Larry Morrissey

State of Illinois

A program designed to help spur economic development in Rockford and other river cities in Illinois got a new lease on life this week. Tuesday, Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner signed legislation extending the River Edge Redevelopment Zone Program until the beginning of 2018.

city of Rockford

Outgoing Rockford Mayor Larry Morrissey will discuss a potential utility tax this evening.  

The city faces a $5 million budget shortfall, mostly due to an increase in pension costs.  In 1999 and 2001, the Illinois General Assembly lowered the public safety retirement age from 55 to 50, guaranteed annual 3 percent cost of living increases and agreed  to continue paying spouses of retired firefighters and police officers who die the same pension they got while alive.  A report says pensioners are also living longer after they retire.  

Rockford Mayor Says He's Not Seeking Re-Election

Sep 2, 2016
City of Rockford

Three-term Rockford Mayor Larry Morrissey is not running for another term in 2017.

    

He made the announcement Friday afternoon at City Hall.

Morrissey became the city's youngest and only independent mayor when he was elected in 2005.

He's also only one of four mayors in Rockford's history to serve for 10+ years. 

Three candidates have emerged for the position.

They include Aldermen Pam Connell and Tom McNamara, as well as community activist Rudy Valdez.

Rockford Mayor Larry Morrissey suggested suing the state if a budget isn’t passed soon.

Mayor Morrissey says he doesn’t want local agencies to go through the same process that occurred last year without a budget.  Individual organizations sued the state to force disbursement of emergency funding.   

Instead of this process, Morrissey says one big lawsuit would “hold lawmakers and the governor responsible for their constitutional duty to pass a balanced budget. 

Susan Stephens / WNIJ

Rockford’s mayor wants to expand the system his city used to end homelessness among veterans. Larry Morrissey delivered his 11th annual State of the City address Wednesday night. He says it means identifying the city’s toughest challenges, focusing the right people on solutions, and tracking results. Morrissey calls it "collective impact" and would like to tackle the problem of child abuse using the same technique.

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