TIF Lawyer Convicted of Theft

An attorney who worked primarily on Tax Increment Financing (TIF) related issues for Calumet Park was sentenced in Cook County to six years in prison for overbilling the village for several years.

A state’s attorney’s investigation of [attorney Mark] McCombs was triggered in 2010 after Community High School District 218 Superintendent John Byrne started questioning McCombs about the tax increment financing district.

The lawyer allegedly responded by offering to pay the school district for Byrne’s silence. But he reported McCombs to village officials.

A subsequent review of records showed that he had billed the TIF fund for about $2 million since 2007 even though no economic development projects had been completed.

Yes, that’s right: Allegedly nobody thought anything amiss until somebody allegedly was offered hush money. So much for annual TIF reports, TIF oversight committees and the like.