12/08/2008 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

County Board Backs $930M Health Budget

The new independent board overseeing Cook County's public health system won its first battle Friday to avoid tinkering by politicians who hold its purse strings.

County commissioners approved the $930 million budget proposed by the Health and Hospitals System Board of Directors. The spending plan now will be included in County Board President Todd Stroger's budget proposal, which is due sometime this month. Commissioners can change Stroger's budget proposal.

The health system plan calls for spending $83 million more than in 2008. The extra spending would cover the costs of salary increases and higher benefit costs already approved by commissioners and pay for medical and computer equipment, system Chairman Warren Batts said.

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