Patlak campaign receives thousands from lawyers who appear before his board
In the race for the Cook County Board of Review, challenger Marty Stack is calling for a moratorium on all campaign and election donations from tax law firms whose lawyers appear before the county's tax review board, and is criticizing incumbent Dan Patlak for accepting thousands in campaign donations from law firms that appear before the board through his campaign election fund
Originally published in the DVN, The Regional, The Reporter Nov. 3, 2016
By Ray Hanania
Cook County’s Board of Review has a big problem and Marty Stack wants to change it.
It won’t be easy, though. Stack is the underdog in the race for the Cook County Board of Review, which is supposed to help taxpayers appeal their property taxes if those taxes are higher than the average tax on the same homes in your community.
The innocuously named Board of Review doesn’t really help taxpayers at all, but does seem to help tax lawyers make easy profits, and board members loads of campaign donations.
The system is confusing for many taxpayers, especially seniors. The forms are confusing. The deadlines are confusing. Even if you manage to fill out everything and provide all the legal documents, chances are the board will reject it.
But – and this is a big, wealthy, fat check of a “but” – if a taxpayer “hires” a tax appeals law firm to complete the forms, your chances of getting your appeal approved increases.
Who are these tax law firms? You could go online and spend months researching their names. Or, you could go to Patlak’s campaign forms at the Illinois State Board of Elections, www.Elections.IL.Gov, which reads like a Yellow Pages listing of tax appeal lawyers.
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