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Published by: Chicagoist on Oct 19, 2012
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R S I  DN’   S  G UI  D
Volume 1
Resident’s Guide
Cook County government provides vital services for 5.2 million residents of northeastern Illinois,including the city of Chicago and surrounding suburbs. Public services provided include health care,public safety, property and taxation; economic development, and finance and administration.The 2013 preliminary budget projected a $267.5 million shortfall caused by continued revenuedeclines including the impact of the commitment to reduce sales tax rates, and expenditureincreases such as the impact of negotiated wage increases.To close the preliminary budget gap, the budget recommendation supports important structuralchanges to the public safety and corporate funds, and maintains the Health System subsidy whilepreparing Cook County Health and Hospital System (CCHHS) for early implementation of the Affordable Care Act. This budget supports a shift in the service model from emergency care to amore holistic patient care model for CCHHS. One-time budget solutions are limited to less thanone percent of the budget. The net impact of the structural actions taken during the 2013 budgethave improved the fiscal outlook for years 2013-2016 by a collective $1.04 billion from the forecastincluded in the final 2012 appropriation bill.In addition to targeting expenditure reductions in the operating budget, the 2013 budgetrecommendation does not include new capital equipment projects. Remaining 2009 and 2010bond proceeds will be reprioritized as the County borrowed heavily during those years and we areseeking to minimize the cost of borrowing in future years. Additionally, the Capital ImprovementPlan is presented utilizing existing capital bond proceeds. These initiatives are used to limit capitalborrowing and maximize the return on investment for taxpayer funds.The entire 2013 budget was developed with an eye towards long-term fiscal planning with regardsto both capital and operating funds. The County is seeking to preserve the fund balance that wasrebuilt during 2011. Furthermore, in order to protect these crucial reserves, the County is proposingadoption of a Fund Balance policy in concert with a broad range of fiscal policies contained in Appendix E in conjunction with the 2013 budget. Similarly, in addition to reducing sales taxes, theCounty is proposing a set of Revenue policies; in addition to holding the line on new borrowingand reprioritizing existing taxpayer capital funds, the County is proposing a comprehensive debtmanagement policy.The 2013 Executive Budget Recommendation is the result of a collaborative effort. The President’sOffice worked with the Board of Commissioners, County elected officials, employees, their unionrepresentatives, and residents to find innovative solutions and present a balanced budget whichinvests in projects and programs that will improve services while decreasing costs in the long run.
Resident's Guide - 1
Executive Budget Recommendation
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cook county Budget overvIew
Cook County’s total FY 2013 budget is $3.32 billion, down from $3.35 billion in FY 2012. In FY 2013,the County’s operating budget will decrease slightly, while the General Fund will see a modestincrease, driven primarily by increases to the Health Fund as part of Medicaid expansion, along witha full year impact of negotiated wage increases for expired collective bargaining agreements settledduring 2012. Meanwhile, total budgeted full time equivalent (FTE) positions will decrease by 462 orby two percent.Cook County receives operating revenues from several sources, primarily through Property Taxes,Fees, Home Rule Taxes, Grants, and dedicated Special Purpose Funds revenues. Each of theserevenue sources is detailed in the following Revenue Estimates section. Revenues are allocatedto the County’s five service areas of general government, health care, public safety, property andtaxation, and economic development. Additionally, the government has general operating expensessuch as employee benefits and building utility payments, which are categorized as fixed charges.Finally, bond and interest payments and the County’s pension liability are also major operatingexpenditures. The charts below detail the proposed FY 2013 revenue sources and the proposedallocation of the revenues.
FY 2011 ActualFY 2012 AppropriationFY 2013 (Est.)2013/2012 Change
Corporate Fund136,191,351163,018,988145,178,232-10.9% FTE1,481.91,569.81,532.6-2.4% Public Safety Fund1,194,831,9901,178,878,1291,186,335,0480.6% FTE14,023.213,287.313,326.70.3% Health Fund864,388,360894,133,047965,885,4798.0% FTE6,638.17,057.86,667.1-5.5% Special Purpose Fund 538,815,406570,440,203517,286,442-9.3% FTE1,117.11,079.91,046.9-3.1% Grants 185,029,746148,928,355134,433,126-9.7% FTE724.6664.6624.0-6.1% Total
188,739,806391,689,580372,020,827-5.0% Total Budget3,107,996,659$ 3,347,088,302$ 3,321,139,154$ -0.8% Budget and FTE Count by Fund
Resident's Guide - 2
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Volume 1
33.2%Grants4.6%Home Rule Taxes26.8%IntergovernmentalRevenues4.6%Other Revenues1.2%Personal PropertyReplacement Tax (PPRT)1.4%Property Taxes (ExcludingUncollected Taxes)24.2%
Special Purpose Fund
Revenue/Fund Balance4.0%
Where the Dollars Come From
General Government,Finance & Adminis
 6.2%Health38.4%Public Safety37.6%Property & Taxa
on3.4%Economic Development1.1%Fixed Charges13.3%
Where the Dollars Go
General Government,Finance & Administra
on5.4%Health33.5%Public Safety32.7%Property & Taxa
on3.0%Economic Development1.0%Fixed Charges11.5%Bond and Interest6.4%Annuity and Bene
Where the Dollars Go
FIscal year 2013 general Fund Budget
 In the preliminary budget, the County projected the general fund shortfall between expectedrevenues and expenses to be $267.5 million for 2013. Anticipated declines of $251.4 million in 2013revenues were the primary driver of the projected shortfall. Revenues were projected to declineprimarily at the Cook County Health and Hospital System and due to the planned 0.25% roll back of the sales tax, which would lead to an $86 million reduction in taxes. Expenditures were projected toincrease by $16.1 million, less than 1% from the prior year, primarily as a result of contractual wageincreases.
Resident's Guide - 3

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