Suffredin- Changing County Government  

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.

County Jail searches for way to reduce overcrowding

Thursday, August 26, 2004
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook County will examine its criminal justice system to see how to reduce administrative delays that could contribute to jail crowding, officials said Wednesday.

Chief Criminal Court Judge Paul Biebel made the recommendation at a federal court hearing Wednesday in an ongoing civil case dealing with county jail issues.

Biebel recommended that consultants with American University in Washington update a 1989 study that looks at why inmates are in the prison system for so long before they get to trial.

Recent reports by the John Howard Association have raised issues with a prisoner's right to a speedy trial and staffing shortages at the county jail.

"There's a right to a speedy trial, but it's not happening in many, many cases," said Charles A. Fasano, director of the Prisons and Jails program for the John Howard Association.

Some wait years

Fasano said an inmate waits an average of 180 days and some even wait years before they're found guilty or innocent of their charges. The study will look at a number of aspects of the system, including whether more inmates should be released on electronic monitoring, sent to drug, alcohol or other support programs.

Even though suspects can only spend a maximum sentence of one year in county jail, there's no limit to how long they can wait before their trial, Fasano said.

Bill Quinlan, chairman of the Judiciary Advisory Council, said the county favors the study, which will likely cost about $40,000 in federal and county money.

"That proposal was made before the committee, and the committee is comfortable with it," Quinlan said.

Both Quinlan and Fasano said they've seen improvements with jail crowding over the last year. The Cook County Jail's daily population still runs 500 to 1,000 over its 10,000 capacity, jail officials said.

Staffing request was denied

Sheriff's spokesman Bill Cunningham said staffing is still a chief concern, and the sheriff plans to ask for 200 additional correctional officers this year.

Last year, a request for 100 additional officers was denied for funding reasons, he said.

"Its been the sheriff's contention for a number of years that the jail has been understaffed; we've been unable to get the county to get more staffing," Cunningham said.

Fasano, too, said staffing shortages need to be addressed.

Quinlan said staffing will be examined, but not as part of the study.

Recent Headlines

System News
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

Women Jail Guards Say Sheriff’s Department Tolerated Sexual Harassment By Cook County Inmates
Monday, May 06, 2019
WBEZ Chicago public Radio

all news items

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