Suffredin- An Advocate for All of Us  

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 Hospital fills more outpatient prescriptions every day than are filled at 26 Walgreen's drug store combined.

Mad about the tax grab?

Monday, March 03, 2008
Chicago Tribune

"There's not that many political hacks in Cook County."

-- Deborah Sims, urging her fellow
Cook County Board members to raise taxes.

When members of the Cook County Board boosted local sales taxes into double digits over the weekend, did they unwittingly invite challengers to battle them for cushy part-time jobs that pay $85,000 a year?

That would be justice. Friday's board vote to add a full percentage point to the sales tax proves there's much to reform in this brain-dead government. We only hope potential candidates weren't scared off during last week's debate by the county employee who publicly cast a curse -- we're not sure if it was Santeria or Voodoo -- on board members who opposed further gouging taxpayers.

That 9-8 tax vote leaves the County Board a target-rich environment. Sims and several others who voted with her are relying on voter amnesia to block public memory of their successful push for $426 million a year in new taxes. Imagine the joy of reminding residents in her district of another Sims argument: "This country was built on taxes."

Actually, Ms. Sims, it was built on rebellion against onerous taxation. Tea party, anyone?

Board President
Todd Stroger provided this quote to save: "Revenue is reform."

Talk of recruiting much better candidates (Rep.
Jesse Jackson Jr., are you listening?) isn't as premature as you'd think. In now-vulnerable offices of county government, all that matters is 2010, when all 17 board seats are up for election. These jobs are now higher-profile than most City Council seats, the pay is good, and there's no forlorn commute to Springfield.

Consider too: Challengers will be able to explain how higher county taxes drive shoppers to the Internet -- and employers to other counties in Illinois, Indiana or Wisconsin.

Challengers also can remind people that eight board members -- including all four women -- voted to raise their own office budgets rather than direct that $1.1 million to reduce the backlog of poor women waiting for mammograms at Stroger Hospital.

And the self-humiliation may continue. Some board members are murmuring about another revenue grab: doubling the county parking tax to $40 a month. Oh, did we mention that County Board members don't have to pay any parking tax? They get free indoor parking beneath the Daley Center. Talk about a juicy item for every challenger's campaign mailers.

Watching last week's tax debate, we were struck by the indignant, often furious opposition of Stroger's board allies to even mild cost cuts or calls for efficiency. Then it dawned on us: Cutting payrollers, contracts and other expenses would reduce the need for ... tax hikes in the hundreds of millions!

So there's much to fix: the insolvent health system, the redundant bureaucracies of county offices, the cronyism that drives hiring. With just one or two new board members, Cook County could be a model of something other than patronage and bloat.

Reform candidates, start your ambitions. And don't worry about the curse. We checked pulses after the sales tax vote. All eight opponents survived -- and plan to keep fighting.

Recent Headlines

Pappas: There's help for senior citizens struggling to pay Cook County property taxes
Friday, December 14, 2018
Special to

Cook County Public Guardian sues DCFS: “Abject moral and human rights failure”
Thursday, December 13, 2018
Capitol Fax

Borrow $10B to help stabilize city pensions along with legal pot, casino and benefit cuts: Rahm
Thursday, December 13, 2018
The Daily Line

CTA Moves Forward with Major Red Line Projects:
Thursday, December 13, 2018
Special to

Cook County repeals lower parking-app tax rate
Wednesday, December 12, 2018
Crain's Chicago Business

How local suburbs voted in Cook County minimum wage/paid sick leave advisory referenda
Wednesday, December 12, 2018
The Bugel

Cook County restores tax on parking apps before January cut took effect
Wednesday, December 12, 2018
Chicago Tribune

County Board to take on taxes,toilets at Wednesday meeting
Tuesday, December 11, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

PRECKWINKLE’s tax tweak — Details on BURKE raids — State REPUBLICANS look for hope — SUMMERS’ tirade
Tuesday, December 11, 2018
Illinois Politico

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

all news items

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