We try not to be cynical about government. Ours being a newspaper covering portions of Cook County, though, that’s a hopeless goal. To watch this bloated, self-perpetuating, citizen-mocking cesspool of self-interest operate is to doubt its every utterance.
Which brings us to the current plan of Todd Stroger and his pals to relocate the Cook County Department of Public Health administrative offices from two rented floors of an office building in downtown Oak Park to new space in a county-owned facility in Oak Forest.
Government bodies paying rent never seems like a great idea to us. Especially when they are sitting on vacant property they already own. And the county does own the former Oak Forest Hospital.
It also owns the former Cook County tuberculosis building in Forest Park. That building is vacant only because Oak Park’s state Sen. Don Harmon got the state to pass a bill driving a stake through the heart of that insanely obsolete unit of county government.
We have no opinion on whether a Lake Street rental or Forest Park or Oak Forest relocation is the proper solution for the public health department. Our point is simpler. Whatever happens, taxpayers will lose.