Their analysis was done for 89 Illinois cities and ranked based on what the owner of a $250,000 home actually paid in property taxes in 2010.
The report also reveals the downward economic spiral that can result when a community such as Rockford sees a decline in property values and raises property tax rates to make up the difference. Property tax payers who see a drop in their net worth because of declining property values still pay the same or even more in taxes, which in turn can discourage property development and reduce their property values even further. An example of this is East St. Louis, IL, which the Tax Federation's analysis found had by far the highest effective property tax rate in the state, yet would also be described as one of the most economically depressed.
The report also only tells a part of the tax story, however. It notes that many Cook County cities rank near the bottom of the list, yet it could be argued their residents pay some of the highest overall taxes in the state because of other taxes which impact those who do not own property.
While Rockford is the only Stateline community in the top 10, other local communities have seen bigger jumps in real property taxes paid. Belvidere rose from 62nd in 2008 to 26th in 2010, the largest jump of any city in the state. Woodstock rose from 31st to 16th highest.
Here are the effective rates and tax bills for Stateline communities as determined by the Tax Federation for a $250,000 property.
9. Rockford: 3.83% ($9,574)
13. Freeport: 3.41% ($8,527)
16. Woodstock: 3.37% ($8,432)
18 DeKalb: 3.35% ($8,365)
26. Belvidere: 3.08% ($7,698)
30. Sterling: 2.95% ($7,396)
49. Oregon: 2.71% ($6,765)
You can see the entire report, which also looks at business taxes in the state, at the link below: