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Tit for tat?
Or a case of unintended consequences?
Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart’s office just got a letter from Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle listing 925 positions designated for layoffs — if a judge doesn’t allow a countywide sweet beverage tax to take effect by August.
• The kicker: Sneed is told 377 of those jobs, many of them held by Cook County Jail correctional officers, are held by members of the Chicago Teamsters Union.
So here’s the kick in the butt.
Recently, the Teamsters Union took out a full-page newspaper ad opposing the tax, which Preckwinkle vigorously backed.
“This sure looked like a shot across the bow,” a top Sneed source said.
“Or interesting timing that many of the designated layoffs were members of the Teamsters Union, which took out the ad opposing the tax,” the source said.
• Buckshot: The sheriff’s office was warned there would be a 10 percent budget reduction if the tax doesn’t go through — and that this would have to happen unless every possible alternative was pursued.
• Backshot: Cook County Circuit Judge Daniel Kubasiak suddenly stopped the pop tax from going into effect Saturday by issuing a temporary restraining order shortly after a suit was filed by the Illinois Retail Merchants Association to block the penny-per-ounce tax from being levied. They claimed it was unconstitutional.
• Buckshot: A stunned and disappointed Preckwinkle was depending on the $67.5 million raised through the end of November from the sweet tax to shore up empty county coffers and $200.6 million by 2018.