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
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 has the largest unified trial court system in the world, disposing over 6 million cases in 1990 alone.
   
     
     
     



$4 million in funding to clear Stroger Hospital's patient backlog OK'd over board protests

Tuesday, July 10, 2007
Medill News
by Elisabeth Kilpatrick

A $4 million increase in funding to clear a backlog of patient Social Security income applications at Stroger Hospital was approved over the anger of several Cook County’s Board commissioners Tuesday.

The additional money will be paid over two years to a private contractor helping with the overflow of Stroger Hospital’s backlog of more than 2,000 applications -- 570 of which were filed more than 90 days ago -- for indigent patients.

The hospital will be paid for providing the patient services only after processing the applications, which have a combined worth of $30 million and will greatly help to offset the Bureau of Health Services’ 2007 budget shortage, according to Thomas Glaser, chief operating officer for the bureau. 

However, many board members balked at approving the new funding without seeing specific numbers on how successful the private contractor, Chamberlin Edmonds, has been in processing applications up until now.

“You’re asking us to expand and to amend this contract by $4 million, and you’re not able to give us any information on this company generating revenues for the county,” said Commissioner Roberto Maldonado (D-Chicago). “This is like a leap of faith for this company.”

Maldonado and others called for the funding increase to be referred to the next finance committee meeting before board action.

But health services officials countered that although they would provide an analysis of the numbers at the next committee meeting, bringing in extra help to handle the flood of applications could not wait.

“Every week, every month that goes by, we’re further behind on collecting,” said  Robert Simon, director of the health services bureau.

He added that the contract is a contingency contract, meaning that the bureau will only pay the full $4 million when the contractor produces $42 million in revenue from the applications over the next two years.

The bureau is facing a $60 million budget shortfall for 2007, Glaser said earlier in the day during the finance committee meeting.

The deficit sparked heated discussion when Commissioner Anthony Peraica (R-Westchester) pointed to several portions of the budget that had already gone 50 percent over their intended spending for all of 2007 by July 1.

While Glaser said that underspending in some areas would help to offset some of the unanticipated costs, the Bureau was still facing $30 million to $35 million in overexpenditures for the year.

Simon said that the only way to reduce the budget further would be to cut essential services.

Commissioner Jerry Butler (D-Chicago) brought up the budget shortage again shortly before voting in favor of the funding increase.

“This is one of those situations where we are always beating up on the bureau about getting the money collected,” Butler said, “and then we make it difficult for them to do what they think is the best plan to collect the money.”

Board members voted 11-6 in favor of the funding increase. Doug Kucia, chief of staff for Commissioner Forrest Claypool (D-Chicago) -- who voted to refer the matter to committee -- said after the meeting that he worried the approval might be based on spurious logic.  

“Now it’s up to the board to see if the vendor is going to deliver,” Kucia said.

“All the commissioners want the Bureau of Health to see if they can get things functioning right," Kucia said. "I think we’re all working towards the same goal, we just have different opinions on how to get there.”



Recent Headlines

Woman, 19, arrested after escaping police custody at Cook County courthouse
Sunday, December 09, 2018
WLS ABC Chicago 7

Here's an exciting prospect: A boring assessor's office
Saturday, December 08, 2018
Crain's Chicago Business

Sheriff starts unique inmate program to combat Chicago's gun epidemic
Thursday, December 06, 2018
RTV 6 Indianapolis

Staff feud at tax appeals board turns nasty
Wednesday, December 05, 2018
Crain's Chicago Business

Cook County Tax Bills Posted Online Three Months Early
Wednesday, December 05, 2018
CBS Chicago

County Board makes it easier to choose Preckwinkle successor
Tuesday, December 04, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

New Cook County assessor vows end to favoritism as he takes office
Monday, December 03, 2018
Crain's Chicago Business

New Cook County Board members sworn in Monday
Monday, December 03, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Cook County referendums: 'Yes' to everything
Wednesday, November 28, 2018
Chicago City Wire

Glenview to discuss Cook County minimum wage, paid sick leave ordinances in December
Tuesday, November 27, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Wilmette reverses course, fully adopts both county minimum wage and sick time rules
Tuesday, November 27, 2018
Chicago Tribune

What Pritzker's minimum wage increase plan could mean for the suburbs
Monday, November 26, 2018
Daily Herald

Cook County sheriff’s vehicle struck during ISP pursuit on I-294
Sunday, November 25, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook County 'Tails' program offers redemption for inmates, dogs
Thursday, November 22, 2018
Daily Herald

Cook County correctional officer owns bar where security guard Jemel Roberson shot by cop, officials say
Wednesday, November 21, 2018
Chicago Tribune

More than 2 months after sisters were killed in crash with Cook County sheriff's officer, family still waits for answers
Wednesday, November 21, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Jail guard’s retaliation suit can proceed
Monday, November 19, 2018
Chicago Daily Law Bulletin

Northbrook will revisit Cook County minimum wage ordinance in May
Sunday, November 18, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Suffredin: County to seek 'safeguards' for golf course road
Friday, November 16, 2018
Evanston NOW

She's been waiting 15 months for her rape kit to be processed. A new proposal to track evidence aims to change that.
Wednesday, November 14, 2018
Chicago Tribune

all news items

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