Richard Ray

Cook County Public Guardian May Narrowly Avoid Layoffs

A last minute deal may save the Cook County Public Guardian Office from devastating cuts.

Cook County Commissioners vote on the budget Tuesday and over the weekend Public Guardian employees spoke out about the loss of 22 positions. Still employees are wary of this new deal until the vote takes place. Already, the Public Guardian office agreed to give up 16 open positions.

Frank Shuftan, director of communications for Board President Toni Preckwinkle released a statement:

"The Budget Office has worked today to restore the 22 positions due for layoffs in the Public Guardian's Office. Advocates for the Public Guardian made a compelling case over the weekend and today to roll back the planned layoffs and maintain service levels."

Also, while most departments are taking a 10 percent cut -- the Commissioners themselves are not as wiling to lose $20,000 to their operating budgets.

Commissioners Daley, Schneider, Sufferdin and Boykin have agreed to cuts -- in some cases even more than $20,000, but others are refusing to do so. Each of the County Commissioners receive approximately $400,000 in operating funds.

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