Village and zoo clash over tax

For decades the village of Brookfield and the Brookfield Zoo have been great partners. The zoo brings in tourism to the town and gives jobs to hundreds of locals. But recently the Village of Brookfield proposed an amusement tax that would most likely be added to the admission fee for getting into the zoo. Though the tax does not significantly raise the ticket price, the zoo firmly rejected the amusement fee and lobbied to have a bill put into the Illinois House of Representatives that would take away the ability for the village to adopt the amusement tax.

 The zoo has argued that they would have to pay $700,000 dollars more than they are already paying the village. In addition, the zoo says they are a source of jobs and tourism for Brookfield and Illinois.

 The village sought the tax in order to raise $500,000 each year in revenue. The village complains that the zoo made over five million dollars in profit last year. The zoo’s President and CEO make around $400,000 each year. On top of that its numerous amounts of vice presidents make around $200,000 each year. With the 2.2 million guests the zoo receives each year, the zoo puts a tremendous strain on the public safety services and the traffic in the town.

 The bill to prohibit the village’s amusement tax is currently sitting on Governor Pat Quinn’s desk and is awaiting his approval or veto.