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Park district plans borrowing

September 6, 2018

BOURBONNAIS — A Bourbonnais Township Park District proposal to borrow up to $1 million would have no effect on taxes, an official says.

The money would pay for replacing the playground at Perry Farm Park, making it handicapped accessible, and building a storage facility, including restrooms, at Willowhaven Park and Nature Center, said Hollice Clark, the district’s executive director.

To pay for the projects, he said, the district would sell bonds that will be paid off in four years. The borrowing would replace bonds that will retire this year.

“We wanted to make sure this was tax neutral,” Clark said in an interview.

Each year, the park board increases its property tax levy — the total amount it collects from property taxpayers — by the same percentage as the consumer price index, which it is allowed to do in a tax cap county such as Kankakee.

“We utilize these bonds to do infrastructure and capital improvements. That way, we can spread the costs over four years,” Clark said. “It’s like fixing up your home. If you don’t, it just deteriorates.”

In Bourbonnais, the owner of a median-valued house of $166,000 paid $208 in park district taxes this year. That compares to $222 for a median-valued house of $88,000 in the Kankakee Valley Park District.

The Bourbonnais park board plans to hold a public hearing on its borrowing on Wednesday.

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