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Untangling TIFs

Many Chicagoans have heard the word TIF, but few people understand how they work, and they may even have trouble untangling all the threads related to this complicated economic development tool.

TIF stands for tax increment financing, a definition that — on its own — misses the nuance in TIF programs. It also skips right over what the point is in the first place. So, Emily Hanneman of Logan Square probably wasn’t alone when she asked us:

What are TIFs? Where does the money come from and who decides where it goes?

To her credit, Emily may be a bit more informed than most when it comes to TIFs, since she’d been to one of Tom Tressor’s TIF presentations (more on him below). There, she learned who receives TIF money collected in the Logan Square neighborhood. But, obviously, there was a lot more explaining to do…Please click here for Simran Khosla’s full story on WBEZ.

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