Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Cook County Board Kills Stroger Tax Cut Veto, 12-5

Finally, some good news for people who live, work or shop in Cook County: That 1/2 cent sales tax that Cook Co. President Todd Stroger loved so much was finally repealed today. The vote was historic, too. As Cook Co. Commissioner Tony Peraica wrote on his Twitter page today, "What a day! County Board made history today, and, for the first time in 175 years (apparently) overrode county President. The County Board proved today that it is not the City Council or the State Legislature, but that it is truly a legislative body. Congrats! " Today's veto override required 11 votes, but it was higher before the Illinois Legislature change the law to lower the requirement. Chicago Breaking News Center reported this: Cook County commissioners today voted to roll back part of a sales tax increase despite an impassioned plea from Board President Todd Stroger that "some people will die needlessly" if health care for the poor is cut as a result. The County Board voted 12-5 to override Stroger's veto of a measure that would cut the county portion of the sales tax from 1.75 percent to 1.25 percent on July 1. The overall sales tax rate in Chicago would drop to 9.75 percent. See the list of how they voted below. The Chicago Sun-Times has this report:

After Stroger successfully vetoed three previous measures to lower the sales tax —and commissioners were unable to muster the 14 votes for an override — suburban state lawmakers stepped in to push for a change in Illinois law that lowered Cook County’s override threshold. In November, Gov. Pat Quinn signed into law a measure lowering the threshold to 11 votes out of 17, or a three-fifths majority, in line with the voting rules of local governing bodies and even [the U.S.] Congress.

All of the five Republicans on the board voted for the override, and the majority of those voting to override Stroger's veto are Democrats. All five commissioners who voted to support Stroger's veto are Democrats. Peraica commented on this as he tweeted live from the meeting: "Com [Larry] Suffredin is arguing the Laffer Curve Theory that says: the higher the taxes, the lower the revenue. Interesting for a democrat." Yes, very interesting, considering that most Democrats will - pardon the expression - laugh in your face when you try to explain the Laffer Curve to them. (Perhaps that's why it's called "Laffer" Curve.) Perhaps it's really not so surprising when you consider that there's an election soon and the smart board member know how furious Cook County voters are with high taxes. Indeed, Suffredin has been hypocritical on the issue. Another Peraica tweet from the meeting: "Com Suffredin (who was the 9th vote last year to raise the sales tax) is now arguing in favor of tax repeal and veto override." In other words (mine), Suffredin and other Democrats on the board don't really care about giving taxpayers relief. They care about getting elected, and that's why they voted the way they did today. HOW THEY VOTED (Republicans in Red): Voting to override and cut taxes: Earlean Collins, D-Chicago Forrest Claypool, D-Chicago John Daley, D-Chicago Bridget Gainer, D-Chicago Elizabeth Gorman, R-Orland Park * (see note below) Gregg Goslin, R-Glenview Tony Peraica, R-Riverside Edwin Reyes, D-Chicago Timothy Schneider, R-Streamwood Peter Silvestri, R-Elmwood Park Robert Steele, D-Chicago Larry Suffredin, D-Evanston Voting against override and preserve tax increase: William Beavers, D-Chicago Jerry Butler, D-Chicago Joseph Mario Moreno, D-Chicago Joan Murphy, D-Crestwood Deborah Sims, D-Chicago * Elizabeth Gorman is a troubling character who has not been good for the Cook County Republican Party. She has senselessly attacked Tony Peraica, the most outspoken voice for real reform that Cook County has ever known. For more about this, see Stroger Ally: Budget Fight All About Race. In a special series of reports about Gorman, Illinois Review wrote that "Liz Gorman seems anything but conservative. In fact, she has surrounded herself with such troubling characters, that it is hard to understand why any ethical politician or leader – Republican or Democrat – would knowingly hitch themselves to her political star." Read the full series on Gorman. Gorman is a political ally of RINO Jim Dodge, an Orland Park village board member who is running for Illinois State Comptroller against conservative Republican William J. Kelly. RELATED: Beavers: Budget Battle Is Because Stroger Is Black - cbs2chicago.com Suburban Chicagoland: Liz Gorman says she is being threatened in ... The Strangely Ecumenical Liz Gorman Mark Thompson for County Commissioner Leave a Comment Conservative T-Shirts Follow CNB on Twitter RSS Feed