Stacy Davis Gates loses undeserved property tax break, owes Indiana $1,533
An Indiana county will seek back taxes and penalties of $1,533 after Chicago Teachers Union President Stacy Davis Gates claimed a property tax deduction reserved for owner occupants. Davis Gates has claimed Chicago property taxpayers aren’t all paying their fair share.
Stacy Davis Gates will be asked to pay back a property tax deduction plus penalties totaling $1,533 on a house she owns but did not occupy in South Bend, Ind., according to the local St. Joseph County auditor’s office.
The Chicago Teachers Union president lives in Chicago with her husband and three children. Her personal income is more than $289,000 a year and she has repeatedly called for the rich to pay their fair share when it comes to taxes. Her union also led the charge against the Invest in Kids scholarship program, claiming it takes taxes away from public school funding, although she sends her son to a private school.
The Illinois Policy Institute was the first to report Davis Gates was claiming the homestead exemption for a house she’s owned since 2006 in South Bend, Ind., despite signing a Chicago residency pledge in 2004. The pledge was made two years before she purchased the Indiana house.
Even though the exemption was taken for earlier years, Indiana law only allows the county auditor to seek a maximum of three years of back taxes. Taxes owed from 2020 total nearly $1,400 and a 10% civil penalty takes the money she owes St. Joseph County to $1,533 due by Dec. 8.
The county auditor canceled Davis Gates’ homestead exemption on the South Bend house. The exemption is only for people who own and reside in the house.
Property taxes are the primary source of funding for public schools. Taking a homestead deduction in a state in which she doesn’t reside and depriving that state of taxes used for its schools is hypocritical, given Davis Gates and CTU’s ongoing mission to make the wealthy pay their “fair share.”
The same can be said of Davis Gates sending her own son to a parochial school where she said his academic and athletic options are superior, yet killing that option for low-income families.
Illinois House Speaker Emanuel “Chris” Welch refused to call a bill before adjournment Nov. 9 to extend the Invest in Kids program that allowed disadvantaged families a private-school option. Gov. J.B. Pritzker refused to push for the program, making Illinois the only state to ever roll back school choice for its children. Teachers unions and CTU pushed hard to kill the program.
Public records show several discrepancies involving Davis Gates and her residency.
In 2004, Davis Gates signed a “Sworn Residency Statement” with Chicago Public Schools, indicating she resided within the City of Chicago. Two years later she bought the Indiana house and and until recently was taxed as if she lived there.
In 2014, Davis Gates registered to vote in Illinois, providing the South Bend address as her former registration address. She provided a Chicago address as her residence address.
Then in 2016, she was issued a traffic violation by the Chicago Police Department, with the court record showing she had an Indiana driver’s license at the time. That was about 12 years after she swore she lived in Chicago.