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Participate in the 2004 Cook County Budget Process

October 2003

Dear Friends,

Since becoming Cook County Commissioner for the 13th District, I have advocated changes to streamline Cook County government and make it more transparent. On Thursday, the County began the arduous process of passing the 2004 appropriations budget. As you may be aware, the County is projecting a $100 million dollar budget short fall for next year.

Now more than ever, the County must tighten its belt at all levels and look for innovative ways to maintain and improve services.

I vehemently oppose the two tax increases – a one-quarter percent increase in the County’s sales tax and a four percent tax on all leased equipment in Cook County – proposed by President Stroger.

As the budget process moves forward, I stand by my commitment to review the 2004 budget line-by-line and to identify areas where cost saving measures can be implemented. This is a challenging time but I believe that working together, we can respond to this budget crisis in a manner that will maintain services, uphold our pledge to provide quality health care and law enforcement protection, and support our criminal justice system.

As Cook County residents, I encourage you to participate in the 2004 budget process.

Some parts of the budget are available online (View 2004 Budget). The County has also made copies of the budget available for public review in the suburban Municipal Courthouses, including the Skokie Courthouse located at 5600 Old Orchard Road. The full document is available for public review in the Office of the County Clerk, room 149, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. I also have a copy available in my District Office located at 820 Davis Street in Evanston.

You can share your input and suggestions for the 2004 Budget at one of four public hearings.

Thursday November 6, 2003
6:30 p.m.
Fourth District Courthouse Courtroom 106
1500 South Maybrook Drive, Maywood

Monday November 10, 2003
6:30 p.m.
Sixth District Courthouse Courtrooms 098 lower level
16501 S. Kedzie Parkway, Markham

Wednesday November 12, 2003
6:30 p.m.
Second District Courthouse Courtroom 201
5600 Old Orchard Road, Skokie

Wednesday November 19, 2003
10 a.m.
Cook County Building Boardroom, Room 569
118 North Clark Street, Chicago

At the hearings you will be asked to sign-in with your address and will be given 3 minutes to speak. If possible, it is helpful if you can submit 30 copies of your testimony.

Departmental Budget Hearings
The following is the schedule for Departmental Budget Hearings:

Thursday November 6, 2003
10:00am Bureau of Finance
1:30pm Office of County Auditor
2:00pm Office of Public Administration
2:30pm Office of Cook County Commissioners
3:00pm Office of Cook County Inspector General

Friday November 7, 2003
10:00am Bureau of Health
1:30pm Board of Elections
2:15pm County Clerk
3:30pm Recorder of Deeds

Monday November 10,2003
10:00am Chief Judge
11:00am Office State’s Attorney
1:30pm Office of the Sheriff
2:30pm Bureau of Public Safety/Judicial Coordination

Wednesday November 12, 2003
10:00am Office of Assessor
11:00am Board of Review
1:30 pm Office of the County Treasurer
2:30pm Clerk of the Circuit Court
3:30pm Bureau of Human Resources

Thursday November 13, 2003
10:00am Bureau of Administration
11:00am Bureau of Information Technology and Automation
1:30pm Offices under President
2:30pm Capital Planning

If you cannot attend one of these public hearings, I encourage you to submit your budget comments and suggestions to my office. You can share your suggestions with me in any of the following ways:

1) Call my office at 312-603-6383
2) Email your comments to lsuffredin@cookcountygov.com
3) Fax your comments to 312-603-3622
4) Mail your comments to: Commissioner Larry Suffredin, 118 N. Clark, Room 567, Chicago, IL 60602.

Sincerely,


Larry Suffredin
Cook County Commissioner
13th District

 
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