Cook County Budget Preliminary Forecast

FY2019 Forecast

An initial forecast of Fiscal Year 2019 revenues and expenditures can be found here. In an effort to increase government transparency, these projections include information outlining the expected costs for County services and available revenue which provide a comprehensive snapshot of efforts to create a reasonable, responsible and responsive budget.

FY2018 Year in Review

A mid-year projection of year-end revenues and expenses for Fiscal Year 2018 is available here. The year-end projections describe budgetary shortfalls and surpluses associated with the FY2018 budget approved by the Cook County Board of Commissioners in November.

We Want to Hear From You

A public hearing and online forum will be held on the Preliminary Forecast on July 12, 2018 at 6 p.m. in the Cook County Board Room to obtain constituent feedback on budget priorities. Additionally, residents may provide recommendations on efficiencies and cost savings or submit budget questions here.

Special Purpose Funds

The County’s Annual Appropriation Bill contains Special Purpose Funds in addition to the General Fund, Health Fund and the Debt Service Fund. Special Purpose Funds are established for a specific and dedicated purpose, and are considered to be self-balancing. Self-balancing means that the appropriated revenues for each of the special purpose funds support the required expenditures for the budgeted fiscal year.

Resident's Guide

The Resident’s Guide provides a high-level overview of the contents of the Preliminary Budget Forecast. This forecast is based on departmental budget requests and estimated collected revenues. The preliminary forecast is required to be filed with the President’s office by June 30 of each year.

2018 Budget Calendar

Departments submit preliminary revenue and expense estimates to the Department of Budget and Management Services (DBMS). The agencies specifically summarize issues, request specific funding levels, and justify staffing requests. 


DBMS prepares the preliminary budget forecast based on the requests submitted by the departments and the revenue the County expects will be collected. The preliminary budget forecast is filed with the President’s Office by June 30. 


The President holds a public hearing on the Preliminary Budget, allowing the public to provide feedback during the development of the Executive Budget Recommendation. The Chairman of the Finance Committee of the Board of Commissioners holds mid-year budget hearings with each Elected/Appointed Office.

Residents and departments provide input during the final development of the County budget. The President and DBMS work to balance department requests with available resources. 


The President submits the Executive Budget Recommendation to the Committee on Finance of Cook County. 


The proposed budget is made available for public review at various locations throughout the County. Public hearings are conducted during which the Committee on Finance considers testimony from service providers, program staff, and the general public. After the hearings have been completed and any amendments inserted, the Board of Commissioners approves and adopts the Appropriation Bill, which authorizes funding and staffing levels for each department. 


The fiscal year begins. The Appropriation Ordinance is implemented on December 1.