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Assessment Matters: The Rise and Fall of the Illinois Resource Equalizer Formula

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  02 April 2020


This article explores the passage and failure of the 1973 Illinois Resource Equalizer formula which was designed to reduce disparities in school finance by breaking the connection between local wealth and school revenue. It argues that two sets of goals drove passage of the new law—equity and local property tax relief—and they came into conflict during implementation, with the latter winning out over the former. It argues that to understand both the passage and failure of the law requires looking deeply at the politics, policies, and practices of taxation, especially the methods of assessing property and levying taxes, where officials made decisions about how to apportion burden and benefits. The Illinois Resource Equalizer story highlights the political and policy choices that structure inequality through school finance at a moment when it was quietly defended and deepened.

Copyright © 2020 History of Education Society

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1 Public Act 78-215, Laws of the State of Illinois Passed by the Seventy-Eighth General Assembly During the Calendar Year 1973, vol. 1 (Quad Cities, IL: Illinois General Assembly, 1974), 638–650

2 Serrano v. Priest, 5 Cal.3d 584 (1971).

3 San Antonio Independent School District v. Rodriguez, 411 U.S. 1 (1973).

4 Ryan, James E., Five Miles Away, A World Apart: One City, Two Schools, and the Story of Educational Opportunity in Modern America (New York: Oxford University Press, 2010)Google Scholar; Reed, Douglas S., On Equal Terms: The Constitutional Politics of Educational Opportunity (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2001)Google Scholar; and Ogletree, Charles J and Robinson, Kimberly Jenkins, eds., The Enduring Legacy of Rodriguez: Creating New Pathways to Equal Educational Opportunity (Cambridge, MA: Harvard Education Press, 2015)Google Scholar.

5 Einhorn, Robin L., American Taxation, American Slavery (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Martin, Isaac William, The Permanent Tax Revolt: How the Property Tax Transformed American Politics (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2008)Google Scholar; Martin, Isaac William, Mehrotra, Ajay K., and Prasad, Monica, The New Fiscal Sociology: Taxation in Comparative and Historical Perspective (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Walsh, Camille, Racial Taxation: Schools, Segregation, and Taxpayer Citizenship, 1869–1973 (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2018)CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Mehrotra, Ajay K., Making the Modern American Fiscal State: Law, Politics, and the Rise of Progressive Taxation, 1877–1929 (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2013)CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Phillips-Fein, Kim, “The New York Fiscal Crisis and the Idea of the State,” in American Capitalism: New Histories, ed. Beckert, Sven and Desan, Christine (New York: Columbia University Press, 2018)Google Scholar; and Michelmore, Molly C., Tax and Spend: The Welfare State, Tax Politics, and the Limits of American Liberalism (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2012)CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

6 Kim Phillips-Fein makes a similar point that the 1970s “fiscal crisis” in New York City was rooted in policy decisions and its “solution”—fiscal austerity and neoliberal policies—was framed as an economic necessity but reflected the triumph of a distinct set of political priorities. Phillips-Fein, Kimberly, Fear City: New York's Fiscal Crisis and the Rise of Austerity Politics (New York: Metropolitan Books, 2017)Google Scholar.

7 For historical and social science studies of middle-class opportunity hoarding of education and other public goods, see Rury, John L. and Rife, Aaron Tyler, “Race, Schools, and Opportunity Hoarding: Evidence from a Postwar Metropolis,” History of Education 47, no. 1 (Jan. 2018), 87107CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Rury, John L. and Saatcioglu, Argun, “Suburban Advantage: Opportunity Hoarding and Secondary Attainment in the Postwar Metropolitan North,” American Journal of Education 117, no. 3 (May 2011, 307–42CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Brantlinger, Ellen A., Dividing Classes: How the Middle Class Negotiates and Rationalizes School Advantage (New York: RoutledgeFalmer, 2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Ball, Stephen J., Class Strategies and the Education Market: The Middle Classes and Social Advantage (New York: RoutledgeFalmer, 2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar; and Trounstine, Jessica, Segregation by Design: Local Politics and Inequality in American Cities (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2018)CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

8 Citizens Schools Committee Statement to the Illinois School Problems Commission, Jan. 27, 1965, Citizens Schools Committee Papers, folder 2, box 21, Chicago History Museum, Chicago, IL (hereafter cited as CSC Papers); Illinois Education Association, “Common School Fund Needs Vigorous Support,” statement, Jan. 1964, Civic Federation Papers, folder 42, box 11, DePaul University, Chicago, IL (hereafter cited as Civic Federation Papers); and Taxpayers’ Federation of Illinois, “The Illinois Tax Climate” (1960), League of Women Voters of Illinois Papers, folder 453, box 53, University of Illinois-Chicago Special Collections, Chicago, IL (hereafter cited as LWVI Papers).

9 William McLure, “An Analysis of the Illinois Foundation Program of Public School Support,” University of Illinois Bulletin, 1952, folder 10, box 42, Civic Federation Papers.

10 Alexander Woodrow, “Financial Aspects of School District Reorganization in Suburban Chicago” (PhD diss., University of Chicago, 1954), 58.

11 “District 111 Files Suit to Merge with 110,” Chicago Tribune, Sept. 2, 1956, part 3, 3; “County Board Bars Merger of District 111,” Chicago Tribune, Aug. 5, 1956, part 3, 1; and “Asks to Merge Stickney Twp. School Areas,” Chicago Tribune, March 13, 1955, part 3, 1.

12 Pierre de Vise, “Chicago's Widening Color Gap” (Chicago: Interuniversity Social Research Committee, 1967), Municipal Reference Collection, Harold Washington Library, Chicago, IL (hereafter cited as MRC); and Pierre de Vise, “Segregation and Local Government II: School District Governments: Balkanization to Favor the Privileged,” unpublished working paper II.9 (Chicago, Chicago Regional Hospital Study, 1968), MRC.

13 Christopher Chandler and Joel Havemann, “Crazy Quilt Financing of Schools in Suburbs,” Chicago Sun-Times, June 3, 1969, 34; and Christopher Chandler and Joel Havemann, “Solving School Finance,” Chicago Sun-Times, June 4, 1969, 44.

14 School Problems Commission, Illinois School Problems: Report of the School Problems Commission, no. 7 (Springfield, IL: School Problems Commission, 1963), 25.

15 McLure, William Paul, Financial Support of the Illinois Public Schools (Urbana: Bureau of Educational Research, College of Education, University of Illinois, 1955)Google Scholar; Weber, Oscar Friedolin, The Problem of School Organization and Finance in Illinois (Urbana: University of Illinois, College of Education, 1938)Google Scholar; Cornell, Francis G., McLure, William P., Miller, Van, and Wochner, Raymond E., Financing Education in Efficient School Districts: A Study in School Finance in Illinois (Urbana: Bureau of Research and Service, College of Education, University of Illinois, 1949)Google Scholar; and School Finance and Tax Commission, State Support of Public Education in Illinois (Springfield: The Commission, 1947).

16 Wise, Arthur E, Rich Schools, Poor Schools: The Promise of Equal Educational Opportunity (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1968)Google Scholar.

17 Wise advised an unsuccessful challenge to the Illinois system in McInnis v. Shapiro, 293 F. Supp. 327 (N.D. Ill. 1969).

18 Coons, John E., Clune, William H., and Sugarman, Stephen D., Private Wealth and Public Education (Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1970)Google Scholar.

19 Serrano v. Priest, 5 Cal. 3d 584 (1971), at 589, 611.

20 Van Dusartz v. Hatfield, 334 F. Supp. 870 (D. Minn. 1971); and Rodriguez v. San Antonio Independent School District, 337 F. Supp. 280 (W.D. Tex. 1971).

21 San Antonio Independent School District v. Rodriguez, 411 U.S. 1 (1973).

22 Blase v. State, Ill. 2d 94 (1973).

23 James Ryan talks about this as “Nixon's compromise” and was embraced by suburbanites and policymakers especially at the federal level: reform school finance as an alternative to desegregation efforts in metropolitan housing and schools. Ryan, Five Miles Away, A World Apart.

24 “Inflation Puts a Dent in School Board Budget,” Chicago Tribune, May 25, 1959, A14; Department of State Governmental Relations, “The Rising Cost of Public Education,” The Legislature and the Schools, June 1972, MRC; and “Historical Inflation Rates: 1914–2020,” US Inflation Calculator,

25 Governor's Commission on Schools, Finance Task Force, A New Design: Financing for Effective Education in Illinois (Springfield, IL: Governor's Commission on Schools, 1972), 26.

26 “Freeze on Property Tax Revenue,” Chicago Sun-Times, June 13, 1972.

27 Fisher, Glenn W., Taxes and Politics: A Study of Illinois Public Finance (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1969)Google Scholar.

28 D. Daniel Baldino, Statement to the House Revenue Committee, Springfield, IL, April 25, 1973, folder 8, box 156, Civic Federation Papers.

29 Illinois State Chamber of Commerce, “The Illinois Fiscal Crisis in Perspective: A Question of Balance,”[ca 1968] folder 453, box 53, LWVI Papers.

30 Assessment was conducted by township assessors in all but Cook County, where an elected county assessor centralized assessment.

31 “Where the Fraud Lies in State School Aid,” Chicago Tribune, May 23, 1955, 16; “Fair Assessments,” Chicago Tribune, July 30, 1955, 10; and “Another Illinois Tax Mess,” Chicago Tribune, Sept. 27, 1950, 22. For analysis of Illinois property tax administration, see Pealy, Robert H., A Comparative Study of Property Tax Administration in Illinois and Michigan, with Emphasis on State Administration of Intercounty Equalization (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan, 1956)Google Scholar; Thaddeus Peter Kawalek, “The Educational Implications of Property Assessment Practices in Illinois” (PhD diss., University of Chicago, 1959); and Kissel, Richard J., A Review of Assessment Practices: A Digest of the Report to Gov. Richard B. Ogilvie (Springfield, IL: Office of the Governor, 1972)Google Scholar.

32 Rakove, Milton L., Don't Make No Waves—Don't Back No Losers: An Insider's Analysis of the Daley Machine (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1975), 140Google Scholar.

33 On weaknesses, subjectivity, and variation in assessment practices, see Fisher, Glenn W., The Worst Tax?: A History of the Property Tax in America (Lawrence: University Press of Kansas, 1996)Google Scholar; Martin, The Permanent Tax Revolt; Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations, The Role of the States in Strengthening the Property Tax, vol. 1 (Washington, DC: Government Printing Office, 1963); and Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations, Financing Schools and Property Tax Relief—A State Responsibility (Washington, DC: Government Printing Office, 1973).

34 Robert C. Carey, “A Review of Studies on Assessment Administration of the Property Tax in the State of Illinois,” Statement to Illinois Task Force on Education, 1965, box 23, Benjamin C. Willis Papers, Hoover Institution, Palo Alto, CA.

35 Schutz, Aaron and Miller, Mike, eds., People Power: The Community Organizing Tradition of Saul Alinsky (Nashville, TN: Vanderbilt University Press, 2015)Google Scholar; Glenda Sampson, “‘People's Power’ Has Finally Come of Age,” Chicago Today, April 23, 1972, 27; and David Moberg, “The Death of CAP,” Chicago Reader, Oct. 7, 1977, 1.

36 Bob Creamer, Frank Pierson, and Paul Booth, “73% Tax Break at South Works,” (1971), folder 6, box 1, Citizens Action Program (Chicago, Ill.) records collected by Paul Booth, Chicago History Museum, Chicago, IL (hereafter cited as CAP/PB Papers); Citizens Action Program, “Where We Stand on the Big Business Property Tax Scandals,” 1971, folder 6, box 1, CAP/PB Papers.

37 Dozens of press releases and memos document these efforts in 1971–1972, folders 11 and 12, box 5, CAP/PB Papers. See also “P. J. Cullerton vs. The People: Where We Stand,” Dec. 1971, folder 56, box 7, Citizens Action Papers, University of Illinois-Chicago Special Collections, Chicago, IL; and “Checking Up on Assessments,” Chicago Daily News, Dec. 1, 1972.

38 “Taxpayers’ Platform” adopted by a metropolitan-wide coalition of groups at the Taxpayers’ Assembly Feb. 13, 1972, folder 11, box 5, CAP/PB Papers.

39 R. Neal Folk and Joseph V. O'Neil to the President and Members of the Chicago Board of Education, July 13, 1970, folder 3, box 45, Civic Federation Papers.

40 John Elmer, “Real Estate Tax Freeze Defeated,” Chicago Tribune, June 20, 1972, sec. 1, 3; “Tax Reform Time,” Chicago Sun-Times, Feb. 26, 1973; and Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, “Property Tax and School Aid—Fiscal 1973,” The Legislature and the Schools, May 1972), MRC.

41 Kingsley Wood, “Voters Increasingly Turn Down Suburban Schools Fund Boosts,” Chicago Sun-Times, Feb. 11, 1968; and Office of the Superintendent, “Property Tax and School Aid—Fiscal 1973.”

42 “Suburban Tax Strikes Hurt School Districts in Ominous Pattern,” Chicago American, Oct. 13, 1968, 8.

43 For example, Joy Darrow, “Voters Balk at School Bond Sanctity: Referendum Failures Become Increasingly Common,” Chicago Tribune, Feb. 18, 1968, S14; George Leposky, “Voters’ Dream: Fine Schools, No Taxes,” Chicago Today, Nov. 29, 1969; Donna Joy, “Budget Slashes May Spell Crisis for Suburb Schools,” Chicago Today, Jan. 18, 1970, 3; and “Many Suburban Schools Floundering in Red Ink: Some Worse Off Than City,” Chicago Daily News, Feb. 7, 1972, 3.

44 Glenda Sampson, “How Money Crisis Hit Suburb Schools,” Chicago American, Jan. 21, 1968, 1; and Mary Knoblauch, “Suburban Schools: Blue Island Keeps Saying ‘No’ to New Taxes,” Chicago American, Aug. 13, 1967, 1.

45 Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, “A Brief Digest of Financially Troubled School Districts,” May 1972, folder 1, box 43, Civic Federation Papers; which contains newspaper clippings of dozens of suburban districts in crisis; and Wesley Hartzell and Jack Van Dermyn, “Suburban Schools Story Told in Red,” Chicago Today, March 8, 1971, 17.

46 Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, “More Financially Troubled School Districts: A Supplement to Dr. Bakalis’ February 18, 1972 Report to the School Problems Commission,” folder 1, box 43, Civic Federation Papers.

47 Donna Joy Newman “Park Ridge Schools Caught in Cash Pinch,” Chicago Today, Dec. 12, 1971, 28.

48 Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, “Financial Conditions of Selected School Districts throughout Illinois,” Feb. 18, 1972, folder 12, box 42, Civic Federation Papers.

49 James Redmond, Statement to School Problems Commission, Dec. 20, 1966, folder 3, box 24, CSC Papers.

50 “Suburbanites Meddle in Chicago,” Chicago Sun-Times, June 24, 1959; and “Shriver Sends an SOS for Tax Support,” Chicago Tribune, June 24, 1959, 2.

51 Casey Banas, “Daley Pleads for Increase in School Aid: Points to State's Low Ranking,” Chicago Tribune, Jan. 10, 1967, 3; “Peace at a Price,” Chicago Tribune, Jan. 10, 1967, 14; “Squeezing the Schools,” Chicago Daily News, Jan. 5, 1967, 14; and “Shortchanging the Children,” Chicago Sun-Times, March 12, 1967.

52 “Redmond Tells Gloomy School Outlook,” Chicago Tribune, Jan. 20, 1972, 3; and “Schools’ Bad-News Budget,” Chicago Daily News, Nov. 29, 1972.

53 On public debates and stopgap budgetary fixes, see “Time to Aid the Schools,” Chicago Daily News, June 15, 1972; “Keep Schools Out of Hock,” Chicago Daily News, July 29–30, 1972; “School Budgets and Reality,” Chicago Today, June 2, 1972; John Elmer and Frank Zahour, “State Senate Unit Approves Bill to Aid Chicago Schools,” May 12, 1973, Chicago Tribune, 27; and “School Board Should Act,” Chicago Sun-Times, Sept. 5, 1972.

54 “Our Stumbling School System,” Chicago Today, March 13, 1972, 20; Jack Marbley, “Priorities, Not Money, Needed for Education,” Chicago Today, March 7, 1972, 4; and “How Schools Waste $66 Million,” Chicago Today, Dec. 1, 1972, 3.

55 Robert Bouzek, “The Property Tax Crisis in Chicago and Cook County: Position and Recommendations of the Greater Chicago Committee” (1972), folder 4, box 148, Civic Federation Papers.

56 Tom Littlewood, “The Urban Overburden,” Chicago Sun-Times, Sept. 24, 1967; and Neil Mehler, “Chicago, Northbrook Lauded on Taxes,” Chicago Tribune, July 6, 1973, sec. 3, 13.

57 “White vs. Black Voting Trends,” Chicago Tribune, June 13, 1968, 24.

58 Wesley Hartzell, “How Much State Aid?: Schools Don't Know,” Chicago Today, Aug. 17, 1973; and Bakalis, Michael, A Brief History of School Finance in Illinois; Being a Layman's Guide through the Snares of the State Aid Formula and Other Matters (Springfield, IL: Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, 1974)Google Scholar.

59 Hickrod, G. Alan, Hubbard, Ben C., and Yang, Thomas Wei-Chi, The 1973 Reform of the Illinois General Purpose Educational Grant-in-Aid: A Description and an Evaluation (Normal: Illinois State University, 1975)Google Scholar; Hickrod, G. Alan and Hubbard, Ben C., “Illinois School Finance Research: Some Knowns and Unknowns,” (Normal, IL: Center for the Study of Educational Finance, 1977)Google Scholar; and Hickrod, G. Alan, Equity Goals in Illinois School Finance: 1973–1979 (Normal, IL: Center for the Study of Educational Finance, 1979)Google Scholar.

60 Hickrod, G. Alan, Hubbard, Ben C., and Chaudhari, Ramesh B., The Decline and Fall of School Finance Reform in Illinois: A Study of the Politics of School Finance, 1973 to 1986, (Normal, IL: Illinois State University, 1985)Google Scholar; G. Alan Hickrod and Normal Center for the Study of Educational Finance, “Documenting a Disaster: Equity and Adequacy in Illinois School Finance, 1973 through 1988” (Normal: Illinois State University, 1987), MRC; and Hickrod, G. Alan, Chaudhari, Ramesh B., and Hubbard, Ben C., Reformation and Counter-Reformation in Illinois School Finance: 1973–1981 (Normal: Illinois State University, 1981)Google Scholar.

61 Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, Legislature and the Schools (Springfield, IL: Department of State Governmental Relations, Aug. 5, 1986), MRC. For some of the many critiques of Illinois's comparatively light tax burden, see Chicago Teachers Union, “Modernize IL Taxes Now!” June 1960, box 17, folder 5, box 17, CSC Papers; “How Illinois Ranks in Taxes,” USA Today, May 14, 1984; and G. Alfred Hess, testimony to U.S. Senate Education Subcommittee, Oct. 4, 1993 excerpted in Coalition for Educational Rights, “Fair Funding for School Kids” folder 23, box 47, Civic Federation Papers.

62 Dan Morgan, “New Trier: The Most Elite School in US,” Boston Globe, Nov. 16, 1980, 44; and William Cornog, “A Presentation of Reasons for a Tax-Rate Referendum for New Trier Township High Schools,” Sept. 1967, folder 17, box 4, New Trier High School Board of Education Papers, New Trier High School Archive, Winnetka, IL (hereafter cited as NTHS BOE Papers).

63 In the first few years, districts could choose whether to opt into the new formula or continue the old one.

64 Wilmette League of Women Voters, “School Committee Report on the Wilmette District #39 School System,” Nov. 1974, League of Women Voters of Wilmette Collection, box 11, folder 2, Wilmette Historical Museum, Wilmette, IL; and “How State Fiscal Moves Will Affect New Trier,” Report from Your New Trier Township High Schools Board of Education, June 1974, folder 2, box 3, NTHS BOE Papers.

65 “Special Report on Finances: Past…Present…Future,” The Board Report, Sept. 1982, folder 4, box 3, NTHS BOE Papers; Thomas J. Moore, “State to Order Assessments Cut,” Chicago Sun-Times, May 9, 1974, 4; Mitchell Locin, “Schools to Lose in New Tax Plan,” Chicago Tribune, May 15, 1974, 3; Charles Wheeler III, “How ‘Multiplier’ Multiplies School Woes,” Chicago Sun-Times, May 26, 1974, 5; Phillip J. O'Connor, “New Trier High Schools to Post $1.8 Million Deficit,” Chicago Daily News, May 2, 1975; Minutes, Dec. 9, 1974, New Trier Township High School Board of Education, preliminary draft, folder 5, box 1, NTHS BOE Papers; and Neil Mehler, “Required Property Tax Valuation Cut by Senate,” Chicago Tribune, Jan. 26, 1975, B20.

66 “Preventing a Tax Shock…,” Chicago Daily News, July 31, 1976; “Welcome Nudge on Taxes,” Chicago Sun-Times, July 31, 1976, 27; Paul McGrath, “Tully Tries to Curb Soaring Home Taxes,” Chicago Sun-Times, Aug. 22, 1976, 3; and Thomas Tully, news release, July 29, 1976, folder 1, box 151, Civic Federation Papers.

67 “A Two-Part Proposal on Taxes,” Chicago Tribune, July 31, 1976, S8; and Carolyn Toll, “Suburban High Schools Attack Tully Tax-Cut Plan,” Chicago Sun-Times, Aug. 3, 1976.

68 Diane Monk, “Suburban Schools Fear Tax ‘Bomb’” Chicago Daily News, Aug. 2, 1976, 1.

69 Minutes, Sept. 20, 1976, New Trier Township High School District Board of Education , preliminary draft, folder 7, box 1, NTHS BOE Papers; O'Connor, “New Trier High Schools to Post $1.8 Million Deficit;” “On the Problem of Maintaining Excellence in Education,” Report from Your New Trier Township High Schools Board of Education, Jan. 1975, folder 1, box 3, NTHS BOE Papers; and Minutes, Sept. 9, 1974, New Trier High School District Board of Education, folder 5, box 1, NTHS BOE Papers.

70 Downey, Gregg W., “How One of North America's Greatest Public High Schools Is Being ‘Equalized’ to Death,” American School Board Journal 163, no. 8 (Aug. 1976), 36Google Scholar.

71 “How State Fiscal Moves Will Affect New Trier,” Report from Your New Trier Township High School Board of Education, June 1974, folder 2, box 3, NTHS BOE papers.

72 New Trier Township High School Board of Education, New Trier East and West Parents Associations, and New Trier Township High Schools Education Association, “HELP! Your High Schools Are in Trouble,” Oct. 16, 1975, folder 2, box 3, NTHS BOE Papers.

73 They lobbied parents to pressure state legislators. “Board Proposes Legislative Remedies,” Report from Your New Trier Township High Schools Board of Education, April 1975, folder 2, box 3, NTHS BOE Papers; and “Your Schools Are Still in Trouble!” Report from Your New Trier Township High Schools Board of Education, Dec. 1975, folder 2, box 3, NTHS BOE papers.

74 Parents Association Joint Legislative Committee Resolution, in Minutes, March 10, 1975, New Trier Township High School District Board of Education Meeting, preliminary draft, folder 6, box 1, NTHS BOE Papers, 6.

75 “Declining Property Taxes,” Chicago Tribune, July 23, 1975, A2; and “Leveling Down at New Trier,” Chicago Tribune, Nov. 2, 1975, A4.

76 David Schonauer, “The Equalization: If We Can't Make All Illinois High Schools as Good as This One, Maybe We Can Make This One a Little Worse,” Chicago Reader, May 27, 1977, 8.

77 Ted Seals, “Suburban Voters OK School-Tax Hikes,” Chicago Sun-Times, Dec. 5, 1976.

78 “School Picture Brightens,” Chicago Daily News, Nov. 30, 1973; and “A Hopeful School Budget,” Chicago Today, Nov. 30, 1973.

79 Mitchell Locin, “Schools to Lose in New Tax Plan,” Chicago Tribune, May 15, 1974, 3; “Schools on Roller Coaster Again,” Chicago Tribune, May 20, 1974, 20; Milton Hansen,“Fear Tax Cuts to Close Schools,” Chicago Today, May 28, 1974; and John Camper, “Schools Here Face Cash Loss of Millions,” Chicago Daily News, June 26, 1974.

80 Thomas E. Sellers, “School Cutback Protests Grow!: Daley Perplexed by Slashes,” Chicago Daily News, Oct. 3, 1974, 1.

81 “Walker Cuts Education,” Chicago Sun-Times, July 11, 1975; “More Politics in Schools,” Chicago Daily News, Aug. 29, 1975; Charles Mount and Casey Banas, “Walker Attacks Daley on Schools: Governor Blames Strike on Fiscal Irresponsibility,” Chicago Tribune, Sept. 13, 1975, 1; and Casey Banas, “Hannon ‘Won't Quit;’ Warns of Deficit,” Chicago Tribune, Sept. 19, 1975, 3.

82 “How City Got Caught in Money Maze,” Chicago Tribune, Sept. 20, 1981, A1.

83 “The School Board Caves In,” Chicago Sun-Times, Sept. 19, 1975, 63; Casey Banas, “Total Cost of School Pact for City: $75.3 Million,” Chicago Tribune, Sept. 20, 1975, 4; “School Board Flubs Again,” Chicago Daily News, Sept. 19, 1975; “‘Funds We Do Not Have’,” Chicago Tribune, Sept. 23, 1975, A2; and Andy Shaw, “Reveal Daley Pledged Cash to Aid Schools,” Chicago Sun-Times, Sept. 25, 1975.

84 Seth S. King, “Chicago Schools’ Deficit to Force Early Closing,” New York Times, May 30, 1976, 20; Casey Banas, “Classes End Today in City Schools’ Bid to Cut Deficit,” Chicago Tribune, June 3, 1976, 1; and “Schools Punished Enough,” Chicago Daily News, June 24, 1976.

85 John Elmer, “School Aid Bills Sent to Walker,” Chicago Tribune, June 30, 1976, 3.

86 Statement of Thomas M. Tully to Finance Committee of Cook County Board of Commissioners, March 13, 1972, folder 6, box 150, Civic Federation Papers; and Testimony of Anthony Downs Before the Cook County Board of Commissioners Concerning the Proper Method of Classifying Real Property for the Purposes of Tax Assessment, March 13, 1972, folder 6, box 150, Civic Federation Papers.

87 Arthur D. Little, Inc., “A Study of Property Taxes and Urban Blight: Report to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development,” Jan. 1973, folder 5, box 151, Civic Federation Papers; and Kahrl, Andrew W., “The Short End of Both Sticks: Property Assessments and Black Taxpayer Disadvantage in Urban America,” in Shaped by the State: Toward a New Political History of the Twentieth Century, ed. Cebul, Brent, Geismer, Lily, and Williams, Mason B. (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2019), 189217Google Scholar.

88 Ed MacManus, “Tax Rebellion Is Spreading in North Suburbs,” Chicago Tribune, Aug. 14, 1977, 1.

89 John Gorman, “Tax Foes Move to Ban Home Rule in 15 Suburbs,” Chicago Tribune, Nov. 1, 1979, A1; and Rudolph Unger, “3 Suburbs Vote March 18 on Abolition of Home Rule,” Chicago Tribune, Feb. 28, 1981, N1.

90 William Robbins, “Taxpayer Revolt Gains in Chicago Suburbs,” New York Times, Aug. 20, 1977, 8; and Brian J. Kelly, Chicago Sun-Times, “He Leads the Fight on Illinois’ Taxes,” July 2, 1978, 10.

91 Ed McManus, “North Shore Protest: ‘Strike Fever’ Hits Taxpayers,” Chicago Tribune, Aug. 7, 1977, 5.

92 Michael Dixon and Steve Brown, “Tax Strike Words Louder than Action,” Chicago Daily News, Aug. 9, 1977; Robbins, “Taxpayer Revolt Gains in Chicago Suburbs,”; William Claiborne, “Taxpayers’ Revolt Jolts Affluent Chicago,” Washington Post, Sept. 10, 1977, A3; and Clarence Page, “NW Townships Face Tax Boost: 500,000 Homes Are Revalued,” Chicago Tribune, Aug. 21, 1977, 1.

93 Camille Walsh describes this racialized language of taxpayer and tax-eater, and others have emphasized the way that race operated in California's Proposition 13 movement. Walsh, Racial Taxation, 109–31; and HoSang, Daniel Martinez, Racial Propositions: Ballot Initiatives and the Making of Postwar California (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2010)Google Scholar.

94 Jack Mabley, “Homeowners Turn Militants on Taxes,” Chicago Tribune, Aug. 11, 1977, 4.

95 “Tax Rebels without a Target,” Chicago Tribune, Aug. 8, 1977, C2.

96 Michael Dixon, “Tax Revolt: Rebels Vow Not to Pay,” Chicago Daily News, Aug. 4, 1977, 3.

97 Jeff Lyon, “Tax Cut Fever Grows in Illinois in Wake of California Success,” Chicago Tribune, June 15, 1978. 1.

98 Bob Olmstead and Harry Golden Jr., “Tax Grievances Here Called Less Than in California,” Chicago Sun-Times, June 7, 1978, 10; and Karen Koshner, “Illinois Catching the Property Tax Fever,” Chicago Sun-Times, June 11, 1978, 1.

99 Ed McManus, “Tax Rebels’ Cries Ring in Suburbs,” Chicago Tribune, June 4, 1978, 22; and John McCarron, “Proposition 13 Fever Spreads to Chicago Area,” Chicago Tribune, June 15, 1978, sec. 7, 1.

100 M. W. Newman, “Property Taxes: Pain Gets Worse,” Chicago Sun-Times, June 10, 1978, 4.

101 Jerome Watson, “Illinois Voters Favor Huge Tax Cuts: Poll,” Chicago Sun-Times, Nov. 25, 1978; and Dan Miller, “Proposition 13 Would Win Big in Illinois,” Crain's Chicago Business, June 12, 1978.

102 “Tax Relief Becomes Issue in Illinois Race,” New York Times, June 30, 1978, A9; “Tax Relief a la Thompson,” Chicago Tribune, Aug. 5, 1978, 8; “Property Tax Relief,” Chicago Sun-Times, Aug. 5, 1978, 27; and John D. Moorhead, “Illinois Gubernatorial Race Centers on Property Tax,” Christian Science Monitor, July 21, 1978, 6.

103 “Putting Government on Parole,” Chicago Tribune, Jan. 28, 1979, A6; and Daniel Egler and Mitchell Locin, “Curb Property Taxes Now, Thompson Demands,” Chicago Tribune, Jan. 10, 1980, 3.

104 “Issues in Illinois School Finance—Timeline,” folder 12, box 47, Civic Federation Papers.