It’s 8am, Do you know what your county government is up to?

I do. They’re (barely) participating in negotiations at the Hyatt Regency. Since 9:00 am, on 6/19/06, the county has been talking its collective bargaining employees about their next contract. The previous contract expired 18 months ago. We’re currently stuck discussing: Pay schedules, pay increases and health care–you know, the nitty gritty stuff. I’ve been up a little bit over 26 hours now–I get a small break from the tedium to go talk to a judge–working on securing a fare wage for county service providers.

County government, the government of last resort, runs on fees, fines and property taxes. The county provides hospital services for Chicago’s neediest families as well as social service for the Cook County’s most at risk youth. We (the employees) are the Sheriffs, the Probation Officers, Nurses and Public Defenders. We think the work that we do is vital to the Chicago area, and we should not suffer a pay cut and loss of benefits. The County, who is staffed by a board without a president (registration required), whose members meet 2-3 times a week and earn over 80k, says they cannot afford to keep their employees pay scales and benefits.

I call bullshit.

If you drive, ride or walk by the Regency, remember that important gov’ment work is going on. By the time you read this, I may be back in the building–so feel free to wave and say hi.

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2 Comments so far

  1. Dave! (unregistered) on June 20th, 2006 @ 1:02 pm

    And here I thought they might be doing something useful, like picking someone to take over for Stroger. C’mon… this has gone on long enough. Replace him already.

  2. loren taylor (unregistered) on June 24th, 2006 @ 4:10 am

    some silly questions: what exactly does the County Board president DO? how big a monkey-wrench in the system does a lack of president present?

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