Joliet Plays Chicago Politics And Stiffs Residents With Tax Increase

Joliet Plays Chicago Politics And Stiffs Residents With Tax Increase

Joliet Mayor Tom Garriante seems to have taken a page right out of the Chicago Tax Playbook; i.e. screw residents while leaving businesses who ruin its’ roads and bridges alone. And so it is – Joliet residents will get tagged for an increase in their sales tax and utility taxes in 2012 after the City Council voted 5-4 in favor of such an action. In addition to Garriante’s 4 Puppet Council Members – all council members gave the proverbial pipe to residents unfortunate enough to require a Joliet Ambulance, as those rates skyrocketed in a 9-0 Vote. Bear in mind, residents have already payed more and gotten less since water and sewer rates skyrocketed before Artie Baby left office.

Funny thing though – Joliet Government continues to refuse entertaining a lease tax on the intermodal’s who have helped destroy its roads and bridges. They are somehow buying the threats being made by intermodal operators who say they will get up and leave if they do so. Right – after all of that investment? I don’t think so. Just pay your damn fair share! But if they do want to leave – well then don’t let the door hit your asses on the way out. Joliet residents don’t need the extra burden of subsidizing their businesses.

Joliet has always been tied to, and even resembled, Chicago. Particularly when it comes to its’ politics. The funny thing, though, residents aren’t necessarily tied into the city politics as heavily as people in Chicago. Let’s face it, patronage isn’t as much a problem here as it is there. But that doesn’t mean that there aren’t some shenanigans from time to time. Garriante was elected from a large field of candidates and one has to wonder why some candidates even ran if not to just dilute another candidates viability. But hey, there was an election and Artie’s hand-picked boy won the thing fair and square – I guess. But I don’t think he will be as lucky next time.

People are tiring of the dictatorial rule at City Hall.

In perhaps one of the most egregious acts after taking office, Mayor Garriante removed Council Member At-Large Jan Quillman from any substantial committees because she has, for the most part, been the most vocal member against the good ole boys club attitude that has existed in Joliet Government for decades. I suppose her running for Mayor against Tom Garriante pissed a few people off – huh? Well, it doesn’t take a genius to figure out what was done, and by whom, to stifle her voice.

Fortunately for residents, though, there has been a more positive shift towards demanding accountability from members of the City Council. Council Members Larry Hug, Terry Morris, Robert O’DeKirk, as well as Jan Quillman have pretty much stuck to their promises and if we can get another like-minded person elected the next time around, maybe residents can finally get their voice heard.Of course, the voters in Joliet will have to get with the program next time around and finally realize that it is in their best interests to dispose of any yes people who are giving Giarrante (along with his vote) a majority. Personally, I don’t know what Susie Barber, John Gerl (another hand-picked replacement for a former yes vote from my district), Don Fischer and Michael Turk are even thinking. But hey, maybe they feel people really don’t pay attention to how they vote? But what a surprise it would be if people really were, huh? Anyone who has paid attention already knows where the loyalties lie and it sure isn’t for residents of Joliet!

And I don’t think most of us want, or need, Chicago Politics in Joliet.


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  • I don't know about Joliet, and can't keep up with the approx. 900 units of local government.

    However, the governments usually say with regard to the sales tax that "out of towners" pay it. I mentioned going to Lake County in honor of the Toddler. Is Louis Joliet Mall in Joliet? At least there is still shopping in Bolingbrook.

    Of course, you can't escape utility taxes, the the two casinos were not the panacea to all ills.

  • In reply to jack:

    The "Out of Towners" logic is flawed - residents wind up paying much moreover the long haul than the occasional visitor. And yes we have the Louis Joliet Mall - which by the way already assesses a one-half percent higher tax rate than other parts of town.

    Joliet's problem is a fucked-up city council that refuses to do "what it is supposed to do." They waste too much money!

  • In reply to Michael Ciric:

    Someone pointed out the same on a transit comment board with regard to Metra and CTA.

    Like my prior Diogenes comment, I guess would challenge someone to find one of the approx. 900 units of local government in Illinois that doesn't. In that Illinois has that many units of local government itself proves the point.

    At about the time the RTA and Cook County sales taxes were being floated, I wrote my state legislators about the piling on of various jurisdictions with the sales tax. Apparently that went for naught (or nougat).

    And you mean that the mall got stuck in a separate taxing district, so that another 1/2% was added? I believe that downtown Joliet doesn't have any sales tax generating businesses left, but I am surprised that the mall association didn't complain about being subject to a higher rate. People can shop in Aurora, and the 1/2% might make a difference, unless Aurora has tacked on other sales taxes, too.

  • As you say Nougat - Joliet Mall, though, has seen a reduction in customer traffic since they enacted that extra 1/2 of one percent. Their rationale was that they tore down that truck stop / truck wash that was off of US 30 and I-55 on the other side of the mall. They condemned it and were hoping to build an "upscale" and "unique" mall (whatever that means). But yeah - people like me avoid the mall (and surrounding area) and shop in Shorewood for similar items. Aurora / Napeville - their sales tax rate is basically the same as Joliet Mall - so there isn't much sense going there except for the Tiger Direct Outlet Store (great deals). Oswego is close to us as well (from the west side) and we go there too.

    So, if there is a will - there is a way and we generally find it. Maybe one day these yo-yo's will figure out that "volume is better than spiking?"

  • Back to the news, how about the one last night about how lawmakers fixed it so Gannon could get a huge government pension for working for the union? Of course, all the politicians contacted got Fedzheimers.

    Cullerton said he would look into it, but isn't that the same Cullerton who said that the Pension Clause means we can't do beans?

  • In reply to jack:

    Fedzheimers - I like that!

    As for Cullerton looking into anything that could only mean an envelope.

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