Cook County Finance Committee and Special Board Meetings
November 17, 2022
The Finance Committee considered and passed 26 amendments to the proposed 2023 Cook County Budget of $8.75 Billion. The Board then immediately met and voted to approve the budget, as amended. These amendments increased the total amount by about $73 Million, resulting in the final $8.8 Billion 2023 budget. (Item 22-5700) The final budget continued to have no increases in taxes or fees or layoffs, while continuing the supplemental payments to the Pension Fund.
Some of the key amendments which utilized these funds or transferred funds from other line items included
Additionally, the Budget Resolution was amended to allow Cook County Health to use up to 30% of any excess Net Patient Services revenue over budget in 2023 to address increased costs related to direct patient care. (Amend. #26)
The additional dollars for these amendments came primarily from
During the public comment period, several speakers spoke against use of money for leasing the helicopter and adding 2 positions to the 911 call center, and advocated for the need for more funding to create a non-police response to mental health crises. The Civic Federation spoke in favor of the proposed budget, nevertheless noting concerns, including
League Observer: Priscilla Mims
Cook County Board of Commissioners Committee Meetings
November 16, 2022
Finance Committee – 9:30 am
Environment & Sustainability Committee – 10 am
(Agenda Item 22-6140) Com. Degnan moved, Miller seconded this ordinance amendment. The Environmental Commission has served as advisors to Board on environmental matters for the past 4 years. The ordinance was passed in 2019; this extends the sunset date of this Environmental Commission by 4 yr. Com Degnan explained the commission selected 3 goals for its first 4 years:
Technology & Innovation Committee – 11:30 am
(Agenda Item 22-5023) Motion made by Comm. Sean Morrison, seconded by Comm. Degnan to receive and file. The item was deferred last month because the Board of Review (BOR) was absent when they were expected to give updates on the process and expected date for being off the main frame and being fully integrated with the systems of the Assessor and related departments.
Charles O’Shields, Chief Deputy Commissioner from BOR, stated no timeline given applied to the BOR, no timeline was developed for BOR to exit off mainframe. He stated their tech improvements were demonstrated by their work in 2021.
Chief Information Officer (CIO) Tom Lynch and Derrick Thomas, Deputy CIO, responded to questions from commissioners. Their statements indicated the following:
Committee Chairperson Kevin Morrison asked Mr. O’Shields to attend the Jan. meeting of the Technology Committee and be prepared to provide an update of the Board of Review’s strategic plan; it should include a report on RFP progress and timeline. “OK” was Mr. Shield’s answer.
State’s Attorney’s Office representative Matt Steiner presented the update on their office. An apology, explanation of absence, and assurance that this would not recur were given. Process for getting off main frame began with Juvenile System which is on the mainframe; adult system is not. It began with a discovery process which involved integration of cases, data mapping, identifying risk points and developing 2-point solutions to address those. He stated they are on track to be off mainframe by August, 2023.
Motion to Receive and File reports was approved.
Carolyn Cosentino, LWVCC Observer
Cook County Board Of Commissioners Meeting
October 20, 2022; 10:30 A.M.
The Board was asked to extend and to increase the recruiting and HR consultation services with Deloitte. The original contract was 11-8-2021 to 11-7-2022. The proposed extension would run 11-8-2022 to 11-7-2023. (Agenda Item 22-5170)
Additional Board Business Was Conducted With Little Discussion
The Board passed resolutions on the following items:
Observer: Georgia Gebhardt
Cook County Board Committee Meetings
October 19, 2022
Note: All items approved in Committee are expected to be passed at the Oct. 20 meeting by the Full Board concurring with the recommendations of the Committees.
Business & Economic Development Committee
Technology & Innovation Committee
Emergency Management & Regional Security Committee
Observer: Priscilla Mims
Cook County Board - Criminal Justice Committee Meeting
September 21, 2022
Big controversy over Cook County Court use of SCRAM devices
Lots of contradictory points were made by justice groups, public defender office, and some Commissioners vs. the Chief Judge’s Office regarding the Court use of SCRAM ankle bracelets for DUI and other alcohol-related defendants. These devices measure perspiration to determine if the offender has consumed alcohol. The wearer is to avoid all alcohol consumption.
Points made by Jim Anderson, CFO of Chief Judge Office:
1. condition of probation
2. in bond court as a condition of release
3. plea deal to avoid the charge of DUI being on the defendant’s record
Points made by justice groups and some commissioners:
Cook County Board - Pension Committee
September 21, 2022
A steady depletion of assets in Retirement Funds for CC and FPD despite a great investment year (2021)
Observer: Karin Hribar
COOK COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONER’S MEETING
September 22, 2022
During new business, commissioners were asked to suspend the rules to take up fourteen  new items. The rules call for new items to be deferred to committee for consideration if the item or items have been introduced less than 48 hours before the Board meeting. Commissioner Gainer supported by Commission Sean Morrison noted that several of these items were not emergencies and were for expenditures totaling around $40 million dollars. Commissioner Gainer noted that it seems to be circumventing the Board’s procedure for referring new items to committees. Commissioner Morrison agreed and said that, in particular, items with an RFP process should go to committee. Notwithstanding these objections, nine of the resolutions were passed and five were referred to committee.
No action was taken on the ordinance amendment that would limit public testimony to 60 min. #22-4697 or #22-3155 proposed changes to ethics rules to align them with the new IL law.
In addition, the Board approved the following items approved in prior Committee Meetings:
Finance Committee meeting of Sept. 21:
Legislation & Intergovernmental Relations Committee meeting of Sept. 21:
Public Speakers included:
Observer: Diane Edmundson
Individual authors are credited at the end of each post.