Just after midnight on Feb. 27, the Cook County Board agreed to a compromise that ended a nearly four month stalemate on the budget. The American Automotive Leasing Association (AALA) has actively lobbied to defeat the lease tax increase proposal. The compromise agreed to essentially consists of cuts in various existing county funds and operating budgets, plus an increase in the cigarette tax from 18 cents per pack to $1 per pack. The proposed 4% lease tax increase, as well as the sales tax increase were defeated. The approved $2.9 billion budget goes into effect immediately. “All in all, this was a tremendous, and hard-fought victory for the American Automotive Leasing Association,” said Pam Sederholm, AALA executive director. It was only through the strong support and ambitious grassroots effort of our membership -- testimony at hearings, phone calls, letters, personal visits to commissioners — that we were able to convince elected officials that the lease tax proposal was not only bad for business, but bad for the people of Cook County and Chicago.”

Originally posted on Fleet Financials