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.

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



Stroger vs. Preckwinkle: Hide your wallets.

Monday, November 20, 2017
Chicago Tribune
by Editorial Board

Questions we have after hearing Todd Stroger say Monday he wants to run against Toni Preckwinkle to reclaim his old job as Cook County Board president:

Is Stroger serious? Does he remember why he was ousted by Preckwinkle in the 2010 Democratic primary? He lost because of his reviled, rescinded penny-per-dollar sales tax increase.

Does Stroger recognize Preckwinkle, finishing her second term as board president, is now in a similar precarious situation with fuming taxpayers because of her own reviled, rescinded penny-per-ounce soda tax? Yet Stroger hopes to challenge her without showing a whit of remorse for having slammed residents with his own unnecessary tax increase? Really?

What the heck is it with these Cook County Democratic pols and their tax gouges? Are bad penny taxes like the proverbial bad penny and destined to return again and again, even though they are an irresponsible creation of the county’s inbred tax-and-spend culture?

Additional question in the form of a matching game: Which of the above candidates justified tax increases by stating “revenue is reform” and which one decreed “you must support revenue”? Answer: Stroger pushed for the 2008 retail sales tax increase and said “revenue is reform,” while Preckwinkle defended her 2017 soda tax as a required contribution. She also insisted her tax would help change the beverage habits of thirsty people, as if the public asked county officials for lifestyle advice.

Bonus question: Who responded to county tax overreaches with thunderous protests? Thankfully, you the public did, which was why Stroger’s penny-per-dollar sales tax increase died and why Preckwinkle’s penny-per-ounce sweetened beverage tax also went flat.

Stroger’s tax cost him his position. In 2008 he added the 1 percentage point sales tax (recall that he wanted to add 2 percentage points), but taxpayers revolted. His board cut the increase in half and Preckwinkle rescinded the rest after succeeding him. Unfortunately, Preckwinkle later reinstated Stroger's 1 percentage-point sales tax increase. Yet even that wasn’t enough money to sate Cook County’s appetite: Preckwinkle launched the soda tax, which also hit a brick wall with voters. That tax disappears Dec. 1.

With the soda tax gone, Preckwinkle belatedly grasped that the first priority in management of taxpayer money is to ensure every dollar — and penny — is spent responsibly. The soda tax would have been an easy way to close a budget gap, but it was a terrible idea. Now, Preckwinkle and County Board members appear ready to lay off workers, cut unfilled positions and make other reductions.

Stroger, whose late father, John Stroger, also served as board president, has been out of elected office since being trounced by Preckwinkle. He appears to have taken away the exact wrong message about Cook County government. Stroger says he feels vindicated his sales tax increase was later reinstated when he should be expressing regret for squeezing residents.

As Stroger made the media rounds Monday, he sounded keen to get his job back, but we heard no new ideas about how to be a good steward of the people’s money. “There’s always some natural growth,” he said on television. Unfortunately, he wasn’t referring to the accrual of political wisdom. He was talking about county spending.

Penny for our thoughts? The Democratic primary is four months away. Besides Preckwinkle and Stroger, former Chicago Ald. Bob Fioretti is planning a run. Perhaps other candidates will step forward. Let this contest focus on smart governance, not creative taxation.

Join the discussion on Twitter @Trib_Ed_Board and on Facebook.



Recent Headlines

Morning Spin: Question about legalizing marijuana could go on Cook County ballots
Wednesday, December 13, 2017
Chicago Tribune

Cook County ballot question on legalizing weed blazes ahead
Wednesday, December 13, 2017
Chicago Sun-Times

DOUBEK: All women and men ought to be treated with dignity at work
Monday, December 11, 2017
Chicago Sun-Times

'A horrific breakdown in responsibilities': Report reveals new details in Markham courthouse sex assault
Saturday, December 09, 2017
Chicago Tribune

MITCHELL: Too many at risk for losing homes for being late on taxes
Saturday, December 09, 2017
Chicago Sun-Times

How commercial properties are assessed
Wednesday, December 06, 2017
Chicago Tribune

When Preckwinkle goes too far and Evans not far enough
Wednesday, December 06, 2017
Chicago Tribune

Judge halts court layoffs temporarily
Wednesday, December 06, 2017
Chicago Daily Law Bulletin

2 Cook County sheriff’s officers among 3 hurt in Jane Addams crash
Wednesday, December 06, 2017
Chicago Sun-Times

Court rules forest preserve can't evict former Horizon Farm owners
Tuesday, December 05, 2017
Daily Southtown

Preckwinkle can't make chief judge lay off 155 for now, judge rules
Tuesday, December 05, 2017
Chicago Tribune

After winning lawsuit, fired sheriff's officer returns to work
Monday, December 04, 2017
Chicago Tribune

Sheriff Tom Dart’s personnel board halts firings, suspensions amid legal questions
Friday, December 01, 2017
Chicago Tribune

Foxx's office cites conflict, causing delay in chief judge's lawsuit to block Cook County layoffs
Friday, December 01, 2017
Chicago Tribune

2018 Unsung Heroine Call for Nominations
Friday, December 01, 2017
Special to suffredin.org

Sheriff Tom Dart’s personnel board halts firings, suspensions amid legal questions
Friday, December 01, 2017
Chicago Tribune

Evans sues county to halt court layoffs
Friday, December 01, 2017
Chicago Daily Law Bulletin

Unions lost the soda tax fight. Do they want still more layoffs?
Friday, December 01, 2017
Chicago Tribune

Who pays for illegal government secrecy? You do.
Friday, December 01, 2017
Chicago Tribune

Chief judge files action against Cook County Board
Thursday, November 30, 2017
Chicago Sun-Times

all news items

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