Suffredin- For a Better Cook County  
 

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.

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



Preckwinkle can't make chief judge lay off 155 for now, judge rules

Tuesday, December 05, 2017
Chicago Tribune
by Hal Dardick

A judge ruled Tuesday that the Cook County Board can’t make Chief Circuit Judge Timothy Evans lay off employees, averting for now more than 155 job cuts that were supposed to begin Friday.

Lake County Circuit Judge Mitchell L. Hoffman issued a temporary restraining order after a two-hour break in the case that gave negotiators for Evans and County Board President Toni Preckwinkle a chance to hammer out a last-minute budget compromise. They didn’t come to an agreement.

Evans sued Preckwinkle last week, contending the county doesn’t have the authority to tell him who to lay off. Hoffman agreed on Tuesday, telling lawyers in court that the county decides how much money is provided to the courts, “and the chief judge decides what to do with those funds.”

The county’s $5.2 billion budget included about $200 million in last-minute cuts that hit Evans’ office hard. Although the office accounts for 5.6 percent of the county’s 2018 operating budget, it was hit with nearly half the overall layoffs approved by the County Board, Evans stated in his lawsuit.

Evans said layoffs of probation, social service and Juvenile Temporary Detention Center employees would harm his ability to ensure public safety. He also said the budget called for eliminating positions the chief judge doesn’t have the authority to cut under union employee contracts.

“It is critical that the public safety operations of the court system receive adequate funding,” said a spokeswoman for Attorney General Lisa Madigan, who filed the case on behalf of Evans. “This order will accomplish that.”

Preckwinkle, however, had contended she was trying to create a better balance of supervisors to employees.

Evans also wants the judge to order the county to spend tens of millions of dollars more on his office during the current fiscal year that began Friday. Hoffman, though, said he wasn’t prepared to rule on that aspect of the case yet. He set a Wednesday date to determine the next steps in the case.

Assistant Attorney General Sunil Bhave said that the County Board has the obligation to provide an amount of money that’s “reasonable and necessary” for court operations.

“The county approved an appropriation that it determined adequately supported the Office of the Chief Judge, and the county does not have the resources to appropriate additional funds,” Preckwinkle spokesman Frank Shuftan said.

Shuftan also said the chief judge has the right to come before the County Board to ask for changes to his budget during the year, provided he does not spend more money than the board gave him.

Before county commissioners approved the budget last month, Evans proposed having workers take weeks of unpaid furlough days off work instead of layoffs. Preckwinkle rejected that, saying it was unworkable because unions had not signed off.

Hoffman, however, blocked Preckwinkle from “interfering with the authority” of Evans to achieve cost reductions through “furlough days ... and other payroll cost reductions.”

hdardick@chicagotribune.com

Twitter @ReporterHal

RELATED

Budget ax falling — but not on Cook County Chief Judge Timothy Evans' daughters »

Foxx's office cites conflict, causing delay in chief judge's lawsuit to block Cook County layoffs »

Cook County commissioners get behind Preckwinkle's budget cuts »



Recent Headlines

EDITORIAL: Foxx should steer clear of donations from property tax lawyers
Tuesday, January 16, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Restoration on Cook County Hospital could begin this summer
Tuesday, January 16, 2018
Curbed Chicago

26 inmates charged with violence toward guards at Cook County Jail
Saturday, January 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Cook County assessor not cooperating with investigation, IG complains
Saturday, January 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

WASHINGTON: County repeal of soda tax was a mortal mistake
Friday, January 12, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

SNEED EXCLUSIVE: Developer plans to make old county hospital a community anchor
Friday, January 12, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Western Springs Board reconsiders opting out of county minimum wage law
Friday, January 12, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Why more Chicago hospitals are getting into the housing business
Thursday, January 11, 2018
Crain's Chicago Business

Chicago hospitals help lower health care bills by housing the homeless
Thursday, January 11, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Dorothy Brown runs out of excuses on e-filing
Wednesday, January 10, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Ethics board fines Cook County assessor $41,000 over political donations from lawyers
Wednesday, January 10, 2018
Chicago Tribune

County wants seniors to confirm they’re still seniors
Wednesday, January 10, 2018
Evanston Now

Cook County Circuit Court Clerk Dorothy Brown ordered to improve public access to electronic records
Tuesday, January 09, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Foxx focuses on ‘bigger picture’ in first year as state’s attorney
Tuesday, January 09, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

As disparity in water rates persists, Cook County Board searches for answers
Tuesday, January 09, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Kim Foxx Concerned With ‘Justice, Not Convictions’
Monday, January 08, 2018
CBS Chicago

Foxx on hiring of outside lawyers by top aide: 'We're going to look at it from soups to nuts'
Monday, January 08, 2018
Chicago Fox 32

Interim chief supervision, probation officer named
Friday, January 05, 2018
Chicago Daily Law Bulletin

Roseland Community Hospital lays off 7 percent of staff, cuts pay
Friday, January 05, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Lake County spent $4.9 million on uncompleted e-filing system, records show
Thursday, January 04, 2018
Chicago Tribune

all news items

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