The white whale lurking behind the mayor’s new tax increases
The first thing you need to know about Mayor Daley’s budget, released on October 10, is that it’s nothing more than a projection. The mayor’s bean counters calculate how much money the city can expect to take in through fees, fines, and taxes over the next year and balance that against the amount they plan to spend. If, one year later, the city brings in more or spends less than anticipated, there’s a surplus and taxpayers would theoretically get a refund (ha ha ha). If it brings in less or spends more, there’s a deficit, requiring new fees and taxes to make up the difference.