Cook County Commissioner ‘Sales Tax is Dead’

October 9, 2007

Download Story

A push to raise the sales tax in Cook County looks like it's dead in the water. Chicago Public Radio's Ben Calhoun reports.

**

The county's current share of the sales tax is less than a percent. The proposed hike would nearly quadruple that, jacking it up to nearly 3-percent on the dollar. Last week, backers of the proposed sales tax hike deferred a vote because they needed to rally more support.

It appears the opposite has happened.

SUFFREDIN: At this point, I think the sales tax is dead.

Commissioner Larry Suffredin originally said he'd keep out of the sales tax battle—but now says he's resolved concerns about a possible conflict of interest.

SUFFREDIN: I've come to the conclusion that I will vote under the ethics act, and my intention is to vote no.

Suffredin says Commissioner Earlean Collins is also a no—and Commissioner Roberto Maldonado, thought to be a swing vote on taxes, says he'll vote no too. Which, means, if put up to the 17 member county board the sales tax hike would be defeated.

SUFFREDIN: At this point it would be ten to seven.

The county board is schedule to take up the sales tax increase at its next meeting a week from today.

I'm Ben Calhoun, Chicago Public Radio.