Suffredin- Changing County Government  

Forest Preserves
Public Safety
Cook County Budget
Forest Pres. Budget
Property Tax Appeal
Health & Hospitals
Land Bank Authority
Policy Resolutions
Unsung Heroine


  Office phone numbers:  

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


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

  Cook County Hospital fills more outpatient prescriptions every day than are filled at 26 Walgreen's drug store combined.

Array of tax hikes on table
Stroger exempts just property levy

Wednesday, December 29, 2004
Chicago Tribune
by Mickey Ciokajlo

Cook County Board President John Stroger will propose tax increases next week when he belatedly unveils his 2005 budget, although the property tax will be unaffected, said commissioners who were briefed Tuesday.

Stroger's financial team told commissioners that the county faces a $73 million deficit next year and tax increases will be necessary to close the gap.

Chief Financial Officer Tom Glaser and Budget Director Donna Dunnings held individual briefings Tuesday with Commissioners Tony Peraica (R-Riverside), Mike Quigley (D-Chicago) and Larry Suffredin (D-Evanston).

Commissioners were told that Stroger has not made a final decision on which taxes to raise, but he is considering several, including the sales, hotel, and food and beverage taxes.

"They say they haven't picked their poison," Quigley said of Stroger's financial team.

Stroger put those and other taxes on the table last month when he outlined the county's difficult financial position, which is similar to that of other local governments.

Two weeks ago Chicago approved a 2005 budget loaded with tax increases, including a 0.25 percentage-point increase in the sales tax, bringing the total to 9 percent.

One of the tax increases Stroger is considering is an identical 0.25 percentage-point increase on top of the city's. This would raise $90 million annually but only $15 million in 2005 because of the delay in implementation, Quigley said he was told.

"I think what you're going to see is this thing spread out over all of these taxes," he said.

Stroger, who typically unveils his budgets in late October, delayed its release while he asked department heads and elected county officials to pare their spending.

A year ago commissioners turned back two of Stroger's tax proposals, but the president got an 82-cent increase in the cigarette tax approved by one vote.

Peraica said the county could do more to cut spending.

To raise taxes on the heels of Chicago's increase, the Chicago Park District and other agencies would "add new insult to injury, whether it's $75 million or $7 million," Peraica said.

Suffredin agreed that the gap can be bridged.

"That should be an easy enough thing to do without raising taxes," Suffredin said.

Suffredin, Peraica, Quigley and Forrest Claypool (D-Chicago), who led the effort to turn back Stroger's tax proposals last year, have been pushing measures to cut spending to avoid tax increases.

Laurence Msall, president of the Civic Federation, a budget watchdog, said the county's revenues are expected to increase enough next year to provide sufficient funding to balance the budget if officials are willing to cut some spending.

The budget is also expected to include 283 new positions at Cook County Jail. Last week Stroger irked a federal judge when he proposed hiring 200 jail guards after lawyers involved in a consent decree said Stroger had previously offered 283.


Recent Headlines

Cook County forest preserve picnic, camping permits for 2020 season to go on sale Nov. 15
Tuesday, November 12, 2019
Chicago Tribune

Chicago’s public defender plans to ask Illinois Supreme Court to reverse decision that permits holding preteens in custody despite county ordinance
Monday, November 11, 2019
Chicago Tribune

Clerk Yarbrough touts ‘method to her madness,’ says hiring criticism ‘is purely personal’
Saturday, November 09, 2019
Chicago Sun-Times

Nonprofit hospitals forced to defend hundreds of millions in property tax breaks
Friday, November 08, 2019
Crain's Chicago Business

Cook County Land Bank must serve neighborhoods, not City Hall insiders
Friday, November 08, 2019
Chicago Sun-Times

After judge’s dismissal, Skokie appeals federal lawsuit over Evanston water rates
Friday, November 08, 2019
Chicago Tribune

2 teens in DCFS care were shackled and handcuffed during drive from a youth shelter: ‘Totally unacceptable,’ agency says
Friday, November 08, 2019
Chicago Tribune

The lifelong damage we do in Cook County when we jail kids as young as 10
Thursday, November 07, 2019
Chicago Sun-Times

Unfair assessments lawsuit dismissed after assessor makes changes — full reform called a ‘years-long process’
Thursday, November 07, 2019
Chicago Sun-Times

Editorial: Watch out, Cook County land bank. The public could foreclose — on you.
Thursday, November 07, 2019
Chicago Tribune

Niles raises property tax about $21 per average household
Wednesday, November 06, 2019
Pioneer Press

Nov. 15 is Opening Day for Forest Preserves of Cook County Picnic and Special Event Permit Sales, 2020 Camping Reservations
Wednesday, November 06, 2019
Special to

$8M grant program aims to expand Cook County animal shelter space
Tuesday, November 05, 2019
ABC EyeWitness News

Even as Illinois court permits detaining pre-teens, across U.S. fewer youth being held
Monday, November 04, 2019
Injustice Watch

Cook County OK’d insider deal for Ald. Carrie Austin’s top aide
Monday, November 04, 2019
Chicago Sun-Times

A progressive measure intended to keep preteens out of Cook County jails was effectively struck down by an appellate court
Monday, November 04, 2019
Chicago Tribune

Cook County Health CEO Calls on Other Hospitals to Increase Charity Care
Friday, November 01, 2019

Labrador retriever sworn in at Cook County state’s attorney’s office. Yes, really.
Thursday, October 31, 2019
Chicago Tribune

Cook County sheriff wants chief judge to take over electronic monitoring of suspects, citing the records of those released
Thursday, October 31, 2019
Chicago Tribune

Illinois appellate court rejects ordinance banning detention of 10-12 year olds
Wednesday, October 30, 2019
Injustice Watch

all news items

Paid for by Larry Suffredin and not at taxpayer expense. A Haymarket Production.