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Preckwinkle Takes To Internet For Discussion On County Budget

Toni Preckwinkle

Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle discusses the county’s budget shortfall following a Cook County Board meeting on July 27, 2011. (Credit: CBS)

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CHICAGO (CBS) — Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle used the Internet to talk about the county budget with voters Tuesday evening.

As WBBM Newsradio’s Lisa Fielding reports, residents could watch the town hall meeting on live-streaming video, listen on the phone, and even submit online questions during the event.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Lisa Fielding reports

Preckwinkle admitted she was a little out of her comfort zone, but says the medium is a way to communicate with constituents and share ideas on the county budget.

“I think it’s really important to take advantage of whatever opportunities are available to help people learn more about their government – in our case, county government,” she said.

Preckwinkle took questions not only about the budget, but also about the pension system, and the 1 percent sales tax rollback.

The county faces a budget deficit of more than $300 million this year.

Preckwinkle released a preliminary budget late last month. She is set to release her executive budget recommendation by Oct. 31.

State law requires the county to pass a balanced budget by the end of February each year.