Will Todd Stroger have his budget passed in time?

One full week before the budget is due at Cook County, and one full week before elections. My predictions is Daley will win Mayor, Dorothy Brown is an opponent who does not have a chance, neither does Dock Walls. Dock Walls is the most grounded intelligent one, but no money. Dorothy Brown is arrogant, rude, loud, obnoxious, crass, and ill mannered enough to turn enough people off no matter what her credentials are. So this will not be a surprise. One surprise will be if Cook County has a budget passed by the 27th of February. This is going to be a long week for Todd Stroger and the Cook County Board. I wonder how crazy things will get? Will Todd be sending flowers to more than one Commissioner? One thing for sure is that the fur will be flying.

Alderman's races where we already know the results, in ten wards:
13th Ward - Candidates
Frank Olivo (incumbent)
Alderman Olivo is one of six seven eight nine ten aldermen who will run unopposed (1st Ward Alderman Manny Flores, 14th Ward Alderman Ed Burke, 27th Ward Alderman Walter Burnett, 29th Ward Alderman Isaac Carothers, 33rd Ward Alderman Richard Mell, 38th Ward Alderman Tom Allen, 40th Ward Alderman Patrick O'Connor, 44th Ward Alderman Tom Tunney, and 48th Ward Alderman Mary Ann Smith are the others.

And Chicago Suntimes reporter gets arrested while attending a protest at Cook County a.k.a. Stroger Hospital this week by fellow reporter Carol Marin:
Sun-Times reporter Steve Patterson had just been arrested, and I raced over there.
Patterson is a fine, tough reporter but hardly a rude kind of guy. I couldn't imagine why he'd be handcuffed and detained, but he was.
Patterson was covering a demonstration of homeless people who wanted to have a word with the new head of the hospital, Dr. Robert Simon, promoted last month by Stroger.
About two dozen homeless were protesting not only Stroger's massive budget cuts to medical services, but also the discovery of a 12-year-old interview Simon gave to the Chicago Reader in August 1995.
At the time, Simon was chairman of the Department of Emergency Medicine. In the Reader article, Simon is quoted as saying:
''I did not come here to help the bum on the street -- the alcoholic or drug addict . . . I didn't come here for 'the homeless' . . . I'm not a liberal. Die-hard liberals talk about 'the homeless.' If they actually saw what they're defending I don't think they'd be so die-hard. Most of the homeless really don't care about themselves or are psychiatrically impaired. . . . They could do things for themselves, but they won't. So who the hell cares about them?'

In operating independently of the Sheriff's Department, the security force at the hospital gets away with hiring the equivalent of bouncers -- many of them patronage workers with no law enforcement experience. The sooner the plug can be pulled on what looks like cronyism for goons, the better. Other institutions in the city and county have outsourced their security; Stroger Hospital should come to terms with this pattern of misconduct and do the same. A county-appointed commission is expected to report on the problem, but after Thursday's ugly display, what's there to report? As County Board member Robert Maldonado said, these cops are "out of control."

The budget must pass by Feb. 28 according to state law or the county can't pay bills. But the board doesn't have a deal in place yet, after board President Todd Stroger threatened Friday to veto a $73 million budget overhaul proposed by 12 commissioners.

Excerpt from Today's Chicago Tribune:

Cook County's health bureau could lose an enormous amount of money from Medicaid--its single largest revenue source--if it closes 14 of its 26 medical clinics, the governor's health-care adviser warned Friday.
That's because of fundamental changes now being made to the Illinois Medicaid program, which is adopting a form of managed care.
More than 819,000 Medicaid members in Cook County.
If the county closes clinics and reduces the ranks of doctors, there will be fewer opportunities to sign up Medicaid members for primary care case management, said Anne Marie Murphy, a senior health care adviser to the governor. Patients who had used Cook facilities could end up finding medical homes elsewhere, and Medicaid money would follow them.
The financial losses could be devastating, Murphy said. This year, Medicaid revenues at the county's health bureau are expected to reach about $300 million, or about 78 percent of all funding for patient care.
The state reached out to county health bureau officials last year to make sure they were aware of the upcoming Medicaid changes and prepared to adapt.
"We realized it could severely affect their budgets" if Medicaid patients didn't sign up with the county health system, Murphy said. So "it came as a bit of a surprise to find they were now going to close these clinics."
That, too, could be a problem, because the new Medicaid rules require that patients have "timely access" to services, Murphy said.
Asked if there was room for compromise with commissioners on the number of clinics, Stroger said, "We've come up with the right number." Stroger said he would veto the commissioners' budget amendment Some $200 million in Medicaid bills remain unpaid because the county didn't list the procedure being billed or listed the wrong procedure, the letter noted.


  1. Special Prosecutor Biloxi said...
    Will Urkel have his budget passed in time? The real question is when the city of the Chicago is going to give the Toddster the golden boot?
    Third Generation Chicago Native said...
    And Chicago journalist covering stories (Steve Patterson-Suntimes) getting handcuffed and taken away.....yes we are officially out of control in the city
    GEEZERPOWER said...
    Hi 3G

    Looks like you have a 2nd generation president holding the reigns of a runaway buggy?

    Nice to see that he is wearing an honered ribbon in his picture.
    Good luck in the big city...(:

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