Newsletter - April 2024

View as Webpage

Newsletter Highlights

Register for the LWVCC Annual Meeting

May 13, 2024

Low Voter Turnout for March Primary Election

Civic Federation and LWVCC Release Report on Cook County's Implementation of the Pretrial Fairness Act

The LWVCC Board of Directors

invites all Cook County League members and guests to the

2024 LWVCC Annual Meeting

Monday - May 13, 2024

9:45 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.

Roosevelt University - Auditorium Building

430 S. Michigan Ave. Chicago- Ida B. Wells Room

9:15 a.m. Registration begins, coffee and rolls

9:45 a.m. Annual Business Meeting

11:30 Lunch and Speakers

Program: Election Integrity and Safety

Registration: LWVCC Website

Cost: $40 Continental breakfast and box lunch included

Register by May 7

If you would like to be a delegate, contact your local league president.

Featured Program Speakers

The leaders of our election authorities will discuss

election safety and integrity.

Within Cook County there are two election authorities: the Cook County Clerk that manages suburban elections, and the Chicago Board of Elections. Cook County Deputy Clerk of Elections, Edmund Michalowski, and the Chair of the Chicago Board of Elections, Marisel A. Hernandez, will be answering questions on election security as well as the recent Primary. Audience members will also have the opportunity to ask questions.

Edmund Michalowski

Deputy Clerk of Elections

Office of the Cook County Clerk

Mr. Michałowski has been the Deputy Clerk of Elections since 2018. In that role he oversees the Elections Division for the Cook County Clerk's Office.

Marisel A Hernandez


Chicago Board of Elections

Ms. Hernandez has served with the Board since February 2007, rising to the post of Chairwoman in December 2015.

In memoriam: Karen A. Yarbrough, 1950-2024

Our condolences to the family of Cook County Clerk Karen Yarbrough and all the employees of the Clerk’s office. Clerk Yarborough was to speak at our Annual Meeting. Karen Yarbrough was the Cook County Clerk from 2018 to 2024. She also served as the Cook County Recorder of Deeds and an Illinois State Representative.

Two Election Authorities in Cook County.

Before 1885, there was one election authority for all of Cook County. In 1885 a law was passed that gave the voters in any Illinois municipality the ability to vote to create a local Board of Election Commissioners. Voters in all Chicago townships voted to create a Board of Election Commissioners for the City, separate from the Cook County suburbs.

The Cook County Clerk manages the suburban elections and the Board of Election Commissioners manages elections in Chicago. The Cook County Clerk is elected by all the voters in Cook County and is also responsible for official record keeping in Cook County. There are three Board of Elections Commissioners appointed by the Cook County Circuit Court to 3-year staggered terms. The current Commissioners are Chair Marisel A. Hernandez, William J. Kresse, and June A. Brown. They, in turn, appoint an Executive Director who runs the Board’s operations.

A portion of the County’s property tax assessment paid by property owners within all of Cook County (Chicago and Suburbs) goes to the Election Fund for all the costs of the Clerk’s Election Division and a portion of the costs of the Chicago Board of Elections each year. The remaining portion of the Board of Elections’ costs each year is covered by the City of Chicago’s budget.       

March 19th Primary Results Again Demonstrate Importance of Every Vote

Voter Turnout

Suburban Cook


Combined Total

Registered Voters




Ballots Cast




Voter Turnout




   Fact: The difference between the two candidates for the Democratic nomination for Cook County State’s Attorney was 1,571 votes. 

  Fact: The total number of precincts is 2,720 in Chicago and Suburban Cook County. 

You don’t have to be a math wizard to recognize that there could have been a different outcome – or a wider winning margin – if just one more person had voted in each precinct. 

Something to use when urging people to vote in November


The League has a lot to do before November

See all the official results for each race (combining Suburban Cook and Chicago) at Final Combined Results.

LWVCC Interest Groups report on important news in Cook County Government

Criminal Justice Interest Group

The Civic Federation and the LWVCC Release Report Analyzing Cook County's Implementation of the Pretrial Fairness Act

On March 28 the Civic Federation and the LWVCC released a report analyzing Cook County's implementation of the Pre-Trial Fairness Law.

​The report, based on informal observation done by the two organizations during the first six months since the law took effect on September 18, 2023, witnessed mostly a smooth implementation so far due to the County having been particularly well-prepared to adopt the new pretrial release process.

The Report can be read on the Civic Federation website at

View the WTTW Story on the report

  • The Criminal Justice Group reviewed a report by Appleseed on the Restorative Justice Court
  • The next regular meeting of the Criminal Justice Interest Group will be May 21st at 9 am via Zoom. If you would like to attend this meeting please contact Jan Goldberg

MWRD and the Sheriff's Office

National Prescription Drug Take Back Day April 27, 2024

Keep medications out of our water systems

When not disposed of properly, medications can end up in waterways. These medications can flow through our water reclamation plants (WRPs) and enter rivers and streams. This can affect our WRPs and harm fish, plant life and our waterways. Controlling what goes down the drain is an easy and effective way to protect the environment.  

The Cook County Sheriff’s Prescription Drug Take Back Program collects and destroys unwanted prescription drugs at their 129 permanent collection sites and at community take back events.

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

Highlights from Observer Reports

Metropolitan Water Reclamation District (MWRD) Board of Directors Meeting March 21 2024 

Commissioner Garcia asked the Director of Maintenance and Operations John Murray about resuming the distribution of biosolids for residential use. Director Murray confirmed that the MWRD has continued to provide biosolids for use at golf courses and some other non-residential locations. Director Murray said there are no current plans to resume making biosolids available to residents, which was paused three years ago. Commissioner Garcia said that he is often asked by residents who liked the program as to when it would resume. Comm. Garcia asked if there was a fact sheet available to use to educate the public and whether a marketing program should be resumed. Director Murray will consult with Executive Director Perkovich and put together some information for the Commissioners. However, Director Murray did say that the MWRD had stopped producing the material, so that not much would be available this year in any case


Cook County Forest Preserve District Board of Commissioners Meeting March 12, 2024 

The Cook County Forest Preserve District will increase its land holdings in the southeast area of Cook County. The property is west of state route 394 and north of US 30

•        For the sum of $1,410,000.00, plus closing costs up to $10,000.00.  

•        The property has natural and fallowed land.

•     The acquisition advances the goals of the Southeast Cook County Land Acquisition Plan, Next Century Conservation Plan, and Acquisition and Disposition of Land Position Paper.  

Public Speakers:

  Henrietta Saunders- a member of the Conservation and Policy Council –whose goals are “clean air, clean water, and reduced flooding”-- spoke in support of the land acquisition stating that the voters of Cook County overwhelming supported the referendum and favor increasing park land south of I-80.

Cook County Board of Commissioners Committee Meetings March 12, 2024 

Health and Hospitals Committee

Vaccine Preventable Disease was the focus of the report from CCH. Dr. LaMar Hasbrouck, COO, made the presentation. Boost Up Cook County has been the program title for the past year. This year’s title is The Gift of Booster. Since currently school age children have the lowest vaccine rate in decades, immunizations awareness campaign is reaching out in a variety of ways and in multiple languages.  

Local League Upcoming Events

Thursday, May 9, 7:15pm

Glenview-Glencoe LWV

LWV Lake Michigan Region Presentation

The Health of Lake Michigan David G. Miller & Elizabeth Joy Guscott-Mueller

Glenview Public Library, Community Room, 1930 Glenview Road

Open to the public. No registration required.

2023-2024 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: Trudy Turner, Evanston.

Board membersLaura Davis, Palatine; Diane Edmundson, Chicago; Jan Goldberg, LaGrange Area ; Betty Hayford, Evanston; Karin Hribar, Arlington Heights; Sandra Slayton, Homewood-Flossmoor


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