Cooperation Helps Breed Success in Bloomingdale

Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL), September 21, 2012 | Go to article overview

Cooperation Helps Breed Success in Bloomingdale


My family and I moved to Bloomingdale in 1968. I became involved in the community from the beginning, and entered village politics in 1979. I was proud to call Bloomingdale my home then and continue to be proud of the kind of hometown Bloomingdale has become.

Bloomingdale is a place where you can walk, run, roller blade or bike on recreational paths within our borders in the morning, spotting wildlife such as deer, hawks, an occasional fox, or even wild turkeys. You can shop at a regional mall or at a few of our diverse stand-alone shopping areas in the afternoon, followed by a bite to eat in one of our more than 60 eating establishments.

Bloomingdale offers a variety of housing options, as well as lower property tax rates than surrounding communities. Sales taxes from Bloomingdale retail businesses are the largest source of revenue for village operations. Currently, they contribute $7.8 million or 48 percent of the village budget of about $16.1 million.

Sales taxes reduce the need for property taxes and allow the village to provide a high level of service to its residents.

Bloomingdale residents can actually see how low the property tax they pay to the village is by looking at their annual property tax bill to verify how much less they pay to the Village of Bloomingdale than to almost every other taxing body listed.

The nearly 180-year-old municipality also boasts many other amenities, such as excellent schools; a library that rivals any in DuPage County; an award-winning park district; police and fire departments which, in addition to providing excellent public service, are both very connected to the community through outreach programs; plus an active, vital, growing chamber of commerce.

One unique element you will find in Bloomingdale is outstanding intergovernmental cooperation. Since becoming mayor nearly 20 years ago, I have strongly emphasized the value of positive intergovernmental relationships with local entities.

More than 15 years ago, we created the Bloomingdale Intergovernmental Group (BIG), consisting of all the governmental agencies in Bloomingdale, as well as those outside of town that have a direct impact on village residents, such as Bloomingdale Township, DuPage County, and school districts based in neighboring communities.

The group meets on a quarterly basis and fosters cooperation in shared resources, community events and general networking.

I am pleased to say I am in contact with the heads of each of these entities, as well as with our neighboring communities, on a regular basis. We all enjoy an informal, friendly and positive relationship, which is a great benefit to the village at large.

I am proud of our business community, both the retail base, which allows the village to keep property taxes low because of sales tax revenues, and the many professionals and service-oriented businesses that help us maintain the outstanding quality of life we enjoy. …

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