Friday, February 23, 2007

Cook County budget...

I just saved three links about the budget news at Cook County. I'll post a few excerpts about this story from the Sun-Times though and I'll post the links. From one story it appears the debate over the budget went right into the late night.

Isn't great to see our dedicated public officials work late to get the people business finished?

Check out the proposal that lost versus the one that was actually agreed too...

Commissioner Forrest Claypool, who led the charge for Stroger to make deeper cuts, pushed a plan that would have cut 400 more high-paying management jobs while restoring more police, prosecutors and nurses. Claypool could only get seven votes of support.
Now the proposal that won out...

Stroger's budget plans for the elimination of almost 1,700 jobs, including 1,251 through layoffs. Stroger also agreed to restore the Access to Care health program, Women's Justice Services and community service programs for the sheriff, along with 65 sheriff's police, 175 courtroom deputies and 25 probation officers, as well as some nurses and prosecutors.
Here's a little more about the votes...

Though a formal vote by the County Board had not been cast by 12:30 a.m., it appeared Stroger had locked up 10 of the 17 votes necessary, including winning the support of Republicans Peter Silvestri, Gregg Goslin and Liz Gorman, along with surprise support from Mike Quigley.
Here's a little more about this budget vote and the people it will affect...
Earlier, union members lobbying commissioners in a back room seemed to be weakening some of Stroger's support.

Some who had earlier supported Stroger's call for 17 percent cuts across the board by all county officials later backed Claypool's plan, then switched back to Stroger's side.

Though the budget cuts Stroger is proposing will mean layoffs and the end of some county programs, taxes will not be raised to balance this budget.

It was unclear just how many doctors and nurses would be cut from county hospitals, but Stroger still wants to close 13 of the county's 26 health clinics.

Thursday's budget meeting drew hundreds of county workers, concerned about layoffs. Dozens stayed late into the night, awaiting word on their jobs.

The budget process dragged on because of an effort to fill a $500 million deficit. Stroger refinanced bonds to save $150 million but still had to cut $350 million.
If I find more links to this story I'll post them into Del.icio.us.

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