Suffredin- For a Better Cook County  
 

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

 

   
 
   
   
 
   
     
  Office phone numbers:  
   
 
 

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.

   
  The Chicago Board of Trade and the Chicago Mercantile Exchange trade 60% of the world futures contracts.
   
     
     
     



Stroger warns of county tax hike

Saturday, November 20, 2004
Chicago Sun-Times
by STEVE PATTERSON

Pick your poison.

A tax increase appears inevitable, Cook County Board President John Stroger said Friday, it's just a matter of which tax.

Hotels, cigarettes, food and beverages, concerts, clothing and, yes, property taxes, are among those things that could be more costly next year, Stroger said.

It's going to take more than $3 billion to run county government next year, which includes expenses to run hospitals, courts, the jail and standard government offices.

Stroger said he'll release final budget figures "in the next few weeks," but first must fill a $146 million budget deficit through cuts and "we have to do what we think is best," including finding "new revenue sources."

Sheahan under pressure of county audit to cut budget request

Read: new taxes.

'Not that simple'

He said $106 million has already been cut from the 2005 budget, and while "there may be room for additional cuts, you can't just say cut across the board 2 percent," because "it's not that simple."

Stroger was candid at his news conference, but appeared to be delaying the inevitable announcement of higher taxes, well aware that Mayor Daley has just finished asking Chicago taxpayers to pony up more to balance his city budget.

Other county officials stood with Stroger, including Assessor Jim Houlihan, State's Attorney Dick Devine, Clerk Dorothy Brown and some commissioners, each committed to cuts and finally raising "new revenues" if needed.

When the news conference started, Commissioner Mike Quigley stood in the back, but as it went on, he moved to the front, standing by those with Stroger.

"It's a question of political will and are we willing to take on these sacrifices," Quigley said, adding that Stroger is "a good man, a nice man, but he's too kind" to other officials demanding more money.

'Difficult decisions'

Often a Stroger critic, he instead called on his colleagues to "stand behind" Stroger as "a unified county board" and "say 'no' " to those asking for more tax money.

He said the full board must demand that officials "make sacrifices so taxpayers don't."

Stroger said he has cut 1,400 jobs under his supervision since 1995 and though property taxes haven't gone up in that period, "we have some very difficult decisions" to make in coming weeks, because "we just don't have the revenue sources" to keep the county going.

Many are expecting this year's budget battle to mirror last year, when it was to be passed by Dec. 1, but instead dragged into February.

----------------------
BY STEVE PATTERSON Staff Reporter


Cook County Sheriff Michael Sheahan, the John Howard Association and even federal judges have said there's a severe staffing shortage at the Cook County Jail.

Sheahan's answer is to ask for $7.2 million more from taxpayers to pay for 200 new jail guards.

Many Cook County commissioners, however, believe Sheahan can move enough of his 6,479 existing employees to fill those roles.

Friday, behind closed doors, they began auditing the sheriff's staff for job titles and descriptions.

It's something they said they'll do with every office, but are starting with the sheriff because of his request for 200 new jobs.

The effort finds Stroger and adversaries like Mike Quigley on common ground in calling for Sheahan to make tough cuts in his proposed budget.

"I can't cut any more," Sheahan said, pointing to a budget that has 121 fewer employees than in 1995.

Saying he's "squeezed for the last 10 years," he wants $30 million more than last year, but $23 million of that is due to raises approved by commissioners.

Stroger said he can increase Sheahan's budget and give him 83 new positions, including 50 at the jail, but "we can't afford" more.

Quigley said Sheahan's budget has increased $92 million in five years and "if he managed his facilities in an appropriate fashion," he wouldn't be "the poster person for wasteful government."

Sheahan fired back: "The only thing Quigley's ever run is his mouth."



Recent Headlines

The PrivateBank pledges $10 million to the Cook County Land Bank
Friday, July 25, 2014
Chicago Tribune

Cook County Commissioners switch votes, rehire erstwhile contractor
Friday, July 25, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook County Commissioners switch votes, rehire erstwhile contractor
Friday, July 25, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook County to cut buildings' carbon emissions
Thursday, July 24, 2014
Fox 32 Chicago

Cook County Board sends assault weapons referendum to the ballot
Thursday, July 24, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook County mulls fund-of-funds investment, other changes
Wednesday, July 23, 2014
Pensions & Investments

Forest Preserves of Cook County to get expertise, guidance from new Policy Council
Tuesday, July 22, 2014
Special to suffredin.org

Preserves and parks offering memorial trees and benches for a price
Monday, July 21, 2014
Chicago Tribune

Community leaders, sheriff aim to help mentally ill inmates
Monday, July 21, 2014
FOX 32 Chicago

TIF Revenue Down 2 Percent in Suburban Cook Co.
Thursday, July 17, 2014
Palatine Patch

Recorder of Deeds staffers accused of political motive in firing
Thursday, July 17, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook County sheriff's department will focus on catching people wanted on arrest warrants
Wednesday, July 16, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

An unwelcome surprise from the Cook County health system
Monday, July 14, 2014
Chicago Tribune

New Cook County Health CEO must find millions in savings - stat
Monday, July 14, 2014
Crain's Chicago Business

Fitch cuts rating on Cook County
Saturday, July 12, 2014
Reuters

Man trapped in Cook County Jail 30-plus hours files court papers
Thursday, July 10, 2014
Chicago Tribune

Man trapped in Cook County Jail visiting room for 31 hours
Wednesday, July 09, 2014
Chicago Tribune

Orr, Suffredin To Explain Expanded Voting Rules At Town Hall
Wednesday, July 09, 2014

County land bank sweeping up the debris of the housing crisis
Monday, July 07, 2014
Crain's Chicago Business

Exoneree Diaries: Jacques mentors in Cook County juvenile detention
Monday, July 07, 2014
WBEZ Chicago Public Radio

all news items

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