Saturday, October 07, 2006

Will Cook Shake and Bake Shakman?

On September 20, FBI agents raided the Cook County Human Resources Department , carting off caseloads of materials in an on-going investigation into corrupt political hiring. They returned on Monday, October 2, focusing on the county Highway Department. And on Friday, October 6, lawyers for Cook County went into federal court to ask that anti-corruption monitoring be stopped . With so many investigations, now is not the time for Cook County to do away with the Shakman Decree.

Just like the City of Chicago, the County of Cook is now facing serious and credible allegations of illegal political hiring while simultaneously seeking to end judicial oversight designed to monitor and curtail political hiring. Over the past three decades, the Shakman Decree has emerged as the key tool to ensure that political and electoral considerations do not dictate hiring and the handing out of taxpayer-funded jobs. Efforts by the City and the County to do away with Shakman at the same time that they are facing such far-reaching and credible allegations of corruption throughout their hiring processes are absolutely shameful.

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