Shelby Co. (ECWd) –
This is Part IV of the exposure of misrepresentations and misinformation provided by Shelby County State’s Attorney Nichole Kronke during her oral testimony in support of legislation affecting every county in the state. We urge everyone to read Part 1 at this link, Part II at this link, and Part III at this link.
- “The transcript of the legislative debate, which the Illinois Attorney General’s Office did cite to the opinion that was already referenced that was issued June 3 of 2021 was issued to our county at our request...” (emphasis added)
Oh really? The Attorney General issued an opinion to Shelby County dated June 3, 2021?
Kroncke asked two questions to the opinions bureau.
- whether a non-home-rule county has the authority to lease county-owned real estate to a private individual for a private farming operation for an annual cash rental payment to be paid to the county;
- and if the county possesses the requisite authority to lease county real estate for the indicated use, which party is responsible for the payment of any property taxes that may be due on the property, the county or the lessee.
Did the Attorney General provide her an opinion on those two questions as she claimed during her oral testimony?
No, they did not.
The letter she received provided two crystal clear sentences in the closing paragraph, emphasis added.
“Whether either of these provisions authorize the lease of the county property that is the subject of your inquiry involves questions of fact that cannot be resolved in a legal opinion of this office.”
“Absent a specific provision in a lease agreement, whether the county or the lessee is responsible for the payment of taxes that may result from a county’s lease of its property for private farming purposes involves a factual determination that cannot be resolved in a legal opinion of this office.”
Anyone listening to Kronke’s testimony was led to believe the Attorney General issued an opinion letter on the farm ground subject to the county when the truth of the matter is they did not issue an opinion and said so.
For her to represent the letter was in fact an opinion is misleading and misinformation for the purpose of manipulating the minds of the legislature and its wrong.
Don’t take our word for it. Read the actual letter and pay attention to the last two paragraphs.AG letter on farm lease and tax