ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — The City of Rockford has an idea to spur new home construction, and the hope of new jobs and more money for the region with it.
Four different taxing bodies will come together in hopes of keeping the area’s taxes stagnant for the foreseeable future.
“When we start adding new construction, you know, certainly that helps meet the demand that’s out there, but also, it creates afford ability for our entire community,” said Rockford City Administrator Todd Cagnoni.
The City of Rockford, the Rockford Park District, Rockford Public Schools 205 and Winnebago County will all vote on a three-year property tax rebate for new residential construction. This includes single and multi-family structures built before the end of 2024.
“The initiative comes forward recognizing that our economy is continuing to grow, our jobs are increasing,” Cagnoni said. “However, our housing stock has aged and we haven’t added any significant new construction within our community in over a decade.”
The last time that Rockford had more than 50 new homes built in a single year was in 2007. Along with the push to remove blighted properties in the city, realtors believe that this program is coming at a perfect time.
“We’re in desperate need, like much of the country, in terms of having more homes on the market, and so we’ve seen for years buyers kind of scramble to find their next home,” said Connor Brown, CEO of the Northwest Illinois Alliance of Realtors. “So, anytime we can build something, new construction that is moving a person or a family into that home and will hopefully free up another home for somebody to buy that existing house.”
The City of Rockford hopes that an addition of new homes will benefit everyone in the community down the road.
“So, if you look at a three-year tax rebate, understanding that that residential structure is going to be there for decades upon decades to come, we’re really building an annuity of property taxpayers for the future,” Cagnoni said.
The City of Rockford will discuss the program at Monday’s council meeting. Not all of the taxing bodies have to move forward for it to work, but it will make up for 85% of the tax bill if they do.