Madison County State's Attorney Tom Gibbons claims Madison County Treasurer Kurt Prenzler failed to file the proper paperwork prior to the February county tax sale and that could cost taxpayers in the end. Prenzler, a Republican, says the issue is being politicized by Gibbons, a Democrat, and the matter can be resolved. The issue revolves around rules that are laid out in the Illinois Constitution, and $4.2 million in property tax debt.
Gibbons issued a statement to the media on Monday saying Prenzler's office failed to obtain a constitutionally-mandated judgment from the Circuit Court prior to conducting the tax sale, an error that Gibbons says could potentially render the entire sale invalid. Gibbons calls the issue very complex and it could be very time consuming in terms of manpower in trying to fix the problem. The Illinois Attorney General's Office has also been contacted by Gibbons to assist in correcting the error. Gibbons says the issue could impact the property rights of about 27-hundred county residents, while Madison County Clerk Mark Von Nida believes the blame lies on Prenzler and the firing of several experienced employees in the treasurer's office who might otherwise have filed the proper paperwork as they have done in year's past. Prenzler says it is the responsibility of the State's Attorney's Office to file the documentation, but Gibbons says Prenzler's office filed the information last year and says it should have been done properly again this year.