Newsletter - October 2022

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Newsletter Highlights

Oct 19th Candidate Forum for Cook County Commissioner District 9

 League Action Makes a Positive Difference--Cook County Board changes the process for filling officials' vacancies

Voters will get two ballot cards in the upcoming election

Candidate Forum for Cook County Commissioner District 9  Oct 19  8:15 pm via Zoom

The League of Women Voters of Arlington Heights-Mount Prospect-Buffalo Grove is sponsoring a forum for candidates Matt Podgorski (R) and Maggie Trevor (D) who are vying to replace current Commissioner Peter Silvestri who is retiring. 

District 9 includes portions of the northwest side of Chicago, and the townships of Elk Grove, Leydon, Norwood Park, Palatine, River Forest, and Wheeling. For more information and to register see the League's Website.

LWVCC In Action

Voters to have a say

Earlier this year, the League asked the Board of Commissioners to change how vacancies for Cook County officials were handled.  Until now, vacancies were filled by appointment.  In September, the Board approved an ordinance providing for elections to fill vacancies in County offices when the remaining term is more than 28 months. 

Increased Transparency

In response to the League's opposition to the automatic raises that the Commissioners approved for themselves in May, a new ordinance was approved by the Board requiring an independent salary comparison to be done every 4 years.

Cook County Inspector General 

The League sent a letter of appreciation to Patrick Blanchard for his service as the first Independent Inspector General for Cook County, the Forest Preserves, and MWRD. Mr. Blanchard is retiring.


Cook County $8.75 billion budget

The League will be observing the County's budget process which begins in October. Because of the past actions of the Budget & Structure Interest Group to improve the Cook County budget process, the League was invited to attend a "budget preview" session with other groups like the Civic Federation. 

November 8 Election


Vote Yes for Forest Preserves

Vote yes for preserving clean air, clean water, and wildlife habitat

The referendum is at the end of ballot card A.

This Election Day, Cook County voters will have a historic opportunity to protect our water sources, air quality, and wildlife habitat by approving a property tax increase of 0.025%.

That amounts to less than $1.66/month for the vast majority of homeowners-a very small price to pay to protect, restore, and expand our forest preserves, ensure cleaner air and drinking water and reduce flooding.

More than 62 million visitors enter the forest preserves each year- more than eight times the number that visit our nation’s most popular national park. While the forest preserves are crucial for our environmental protection, Cook County residents also depend on them for recreation and community. Approval of this ballot referendum would ensure the next generation of Cook County residents can experience nature and the same quality of life.

See the VOTE YES Website for more information.

Help make Democracy Work - Be an Election Judge

  •  Suburban residents, go to the Cook County Clerk's Website for information on being an Election Judge or Polling Place Technician. 
  •  Chicago residents go to the Board of Elections Serving as a Judge Website for information on being an Election Judge
  •  Chicago residents go to the Board of Elections Coordinator Website for information on being an Election Coordinator

Cook County Residents

Plan Your Vote

Voter Information

Register to Vote

  • By Tuesday October 11 by mail or in person
  • Online by October 23 or in person for Early Voting and on Election Day
  • Cook County
  • City of Chicago

Vote by Mail

Early Voting Suburbs - more information

  • Wed., Oct. 12 69 W. Washington pedway, suburban court houses
  • Mon., Oct. 24 Expands to other Suburban early voting sites

Early Voting Chicago - more information

  •  Fri., Oct. 7 :191 N. Clark and Board of Elections Office
  • Mon., Oct. 24 Expands to other sites in all 50 wards 

View the Illinois Voter Guide. The one-stop spot for all your voting information!

Ballot Information

  • City of Chicago and Suburban Voters will be given two cards for voting. 
  • Ballot Card A: Constitutional Amendment, Federal, State, County,  Judicial Offices and the Forest Preserve question  
  •  ​Ballot Card B: Judicial Retention and local referenda questions (if  applicable) 
  • Referenda on the ballot are an amendment to the Illinois Constitution and an increase to the property tax levy by the Cook County Forest 


                Candidate Information

  • Candidate Information on the WTTW Video Voter Guide should be available in mid October. U.S. Senator, Congressional candidates for districts in the viewing area, and all Cook County and MWRD candidates are to be included. 

   See the LWVCC website Voter Information Page for detailed information about the upcoming election. 

Criminal Justice Interest Group 

Electronic Monitoring

The LWVCC's Criminal Justice Interest Group has written a letter to the Board of Commissioners  Criminal Justice Committee urging them to adopt the recommendations of the Appleseed Center for Fair Courts in its report on electronic monitoring in Cook County Courts. The Justice Advisory Council ( the criminal justice arm of the office of President Preckwinkle) commissioned the report. 

SAFE-T Act Update

The General Assembly in Springfield will hold its veto session after the Nov. 8 elections. They are planning to tweak or add trailer bills to the SAFE-T Act in order to clear up some confusion and misinformation. Elimination of cash bail will most likely not change.

Cook County Health Aids Asylum Seekers

At its Belmont Cragin Health Center, Cook County Health is providing services to all asylum seekers coming to Chicago and Cook County.  As of September 30, a total of 1,089 patients during have received screening, registration, intake, and assessment services. Following these activities, the person or families are transported to a shelter or to the Emergency Department at Stroger when further clinical intervention is indicated.

News from the MWRD

PFAS Monitoring

The Metropolitan Water Reclamation District (MWRD) is addressing the rising concern of "forever chemicals" (PFAS) found in our waste water. They are investigating the sources of the chemicals and how to reduce the discharge at the source. At the Sep 15th board meeting, Board President Kari Steele directed Executive Director Perkovich to pause the free EQ Biosolid Distribution Program. While she believes the MWRD is following the EPA rules regarding PFAS, the pause is to ensure that the District remains compliant, environmentally friendly, and mindful of public concern. Access the MWRD Fact Sheet on PFAS here.

EPA Launches Environmental Justice Office

This new office will be focused on the needs of minority communities overburdened by pollution and oversee the delivery of $3 billion in environmental justice grants created by the recent passage of new climate legislation. It will engage with communities to ensure they are able to access grants and provide help with environmental conflict resolution. 

LWVCC observes several of the Cook County Board, committee, and agency meetings each month. To read more: LWVCC Observer Reports

Local League Upcoming Events

Wed. Oct. 19, 7-8 pm via Zoom 

LWV of Oak Park & River Forest

 Laura Davis of the Palatine and Cook County League will present "Forest Preserve Referendum, What’s At Stake"  Register here.

Wed. Oct 26, 7 pm via Zoom

LWV of Oak Park & River Forest  

To encourage residents to run for school, park, library, township or village board, legal experts Jonathan Priest and Anne Skrodzki, from Klein, Thorpe, & Jenkins, will discuss "How to Get and Stay on the Ballot". Register here.

Sunday, Nov 13., 2pm

LWV of Oak Park & River Forest 

Fundraiser theater outing to the GoodmanTheatre to see “Swing State”

Deadline to purchase tickets is October 24.  Purchase tickets here.

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