March , 2019

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County Board President Preckwinkle’s remarks on Resolution 15-2421

“The resolution being introduced to the Cook County Board of Commissioners on Wednesday by Commissioner Tim Schneider is ill-conceived and irresponsible.

“Under the past five years of my administration, we’ve overwhelmingly passed five budgets, solved for over $1.4 billion in deficits and cut over $465 million in expenditures while holding the line on property taxes and returning $1.5 billion to taxpayers by rolling back the sales tax.

“Because of pending debt service and pension payments and collective bargaining agreements, 2016 stands to be our most challenging budget to date.

“Since we completed our last budget, my team has been hard at work identifying savings, increasing tax compliance, and delaying hiring in order to respond to the challenges ahead. At the beginning of January, I sent a letter to all County agencies and elected officials, including our Commissioners, asking for help identifying cost savings measures and management efficiencies. While we received a number of useful ideas to streamline efforts, we have not heard anything from Commissioner Schneider.

“Let me be clear: any change to our property tax levy will only be considered as a last resort and we will continue to do everything in our power to avoid raising taxes. This has been my position all along and I’ve been very consistent in my communication with the members of the Board and the public on that account.

“But by pre-emptively ruling out any changes to our property tax levy before we determine how to meet all of our financial obligations, Commissioner Schneider is suggesting that the Board tie its own hands when it comes to solving our fiscal challenges.

“This is exactly the type of political stunt that bond rating agencies have raised concern over in recent years. If passed, this resolution could have a negative impact on how the County is viewed by rating agencies and bond markets, making it more expensive to borrow money and jeopardizing the long-term financial stability we have worked so hard over the past five years to create.

“Under the budget process I enacted when I was first elected as President of the County five years ago, the County issues a preliminary budget forecast each June. As we work towards that preliminary forecast, I will continue to partner with the members of the Board, as well as the public, to collaboratively identify for solutions to the fiscal challenges ahead.”

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Welcome to CopyLine Magazine! The first issue of CopyLine Magazine was published in November, 1990, by Editor & Publisher Juanita Bratcher. CopyLine’s main focus is on the political arena – to inform our readers and analyze many of the pressing issues of the day - controversial or otherwise. Our objectives are clear – to keep you abreast of political happenings and maneuvering in the political arena, by reporting and providing provocative commentaries on various issues. For more about CopyLine Magazine, CopyLine Blog, and CopyLine Television/Video, please visit juanitabratcher.com, copylinemagazine.com, and oneononetelevision.com. Bratcher has been a News/Reporter, Author, Publisher, and Journalist for 33 years. She is the author of six books, including “Harold: The Making of a Big City Mayor” (Harold Washington), Chicago’s first African-American mayor; and “Beyond the Boardroom: Empowering a New Generation of Leaders,” about John Herman Stroger, Jr., the first African-American elected President of the Cook County Board. Bratcher is also a Poet/Songwriter, with 17 records – produced by HillTop Records of Hollywood, California. Juanita Bratcher Publisher

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