It wants more hospitals to pay property taxes, and the state has a chance to set a precedent. The department rules that three hospitals no longer qualify for a property tax exemption. The Illinois Hospital Association protests the decision and says the state's criteria for what makes a not-for-profit facility exempt are unclear. Officials from the three hospitals—Edward Hospital in Naperville, Decatur (Ill.) Memorial Hospital and Northwestern Memorial Hospital's Prentice Women's Hospital in Chicago—vow to appeal the decision.
Department of Revenue officials say that the hospitals don't offer enough charity care, among other objections. But not so fast says Illinois Gov. Patrick Quinn, after reading a letter submitted by the Illinois Hospital Association. Quinn asks the Department of Revenue to work with the hospitals to more clearly define the regulations before forcing them to pay taxes. The governor asks for the parties to continue working together for some kind of consensus by March.