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Todd Stroger to Release Tax Returns

By Kevin Robinson in News on Jan 28, 2010 5:00PM

In an effort to increase transparency, Cook County Board President Todd Stroger is releasing the tax returns he and his wife, Janine, filed in 2008 and 2009. If the other three candidates that are running for the seat don't as well, “it tells me there must be something they don’t want you to see,” he told the Tribune. The other Democratic candidates replied quickly to denying the request.

Metropolitan Water Reclamation District president Terrence O’Brien said he is too “busy running my campaign, and I have no time to do a tax research project for Mr. Stroger. Instead of worrying about my finances, he should be worrying about the finances of Cook County.” And Jessey Neves, a spokesperson for Ald. Toni Preckwinkle’s campaign said “we have no intention in participating in Todd Stroger’s publicity stunt,” noting that Preckwinkle's income is limited to her aldermanic salary, and her husband's income as a teacher. Dorothy Brown's campaign called on Stroger to try for more transparency in county government. "If President Stroger is so interested in accountability for the citizens of Cook County, instead of his tax return, perhaps he should show us a list of all of his friends and family on the county payroll," said Brown's campaign manager Catherine A. Zaryczny told the Tribune.

In releasing his tax returns, Stroger runs the political risk of reminding voters of a $12,000 lien that was placed on his home last year for failure to pay federal taxes. He says he's paid off about half of that.