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The Forest Preserve District of Cook County encompasses nearly 70,000 acres. (Patty Wetli / WTTW News)

The recommended 2022 budget will keep the doors open and the lights on, but doesn’t make a dent in the district’s $64 million in unfunded maintenance, pension obligations or goal to acquire more land. For those resources, the district is pinning its hopes on an upcoming property tax referendum.

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Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle appears on “Chicago Tonight” via Zoom on Monday, Sept. 14, 2020. (WTTW News)

Cook County Board of Commissioners President Toni Preckwinkle has announced she will run for a fourth term as the county’s top elected official, putting her response to the COVID-19 pandemic at the center of her bid for reelection.

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“We've committed to strategies and measurable outcomes that hold us accountable to the public. It's not enough just to talk about equity. We must act,” Cook County President Toni Preckwinkle said.

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Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle appears on “Chicago Tonight” via Zoom on Monday, Sept. 14, 2020. (WTTW News)

The order covers all of the employees who work for the office of Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle as well as those covered by Cook County Employment Plan, officials said.

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(Photo by Mayron Oliveira on Unsplash)

Cook County officials said every hospitalization and death at this point “is entirely preventable” and again urged residents to roll up their sleeves. “Please, get vaccinated,” said Cook County Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Ponni Arunkumar. “You will make a difference.”

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(WTTW News)

Cook County residents, including Chicagoans, can now get a free ride to a nearby vaccination site, thanks to the new “Destination: Vaccination” program.

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Provident Hospital of Cook County (Google Maps Streetview)

A year after Cook County officials faced the largest budget deficit in a decade, they find themselves flush with cash, thanks to $1 billion in COVID-19 relief funds and an economy recovering faster than expected from the ravages of the pandemic, according to a budget forecast.

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(WTTW News)

COVID-19 mass vaccination sites in Tinley Park, South Holland and River Grove will close Thursday as demand for the vaccine wanes and officials redeploy resources to focus on community-based vaccination efforts.

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(WTTW News via CNN)

Flowers, candy and jewelry are all go-to gifts for mom. But this year, Cook County officials say the No. 1 gift can’t be bought in a store. “This year all your mother wants for Mother’s Day is for you to get vaccinated,” said Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle. 

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A small business in Wicker Park highlights its opening hours in 2020. (WTTW News)

Cook County officials are marking Small Business Week, which runs through Saturday, with the launch of a new initiative aimed at supporting small businesses as they recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

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(WTTW News)

Suburban Cook County residents ages 16 and older will be eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine beginning Monday, and while eligibility in Chicago doesn’t expand until April 19, Gov. J.B. Pritzker said adults in Chicago are also “absolutely welcome” to sign up at any state-run mass vaccination site starting Monday.

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The Rev. Claude Porter of Maywood’s Proviso Missionary Baptist Church, is part of a new public education campaign aimed at addressing vaccine hesitancy. (Credit: Cook County Health / Cook County Government / Cook County Public Health)

Personal stories from Cook County residents who have gotten the COVID-19 vaccine highlight a new campaign that aims to dispel misinformation and encourage others to roll up their sleeves when it’s their turn.

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(WTTW News)

A just-launched program will bring coronavirus vaccines to residents at temporary pop-up sites across suburban Cook County as part of an “equity-focused approach to the vaccine distribution,” Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle said Thursday.

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(WTTW News)

Applications for the new program are being accepted through April 9. Suburban residents can receive up to $15,000 in assistance to cover up to 12 months of missed rent and utility payments and up to three months of future rent payments. 

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(WTTW News)

Even as the first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine were administered Tuesday morning at the United Center, confusion swirled over how many appointments remained available, who was eligible for those slots and when they would open for thousands desperate for the life-saving shot.

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Lori Lightfoot, left, and Toni Preckwinkle appear on “Chicago Tonight” on May 14, 2018 and Oct. 16, 2017, respectively. (WTTW News)

Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle said if the city and county were to follow the plan laid out by the governor, it would add additional stress to a vaccination effort that has left many scrambling to find an available appointment.