News Updates


County Board unanimously approves balanced 2018 Budget

The bipartisan vote approving the $5.2 billion budget follows a month of extensive departmental hearings and public meetings aimed at closing a more than $200 million revenue gap that resulted from repealing the Sweetened Beverage Tax. 

Among the steps taken to close the gap were:

  • More than 1,000 vacancy eliminations for offices and departments across the County. 
  • Layoffs totaling 321, resulting from initiatives such as consolidating services, right-sizing management-to-staff ratios, merging HR functions, closing a branch court and Juvenile Temporary Detention Center (JTDC) housing unit, and additional divisions at the County Jail as a result of population reductions at both the Jail and JTDC. 
  • Eliminating equipment purchases from general fund revenues, holding the line on salary increases, and approved furlough days in the Office of the Clerk of the Circuit Court.

My office regularly returns a portion of our budget, and we have pledged to do so in 2018.

Repeal of Sweetened Beverage Tax

I voted against the Sweetened Beverag Tax when it was first passed back in November of 2016, and I voted to repeal the tax when the board revisited it in October of 2017. People Spoke Up. Your voices were heard! My office received more than 1,000 letters and emails and hundreds of phone calls. Others who had supported the tax were urged to reconsider by their constituents, and it worked. As of December 1, 2017, this tax is history. 

State Budget Impact

  • The State of Illinois passed a budget in July 2017 after two years. Although it is expected that the state will finally begin to catch up, as of July it owed the county $186 million in revenue for Medicaid fees, reimbursements for grants, and adult probation related services.    
  • The state began charging a 2% administrative fee for collecting the county’s Home Rule Sales Tax, resulting in a negative impact to the county of $15 million annually.