CHICAGO (Oct. 31, 2019) – During budget hearings members of the Chicago City Council Progressive Reform Caucus called for the Inspector General’s Office to conduct a review of equity and parity in city contracting and publish an updated Saving & Revenue Report.
At the hearing, Progressive Caucus members called for the IG’s new Diversity and Inclusion Officer position to prioritize an analysis of equity and parity of city contracts.
“A full audit of contracts will help ensure there is racial and gender equity and parity in contracts awarded.” said Ald. Sophia King (4). “Chicagoans elected the most progressive council in our city’s history, and we were elected on platforms that promote fair and responsible lawmaking. A report like this would be the first step in ensuring our city is reaching these goals.”
Progressive Caucus members also called for an updated Savings & Revenues Report in light of this year’s $838 million budget gap and projections that future budget gaps will be substantial. In September, the Progressive Caucus announced its budget priorities and pointed to revenue sources from the report including taxing high-end professional services. The caucus has announced this as their Springfield priority.
“In 2012, the IG released a Savings & Revenue Options Report highlighting $1.176 billion in potential savings and revenue. Updated recommendations would help the city better plan for the future and identify fair revenue sources that do not overburden poor and working families,” said Ald. Mike Rodriguez (22). “This is not the only year the city is expected to have a substantial budget gap. A report like this should be prioritized and expedient.”
The Inspector General’s Savings & Revenue Options Report released in 2012, notes that significant revenue could be generated if a set of professional services were modestly taxed. For example, a tax of 2.25% on the following services could generate $107.4 million for the city through:
- $13.9 million from accounting, tax prep, bookkeeping services;
- $25.8 million from portfolio management,
- $50.8 million from legal services; and
- $16.9 million from offices of real estate agents and brokers.
The Progressive Caucus has its largest membership to date, with 18 members from communities across the city. The caucus’s budget priorities can be found here.
The Progressive Reform Caucus includes Ald. Daniel LaSpata (1); Ald. Sophia King (4); Ald. Leslie Hairston (5); Ald. Roderick Sawyer (6); Ald. Susan Sadlowski-Garza (10); Ald. Stephanie Coleman (16); Ald. David Moore (17); Ald. Jeanette Taylor (20); Ald. Michael Rodriguez (22); Ald. Byron Sigcho-Lopez (25); Ald. Chris Taliaferro (29); Ald. Rossana Rodriguez-Sanchez (33); Ald. Carlos Ramirez-Rosa (35); Ald. Felix Cardona, Jr. (31); Ald. Scott Waguespack (32); Ald. Andre Vasquez (40); Ald. Matt Martin (47); and Ald. Maria Hadden (49).