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Commissioner Morrison to file new pop tax repeal plan, says he has the votes to override veto

Friday, Oct 6, 2017

* Republican Cook County Commissioner Sean Morrison says he’s filing a new ordinance to repeal the county’s pop tax and has more than enough votes to override a veto from Board President Toni Preckwinkle if they all stand firm.

Morrison’s original ordinance would’ve repealed the tax immediately, which would be next Tuesday. The new ordinance would allow the tax to expire at the end of the fiscal year, which would be December 1st.

Commissioner Morrison says he has 12 co-sponsors on the measure, with perhaps more soon because some commissioners couldn’t sign on before he filed it. It takes 11 votes to override a veto. Commissioner John Daley is a co-sponsor, Morrison said. Daley said yesterday that he had switched positions and now wanted to repeal the tax.

So, that could be the end of the much-hated pop tax.

…Adding… The Tribune has the names of the other flippers

Jesus “Chuy” Garcia, a Preckwinkle’s floor leader; Stanley Moore; and Dennis Deer. All are Chicago Democrats. Garcia and Moore voted for the tax last November. Deer was recently appointed and this will be his first major vote. All are expected to seek reelection next year.

…Adding… From a Chris Kennedy fundraising e-mail yesterday that I didn’t see…

Food can be medicine and it can also be poison. In a food swamp, almost all the food is poison. Discouraging unhealthy foods is important but so is an investment in healthcare and access to healthy foods.

That’s not what we’re doing with this soda tax in Cook County. What we’re actually doing is hurting working families in Illinois.

It’s time to stop with these regressive taxes that hurt our working families. Chip in $5 to our campaign so that we can make sure that we reform to our tax code to help our working families, not hurt them.

Cook Country thinks it can clean up its finances with a patchwork of regressive fixes like a soda tax. Illinois needs a wholesale reform of our tax code, starting with ending our reliance on a broken property tax system to fund local schools.

Saying we’re helping kids when we’re simply imposing another tax on their families, is playing pretend.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - 10th ward - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 10:22 am:

    Finally! Toni has some real work to finally do. Cut your budget and start with your head count

  2. - Curl of the Burl - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 10:34 am:

    If he for sure does this then Commissioner Morrison should run against President Preckwinkle. He may be a Republican but he can pass petition as the guy who ended (or attempted to end) the pop tax.

  3. - Ron Burgundy - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 10:35 am:

    Good. Perhaps a Berrios Relative Payroll Tax to make up the lost revenue?

  4. - 47th Ward - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 10:36 am:

    10th, the problem is that much of the spending isn’t “hers.” It belongs to the Sheriff, State’s Attorney, the Chief Judge, etc. she doesn’t manage those independent offices, she funds them. If they won’t cut their budgets, there isn’t much she can do to force them.

    Cook County Board President is the worst big job in Illinois politics. You get blamed for tax hikes and others get credit for performance.

  5. - Ravenswood Right Winger - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 10:44 am:

    Morrison should run for Board President and make the soda tax the centerpiece of his campaign. IIRC you can run for Board President and Board Member simultaneously so he would have nothing to lose. Go get em Sean!

  6. - Fax Machine - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 10:49 am:

    This is the best of both worlds for the beverage industry - it means the pop tax comes to an end, but it ensures it stays in effect through the 2018 primary & general elections so constituents stay angry enough to vote out the pro-tax politicians

  7. - Fax Machine - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 10:52 am:

    Also - who is running for the GOP nomination for County Board President (besides Frank Coconate)?

  8. - City Zen - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 10:57 am:

    “…at the end of the fiscal year, which would be December 1st.”

    What’s with all the different fiscal calendars across governments? And why Dec 1, which isn’t even a quarter end?

    I never got why the 2011 tax hike expired in a calendar year yet 6 months before the end of a fiscal year.

  9. - Fax Machine - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 11:02 am:

    Oops - I misread it - I thought it would stay through 12/1/2018 but it’s actually 12/1/2017

  10. - DuPage Bard - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 11:39 am:

    This is going to be a real test for Preckwinkle and her crew to see how they can navigate a deal.

  11. - Robert Lincoln - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 11:43 am:

    47th you are way off. She can and does cut the budgets of Sheriffs, State’s Attorneys, public defenders etc. She just can’t tell them what and where and who to cut. But she wishes she could.

    If it such a terrible job she should simply quit. Todd Stroger did the job better and that is saying something. At least he was straightforward and honest.

  12. - Amalia - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 11:44 am:

    @City Zen, great comment. fiscal year differences are so confusing. it makes much sense to not have them coincide with the calendar year, but it is all over the place. best thing to do….consolidate governments.

  13. - 47th Ward - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 11:50 am:

    ===Todd Stroger did the job better and that is saying something.===

    Starting early today, eh Bob?

  14. - Lucky Pierre - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 11:57 am:

    From the Tribune:

    “Here, commissioners, is the question you and your staffs should press on behalf of your constituents: Cook County’s total annual employee compensation, divided by the number of full-time-equivalent employees, has grown by what percentage since Preckwinkle took office in December 2010? Be sure to count the newly negotiated contract raises her administration hasn’t yet disclosed — not just for the 2018 election year, but for the full life of those contracts.

    Oh, and if you’re wondering whether Cook County’s rising compensation costs are out of whack: During Preckwinkle’s nearly seven years in office, the U.S. consumer price index has climbed by a modest 12 percent. Remember, too, that a lot of taxpayers haven’t had anything near a 12-percent cumulative rise in income over these seven years.

    Commissioners, as you work toward a budget for the fiscal year that starts Dec. 1, maybe Preckwinkle can convince you — and maybe you can convince the rest of us — that county labor contracts aren’t giveaways to the politically helpful unions that hold so much sway at the County Building.

    The unions, of course, see higher taxation as the solution to every problem. Preckwinkle, who won office by opposing her predecessor’s ruinous sales tax hike, hasn’t only reinstated that tax hike. She’s fallen into the Cook County tradition of taxing whatever she can. We long speculated that county government eventually will tax cats’ tails and deep breaths.

    That’s the thinking that gave Cook County this soda tax. Repeal it — and get to the bottom of county compensation costs.”

    The situation in Cook County is exactly the same as Springfield. Cook County Democrats raising taxes on working people but refusing to reform government because they are too closely tied to powerful government unions.

  15. - West Side the Best Side - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 12:02 pm:

    Toni got Kim Foxx in as State’s Attorney so she can tell that office what to do, but the other offices, except for Public Defender, are independently elected offices. She can tell them how much money they’ll get, but not how to spend it. And, 47th, the Toddler is looking better in retrospect all the time.

  16. - Ron - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 12:09 pm:

    “She can tell them how much money”

    That’s all that matters. You get a 10% reduction, deal with it.

  17. - Ron - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 12:11 pm:

    Stroger is better than Prekwinkle at this point. I do hope a viable moderate republican runs. He/She has my vote.

  18. - Ron - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 12:14 pm:

    Great post Lucky

  19. - anon2 - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 12:38 pm:

    Since the tax will be gone by Dec. 1, 2017, there will unlikely be a anti-pop tax wave in Nov. 2018 to bring in a Republican president. To the best of my memory, the last GOP county board chairman was named Ogilvie.

  20. - Mike Cirrincione - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 3:56 pm:

    One HUGE way to cut the county budget would be to legalize Marijuana, tax it, while simultaneously closing the largest Mental Health Facility in the county located at 26th and California.

  21. - Trapped in the 'burbs - Friday, Oct 6, 17 @ 4:05 pm:

    We need a democrat to run against her in the primary.

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