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.

  The Cook County Forest Preserve District maintains over 70 miles of bicycle trails.

Is Illinois Business Friendly? Maybe, Legislators Say

Monday, October 21, 2013
Evanston Patch
by Jennifer Fisher

U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky and several state legislators talked about the business climate, pension reform and the Affordable Care Act at a breakfast in Evanston.

Asked whether Illinois is a friendly climate for businesses, local legislators gave a mixed bag of answers at an Evanston Chamber of Commerce breakfast last week.

They acknowledged weaknesses at the government level, like pension debt and corruption, but stressed the state’s strengths in innovation, technology and culture, especially in the Chicago area.

“No offense to Milwaukee, Minneapolis or Detroit, but who wants to live there?” joked Cook County Commisioner Larry Suffredin. “We’ve got to remind people about the strengths of this area.”

“We’ve got to let people know that this isn’t the murder capital of the world,” he added.

Suffredin spoke at the chamber’s annual legislators breakfast along with U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-9th), state senators Heather Steans (D-7th) and Daniel Biss (D-9th), and state representatives Laura Fine (D-17th) and Robyn Gabel (D-18th).

They talked about how the state was making progress on pension reform and adressed the effects of the government shutdown, in addition to sharing their opinions on the state’s business climate.

While Suffredin was largely positive, Steans had more criticisms to make. She said Illinois had to get its pension debt and public corruption under control in order to attract more businesses. And she pointed out that with 72,000 local government entities, Illinois has significantly more taxing bodies than any other state. Moves like eliminating Evanston Township (an action the city council is considering putting before voters), would help, Steans said.

Fine noted that Illinois has some of the best schools for training for tech jobs—but students tend to leave after graduation.

“Are there ways we can help students pay for school so they don’t leave with so much debt, and follow the lure of big paychecks out west?”Fine asked.

On a positive note, Illinois is ranked among the top 20 states for innovation, international trade and wind farms, according to Gabel.

“In my opinion, we need to focus on that,” she said. “Let’s go with our strengths.”

Pension Reform

One piece of the puzzle toward improving the state’s business climate may be in sight, according to Biss. In June, he was appointed to a bipartisan committee working on a plan for reducing pension debt. He said he hoped they would come out with a plan that legislators could agree on sometime this fall.

“It’s absolutely within our grasp to achieve this,” Biss said.

Assuming legislators can reach agreement on a plan, reduced pension debt could have a huge impact on the state’s finances. Pension payments have grown from six percent of the state’s general revenue fund in 2008 to 23 percent today, according to Steans.

“There’s nothing more fundamental to the state than to restore any sort of financial integrity,” she said.

Government Shutdown

Schakowsky got a laugh from the audience Friday, when she told chamber members that she’d rather be there than back in Washington, D.C., where the partial government shutdown finally came to an end last week.

"What happened is no cause for jubilation, it's a cause for relief," she said, especially for government workers who were furloughed during the shutdown.

While Schakowsky said she was glad that lawmakers had agreed to extend the federal debt ceiling and reopen the government, she noted that there would be economic consequences.

She quoted ratings agency S&P, which has estimated that the shutdown cost the U.S. economy $24 billion and slowed economic growth.

“We’re glad that this immediate crisis, self-inflicted, completely unnecessary crisis is over,” she said. “Hopefully we’ll be able to move forward in a more rational way.”

Recent Headlines

Cook County General Hospital's $90-Million Redevelopment Saves a Chicago Icon
Tuesday, March 19, 2019
Engineering News Rec ord

Illinois Land Title Association Granted Summary Judgment in Case against Cook County Recorder of Deeds
Sunday, March 17, 2019
Illinois State Bar Association

Grand Jury Indicts Debt Collector of Bribing Cook County Clerk Dorothy Brown
Friday, March 15, 2019
WBBM Chicago

Indictment: Cook County's hired debt collector charged with bribing county officials to secure county contract
Friday, March 15, 2019
Cook County record

Karen Chavers Honored as 2019 Unsung Heroine
Thursday, March 14, 2019
Special to

Pappas to announce deadline for Cook County property owners to pay late taxes
Wednesday, March 13, 2019
Chicago Sun-Times

Courts Cause Confusion For Woman Trying To Resolve Her Case
Wednesday, March 13, 2019
CBS Chicago

Census changes raise fears of Illinois undercounting
Monday, March 11, 2019
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook County Sheriff Warns of Apple Phone Scam
Monday, March 11, 2019

Caller poses as Apple to get victims personal info in scam targeting Cook County residents
Monday, March 11, 2019
WGN Chicago

Should Young Adults Be Sent To Juvenile Courts?
Sunday, March 10, 2019
NPR Radio

Cook County Jail hires 2nd consecutive mental health professional as warden
Wednesday, March 06, 2019
Chicago Sun-Times

Lawsuit: Sheriff jailed dozens because of faulty electronic monitoring devices
Monday, March 04, 2019
Chicago Sun-Times

Woman dies while in custody at Cook County Jail
Sunday, March 03, 2019
Fox 32

City considers landmarking old Cook County Hospital
Friday, March 01, 2019
Gazette Chicago

Judge: State constitution doesn't force Cook County to spend $250M more on roads, transport projects
Thursday, February 28, 2019
Cook County Rrecord

City Club of Chicago: Cook County Housing Authority Executive Director Richard Monocchio
Thursday, February 28, 2019
WGN Chicago

Illinois hospitals seek reform of Medicaid managed care system
Wednesday, February 27, 2019
Effingham Daily News

Cook County Juvenile Court Clinic’s Annual Report
Wednesday, February 27, 2019
Special to

Glenview open house a 'one stop service' for new, existing residents to learn about town offerings
Wednesday, February 27, 2019
Glenview Announcements

all news items

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