I got an interesting perspective this morning on how people see
Chicago from afar.
We're hiring a general manager, and one of our candidates listed a reference at a real-estate data firm in Texas. I called to check up on the candidate. I wound up hearing a long, sad story from someone who's been trying unsuccessfully for months to obtain public records on property assessments from the Cook County government.
"Every time I deal with them, it sucks the life out of me," she said.
The county wants close to $100,000 for records that are compiled and maintained with taxpayer money. The woman said her company gets this kind of public information without hassle from local governments all over the country.
But not the local government here.
"It's like dealing with people from a different planet," she said.