the largest dollar reductions and percentage reductions granted by the Board. It should also provide this very same information by ranking - for the county as a whole. Citizens need to know who received the biggest tax reductions and be granted access to the evidence supporting the reduction. This will go a long way in demystifying what the Board actually does and why. Once the process becomes truly transparent, only then will the lingering whispers regarding favoritism and corruption subside. Since not everyone has internet access, this information should be readily available at Board Offices as well.

 

Board of Review commissioners often hold seminars to explain the appeal process and help homeowners fill out forms for appeals. Is this a public benefit, or does it shift costs to property owners who don’t appeal?
Respuesta de Marty Stack:

 

In my heart, I think these outreach seminars are political tools. The were and are used by certain commissioners to further political agendas. There is no eveidence to suggest that these seminars benefit homeowners. In fact in my travels throughout the county, I have been told by more than one homeowner who attended  outreach seminars that they left without understanding the appeals process any better than when they arrived.  If the Board did its job correctly, the outreach program could be truncated or would not be needed.

I will review this practice with an eye toward either eliminating it or greatly reforming it.

 I also believe that the need for suburban Board offices has to be audited. As a practicing attorney, I see Board offices within the suburban district court houses. Why, I wonder, are these offices staffed? Why do they exist? What is acccomplished within these offices? These are questions that I need answers too. My instincts and knowledge of goverment tells me that they exist for all the wrong reasons. If I am right, then they need to be closed.

 

 

Last year, property owners for the first time were able to upload online all necessary documents for assessment appeals. What additional improvements do you envision for the system?
Respuesta de Marty Stack:

The decision to reconfigure the Board's filing system was a step in the right direction. The Board's website should be adjusted to accept homeowner appeals year round. That is, Board deadlines for homeowners should be eliminated.  The site should also provide a straight forward way of finding property anywhere in the county using common addresses or with proximity software. The current software is unforgiving. The Board's site should provide easy access to a homeowner's property tax records and be able to associate a homeowner's records to other similar or like properties in the area. Additionally, and as previously discussed the Board should categorize by township, the largest dollar reductions and percentage reductions granted by the Board. It should also provide this information by ranking for the county as a whole.

I think the Board's web site could be a used to decode and simplify the process of property tax appeals.

Is the job of Board of Review commissioner basically a quasi-judicial ministerial position? If so, should commissioners be appointed rather than elected?
Respuesta de Marty Stack:

 I am not opposed to appointment of Board Commissioners. Of course it is too late for this cycle.  I do have some questions regarding such proposed appointments. For example- Who would appoint? Would the appointees be subject to recall, if needed? What would qualify a person to serve as a commssioner. How long would an appointed term be? Could the appointment system be critcized as -at times - is the appointment of associate judges? Those would be only some of the questions I would have. For now, the fact that commissioners are subject to recall by way of the ballot box seems to be working.

The Rules for election or qualification to hold office need to be reviewed. Attorneys elected to the Board should be required to forego any real estate business- including property closings and trust work. Non-attorneys should be required to refain from working as real estate brokers or salesman.

Videos (1)

Marty Stack tells why he should be a commissioner on the Cook County Board of Review.

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