Cook County Board of Commissioners Meeting - May 11, 2016
Major Items Discussed:
Withdrawal of Resolution to Petition the State Legislature and Governor to Change the Office of Cook County Circuit Clerk from Elected to Appointed. The Board Room was crowded with people who had come to protest this motion. However, prior to the public comment period, Commissioner Peter Silvestri, who was the named sponsor of this resolution, announced he was withdrawing the item. He explained that this resolution was one of the outcomes of an initiative undertaken by his office to look at the roles of a number of currently elected Cook County positions. He said that the resolution was not directed at Clerk Dorothy Brown, and, in fact, specifically called upon any action by the State not to take effect until December 2020, following the end of the term that will begin after the November election. While a number of people who had signed up to speak had left by the time public comments began, those who did remain expressed support for the withdrawal, as well as support for Clerk Brown. Some in the room clearly took this resolution as an attack on the African American community. Several urged that the Clerk’s salary be increased, as she herself had requested in a recent letter to the Board. Commissioner Steele explained that the salaries for Cook County elected officials are set by State statute, so the Board cannot increase any salaries without State action.
Board approves Construction Agreement for New Central Health Center and Redevelopment Agreement for Old Cook County Hospital and Nearby Land.
Under the agreement approved with Clayco, a new 9-story ambulatory health and administrative facility will be built with a connection to Stroger Hospital for $112 million, plus additional “soft costs” for a total of $118 million. This building will replace the 1959 Fantus Clinic, the 1931 Polk Administrative Building (originally built as a nurses’ dormitory), and the 1964 Hektoen Administration Builidng. Design of the new facility will continue through the remainder of 2016, with construction proposed to begin in January of 2017 and expected completion by the third quarter of 2018. (Agenda Item #16-2503)
Resolution by Commissioner Boykin to Reduce the President’s and Commissioners’ Salaries by $10,000 for the purpose of funding public works projects and creating meaningful jobs for residents of Cook County failed for lack of a second.
Items from 9 am Finance Committee Meeting of May 11: Commissioner Boykin deferred several items regarding a proposed special use gasoline and fuel tax and proposals on how to utilize the resulting funds. (#16-2566, 16-2567, 16-2569, 16-2570, 16-2571) His motion to approve a local business preference ordinance failed for lack of a second. (#16-2614)
Observer - Priscilla Mims Length of Board Meeting: 2 hours, 45 minutes
(Consent Agenda: 20 minutes)
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