Suffredin- For a Better Cook County  

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 first blood bank in the world was established at Cook County Hospital by Dr. Bernard Fantus in 1937.

Rollback of county smoking ban stalls

Thursday, February 08, 2007
Daily Southtown
by Jonathan Lipman

A proposal to delay Cook County's smoking ban until July 2008 won committee approval Wednesday -- but it may be an empty victory.
The rollback measure passed out of Commissioner Elizabeth Gorman's public health subcommittee on a 3-to-1 vote, but county board rules likely will leave the bill stuck in another committee until after the ban takes effect March 15.
"I'm not going to sit on it, I'm going to call it, but I probably won't call it until after March 15," said health committee chairman Jerry Butler (D-Chicago).
Butler's committee must pass on the bill before it makes it to the full board. He was the lone opposing vote in Gorman's subcommittee meeting.
"We've got no time, with the budget," Butler said. "I'd have to have a meeting almost instantly after the budget was passed, and this isn't that big a deal."
So suburban towns will be on their own to decide whether to go along with the existing county smoking ordinance -- which bans smoking in bars, restaurants and other public places -- or craft smoking rules of their own.
Any rules approved by a village board trump the county ordinance.
The measure that passed out of Gorman's committee Wednesday would make the county law more closely mirror Chicago's smoking ban. The ban still would go into effect March 15 for restaurants, but would be delayed until July 2008 for bars, taverns and the bar areas of restaurants, just like Chicago.
Anti-smoking forces squared off with business owners at the committee meeting, though turnout was low compared with the high-charged fights both sides waged in Chicago and the county when the issue was first decided a year ago.
"Don't retreat, don't give people ammunition to say that it's not that important," American Cancer Society regional vice president David Baldwin pleaded with board members. "Stay strong and stay courageous."
Tom Booth, co-owner of Sam Maguire's pub in Orland Park, said bars in that village have lost half of their business since the village adopted a smoking ban, even though the pub is packed on weekends.
"Sunday through Thursday is when we're competing for customers, and they're going to non-smoking locations if there are other options," Booth said.
The patchwork of laws from community to community has left some village boards struggling over what to do. Orland Park, Tinley Park and Oak Forest all recently voted to delay enforcement of their bans after an outcry from business owners.
Although Gorman (R-Orland Park) arranged for the hearing Wednesday, voted against the original ban and called for a delay when the ban originally was debated last year, she abstained from voting on the rollback proposal.
"I thought it was inappropriate for me, as the chair of the public health committee, to vote for it," Gorman said. "I brought it up to open up the dialogue because it's such a messy issue."

Recent Headlines

Measles Exposure Reported in Chicago
Monday, May 20, 2019

News from the Cook County Health System
Friday, May 17, 2019
Special to

Cook County Health Recognizes Mental Health Awareness Month
Thursday, May 16, 2019
Daily Herald

Skokie plans for road improvements near Edens Expressway: 'It’s desperately needed'
Thursday, May 16, 2019
Skokie Review

5 Chicago hospitals earn D grades for patient safety in new report, Northwestern slips to a B
Wednesday, May 15, 2019
Chicago Tribune

Chicago Daily Law Bulletin: Backward Glances
Wednesday, May 15, 2019
Chicago Daily Law Bulletin

Cook County Eliminated Its Gang Database, But Advocates Say Harm Continues
Wednesday, May 15, 2019

New Cook County Housing Authority Proposal Targets the 'Missing Middle'
Wednesday, May 15, 2019
Evanston RoundTable

Census Citizenship Question Could Hurt Citizens, Noncitizens Alike
Wednesday, May 15, 2019
WBEZ Chicago Public Radio

News from Friends of the Forest Preserves
Tuesday, May 14, 2019
Special to

Cook County commissioners get earful about soon-to-be-destroyed gang database
Tuesday, May 14, 2019
Chicago Sun-Times

Detainee dies days after suicide attempt at Cook County jail
Tuesday, May 14, 2019
Chicago Sun-Times

Curious City How Chicago Women Created The World’s First Juvenile Justice System
Monday, May 13, 2019
WBEZ Chicago Public Radio

Cook County report: Sharp drop in jail population, but crime did not jump
Friday, May 10, 2019
Injustice Watch

Will Cook County be home to the next big measles outbreak? Researchers think so.
Friday, May 10, 2019
Chicago Tribune

May is Prime Time for Birding in the Forest Preserves of Cook County
Thursday, May 09, 2019
Special to

More Babies Are Illegally Abandoned Than Turned Over Through Illinois’ Safe Haven Law In Cook County
Thursday, May 09, 2019
CBS Chicago

Empty businesses may lose county tax incentives
Wednesday, May 08, 2019
Homewood-Flossmoor Chronicle

As new DCFS report highlights failures, Cook County guardian says 'inept' child welfare agency is ‘not doing its job ... at every level’
Tuesday, May 07, 2019
Chicago Tribune

Cook County passes bill to stop discrimination against tenant applicants
Tuesday, May 07, 2019
Chicago Crusader

all news items

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