Tuesday was a typically busy day for Mayor Rahm.
In the midst of spending his time trying to bring a casino to Chicago, he dashed over to the banks of the Chicago River to attend a ground-breaking ceremony for River Point.
That’s the upscale office skyscraper subsidized with $29.5 million of your hard-earned property tax dollars taken from the mayoral slush fund known as TIF.
Or tax increment financing, to be proper about things.
In the TIF program, the city diverts over $200 million a year from the Chicago Public Schools—currently about $1 billion in debt—to fund much-needed economic development and eradicate blight in low-income neighborhoods.
Of course, in the case of River Point, the area is neither low-income nor blighted. It is instead in River North, one of the hottest real estate markets in town.
Why, you ask, would the mayor take money intended for poor neighborhoods and spend it on upscale developments on the rich end of town?
‘Cause he wants to—and if you don’t like it? Well, consider what he (pretty much) told Sam Holloway when the firefighter pointed out that Rahm didn’t have to cut the pensions of old firefighters if he just raised taxes on rich commodities traders and brokers instead of giving them tax breaks: “Run against me!”
In the picture the Tribune ran of the River Point ground-breaking scene, Mayor Rahm and a developer are laughing as if they’re sharing a private joke.
The punch line of which is: Can you believe we get away with this shit?…
Thanks to NS for the above link.