About the Candidate
Name: Sean M. Morrison
DOB: Aug. 8, 1967
Occupation: Small Business Owner, Morrison Security Corp.
Political Experience: Cook County Commissioner, 17th District since 2015
Hello, I’m Cook County Commissioner Sean Morrison. I have been honored to represent and serve the people of the 17th District since 2015.
I bring a small business owner’s common sense perspective to the County Board where I have consistently advocated for fiscal responsibility, innovative reform programs, pro-growth economic policies, and strong public safety measures.
In my seven years of service, I am proud to be a part of several significant reforms and achievements.
Most notably, I stepped forward in 2017 as the Chief Sponsor and Author of the ordinance that repealed Cook County’s Soda Tax. A major victory for “ALL” taxpayers.
In 2020, the county board passed a resolution that called for defunding the Cook County Sheriff’s Office. The vote was 16-1 and I was the only commissioner to vote “NO” to defunding our police. I will continue to stand firm in my support of law enforcement to help keep our communities safe.
Today, Cook County is faced with rising crime… and much of it violent. Our residents and businesses are fearful, and rightfully so.
Much of the crime problem stems from not properly charging and sentencing criminals. These ‘soft on crime’ policies have emboldened criminals and this must change.
As commissioner, I will continue to advocate for stronger policies that strengthen the prosecution and sentencing of criminals. We cannot have a revolving door for violent offenders.
Crime is not the only concern facing our residents.
Rising inflation, gasoline prices, high taxes and the general concern with kitchen table issues are impacting families all across Cook County. As commissioner, I will double my efforts to ease the tax burden and financial strain on our residents brought on by irresponsible tax and spend policies.
Voters of the 17th District have a clear choice. They will have the opportunity to re-elect a proven reformer and tax fighter. A commissioner who stands with law enforcement and stands for safe communities. A commissioner who challenges the status quo.
I am Cook County Commissioner Sean Morrison of the 17th District, and I ask for your vote.
Why are you running?
My purpose for seeking another term as Commissioner of the 17th District is multifold; I wish to ensure an equal representative voice for the residents of suburban Cook County where often the equal application of Cook County tax dollars and resources are not evenly distributed and applied back to the residents of south and west suburban Cook County. To offer a fiscally responsible approach to Cook County's budgeting process. To provide a check and balance system against growing the size of county government, increases in the Sales Tax and Property Tax, and user fees upon Cook County residents, visitors, and businesses.
What does this office do well, and what needs fixing?
Over the last five years, Cook County has taken proactive steps to shore up its pension obligations. I was a leading proponent for Cook County to increase its yearly pension contributions beyond the legally required amount. With additional revenue coming in from the county’s sales tax, I strongly supported adding the additional supplemental pension payments which has improved our funding and led to a substantial improvement in Cook County’s bond rating over the last several years. The county needs to continue with this fiscal policy and increase our supplemental payments whenever possible. With the influx of additional federal dollars, the county can continue to allocate substantial resources to pay down debt, stabilize its pensions and strengthen the long-term fiscal picture for the county.
Public Mental Health provision is an area that can be improved. As commissioner, I have been a very proactive vocal proponent of the necessity of federal and state funding of Public Mental Health Services. Public Mental Health funding was gutted under Governor Pat Quinn by hundreds of millions of dollars, resulting in our Cook County Sheriff’s Office, out of sheer necessity, being amongst the largest provider of Public Mental Health Services in Cook County. Cook County as a government entity (and certainly not Cook County taxpayers) is not the appropriate government entity to be responsible for the provision of Public Mental Health Services to the county and region. Historically, this has been a statewide issue, and one that is utterly failing.
In fact, in nearly every other state of the country, Public Mental Health Services are funded and administered on the statewide level. I will continue to be a vocal proponent for the appropriate resources being allocated to Public Mental Health and I will also continue to be outspoken when it comes to the state of Illinois re-engaging on a much greater level for such a critical public health issue. Collaboration between the county, state and federal agencies is an avenue that must be vigorously pursued to effectively address Public Mental Health.
What is the most pressing issue facing your constituents and how do you plan on addressing it?
Crime, rising inflation and high taxes are the most pressing issues facing all residents across Cook County. As commissioner, I will continue to advocate for stronger policies that strengthen the prosecution and sentencing of criminals. We cannot have a revolving door for violent offenders. I will push for a reassessment of the county's electronic monitoring program, with a focus on reducing the number of violent offenders in the program.
Rising inflation, high taxes and the general concern with kitchen table issues are impacting families all across Cook County. As commissioner, I will double my efforts to ease the tax burden and financial strain on our residents brought on by irresponsible tax and spend policies. In 2022, I successfully co-sponsored an amendment to eliminate the county's Wheel Tax, a very burdensome and costly fee for suburban residents. I also voted 'NO' to pay raise for county elected officials. These recent steps and many more fiscally responsible initiatives need to be prioritized by Cook County government.
For the 17th District specifically, there are many roads and transportation needs throughout the 17th District as well as flood mitigation. For years, infrastructure dollars generated by the gas tax were diverted away from infrastructure and moved into the general fund to spend elsewhere. A statewide referendum was passed by nearly 80% of voters to create a “lock box” for those funds so that they are spent only on infrastructure needs. As commissioner, I’ve worked closely with my suburban mayors and municipal organizations to identify pressing needs for their communities as well as identifying larger regional needs that can be properly prioritized. Over my last four years in office, the 17th District saw a record amount of transportation investment in the district to the amount of $120 million by the county. I look forward to continuing our successful districtwide efforts of infrastructure & transportation investment in a collaborative manner with our local municipalities.
What specific steps would you take to ensure your office is accessible and responsive to your constituents?
My 17th District office prides itself in providing constituent services and assistance as well as working closely with our local governmental bodies within our suburban district. My staff provides free technical assistance to hundreds of residents each year when filing their property tax assessment appeals. Our office serves as an efficient and effective conduit for residents in all county government areas such as road & infrastructure repairs, zoning matters, business assistance, veterans affairs, health & human services and more. Our office will continue to seek new and innovative ways to connect with constituents making their interaction with county government much more user-friendly.