Suffredin- Changing County Government  
 

Accountability
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.

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



Preckwinkle stirs up a tempest with sales tax hike

Wednesday, June 24, 2015
Crain's Chicago Business
by Greg Hinz

Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle's  move to revive the penny-on-the-dollar sales tax hike she once derided as poor policy is drawing a distinct mixed reaction from her colleagues on the County Board. Some Republicans hint they could support it as an alternative to raising property taxes, but other members are vehemently opposed.

Seemingly open to the idea was northwest suburban Republican Gregg Goslin.

"I'm not supportive at this point," he told me in an interview. "We've cut hundreds of millions of dollars of debt and waste in recent years that may have earned us some sort of revenue enhancement. We've done a lot of good in five years."

A property tax ought to be off the table, Goslin said. But with the county needing more money to pay for items such as higher pension payments, "there isn't a lot left to tax."

Evanston Democrat Lawrence Suffredin, meanwhile, said he's unalterably opposed.

"I stand by my vote to repeal it," he said, referring to the 1-percentage-point hike pushed through by then-President Todd Stroger. The hike was partially repealed before Preckwinkle took office and completed the repeal.

"We tried this before and it didn't work," Suffredin continued. "Once we cross the 10 percent threshold, we create a detriment to the entire region and hurt a lot of small businesses." (The hike would move the sales tax to as much as 10.25 percent in the city, and up to 10 percent in many suburban areas.)

It's not clear the county needs money at all and, if it does, other options including a property tax ought to come first, Suffredin said. "We haven't raised our tax since 1994."

Strongly in agreement with Suffredin was Democrat Richard Boykin, who represents much of the West Side of Chicago and near west suburbs.

"Nobody thinks it's a good idea," Boykin said. "The sales tax is the most regressive tax there is. It's particularly hard on poor people and the working poor, who have to pay more every time they go to the grocery store."

A similar message came from Illinois Retail Merchants Association chief Rob Karr.

A "shortsighted" increase just in Cook County "will push additional sales out of the county and to the Internet," he said. "We'll have the highest sales tax in the country."

And raising the sales tax won't avert a property tax increase, Karr asserted. "I think higher property taxes are coming regardless. This is not an either/or situation."

But another Republican, Elmwood Park's Peter Silvestri, said that while he's "currently opposed," that could change after he sees budget details from Preckwinkle.

"I'd like to see what the impact of not passing it is," Silvestri added, saying Preckwinkle has "more credibility" on spending issues than did Stroger. "I'm glad the property tax is off the table."

A third Republican, Illinois GOP Chairman Tim Schneider, who represents the northwest suburbs, did not return phone calls seeking comment.

Preckwinkle's office has confirmed only that she's looking at various financial options to shore up sagging county finances, and hopes to present a proposal soon.

Update, 2 p.m. — Todd Stroger has some thoughts, too, and given how badly Preckwinkle clobbered him with the issue, they're rather mild.

“I'm not surprised. It takes money to run government,” he told me in a phone conversation. “They've raised all the fees they can.”

Stroger—who, incidentally, is about to seek slating for a seat on the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District board—did take one little shot at his successor, asking, “Will they call this the 'Toni Preckwinkle tax' now?” And another shot at the media: “Maybe they'll tell the truth now.”



Recent Headlines

Coronavirus in Illinois updates: Here’s what’s happening Thursday with COVID-19 in the Chicago area
Thursday, May 28, 2020
Chicago Tribune

Here’s what will be different Friday, when most of the state (but not Chicago) moves into phase three of Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s reopening plan
Thursday, May 28, 2020
Chicago Tribune

First two Cook County judges test positive for COVID-19
Thursday, May 28, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

First 2 Cook County Judges Test Positive for COVID-19
Thursday, May 28, 2020
WTTW News

Folks Are In Limbo’: Cook County Court Shutdown Could Stretch Into July
Wednesday, May 27, 2020
WBEZ News

The Spin: Nation, Illinois, Cook County reach grim coronavirus death milestones |
Wednesday, May 27, 2020
Chicago Tribune

How COVID will change your CTA ride
Wednesday, May 27, 2020
Crain's Chicago Business

Cook County M.E.’s autopsies in less than five months surpass entire 2019 tally: ‘We do not believe that these deaths had to occur’
Wednesday, May 27, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

2 exonerated men file federal suits claiming Chicago police and Cook County prosecutors framed them for murder as teens
Wednesday, May 27, 2020
Chicago Tribune

Peoples Gas encourages customers to apply for financial assistance
Wednesday, May 27, 2020
Chicago Crusader

Chicago-area municipalities to rely on counties for CARE Act money
Wednesday, May 27, 2020
The Daily Line

Local governments set to get small slice of $4.9B coronavirus relief package headed to Illinois
Wednesday, May 27, 2020
The Daily Line

Cook County death toll in less than five months surpasses entire 2019 tally: ‘We do not believe that these deaths had to occur’
Wednesday, May 27, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook County courts extend COVID-19 precautions into July, further delaying most criminal, civil cases
Wednesday, May 27, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

Return to sender? Preckwinkle vetoes plan to give first responders COVID-19 addresses: ‘This didn’t make any sense’
Tuesday, May 26, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

Niles continues to see most COVID-19 deaths among Cook County suburbs; check your town’s count
Tuesday, May 26, 2020
Chicago Tribune

Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle vetoes ‘extraordinarily bad’ plan to share coronavirus-positive addresses with first responders, a first in her tenure
Tuesday, May 26, 2020
Chicago Tribune

Officials see signs COVID-19 is contained at Cook County Jail, while experts caution measures need to remain in place
Tuesday, May 26, 2020
Chicago Tribune

Preckwinkle vetoes plan to give first responders addresses of COVID-19 positive residents
Tuesday, May 26, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

Daywatch: Pritzker announces reopening rules for businesses, an exclusive look at Cook County Hospital
Tuesday, May 26, 2020

all news items

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