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Title:The Illinois Farmland Assessment Laws: A Case Study of the Political Passage and Implications for School Funding, 1977-1980
Author(s):Hendricks, Arthur Donald
Department / Program:Education
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Education, Finance
Abstract:This study examines the policymaking process between March, 1977 and August, 1980 which resulted in the passage of the 1977 farmland assessment law, a major property tax reform. Examining the farmland assessment law as a dependent variable, the study focuses on identifying and analyzing the major political factors responsible for the enactment of the assessment legislation. Additionally, viewing the farmland assessment law as an independent variable, the impact on school state aid allocations and property tax liability shifts for a typical rural Illinois county is analyzed.
Classical group theory provides the framework for the analysis of the policymaking process. Case study is the methodology employed to study both the policymaking process and the fiscal effects of the farmland assessment law. The field techniques of interviewing and document analysis are the major data gathering devices. Recognized methods of calculating state aid differences and tax shift analyses are utilized.
The major conclusions are: (1) the IAA leadership through its legislative staff and broad based farm bureau constituency is an effective special interest group responsible for a major farm property tax reform, (2) the Illinois educational community did not participate actively in the passage of the farmland assessment bill, (3) the original IAA leadership claim of no fiscal effect on local revenues as a result of the new assessment procedure was essentially accurate, and (4) the de facto practice of underassessing farmland was an accepted practice and the 1977 assessment procedure legalized the established assessed values.
Three general statements can be posited that describe the Illinois legislature, the policymaking process and the role of the educational community in policymaking. First, the lack of involvement of the educational organizations in the original 1977 tax reform reflects their traditional policymaking perspective. Secondly, the hold-harmless provision was used by the legislature in 1977, 1978 and 1979 as a mechanism to assure taxing district stable local revenues. And thirdly, underassessing farmland in Illinois was the standard prior to 1977.
Issue Date:1987
Description:132 p.
Thesis (Educat.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1987.
Other Identifier(s):(UMI)AAI8711808
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-12-15
Date Deposited:1987

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