Legislation Would Remove Carle Hospital Tax Exemption in Urbana
By Jim Meadows
Urbana Mayor Laurel Prussing has said she might seek legislation to require Carle Foundation Hospital to pay local property taxes --- and now, such a bill has been introduced in Springfield.
Urbana Democrat Naomi Jakobsson filed the bill (HB 3634) in the Illinois House last week. It would lift the hospital tax exemption in cities that would be “disproportionately impacted” by the loss of tax revenue.
Urbana officials say that with additional buidlings becoming tax-exempt due to the merger of Carle Foundation and Carle Clinic, the city is losing $822,343 in tax revenue this year due to the exemption --- while the Urbana school district is losing $3,012,799.
"Urbana has about --- what do we have, a population of 41,000, or a little more than that, maybe," Jakobsson said. "And that’s the population. That’s not the number of real estate property taxpayers. So this definitely disproportionately affects the property owners in Urbana."
Specifically, Jakobsson’s bill would deny any hospital tax-exempt status if the town it’s located in question contains 10 percent or less of the population served by the hospital, and if hospital taxes for that town would make up eight percent or more of the town’s revenue. Other local taxing bodies that overlap the city would receive the tax revenue as well.
Jakobsson said she does not expect any action on the bill during the spring session, but said it could come up during the veto session at the earliest.
Meanwhile, Carle argues that its charity and discounted medical care far outweighs the money it would pay in taxes.