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:  
   
 
 

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.

   
  Eighteen of the 20 largest banks in the world and more than 50 foreign banks have offices in Cook County.
   
     
     
     



Cook County OKs budget with new cigarette, gun taxes but lower sales tax

Friday, November 09, 2012
Daily Herald
by Jake Griffin

Some last minute changes to next year’s $3 billion Cook County budget resulted in more spending freedom for board members and a new nurse for the county’s hospital system.

After a two-hour finance committee meeting to decide the fate of 19 proposed budget amendments, the board kept Board President Toni Preckwinkle’s budget plan largely intact, voting 16-1 in favor of it.

Only Chicago Democratic Commissioner William Beavers voted against the budget proposal, offering no reason during the vote.

The budget includes a $1-per-pack tax hike on cigarettes, a $25 tax on gun purchases, taxes on video gambling machines and a 1.25 percent tax on items like office equipment and building materials purchased by business owners outside the county limits.

The new taxes and some other new fees will amount to roughly $42 million in revenue in the next year, according to budget estimates.

The county budget also eliminates the final quarter percent of a 1 percent sales tax imposed by the county board under Todd Stroger’s leadership four years ago.

“This budget reduces the size of Cook County government,” Preckwinkle said. “It is $100 million less than the county spent two years ago, when I came into office. We achieved that by making structural changes that focus on the county’s long-term health. We’ve reduced our head count and taken vacant positions off the books. And this year’s budget does not rely on one-time fixes. We are rolling back the sales tax, a promise I made before taking office and one that I’m proud to have kept.”

Meanwhile, among the amendments is one giving the county’s hospital system $90,000 that was initially earmarked for the hiring of a lawyer to work for the county board.

Initially, the amendment called for the board to divide the $90,000 among themselves and use it toward office expenses, but Bartlett Republican Timothy Schneider suggested the money would be better spent to cover the costs of routine medical exams for county residents.

“If it was going to look like the commissioners were going to get more money, most were not going to support that,” Schneider said.

The original amendment was scrapped and a substituted version called for the money to be used to hire a nurse. That proposal passed 9-7.

That vote came a few minutes after the commissioners gave themselves unfettered access to nearly $140,000 in funds that were traditionally only used to cover costs of their office supplies. Now, the 17 commissioners will be able to use the office supply stipend of $8,200 apiece for a variety of other purposes, including travel and paying consultants. Commissioners will be required to fill out request forms for the cash explaining their expenditures.

The move comes weeks after the county’s inspector general released a report critical of the way commissioners were accounting for so-called “contingency funds.” That money is available for commissioners to use for a variety of expenses, including meals and other incidental costs. The report found nearly $100,000 spent over three years could not be accounted for.

McCook Democratic Commissioner Jeffrey Toboloski expressed concerns that the amendment created “a slush fund” for the board, but it was ultimately approved as well with many commissioners noting the written request requirement.

“Whatever they spend the $8,200 on has to be explained and will be available for the public to see,” Schneider said.



Recent Headlines

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

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 suffredin.org

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.
^ TOP