“Budget day is like Groundhog Day in Cook County,” Commissioner Mike Quigley says. “Every day is the same day over and over again.”
No kidding. I’m not sure how guys like Quigley and Claypool can take it; I mean, if we’re frustrated, imagine what it must be like in the trenches.
Just for starters, copies of the budget weren’t available because some of the figures were inaccurate. Again. Printer’s error. Supposedly.
“Every year, President Stroger issues his budget, and it’s a mess,” Claypool said. “It’s full of errors. It’s incomplete.”
And it’s a budget that calls for borrowing to pay the bills. Hey, the Sun-Times asks, what happened to all that new sales tax money? “What we were going to do with the surplus was to put it in a reserve fund, which is sound financial practice and that’s what rating agencies really want to see, that we have a rainy day fund.”
Hasn’t it been raining in Cook County for years?
Even the good news doesn’t turn out to be ture.
“Right now, I don’t believe we have the votes,” said John Daley, chairman of the finance committee. (And by “we,” he meant “we.”)
Not true, according to the Daily Herald.
“[W]hile Stroger allies have said repeatedly they don’t have the votes to pass the borrowing, a survey of commissioners Tuesday by the Daily Herald reveals that, in fact, they likely have the bare minimum of nine votes to pass it, but want other commissioners to join them so they are not forced to take the heat alone,” Rob Olmstead reports.
Memo to John Daley: Pull your pal Todd aside and teach him a lesson from your brother. The best way to get cooperation from your legislative body is to co-opt them first, then bully them.
Adopt the Quigley/Claypool reforms. It will only make you stronger.