Newsletter - March 2023

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MWRD Commissioner Davis to Speak at LWVCC Annual Meeting May 9

Municipal Elections April 4

Observed: What's happening in Cook County governments

Photo by Anna Shvets

2023 LWVCC Annual Meeting

Together Again!

All League Members Invited

When: Tuesday, May 9 from 9:45am until 1pm
Where: The Auditorium Building - Roosevelt University 430 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago - Ida B. Wells Room
Cost: $35 - Continental Breakfast and Box Lunch Included
Program: MWRD Commissioner Cameron Davis
Registration for the meeting will be available soon. Delegate Information and meeting materials will be available in April.

 Featured Speaker for Annual Meeting

Metropolitan Water Reclamation District (MWRD)

Comm. Cameron Davis

Commissioner Davis is the Chair of the Board’s Public Health & Welfare and the Stormwater Management Committees. He was first elected in 2018.

He is a vice president at GEI Consultants, Inc., a consulting engineering and environmental firm. Before joining GEI, he was appointed by the Obama Administration to coordinate the work of 11 federal departments and serve as liaison to Congress on Great Lakes matters. As Senior Advisor to two U.S. Environmental Protection Agency administrators in Washington, D.C., his responsibilities included coordinating Great Lakes policy and more than $2 billion in investments to state, municipal, tribal, business and civic stakeholders for contaminated sediment cleanups, invasive species prevention, habitat restoration, runoff reduction, and related water resource matters.

Metropolitan Water Reclamation District

Photo by Nancy Bourque

  • The MWRD is the billion-dollar plus government  that plays a critical role in our health and quality of life. Originally established by the Illinois legislature as the Chicago Sanitary District in 1889 to keep the Lake Michigan drinking water clean, today’s MWRD’s mandates are guarding public health through its water treatment operations and managing stormwater.

  • The MWRD operates 7 waste water treatment plants throughout Cook County. Water from the sewers is intercepted and then treated by the MWRD before it is sent into rivers and Lake Michigan.

  • To prevent untreated water from being released into the rivers and lakes during storms, the MWRD implemented the Tunnel and Reservoir Plan (TARP) designed to divert untreated water and hold it in reservoirs until capacity at the treatment plants is available.

  • Over the past few years, as climate change has resulted in more severe rainstorms more often, the MWRD has focused on green and gray infrastructure projects and programs to help absorb rainwater before it enters the sewer system or floods streets and homes.

  • The Cook County Watershed Management Ordinance enacted by the MWRD in 2013 provides uniform stormwater management regulations in order to prevent future commercial, municipal, and residential development and redevelopment projects from exacerbating flooding.


Click here to watch a video about the MWRD and TARP.


Municipal Elections

Tuesday April 4

Early Voting March 20 to April 3

Vote by Mail ballot requests by March 30


For more information, check your local League website and the Illinois Voter Guide.

Suburban Cook County

Consolidated elections for the many different governmental bodies (such as municipal, school district, library, park district, townships)

Election Day voting sites: Home precincts and 69 W. Washington, 5th Fl. (not pedway)

More Registration and Voting Information

Cook County Clerk Website


Runoff elections of the top 2 vote-getters for Mayor and some of the Alder positions.

Election Day voting sites: Home precinct, early voting sites (except Board of Elections' office)

More Registration and Voting Information

Chicago Board of Elections Website

See the Voter Info Page on the LWVCC website

Criminal Justice Interest Group

1. Oral arguments for the SAFE-T ACT were held on March 14th. The LWVIL signed an amicus brief (friend of the the court) in favor of the act along with 389 other organizations. A final decision is expected by late May or early June. Legal experts believe the high court will approve the act. They have spent 2 years setting up task forces around the state to prepare for it.


2.The Illinois assault weapons ban is working its way through the courts. Downstate courts have declared it un-constitutional and a major federal court has said it was constitutional. What happens next is unclear.


3. The position of criminal justice issue specialist for LWVIL will be open after the convention in June. If anyone is interested please contact the outgoing issue specialist Janet Kittlaus at [email protected]

4. Our next regular meeting is March 21st at 9AM via Zoom.

Forest Preserve Interest Group

Forest Preserve District Commissioner Josina Morita is continuing to hold walks in the Forest Preserves on the first of every month.
Saturday, April 1st, 10a-1p
Linne Woods
Dempster and Ferris, Morton Grove
A day of eco-friendly family fun including tree climbing, nature hikes, native planting, and animals from the Brookfield Zoo. And for lunch, free Asian Carp burgers and nuggets.
Register here

Cook County Governments

Observer Highlights

LWVCC observes and reports on board and committee meetings of Cook County government entities to provide our members with an understanding of current issues. To read more: LWVCC Observer Reports


Cook County Commissioners Board Meeting Feb 9 - Covid 19 Response Financial Report: the County’s CARES Act allocation is 100% expended with the final report delivered to the US Treasury in the last month.

Cook County Health Board Meeting Feb 24 - Department of Public Health Quarterly Report 2023 highlighted the plight of essential workers, especially during the pandemic. Another focus was low wage workers with unstable or precarious working conditions. They work with hazards and without regulatory safety standards. The goal is to improve worker safety and to address the issues highlighted.

Cook County Health partners with Chicago ARC ( Accelerate, Redesign, Collaborate) to Bring Innovative Solutions to Safety Net Patients

Chicago ARC and CCH share a commitment to reducing health inequities through community-informed and innovation-enabled approaches.  Chicago ARC will source global best digital health solutions and best practices to support Cook County Health priority needs in areas such as chronic disease management, trauma-informed care, and maternal and child health equity. Curated technology solutions will be implemented and piloted to support and serve Cook County residents in the communities where they live and where they receive care.

MWRD Board Meeting on March 2 - In Person Tours of MWRD facilities have resumed.

Local League Upcoming Events

Sat. March 25, Noon to 2PM

Celebrate Women's History Month with HERstory: Trailblazing Female Artists

Glenview-Glencoe League

Glenview Park Center Lakeshore Room

Lunch and program: $42

Register Here

Thurs. March 30, 6:30 pm SAFE-T Act and Pretrial Fairness Act

Oak Park River Forest League

Shanahan's Irish Bar and Creole Restaurant

7353 W, Madison Street Forest Park

Jan Goldberg, Cook County and LaGrange League Member and Chair of the Criminal Justice Interest Group will discuss the new laws for Illinois.

RSVP Belinda Lutz-Hamel no later than March 23.

2022-2023 Cook County League Board Members 

OFFICERS: President: Cynthia Schilsky, LaGrange Area; Vice-Presidents: Pris Mims, Chicago, Kathi Graffam, LaGrange Area; Secretary: Carolyn Cosentino, Homewood/Flossmoor; Treasurer: Nancy Clark, Oak Park/River Forest.

Board membersLaura Davis, Palatine; Diane Edmundson, Chicago; Jan Goldberg, LaGrange Area ; Georgia Gebhardt, Wilmette; Betty Hayford, Evanston; Karin Hribar, Arlington Heights


The League of Women Voters is a nonpartisan, political organization whose mission is to encourage informed and active participation in government; to increase understanding of major policy issues, and to influence public policy through education and advocacy. Membership in the League is open to anyone regardless of gender, race, or ethnic group.


League of Women Voters of Cook County

332 S. Michigan Ave. Suite 634, Chicago, IL 60604

312-939-5935 x127