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.

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



President Preckwinkle Presents 2016 Budget Recommendation

Thursday, October 29, 2015
Special to suffredin.org

President Preckwinkle Presents 2016 Budget Recommendation

for the Forest Preserves of Cook County

Forest Preserve of Cook County Board President, Toni Preckwinkle introduced the 2016 Budget Recommendation to the Forest Preserve of Cook County Board of Commissioners. The budget operationalizes specific goals outlined in the FPCC’s Next Century Conservation Plan which was formally adopted in 2015 and provides the following goals:

  • Restoring ecological health and protecting the diversity of plants and animals that depend on the preserves.
  • Providing well-maintained buildings, trails and other facilities, and making them accessible to all county residents.
  • Increasing outreach to underserved communities and expanding educational and recreational opportunities for all residents.
  • Managing with excellence, transparency, and sound financial practice.

As residents of the third largest metropolis in the nation, our Forest Preserves offer Cook County residents the chance to experience nature in an unparalleled way, said President Toni Preckwinkle. “I am pleased to introduce this budget for the Forest Preserves, which recommends no tax increases to individuals or businesses and no increases to fees and services.”

The proposed budget includes a request for total appropriation authority of $190.2 million--an increase of less than 2% compared to 2015. This assumes no increase in the number of full time employees, but does include a modest increase of four part-time and/or seasonal employees.

This budget also holds consistent the amount of money given by the Forest Preserves to support the operations of the Brookfield Zoo and the Chicago Botanic Garden with $14.9 million and $9.3 million dollars respectively.

The Corporate Fund, or operating budget of $65.6 million, is balanced without raising homeowners’ property taxes, without increases to fees or fines, and without a transfer from Corporate Fund Balance or reserve funds. The Corporate Fund supports the day-to-day activities of 11 departments and district-wide expenses. The 2016 Corporate Fund reflects a small increase of $3.5 million over 2015.

The major increase in the operating budget is due to anticipated Cost of Living Increase, patterned after the County’s collective bargaining agreements and salary resolutions.

The budget does include a transfer of $8.2 million dollars from reserve funds to the Capital Improvement Fund—including $6 million to enable the FPCC to continue its critical work to restore the preserves to ecological health, and $2 million to renovate deteriorated facilities and make life-safety and accessibility improvements.

In the last several years, the Forest Preserves made significant capital improvements funded by a $110 million in 2012 General Obligation bonds which were completed in 2015 including $29 million five new and revitalized campgrounds which have already hosted more than 8,500 visitors since a staggered opening Memorial Day Weekend.

In 2015, we committed an additional $6 million dollars in major new trail improvements in addition to completing three loop trail projects that started in 2014. Trail improvements better connect people and communities to the preserves, increasing transportation options, creating links between the preserves themselves, improving residents’ health through the use of natural spaces, and contributing to the region’s economic vitality.

In total we built or renovated 24 miles of trail across 8 major trails across the County. The largest section was a 7-miles stretch of the western segment Cal-Sag Trail which opened on National Trails Day this summer.

Public attendance also increased at our six nature centers by nearly 43,000 people according to third quarter reports from 2014 to 2015.

“We have made critical investments in the preserves and will continue to address ADA and life-safety improvements 2016,” said General Superintendent Arnold Randall. “While we continue to move forward on our ambitious Next Century Conservation Plan goals, the 2016 budget remains only recommends a modest increase.

Recognizing the current fiscal realities faced by most government agencies, the 2016 Budget Recommendation the pursuit of additional sources of non-tax revenue and cultivate more resources from partners and volunteers.

This includes expanding concession revenue by developing a Master Plan for Concessions and pursuing non-traditional sources of funding such as corporate sponsorships, public-private partnerships as well as working with the Forest Preserves Foundation to leverage support from the private sector. Additional cost cutting measures will also be explored to identify efficiencies and cost reductions through potential outsourcing of certain operations.

# # #



Recent Headlines

Sheriff Tom Dart gets Cook County funding for helicopter to track carjackers
Thursday, November 17, 2022
Chicago Sun-Times

Editorial: With Cook County property tax, the absurdity continues, but attorneys always win
Tuesday, November 15, 2022
Chicago Tribune

Homeowners seeking new tax bills crash treasurer’s website
Tuesday, November 15, 2022
Crain's Chicago Business

Cook County property tax bills posted online after monthslong delay
Tuesday, November 15, 2022
Chicago Sun-Times

New, lower court fees for adoptions are making it easier for children in Cook County to find “forever” homes
Tuesday, November 15, 2022
Special to suffredin.org

Cook County Property Tax Bills Arrive After Months of Delays and Finger-Pointing
Tuesday, November 15, 2022
WTTW News

Higher tax bills arrive for some Cook County homeowners
Tuesday, November 15, 2022
WBEZ News

Surprise: Chicago homeowners will carry more of the property tax burden
Monday, November 14, 2022
Crain's Chicago Business

Extended Hours 11/15/22 Niles Township Assessor
Monday, November 14, 2022
Special to suffredin.org

Some homeowners’ property tax increases are due to Board of Review actions, Kaegi study asserts; board points finger back at assessor
Monday, November 14, 2022
Chicago Tribune

After months of delay, Cook County property tax bills will be available online Tuesday, mailed by Dec. 1
Sunday, November 13, 2022
Chicago Tribune

Fountain Square ceremony salutes veterans
Saturday, November 12, 2022
Evanston RoundTable

A Win for Cook County Forest Preserves
Wednesday, November 09, 2022
WLS radio

Chicago Botanic Garden: Free Admission Days in November and December
Wednesday, November 09, 2022
Special to suffredin.org

Cook County voters approve property tax increase for the forest preserves
Tuesday, November 08, 2022
WBEZ News

Supporters Celebrate ‘Victory for People and Nature’ as Forest Preserve Tax Hike Appears a Winner
Tuesday, November 08, 2022
WTTW News

Brookfield Zoo Marks 100 Years Since Groundbreaking With Eye Toward the Future
Monday, November 07, 2022
WTTW News

Give Yourself and Your Loved Ones a Boost This Holiday Season to Avoid COVID & Flu
Sunday, November 06, 2022
Special to suffredin.org

Cook County Health hosting a Nursing Job Fair 11/10
Wednesday, November 02, 2022
Special to suffredin.org

New leader chosen for Cook County Land Bank Authority
Wednesday, November 02, 2022
Daily Herald

all news items

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