Suffredin- An Advocate for All of Us  
 

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:  
   
 
 

Search current and proposed Cook County Legislation in Larry's exclusive legislative library.

   
 

The Cook County Code of Ordinances are the current laws of Cook County.

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



The 17% charade

Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Chicago Tribune
Editorial

Everybody knows that the poor, put-upon elected officials of Cook County had to cut their budgets by 17 percent for 2007. Everybody knows this in part because many of those officials nobly tell anyone who'll listen -- in speeches, interviews and broadcast appearances -- that Board President Todd Stroger asked them to lower their spending by 17 percent. What heroes. Except that the heroes often don't tell the rest of the story: In many cases, they didn't really cut their budgets by 17 percent. Some officials may again try to exploit the 17 percent charade Wednesday, when they're scheduled to discuss possible cuts of 10 percent for 2008. Expect to hear them whine about those 2007 cuts -- followed by their blustery resistance to doing what mere taxpayers have to do whenever their income falls short of the amount of money they need: reduce spending. The true story of the 17 percent started to unfold last week. The county's budget director distributed a report on actual budget cuts for 2007. The report startled several board members who dutifully had cut 17 percent from their own office expenditures -- and assumed everyone else in county government had done the same. Not so. Example: Employees at the county's Bureau of Health -- many of them patronage hires -- frequently bemoan the 17 percent savaging they supposedly endured. Except the real spending reduction was only 10.8 percent. Stroger now proposes to raise health spending by 11.2 percent in 2008 -- to $831 million, a total higher than the 2006 appropriation. You may believe that's not enough money -- but it's no savaging. Other spending cuts for 2007: Assessor: 12.8 percent. Board of Review: 7.8 percent. Treasurer: 8.3 percent. Recorder: 14.4 percent. State's attorney: 5.5 percent. County clerk (in a year free of a major election): 27.7 percent. Sheriff: 3.3 percent. Chief judge: 7.6 percent. Clerk of the Circuit Court: 7 percent. Here's an intriguing comparison: Total 2007 spending for the county offices that report to Stroger -- the Bureau of Health is by far the biggest -- dropped 10.6 percent from 2006. Stroger cut 19 percent from his own relatively small office budget (to $1.3 million). Yet the total '07 budget for the other county officials decreased only 5.8 percent. What happened to the threatened 17 percent cuts across the board? Stroger raised some appropriations during his negotiations with county officials before the board's 2007 budget vote. And board members added amendments: Restoring some cuts and adding new expenditures made the budget what it is. A caveat: Some officials bring in revenue. If they can demonstrate Wednesday that spending cuts and unbudgeted revenue increases in '07 combined to reduce their reliance on taxpayers by 17 percent, bully for them! That should be Cook County's future: higher fees for firms and individuals who use county databases and services -- and less reliance on tapped-out taxpayers. So if you hear county bosses yowling that they've already given at the office and can't absorb more cuts, remember: For many of them, the 17 percent cuts of 2007 were a charade.


Recent Headlines

Dart warns of 'dramatic increase' in accused gun offenders released on electronic monitors
Friday, February 23, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Anti-soda tax PAC jumps in Cook County Board races
Monday, February 19, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Wilmette minimum wage working group surveys businesses, will survey residents
Monday, February 19, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Circuit clerk gets stay on e-filing order
Friday, February 16, 2018
Chicago Daily Law Bulletin

Hundreds gather at Bridgeport church for Cmdr. Paul Bauer's wake
Friday, February 16, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Dart goes to court in effort to find person accusing him of domestic violence
Friday, February 16, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Study says property tax system favors rich
Friday, February 16, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Property Tax System ‘More Regressive’ in Cook County, Report Finds
Friday, February 16, 2018
WTTW Chicago Tonight

VIDEO: Cook County Jail detainees applaud CPD commander’s alleged killer
Friday, February 16, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Blockbuster report: How Cook County tax system shafts the little guy
Thursday, February 15, 2018
Crain's Chicago Business

Order over lawsuits in Dorothy Brown’s office put on hold by appeals court
Wednesday, February 14, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Dorothy Brown can't 'end-run' First Amendment, judge says in denying delay
Tuesday, February 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Cook County prosecutors toss more convictions tainted by corrupt ex-Chicago police Sgt. Ronald Watts
Tuesday, February 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Handwritten documents, Manila folders, carbon paper — welcome to Cook County criminal court
Monday, February 12, 2018
Chicago Tribune

2 Cook County Commissioners missed over a third of Forest Preserve meetings
Sunday, February 11, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook County Jail guards lock down sweet union contract—despite sour budget mess
Sunday, February 11, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Running for judge, Dorothy Brown’s inspector general accepts donation from bos
Friday, February 09, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook Co. President Urges Trump To Stop ICE Arrests In Courthouses
Wednesday, February 07, 2018
Beverly Patch

Voting in Jail? New Bill Seeks to Expand Ballot Access for Detainees
Wednesday, February 07, 2018
WTTW Chicago Tonight

COOK COUNTY BOARD COMMISSIONER PROPOSES HEARING ON POLICE OVERSIGHT
Wednesday, February 07, 2018
WBEZ BGA

all news items

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