Suffredin- For a Better Cook County  

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Search current and proposed Cook County Legislation in Larry's exclusive legislative library.


The Cook County Code of Ordinances are the current laws of Cook County.

  Cook County is the second most populous county in the nation. It is the 19th largest government in the U.S.

Thank you for visiting my website.  It is an honor and privilege to serve as the Cook County Board Commissioner and Forest Preserve District Board Commissioner for the 13th District which includes the following Cities and Villages: 49th & 50th Wards of the City of Chicago, the City of Evanston and the Villages of Glencoe, Glenview, Kenilworth, Lincolnwood, Morton Grove, Niles, Northbrook, Skokie, Wilmette and Winnetka. 

Although our Cook County government has a low profile, it is a vast operation with many important responsibilities and an annual budget of $3 billion. It is responsible for operating our court system, jail, maintaining 68,000 acres of forest preserves, and acting as a healthcare safety net through the operation of four hospitals and 30 clinics.

The purpose of this site is to provide information on Cook County government and the Forest Preserve District of Cook County as well as links to other government resources.  I regularly post news stories and information on County and Forest Preserve issues which may be of interest to you.   Additionally, my legislative library contains up-to-date information on County and Forest Preserve legislation.

I encourage you to contact me with any questions or ideas you have regarding Cook County or the Forest Preserve District.  I hope you find this site useful. Thank you for taking the time to visit.


Larry Suffredin

April 2014


The Cook County Board of Commissioners will be making appointments for five vacancies to the Cook County Juvenile Temporary Detention Center ("JTDC") Advisory Board, pursuant to Section 2-516 of the Cook County Code of Ordinances. According to Section 2-513 of the Code, the Advisory Board makes public recommendations:

(1) To the Executive Director of the JTDC, the Chief Judge of the Circuit Court of Cook County, the Cook County Board of Commissioners and the President of the Cook County Board of Commissioners regarding administrative policies and procedures for operating the JTDC;

(2) To maximize the use of existing resources at the JTDC;

(3) Regarding the educational, physical, social, and psychological needs of the population;

(4) To establish public performance measures to track and measure the achievement of the JTDC’s mission.

(5) To ensure the general health, mental health, educational, physical, social and psychological needs of the population at the JTDC are being recognized and addressed.

Interested candidates should nominate themselves by presenting their names and qualifications by midnight April 30, 2014. Each candidate shall present 1) a detailed written statement of his or her experience and why they should be selected; and 2) his or her resume. Applications shall be presented to the Secretary to the Cook County Board of Commissioners electronically at All submissions shall be available to the General Public for review. After receiving interested candidates information, the candidate will be required to fill out an affidavit that will be sent to them and will be subjected to a background check.

Following the April 30, 2014 deadline, the Legislation and Intergovernmental Relations Committee of the Cook County Board of Commissioners will hold a public hearing in accordance with the Illinois Open Meetings Act to review the applications and select the members of the Advisory Board.


13th District Office Spending 

Cook County Commissioner Larry Suffredin is committed to sound fiscal management at Cook County. The office has efficiently provided all services necessary for our constituents. As such, his office has always spent less than its budgeted amount for operations and has returned the following amounts to the Cook County General Operations Fund:

2013 - $19,817

2012 – $38,788

2011 – $51,977

Source: Cook County Office of Budget and Management 


The Cook County Department of Transportation and Highways’ long range transportation effort, Connecting Cook County is underway. The Department is encouraging everyone to weigh in and provide input on transportation priorities via the Connecting Cook County website or through the MetroQuest Kiosks rotating through numerous County locations by means of Commissioner Districts.

During April 2014, MetroQuest Kiosks locations are:

University of Illinois at Chicago, 601 S. Morgan Ave., Chicago- 1st District

Bedford Park District, 6700 S. 78th Ave., Summit- 6th District

Toman Public Library, 2708 S. Pulaski Rd., Chicago- 7th District

Truman College, 1145 W. Wilson Ave., Chicago-10th District

Glenview Public Library, 1930 Glenview Rd., Glenview 14th District

LaGrange Public Library 10 W Cossit Ave., LaGrange-16th District

In May the kiosks will be moved to other locations. Watch this space for upcoming locations of the kiosks that will be placed within the 13th District in May.    

Commissioner Suffredin's Statement on the Passage of the 2014 Forest Preserve District of Cook County Budget

100 years ago, Dwight H. Perkins, an Evanston resident, was a leader in starting the forest preserve movement. His efforts have given us the greatest jewel of open space found anywhere in the United States of America.

The Forest Preserve District of Cook County's budget of $179 million passed on December 2, 2013. The budget gives support to the Chicago Botanic Garden, the Brookfield Zoo and the work of restoration of our 69,000 acres.

The Forest Preserve District of Cook County is home to the most committed volunteers who make our land better and preserve it for future generations. 100 years from now, I hope people will say our efforts saved this precious open space.


Commissioner Suffredin's Statement on 2014 Cook County Budget

On Friday, November 8, 2013 the Cook County Board passed the FY 2014 budget. This budget is a sea change for the county because it changes focus from health care services and cost to public safety services and costs.

The Affordable Healthcare Act has given the county the unique opportunity to sign up new patients with Medicaid payments. The leadership of the independent health board and Dr. Ram Raju has stabilized the healthcare budget and service delivery. The new budget cuts the taxpayer subsidy in half and returns $72 million to the general revenue fund. With the 1115 waiver payments for the over 115,000 new patients the Health and Hospital System will be operating in the black.

The new budget puts a new emphasis on the Public Safety sector. As violence continues to take control of many of our communities, we must better use resources to protect our citizens and keep families safe. Cook County has the largest court system and jail in the United States and therefore is at the center of any programs to reduce crime and end recidivism. This budget gives us the opportunity to develop programs that the nation will follow.

Finally, this budget does not contain any new taxes, fees or fines.


Cook County Commissioners Earlean Collins, Peter Silvestri, Gregg Goslin, Elizabeth Gorman, Larry Suffredin and Jeffrey Tobolski today unanimously appointed John Plante to the METRA board of directors’ district representing Evanston, Leyden, New Trier, Niles, Northfield, Norwood Park, Maine, Oak Park and River Forest Townships. Mr. Plante will replace retiring METRA board member William Widmer.

Mr. Plante has extensive transportation experience from serving in a variety of capacities over a 35 year career with the Chicago Transit Authority (“CTA.”) Most recently, Mr. Plante served as the Senior Manager for System Safety Emergency Preparedness for the CTA. In that capacity, Mr. Plante coordinated the CTA’s planning and training for responding to emergencies. He updated CTA’s’s Rail System Safety Program Plan, the Bus System Safety Program Plan, the Safety Rule Book and construction safety manuals. Following the September 11, 2011 attacks, Mr. Plante coordinated the agencies’ security efforts, leading to his accreditation as a Professional Emergency Manager by the State of Illinois in 2008.

Mr. Plante has served as the Chairman the Chicago Regional Transit Security Working Group, Co-Chairman of the Regional Catastrophic Planning Team Transportation Committee, Member of the Chicago Urban Area Working Group, Illinois Terrorism Task Force Transportation Committee and the committee’s Evacuation Planning/Implementation Working Group, the Chicago Local Emergency Planning Committee and the Chicago Bio Watch Advisory Council.

Prior to serving as a Senior Manager, Mr. Plante worked as the Managing Attorney for the CTA’s Risk Management, Claims and Law divisions, where he learned first-hand the necessity of effective risk-management policies and procedures.

Mr. Plante is heavily involved with the America Public Transportation Association, serving on its board of directors from 2011-2012. He has served as chair of the Risk Management Committee from 2009-2012 and sat on the Legislative and Safety Coordinating Committees. Furthermore, Mr. Plante worked on the association’s Security and Emergency Preparedness Standards Development Program and Emergency Preparedness Technical forums.

Cook County Commissioner Suffredin stated, “Out of a field of 14 highly qualified individuals, John Plante emerged as the clear choice. John has the experience and skills to ensure that METRA has what it needs to prevail over its difficulties. His emergency preparedness work and legal background will help METRA to work through its current problems and foresee any potential future problems. He is an excellent choice.”

Regional Transportation Authority Audit: A Forensic Analysis of Mr. Clifford's Claims Against Metra

To read the Audit, please click HERE


The June 2013 progress report of the Mortgage Foreclosure Mediation Program prepared by the Honorable Timothy C. Evans, Chief Judge of the Circuit Court of Cook County and the Honorable Moshe Jacobius, Presiding Judge of the Chancery Division can be accessed here


The U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced that as a result of the April 18, 2013 storm, President Obama has declared all of Cook County (and other Illinois counties), including Evanston, a federal disaster area. Aid has been made available to the State of Illinois and its residents and federal aid has been ordered to supplement state and local recovery efforts.

Individuals and business owners in Evanston affected by the late April flooding and storms are eligible to apply for grants for temporary housing and home repairs, and low-interest loans for uninsured property losses. To apply, you must register at or by calling 1-800-621-3362. The number for the hearing and speech impaired is 1-800-462-7585. Both numbers will operate from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m., seven days a week.

Applicants registering for aid should be prepared to provide basic information about themselves (name, permanent address, phone number), insurance coverage and any other information to help substantiate losses. For more details on the FEMA disaster declaration applicable to Cook County and northeast Illinois, please click here.


Does Illinois need more guns in public settings to insure the public safety? The answer to this question is no. There are enough guns in the hands of trained law enforcement and security personnel to insure the safety of our citizens in public settings. What Illinois must do is show that its current restrictions are reasonable and do protect the public. Illinois needs to restate its existing law to meet the standards of recent Supreme Court cases. Illinois must not surrender its police powers to those who want unlimited access to firearms.

The debate today is caused by a reading of what Illinois must do under the Seventh Circuit’s ruling in Moore, et al v. Lisa Madigan. The decision is still subject to possible Supreme Court Review. It does not require Illinois to do anything specific; but the Seventh Circuit stayed its mandate to allow the General Assembly 180 days “…to craft a new gun law that will impose reasonable limitations, consistent with the public safety, and the Second Amendment as interpreted in this opinion, on the carrying of guns in public.” The majority opinion clearly outlines how Illinois could more clearly state the reasonableness of its current law and craft changes that would allow for very little change to our current law and would protect the public safety by limiting who and where guns could be allowed.

In addition, the Moore case was decided 2 to I with a strong dissent from Circuit Judge Ann Williams upholding existing Illinois law. Judge Williams stated: “In the absence of clearer indication that the Second Amendment codified a generally recognized right to carry arms in public for self-defense, I would leave this judgment in the hands of the State of Illinois.” The Supreme Court is as likely to adopt this standard as that of the majority. Therefore, the General Assembly should stand its ground and defend the existing law and see what the Supreme Court decides.

Unfortunately, there is no political will to wait to see what the Supreme Court will decide. The discussion concerning “concealed carry” that the Illinois General Assembly is conducting demonstrates that expanding concealed carry beyond trained law enforcement and security personnel will only endanger more and not strengthen the overall public safety. A new Kaiser Health Tracking Poll “found one in five Americans knows someone who has been a victim of gun violence in the last three years.” The explosion of violence especially in public places will not be contained by giving more people guns.

The General Assembly is reviewing bills and amendments that would allow “concealed carry” to those who have significant training, mental health background checks, insurance and an identifiable need for extra protection. Each of these conditions will put an unmanageable financial strain on a state government that is having difficulty providing basic services to its residents.

In addition, the bills and amendments also highlight places where an individual can’t have a concealed carry weapon. These places include: places of worship, hospitals, public transit systems, sports stadiums, public museums, government buildings, courts, mental health facilities, entertainment venues and schools at all levels of education. How will the State enforce these limitations? Will the State provide gun check stations at every place of worship, hospital, transit stop, sports stadium, public museum, government building, court, mental health facility, entertainment venue and school?

Who will pay for these gun check stations?

Illinois has had concealed carry by law enforcement and trained security personnel for years. The debate today should not center on “all individuals” being able to have a concealed weapon but on restating the solid reasons for Illinois continuing to be the only sane state to limit concealed carry.

As a County Commissioner I have no ability to directly shape the concealed carry discussion since it is the General Assembly that must decide. As a County Commissioner I do see the effects of gun violence everyday in our Cook County Hospital System, at our Medical Examiner’s Office and in our Court system. Gun violence costs Cook County taxpayers millions of dollars a year. At the County level I have sponsored into law the Blair Holt Assault Weapons Ban and the required reporting of Lost, Stolen or Transferred Firearms to prohibit straw purchases of guns.

An opinion piece by Cook County Commissioner Larry Suffredin.

Decoding Cook County Property Tax

2010-2011 TIF District Revenue Summary

read summary (Adobe acrobat .pdf)

Cook County Board President Appoints Dr. Stephen J. Cina Chief Medical Examiner

Please find announcement and C.V. below:

read announcement (Adobe acrobat .pdf)

Report of the Justice Advisory Council

read the report (Adobe acrobat .pdf)

Report on the Office of Tax Administrator

Commissioner Suffredin sponsored a resolution requesting close cooperation between offices that oversee property taxes in Cook County. This resolution has done much. Please see the following report for more details.

read report (Adobe acrobat .pdf)

Harms Road & Kenilworth Construction

In Summer 2012 the Cook County Highway Department begins construction on Harms Road from north of Golf Road to south of East Lake Avenue.

read flyer (Adobe acrobat .pdf)

Cook County Completes 2010 Census Redistricting

click here to view map (Adobe Acrobat .pdf)

click here to view Report of the Committee on 2010 Census Redistricting (Adobe Acrobat .pdf)

Unincorporated Cook County Task Force Recommendations

click here to read the Adobe Acrobat .pdf


all news items

Cook County loses billions in tax dollars to collar counties
Friday, April 18, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

Recorder blasted for hiring; says ethics law doesn't apply to her
Thursday, April 17, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

Friends and family hiring plan
Thursday, April 17, 2014
Chicago Tribune

Earth Day Approaching, President Preckwinkle Highlights Cook County’s Sustainability Accomplishments and Programs
Thursday, April 17, 2014
Special to

Two former Board of Review employees get prison time
Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

County announces 2013 No Cash Bid Program results
Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Special to

Orr: TIF reform worth $44M annually at no cost to taxpayers
Tuesday, April 15, 2014
Special to

Property tax relief granted because of O'Hare noise
Monday, April 14, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

What is Cook County Health's interim thinking?
Monday, April 14, 2014
Crain's Chicago Business

New Metra policy will log all calls intended to influence hiring
Saturday, April 12, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

Metra moves to clean up its mess, but lots more needed
Friday, April 11, 2014
Crain's Chicago Business

That scandal at Metra? Nothing to it
Friday, April 11, 2014
Chicago Tribune

President Preckwinkle plans pension cuts
Thursday, April 10, 2014
Chicago Tribune

Getting Metra on the right track
Thursday, April 10, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook County's Alvarez says most in Cook Jail have violent pasts
Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Cook County passes suburban puppy mill ban
Wednesday, April 09, 2014
Chicago Tribune

Cook Co. to settle sex harassment suit involving highway workers
Wednesday, April 09, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

Alvarez complains caseload 'Staggering' and funding shrinking
Wednesday, April 09, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

Ex-prosecutor questions Devine's Death Row decision
Tuesday, April 08, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

After giving to Dorothy Brown's campaign, staffers get promotions
Tuesday, April 08, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

all news items

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