Cook County, Ill., which includes Chicago, saw the biggest numerical drop in population. It lost 66,000 more people to domestic migration than it gained. But this was partially offset by 18,000 people who moved in from outside the country.
“Um, I can’t even get my dog to stop peeing in the house,” he wrote. "It’s baseball — a pastime involving a lot of chance. If Zobrist’s ball is three inches farther off the line, I’m on the hot seat for a failed five-year plan. And I’m not even the best leader in our organization; our players are.” Comment: The modesty shown in that quote only affirms his glory. Confucius say, "The superior man is modest in his speech,...
The City Council is poised to renew — for a second time since President Donald Trump took office — the city’s "sanctuary city" policy designed to protect undocumented immigrants from deportation.
Of the country's 10 largest cities, the Chicago metropolitan statistical area was the only one to drop in population between 2015 and 2016. The region, defined by the U.S. Census Bureau, includes the city and suburbs and extends into Wisconsin and Indiana.
Count on us to give you the critical data.
“A lot of hootin’, yellin’ and screaming:” New Trier School Board member slams “White Privilege” seminar supporters’ behavior at Feb meeting – North Cook News
Comment: Kudos to board member John Myefski.
Another whopper from Rahm: "I have a practice that my political and personal (business) stays on my private email and city business is on the government and that's how I operate," Rahm insisted in a TV interview.
The Chicago Board of Ethics chairman said Tuesday the panel will look into questions raised in a Chicago Tribune report about whether some emails to Mayor Rahm Emanuel's personal accounts crossed the line into lobbying and violated the city's ethics law.
Pockets of intense Trump support exist in the broad-shouldered city of deep blue Democrats, particularly in Brancato's Mount Greenwood on the Far Southwest Side, in Edison Park and Norwood Park on the city's Far Northwest Side and in sections of Sauganash/West Ridge on the North Side — neighborhoods with substantial populations of police and firefighters.
Among grieving families and friends mourning their lost loved ones are revenge-seeking gang members.
The retailer, battling years of plunging sales, profits and cash flow, voiced concern about its ability to continue as a going concern in its annual report filed Tuesday evening.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel took a “small step” by tripling the “grace period” before slapping motorists who blow through red lights with $100 tickets, but the change does not go nearly far enough, an influential alderman said Tuesday.
The Chicago metro area added 10,000 tech jobs between 2013 and 2015, according to a Brookings Institute study, a 5.8 percent compound annual growth rate.
Chicago agreed to pay $91 million for the South Side site in 2009. It would have served as the Olympic Village, had Chicago prevailed with the IOC. Since then, taxpayers have shelled out more than $50 million, but the city still owes over $72 million because most of the payments went toward interest on the loan.
A major figure for decades in Chicago real estate, he was also a first class guy. RIP.
Over time, the family came to realize people they trusted had taken advantage of him in various ways. “You have people who have a little less moral stature than you would like to see in society,” Sayers’ brother Roger said in a phone interview from Omaha, Neb.
Cook County Commissioner Peter Silvestri, who for years moonlighted as village president of Elmwood Park, took on a new side job in 2013 — as a sales agent for a video gambling firm that, months later, began installing poker and slot machines in the west suburb.
Who serves on the board of a nonprofit meant to channel the benefits that flow from Barack Obama’s presidential library into surrounding neighborhoods looks increasingly important with the Obama Foundation indicating it will play more of a passive role in economic development.
The city spent more than $18.8 million on overtime for public safety, traffic management and street cleanup during the Cubs’ march to their first World Series title in 108 years.
The bill for high-end office space in Chicago rose almost 20 percent in 2016, the biggest increase in the U.S. and second-highest in the world. Chicago's one-year jump is especially striking considering the city is typically known for less dramatic fluctuations in property values and rents than those seen in coastal markets such as New York and San Francisco.
Perez, 38, was a legal permanent resident when he joined the Army and said he thought he became a legal U.S. citizen when he enlisted. However, that was not the case. About four years after leaving the military, Perez served prison time for a felony drug offense which sparked the deportation proceedings.
It’s finally time to decide the fate of the proposed south suburban airport – Editorial – Daily Southtown
In the nearly 50 years since a college professor first proposed a third Chicago airport in the south suburbs, the idea has been known by a number of names: the airport in the lake, Peotone Airport, South Suburban Airport, Hegewisch Airport. Also, "boondoggle," "property theft" and "disaster," to mention just a few.
McHenry County Board Chairman Jack Franks wants a committee to work with county officials to trim at least $7.93 million from the 2018 property tax levy – a 10 percent cut that could affect what services the county provides to residents.
Bluetooth-enabled vibrator maker settles digital privacy class action for $3.7M – Cook County Record
The maker of a high-tech Bluetooth-enabled personal intimacy device has reached a $3.7 million settlement with a woman, on behalf of classes of other plaintiffs, who had accused the company of improperly collecting private information in a class action complaint filed last year.
Amazon launched its online bookstore nearly 22 years ago. On Tuesday, it will open the doors of a brick-and-mortar store in Chicago's Lakeview neighborhood, giving customers a chance to test the e-commerce giant's take on offline shopping.
Records show 63 cops have resigned because of complaints about residency since 1981. Another five officers were fired, with 23 more suspended and four reprimanded.
There are two squirrel species in Chicago, and they are very particular about where they live. Gray squirrels tend to live in ritzy neighborhoods, while fox squirrels thrive in more affordable areas. A local biologist thinks he’s finally figured out why.
The Cook County increase is supposed to put the suburbs in line with its largest city, Chicago, which gradually is raising the minimum wage to $13 an hour by July 2019. The city will go up to $11 from $10.50 on July 1. But many suburbs are pushing back, citing the toll a wage increase could take on small businesses.
My husband and our music store. Our store has had to cut employee hours due to the bullying, and soon we will have to cut our employee altogether. We will close at the end of April, because we are no longer willing to subject our staff, our customers, our neighbors and ourselves to the daily risk. So, after 25 years, after a lifetime for my husband, we have to leave. Read the comments on Crain's below her piece which validate her...
It’s rare to see anyone on college campuses – especially students – demanding to hear opinions that differ from their own these days. But at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, the student government recently passed a series of resolutions aimed at bolstering “viewpoint and intellectual diversity.” Comment: A ray of hope! And it was initiated by students. Smarter than the faculty perhaps.
Perino's company posed as a legitimate woman-owned business, allowing Chicago-based Diamond Coring Co. to meet its requirements for hiring disadvantaged businesses in order to win a multimillion-dollar runway repair contract at O'Hare International Airport. Perino did no work for the bills submitted by her company.
Pearachute, the Chicago-based kids' activity booking platform launched last year by GiveForward founder Desiree Vargas Wrigley found parents who use the service raising their hands to invest after the company used a Portal called Republic to launch an equity crowdfunding campaign.
A Tribune analysis of the city's latest bond sale, a $1.2 billion offering earlier this year, shows that the mayor will continue to run the city with borrowed money, at great long-term expense, through the rest of his term in 2019. Comment: The game remains the same -- deny, delay, extend, pretend, borrow, borrow, borrow.
Many regulations are regressive. Broadly speaking, this means they make the poor worse off. Occupational licensing regulations make it harder to get good jobs as barbers, florists, contractors, interior designers, and countless other professions. Zoning regulations tend to be regressive because they make it harder to build housing, thereby raising the price of rent. Environmental regulations often raise the price of energy, which consumes a disproportionate part of a poor person's budget.
Chicago officials are set to start enforcing a new ordinance that imposes tougher regulations on short-term rental companies like Airbnb after a federal judge's ruling in the city's favor.
An owner of the River North landmark restaurant Club Lago has taken outspoken and sometimes inflammatory political positions that might alienate some customers and encourage others.
Cook County government employees paid double the state average, reform group says – Cook County Record
Cook County leads the state in the highest-paid government workers, according to information posted by the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform (ICPR). The web post by the organization analyzed annual payroll expenditures in Illinois’ 102 county government counties using 2015 county government financial reports and U.S. Census data.
Cook County's treasurer says many homeowners have no idea their home is at risk.
Only eight out of more than 250 Chicago-area ZIP codes had more than a slender sliver of their housing stock in foreclosure in February. That's according to data provided to Crain's Chicago Business yesterday by Attom Data Solutions, an online real estate data service based in Irvine, Calif.
Construction is expected to begin in Chicago this week on a Chinese state-owned rail company's assembly plant that will produce up to 846 new rail cars for the Chicago Transit Authority.
Chicago Public Schools leaders and Chicago Teachers Union officials are tussling over who can rob city students of more class time in the upcoming weeks. Call it: The War of Bad — OK, Terrible — Ideas.
City Hall plans to announce that it’s forging a partnership with five Chicago-based universities to create what it calls Global Entrepreneur in Residence programs.
Gentrification Along The 606 Could Be Curbed Under New Law, Aldermen Say – Logan Square – DNAinfo Chicago
A proposed ordinance would increase the demolition fee for residential properties along the western part of The 606 and charge a "deconversion fee" that would essentially make it more expensive to tear down multi-unit buildings and build single-family homes in their place.
The health of city pension funds varies widely. The typical plan is 70% funded, but Chicago’s pension is just 23% funded. Indianapolis has the best-positioned plan at 98% funded, S&P Global Ratings says. Pension liability as measured by the plans’ potential cost to taxpayers follows a similar trend. Chicago’s plan imposes the biggest burden by far, at $12,427 per Chicagoan. Indianapolis’ pension liability is just $66 per person.
Cullinan’s Stadium Club and Beverly Records sit next door to each other in the Chicago neighborhood of Morgan Park. The owners of the two businesses have been friendly since Dan Cullinan opened his bar and grill in 1989. But even Dan couldn’t imagine how John Dreznes of Beverly Records would rush in to help when Cullinan’s Stadium Club ran into financial trouble in late 2016.
Participants in a La Grange rally supporting Cook County's new laws imposing a minimum wage hike and paid sick time law are calling the event a victory because the Village Board will not seek to opt out of the laws.
Chicago Infrastructure Trust put city equipment on lien to private bank, wasted millions in tax dollars – Project 6
An investigation by Project Six into Retrofit One shows how major parts of city-owned buildings were used as collateral for a private loan to fund the project. Project Six’s investigation also found millions of tax dollars being wasted on labor and overhead costs for work that easily could have been done by existing city maintenance employees.
Zachary Fardon may no longer be Chicago's top federal law enforcement officer, but on his way out the door Monday he left Chicago officials with a detailed look at the violence that he said left many in his office with a "sense of frustration and despair." Comment: No, the cause is having children before you have a committed partner and the financial means to raise a child.
Paul Miller, executive director and president of the Haym Salomon Center in Northbrook, lambasted the media in general for not taking issue with Schakowsky, who was appearing at an anti-travel ban rally in Chicago when the picture was taken.
There were 62 condominiums listed for sale in the Trump International Hotel & Tower at 401 N. Wabash Ave. as of Friday afternoon. Take away the 14 listed "hotel-condos" likely owned by investors, and the tower still has double or triple the number of active listings of any other comparable condo building in Downtown Chicago.
Thrive Chicago says its new "reconnected" plan is aimed at both helping 10,000 people aged 16-24 who are neither in school nor at work, some of them potentially in trouble with the law, and improving on the help they get.
"We know this will be difficult for many of you, who put your students first, but please consider the powerful message it will send, highlighting to the world how much we do for our students on a voluntary basis," union leaders wrote to teachers.
Environmental groups and local public officials are condemning these proposed cuts and calling on Congress to not approve them. They would result in a drop in funding for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative from $300 million to $10 million.
Emanuel politicized Illinois’ loss of students to other states by placing the blame squarely on Rauner. Wrong.
Chicago taxpayers have paid $4.5 million in legal and consulting fees tied to the federal civil rights investigation triggered by the 2014 police shooting of Laquan McDonald — and the meter is still running.
After fighting in court to keep his private email accounts completely concealed from public view, Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Wednesday released a trove of messages from throughout his nearly six years in office and announced a new city ban on using private email to conduct official business.
”Knuckle-dragging and generally subhuman:” Northwest Side Chicago Alderman fires insults at constituents on social media – Chicago City Wire
Some politicians try to catch flies with honey. Chicago Ald. John Arena (D-45th) douses them with vinegar: “I am not ready to cead (sic) this country to the racist, classist, knuckle-dragging and generally subhuman puddle of DNA that makes up the base of (President Donald) Trump supporters,” he recently wrote recently.
The remnants of failed Seaway Bank & Trust are changing hands again. The owners of the Texas bank that acquired Seaway from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. in late January now are selling Seaway's branches and deposits to a North Carolina-based credit union. Greensboro, N.C.-based Self-Help Federal Credit Union, which specializes in lending to low-income and minority customers and already owns a Chicago lender focused on Hispanics, will take over Seaway's franchise beginning in May.
Friday’s operation targeting low-level buyers was different from most drug busts. These addicts were given the choice to go into treatment instead of jail. Forty-one of them took the police up on their offer.
Based on extensive interviews with the inhabitants of the city’s badlands, We Are Chicago is part of a growing number of “serious games” focused on using the fun and interactive nature of games to tackle social justice issues such as poverty, the environment and the Syrian Civil War.
Chicago Police and federal prosecutors said Friday they’ve arrested 15 people involved in a heroin operation that included buyers first calling a hotline to set up a meeting spot.
Adapting to the patchwork: Communities, employers consider options in wake of Cook Co. labor rules – Cook County Record
Taking advantage of state law allowing them to essentially ignore some dictates of Cook County’s government, a growing number of Cook County suburban communities are opting out of labor ordinances passed by the Cook County Board last fall.
After more than a century in the shadow of New York’s Big Board, the Chicago Stock Exchange has been short on cash and searching for relevance. Now the exchange, which handles less than half a percent of U.S. stock trades, is approaching the final hurdle in an audacious plan to become a player in international equity markets.
By The Bond Buyer's Yvette Shields: Chicago is a standout as the worst among its big city peers in key pension system measurements, according to a new S&P Global Ratings report.
Illinois holds more than $66 million worth of stocks and bonds in PepsiCo, Coca Cola and Dr. Pepper Snapple alone.
A recently-released faculty committee report also suggests establishing "free speech deans-on-call" trained to "deal with disruptive conduct" in order to ensure students are not prevented from expressing themselves on campus.
"I think it's the proper position of government to provide protections against the excesses of free-market capitalism," said Guzzardi, Comment: Whether to give equal time to wack jobs is a constant question for us on this site. The problem is we we'd be short of material if we didn't.
A massive project, which has been relegated to the drawing board for nearly 10 years because of a slow economy, finally appears ready to break ground in nearby Crete. The $230 million, 500-acre CSX Intermodal, to be located between in the Will County community of Crete, is expected to begin construction early next year, the developer said. The project is expected to provide 200 full-time jobs, as well as 100 to 200 construction jobs.
Comment: Lemme guess. Another tax increase needed for Toni Taxawanker.
Chicago performed the worst across the board — registering the highest annual debt, pension post-employment benefits costs as a percentage of governmental expenditures and the highest debt and pension liability per capita.
In Chicago, the study found that people in the suburbs save an average of $18,472 per year by choosing to reside outside of the city. It’s an average of $1,539 in extra costs per month in housing and childcare costs for a city-centric families, according to the report.
If Fox River and Countryside Fire Protection District's upcoming referendum question seeking to increase the property tax levy by 95 percent fails, Fire Chief John Nixon said the District would likely fold within two years.
Chicago ranks near the bottom in fiscal strength from among 116 cities with populations of at least 200,000, an analysis by the non-profit group Truth In Accounting (TIA) has found.
A venture of Randy Rissman, who sold Tiger Electronics to toy giant Hasbro nearly two decades ago, has struck a preliminary deal to buy the 31-story office tower at 150 N. Wacker Drive. Rissman is now managing director of Leo Capital Holdings, a venture capital firm he founded in 2000. The Northbrook-based firm invests in "early and later stage private companies," with a focus on consumer-oriented technologies, according to its website. Grubhub, which is now publicly traded, is listed among...
As for anything of substance in this exchange, nothing.
No doubt, the state is confronting huge financial issues caused by the Chicago Machine, but the tech community hums along. There are a lot of confluences of trends that are driving it.
Emanuel has long resisted using TIF funds to bolster the CPS budget, saying that it was inappropriate to use money from a one-time revenue source to pay for school operations.
Karen Lewis is president of the Chicago Teachers Union. She was a high school chemistry teacher in Chicago Public Schools for 22 years and is a co-founder of United Working Families, a citywide independent political organization. Presented without comment.
Despite borrowing limit, tiny Skokie school district seeks to get around state law for new school – Chicago Tribune
A Tribune investigation last spring showed districts statewide were about $20 billion in debt, in part with the help of lawmakers who push through exceptions in the debt-limit law. The Tribune found that several dozen districts over the years have gotten permission to borrow more than their debt limit.
CPS is planning to spend $535,000 to install air conditioners in a school that will be empty before the summer.
It ranked sixth among cities around the world among executives asked by KPMG to name three locations outside San Francisco/Silicon Valley that will be seen as leading technology innovation hubs in the next four years. Shanghai ranked first, followed by New York, Tokyo, Beijing and London. Also tied with Chicago were Washington, D.C., and Berlin, followed by Tel Aviv and Boston. That's a big step up from last year's survey, when Chicago was tied for 18th.
As it prepares to embark on a sweeping overhaul of city streetlights, the infrastructure trust that Mayor Rahm Emanuel once hailed as a model of out-of-the-box thinking to jumpstart public works has proved anything but.
“It would be in the second installment that there is the possibility that they could see a big increase if their property was reassessed or if there was a major referendum by one of the taxing bodies.”
Where, some are wondering, was this ire when President Obama was in charge? Obama's policies, such as strict gun control measures, did little to curb the violence and may have even contributed to an uptick in crime.
Chicago taxpayers have now spent more than $1.6 million as a result of a fight between a clout-heavy firefighter and a cop at a rescue scene five years ago, records show.
CTA bus drivers racked up more than 400 red-light-camera and speeding-camera tickets the past two years while on the job, records obtained by the Chicago Sun-Times show — and taxpayers were stuck having to pay.
The once-great college basketball program that debuted at Allstate Arena with a roar 37 years ago is saying goodbye with a whimper. And the timing is bad for Illinois taxpayers. Wintrust Arena on the McCormick Place campus will be the new home of DePaul men's and women's basketball this fall.
The day after federal prosecutors said Cook County Circuit Court Clerk Dorothy Brown received what they described as bribe money from an employee, Brown was collecting money in a different way - by selling political advice for nearly $200 a head. Comment: The scary part is that she probably really does know how to get votes in Chicago.
Comment: Well, well, well. After all the dishonest claims that our group that criticized the seminar was funded by outside interests, look who helped the seminar's supporters. Hypocrisy is no obstacle to the intolerant left.
The 2015 heist of the 111 guns, as well as one in 2014 and another last September from the same 63rd Street Rail Yard highlight a tragic confluence. Chicago's biggest rail yards are on the gang- and homicide-plagued South and West sides where most of the city's 762 killings happened last year.
Former Chicago Public Schools chief Barbara Byrd-Bennett wrecked her career for virtually nothing, but the man to whom she illegally steered CPS contracts personally pocketed more than $5 million from the company at the heart of the scandal, newly released court documents show.
Since 9/11, 15,037 refugees have moved to the United States, starting with Chicago as their first home, according to data from the U.S. State Department's Refugee Processing Center. Last year, 49 percent of Chicago's incoming refugees came from one of the seven countries — Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen — on President Donald Trump's travel ban list.
To create parking turnover that helps businesses serve more customers and reverse a 5 percent drop-off in ticket writing, Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s 2017 budget called for having the city’s parking enforcement aides work in tandem with “contractor teams” on weekends.
The Civic Committee of the Commercial Club of Chicago on Wednesday announced Kelly Welsh, a former Obama administration official, will replace Ty Fahner as the business organization’s president. Welsh was General Counsel at the U.S. Commerce Department. Question: Any experience with bankruptcy law?
Over the past month, U.S. Sen. Richard Durbin, Gov. Bruce Rauner and all but one member of the Illinois congressional delegation added their muscle to the push for a western access point at O'Hare International Airport.
Chicago residents could see their gas bills skyrocket because of a controversial project from Peoples Gas to replace all its aging gas mains.
To the cheers of the police union, Sessions sent his strongest signal to date that he was more concerned about supporting demoralized police officers than he was about negotiating a consent decree culminating in the hiring of a federal monitor to make certain police reforms are implemented in a timely fashion, no matter what it costs local taxpayers.
It's hard to believe now, but Chicago was once a hive of clothing manufacturers that kept sewing machines humming and immigrants employed into the early 1920s. Chicago Tonight visited a small company on the West Side of the city that is hoping to revive the Chicago apparel industry with a combination of American materials and immigrant know-how.
New Trier should focus less on race, more on economic inequality. That’s Problem One. – Opinion – Chicago Tribune
By Corey B. Brooks, pastor of the 1,500-member New Beginnings Church in Chicago's Woodlawn neighborhood.
City Hall today began to parcel out some of the money it raised by squeezing some downtown developers to contribute to a special neighborhood development fund in exchange for winning project approvals. The city announced $9 million in grants will go to local businesses in eight shopping areas on the South and West sides. Each new business will get up to $250,000 for building renovation and related startup costs.
The requirements and difficulty of divesting from family business ties could force Ricketts to withdraw his nomination, two sources told CBS News. That move, the sources said, could come as early as Wednesday.
A gauge of Chicago-area manufacturing shot higher in February, according to data released Tuesday. MNI Indicators said the Chicago PMI rose by 7.1 points to 57.4 in February, marking the highest reading in more than two years. It also was the biggest single month gain since January 2016.
Parents revolt after high school forces students to attend all-day social justice seminar – The College Fix
“Die motherf—er, die," wrote one of the panelists.
"Call it the new Chicago Way."
Chinese investors poured more than $2 billion into Chicago real estate the past two years after flying over the city forever. Yet just as Chicago finally is on the radar in China, two forces may keep more investors from landing here: President Donald Trump's tough talk toward their country and China's own tighter controls on money leaving the nation. Comment: Also, foreign investors haven't so far been bothered by our fiscal problems, but whether that continues is an open question.
On Wednesday, aldermen approved the measure honoring Lopez Rivera, the terrorist whose 70-year sentence was recently commuted by Barack Obama.
Led by Wilmette’s Mimi Rodman, the group’s executive director, Stand for Children Illinois has pivoted away from its mantra of “pro-parent” school reform and into a more polarizing arena. Rodman’s efforts at New Trier represent the first time her Illinois chapter, its parent, Stand for Children, Inc., which spent nearly $17 million in 2016, or any of the group’s other twelve state chapters have expressly advocated for the right of public school teachers and administrators to promote their own political...
Since 1903, the city's Museums in its Parks have received tax money to fund operations, and maintain and care for their buildings. This year, the 11 museums will receive a total of $30 million. It adds up: For instance, in 2015, tax levies accounted for just north of 10 percent of the Museum of Science & Industry's $46 million in revenue.
"I could never have imagined that the congresswoman, who represents one of the largest Jewish constituencies in the country, would be willing to share the stage with a killer."
The state of Illinois and the Trump administration are both mulling potentially draconian budget cuts.
Comment: Any plan will fail unless it addresses suicidal property taxes there that average 12.7% for commercial and 5.2% for residential.
State Sen. Don Harmon, D-Oak Park, is one of the most powerful people in Springfield, talked about as a possible future president of the Illinois Senate. He’s also a partner in a Chicago law firm that’s been paid more than $9 million in the past five years for doing legal work for state agencies, government workers’ pension funds and local governments whose citizens he represents in the Senate, a Chicago Sun-Times examination has found. Comment: He's a Madigan-Cullerton wannabe.
"The most discouraging thing Hargrove has learned since starting his organization is how many police departments around the country not only ignore the FBI’s data but also don’t bother sharing their data with the FBI at all. Among the offenders: the state of Illinois.... Hargrove recently reported that homicides were more likely to go unsolved in Illinois in 2015 than in any other state.... That dreadful clearance rate would seem to go a long way toward explaining Chicago’s notoriously...
Seven people were shot to death on Wednesday, five of them killed over two hours, including a woman who was eight months pregnant and had already picked out a name for her baby. Homicides had been lagging behind last year, which had been the deadliest in two decades. But by Wednesday evening, the city had recorded its 99th homicide two days earlier than it did last year, according to Tribune data.
A billionaire Democratic megadonor, who is exploring a run for governor, encouraged men to use women's bathrooms on Wednesday sparking criticism from transgender advocates and politicians.
Chicago could see tech talent drain if Wellington, New Zealand has its way – Chicago Business Journal
The two groups are reaching out to talent in major markets in the United States, including Chicago, and around the world to find talented tech professionals interested in relocating to New Zealand's scenic capital city.
Officials around the country should watch closely and learn well from these mistakes: The mismanagement of public retirement programs can wreck a city, even in places that aren't already suffering from larger budgetary issues that go beyond their pension funds. Comment: Too late for Chicago.
A group of Southeast Side residents and activists met Tuesday night to formulate a plan for confronting the latest threat of pollution in their community, one of Chicago’s most industrialized areas.
Proviso Township High Schools District 209 dramatically increased its spending over the most recent five-year period for which records are publicly available. Adjusted for inflation, the district’s budget increased 20 percent in that time period. Over the same time, the property tax assessment levied by the district on homeowners increased by 69 percent.
The analysis uncovered 39 payments between Dec. 2011 and Feb. 2016 to Massachusetts-based SEED, or Seeking Educational Equity and Diversity, which states its mission is to train teachers to acknowledge white “oppression, power, and privilege.”
The Chicago region remains thirsty for new public transit funds to address an estimated $37.7 billion 10-year tab for maintenance and capital investments.
CPS’ first move comes Wednesday, when the board will vote to cut more than $100 million from its budget to fill a $215 million hole. Here’s an explainer on how CPS got to this point, what the district’s options are and what are the consequences.
Communities on the South and West Side buy disproportionately more lottery tickets but do not see returns to their schools.
A Texas developer plans to build nearly 500 homes on the site of the former Cabrini-Green housing complex, another big step in the city's long-running push to redevelop the Near North Side property. The Chicago Housing Authority said its Board of Commissions has picked a team led by El Paso-based Hunt Development Group to develop 480 units of mixed-income housing on a 6.9-acre site at Larrabee Street and Clybourn Avenue. The project will include a 21-story tower, 32,900-square feet of...
Comment: This is becoming more preposterous by the day.
"This seminar, concocted by one of the nation's most prestigious schools, undoubtedly will become a template for other mass indoctrinations. It will blossom into the latest fad approved by America's education "experts" who have burdened America with so many failed school systems."
Comment: A pretty good two-minute summary of the New Trier controversy.
When Chicago Public Schools just put a freeze on half of every school’s remaining discretionary money to save $46 million, CEO Forrest Claypool blamed Gov. Bruce Rauner for the cuts, saying he has no regard for the city’s impoverished black and brown children. But it turns out that the way Claypool decided to cut school budgets this time — by freezing the rest of every principal’s discretionary money — has hurt majority Hispanic schools at twice the rate of schools...
Leaders at Monday night’s meeting said it was too late to make changes.
Comment: It's not true that "students are allowed to leave if they feel uncomfortable." Attendance is being coerced. It's a day of mandatory attendance. It's day of Spring sports tryouts. If you don't attend you are barred from those tryouts and other extracurricular activities. The school has, however, made parts of the day's seminar optional.
Country Club Hills Fire Department – “Thousands of Web searches for pornography” – Hard drives wiped. – Illinois Leaks
Comment: Country Club Hills has long been plagued by gross mismanagement.
Chants included: “From Palestine to Mexico, boarder walls have got to go!” Protesters listened to Sousaphones Against Hate and Baritones Resisting Aggression. They played “The Imperial March.”
New Trier H.S. paid $90K for group to instruct teachers on “understanding whiteness” – North Cook News
"PEG teaches that 'individualism'-- or assigning independent classroom assignments-- and 'future time orientation,' or planning ahead, are forms of 'cultural racism' that benefit whites over blacks." “It is our belief that the most devastating factor contributing to the lowered achievement of students of color is institutionalized racism.” Highland Park H.S., Deerfield H.S., Evanston H.S. and Oak Park-River Forest H.S. are other schools in on the racket.
The Illinois State Board of Education said Friday it has reached a tentative settlement with the Chicago Urban League, who accused the agency almost a decade ago of violating students’ civil rights with the way it funds public schools.
"As administrators foist ‘social justice’ on 4,000 suburban students, parents plead for balance." New Trier High School has disgraced itself and the very concept of education.
Comment: Why should taxpayers put one dime into a school system dominated by a teachers union that fundamentally hates the economic system into which they are supposed to be teaching kids to function?
Great article with an inside look at gangs.
The rest of CPS' school year — aka budget year — is short. The district's finances are gravely out of whack. And a huge teachers pension payment comes due at the end of June. This is ugly.
A compilation of selected consumer taxes, including rates and descriptions.
How $85,000 in political donations from the hotel lobby could be influencing Airbnb regulations – Project Six
In 2015, hotels and hotel lobby groups donated more than $85,000 to 22 Chicago aldermen. A year later, the city passed confusing and complex regulations on Airbnb and similar home-sharing services that allow people to rent out their private homes and apartments to individuals.
Uber lobbyist, Ex Obama aide David Plouffe fined for illegally lobbying Chicago mayor – Chicago Business Journal
David Plouffe, a former Uber executive and Barack Obama's 2008 campaign manager, has been fined $90,000 by the Chicago Board of Ethics for illegally lobbying Mayor Rahm Emanuel on behalf of the ride-hailing company.
In his Facebook statement, “A Message Of Strength & Solidarity,” Bayless wrote: “Out of respect for our staff’s vote to support Thursday’s immigrant civil actions in Chicago and elsewhere, we are closing Frontera Grill, Topolobampo, Xoco and Fonda Frontera on Thursday.”
Chicago Violence: Toddler’s Killing Is Captured on Facebook Live as City’s Pain Plays on a Loop – NBC News
The shooting death of a 2-year-old Chicago boy and a 25-year-old man was streamed live on Facebook on Tuesday — a shockingly public display of the violence that has killed two children in less than a week in that city.
The massive apartment construction boom in downtown Chicago is starting to show signs of saturation, and rents will likely start to decline by fall, Appraisal Research Counselors reported Tuesday.
Is it to get travelers downtown a bit faster, or is it chasing a status symbol? London got private businesses to signal its competitiveness as a global city. If Chicago can’t, that’s a lot of money to pay for a signal.
Canadian engineering and architecture firm exp is moving its headquarters from the Toronto suburbs to downtown Chicago. They expect to add 150 jobs at its hew home, with future engineering, architectural, and technical positions to be filled by local talent and recruits from Chicago-area universities. They will join about 230 employees already working at exp's office in the Loop.
Citing the landmark education civil rights case Brown v. Board of Education, CPS railed against the state of Illinois for maintaining what it calls “two separate and demonstrably unequal systems for funding public education in the State: one for the City of Chicago, whose public school children are 90% children of color, and the other for the rest of the State, whose public school children are predominantly white.”
Comment: Chicago's MoneyThink is doing great work teaching financial literacy to young people. Anybody think financial literacy is in short supply in Chicago?
The complex had more shootings than any block in the city between June 2011 and June 2014, a Sun-Times analysis found. As the first housing cooperative operated and owned by African-Americans, Parkway Gardens was a model for urban development. It is now a textbook example of what happens when hope moves out and despair moves in.
Another grim statistic in the DOJ report: an officer suicide rate drastically higher than the national average for police.
Under fire for crossing the line into the privacy of peoples’ homes, Mayor Rahm Emanuel wants to water down his plan to regulate the burgeoning home-sharing industry to bolster the city’s chances of surviving a court challenge.
Sixty-two percent of Chicago families are financially insecure, meaning they have less than $2,000 in savings, according to a new report. This can lead to trouble recovering from a financial emergency or job loss, but it can also directly impact city budgets.
Why were CSU leaders spending money on expanding their mismanaged realm? Why weren't they focused instead on why their enrollment has plummeted by half since 2010? Or why CSU's six-year graduation rate is 11 — yes, 11 — percent? Because no one stopped them, that's why.
For years now, workers at the city’s airports have complained they’re victims of wage theft and are paid poorly even when they get all that’s promised. Some contractors have settled federal lawsuits, including the janitorial company the city has paid about $100 million over the past five years.
The cash-strapped Chicago school system is overpaying by as much as $10 million for its new fleet of for-profit alternative schools for dropouts, according to a WBEZ analysis of a Chicago Public Schools audit.
"What a difference between what I experienced and what they are going to be forced to experience at New Trier High School."
Reform or distraction: Chicago sports teams seek workers comp changes for athletes in budget deal – Cook County Record
Chicago sports teams have rolled the dice and are hoping for a big win if Illinois lawmakers decide they won’t have to pay workers’ compensation wage loss benefits to professional athletes beyond age 35.
The complaint alleged that the district subjected female students to discrimination by charging them more than male students for swimsuits for physical education classes.
"Microsoft Corp.’s decision to move its regional headquarters to downtown Detroit from the suburbs has talking heads all atwitter. Why stop there? For the first time in who knows when, southeast Michigan and the reinventing city at its core can legitimately compete to become the regional headquarters of choice for the Midwest. That’s an honor for way too long owned by Chicago."
Comment: Failing to distinguish permanent jobs from temporary construction jobs borders on "fake news."
Senators question Todd Ricketts’ campaign fundraising ahead of confirmation hearing – Chicago Tribune
Chicago Cubs co-owner Todd Ricketts has been pressed for details about his fundraising efforts for two groups by three Democratic U.S. senators who will consider his nomination to be the No. 2 official at the Commerce Department.
No small rehab: $500 million.
"These 'check your privilege' brainwashing sessions have become commonplace at colleges. Parents don’t seem to know or care enough to protest. The New Trier parents’ group is a sign that resistance to deadening propaganda is alive and well — and polite."
Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Thursday outlined a three-year plan to create 40,000 jobs, in part, by forging ahead with a high-speed rail line between downtown and O’Hare Airport that steers clear of the $200 million Block 37 super-station.
Trump on Wednesday blamed rising violence in Chicago on "undocumented immigrants," but gave no evidence to support his claim.
Chicago’s Republican Party filed an ethics complaint Wednesday against schools CEO Forrest Claypool, charging that a letter he sent home to students this week blaming the governor for budget woes is “political propaganda.”
Groups across the city are pushing the state to ditch laws banning rent control in Illinois as rental markets in Pilsen, Logan Square and Hyde Park heat up. State Rep. Will Guzzardi (D-Logan Square) has introduced a bill in Springfield that would repeal a 1997 law passed under Republican Gov. Jim Edgar. Comment: Why not just send a letter to all apartment builders asking them to leave the state?
It looks like the biggest companies in Illinois will sit out a revenue revival expected to boost top lines at many major American corporations this year. Sales at the 10 largest publicly traded companies here are projected to edge down 0.27 percent on average, based on analyst forecasts compiled by Thomson Reuters. That's an improvement over last year's average decline of 3.4 percent, but a far cry from the 5.9 percent average projected revenue increase for all companies in the...
Amid a two-year budget fight in Springfield that has bruised it financially, and with a new hotel and basketball arena opening later this year, the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority today released a wide-ranging study it commissioned to quantify how much money it generates for Chicago and Illinois.
Rahm Emanuel Tells Democrats To Stop Crying, Bend Over For “Long Haul” – Then Offers Subversive Advice On Dirty Politics – Zero Hedge
"Of course while waiting to regain power, the most effective thing congressional Democrats can do for the country is stop infighting - and then divide, divide, divide!"
Urlacher sues Florida hair doctor for baldly using his name to hawk transplants – Cook County Record
Chicago Bears legend Brian Urlacher – a player whose exceptional, bruising play on the field was accentuated by his clean shaven head – has rushed to sack a Florida medical practice the middle linebacker said has wrongly profited from baldly using Urlacher’s name and hair regrowth success to market his services.
Comment: Do these clowns know that using public school resources for politicking is illegal?
A school-by-school breakdown of the $46 million in mid-year cuts announced by Chicago Public Schools Monday.
The project — a joint initiative between the state and City Colleges of Chicago — repeatedly has stalled amid the state's budget crisis and disputes between the city and Springfield. Instead of being filled with students taking classes, the facility sits idle and empty, its future uncertain after years of delays that could cost taxpayers millions beyond the initial $45 million price tag.
As enrollment drops 50%, Chicago State University continues work on new $60M campus – Illinois Policy
"Lawmakers should address wasteful spending in higher education, which is hurting students, their families, instructors and taxpayers."
Coyotes removed from North Side park after residents fed them, let them play with pets – Chicago Tribune
Comment: If you were hoping this was something about Feds coming after aldermen, no such luck.
Comment: What, "the other guys are all fascists" isn't enough?
About $28 million of the $51 million in planned savings will come by CPS halting planned expenditures on new textbooks, more technology, field trips, hourly employees and other items. An additional $5 million in planned spending on teacher training also is being frozen.
Cities, counties and states are gearing up for a costly battle over billions of dollars in federal funding after President Trump threatened to halt support for those that defy his ban on so-called "sanctuary cities."
The Arizona company at the center of a Chicago’s scandal-scarred red-light camera program has agreed to pay Chicago taxpayers $20 million to resolve the city’s claims.
Class action: ParkChicago app users owed money by city, vendors for bogus parking tickets | Cook County Record
The city of Chicago and the vendor to which the city paid $1.2 billion to install and run Chicago’s street parking meter system have been hit with a class action lawsuit, alleging the vendor and the city should be made to pay up for parking tickets wrongly issued to motorists who were actually legally parked after paying for their parking using the ParkChicago smartphone app.
And it's not actually pig skin.
Comment: This is a shallow article lazily done. Our own article on this is linked here.
Washington, D.C., and Chicago, Illinois governments received the highest amount of federal funding per resident and, therefore, have the most to lose by maintaining their sanctuary status.
Hundreds of people on the internet say they're going to moon Trump Tower in an attempt to get its namesake developer-turned-president to release his tax returns.
Discrimination lawsuits involving the Chicago Fire Department’s hiring and promotions have cost taxpayers nearly $92 million over the past nine years.
For a look at what’s likely to come, North Shore homeowners can just look up the road, where a feared future real estate apocalypse happening right now.
Fiscal Contagion: When Distressed Municipalities Put States and Local Clusters at Risk – Muninet Guide
Comment: "Credit cluster" is bondspeak for overlapping, intertwined government insolvency. Most of this article, as you might have guessed, is about the Chicago region.
A Cleveland minister's surprise comment to President Donald Trump on Wednesday that he had heard from "top gang thugs" in Chicago who wanted to meet with him to reduce the city's gun violence was quickly ridiculed by anti-violence groups here as likely to fail and certainly out of touch with longtime gang dynamics. But Trump embraced the minister's remarks. "That's a great idea because Chicago is totally out of control," the president said of Scott meeting with Chicago gang leaders...
"This is uncharted. Very rarely except on panels at conferences would you have this sort of open debate or defensiveness." Comment: Cat fight! This is about as entertaining as it will get in the dull world of municipal finance.
Fitch Ratings took aim at its credit ratings competitor Moody's Investors Service in an unusual and blunt public notice on Wednesday with a report detailing disagreements over its analysis of the Chicago Public Schools bond payment protections. Comment: Unprecedented as far as we know.
At a meeting Wednesday with members of the African American community, President Donald Trump again talked about Chicago violence saying if city officials don’t take steps, “we’re going to solve the problem for them.” “Because we’re going to have to do something… What’s happening in Chicago should not be happening in this country,” Trump said.
In an advisory issued Wednesday, Standard & Poor’s said its preliminary analysis of Trump’s executive order is “unlikely to immediately affect federal funding streams” to sanctuary cities because of “established statutory limitations of the executive branch withholding or deferring such funding.” Comment: Looks to me like S&P sucking up to Rahm in hopes of more business. S&P is wrong. If Trump wants to whack Chicago over this, he has many ways to do it.
Comment: Good to see somebody in the regular media notice the data we've been harping about.
Year after year, CPS claims a "balanced budget" but actual results show whopping losses. Comment: Just another example of why government "budgets" in general are fake policy, as we wrote recently.
In a Jan. 20 ruling, Judge Ann Collins-Dole found that the city violated a 1993 law when it tried to impose taxes on cigars and smoking, smokeless and pipe tobacco last year.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel and his aviation chief have a rare opportunity to upgrade O'Hare International Airport while stoking competition among its airlines.
Chicago's widening spread penalties may not ease until the state cleans up its budget mess and Chicago Public Schools shores up its rocky finances. That's because the city's fortunes are now more closely linked to the distressed district and a dysfunctional state government in what's known as "credit cluster risk," say market participants Comment: Duh. What a sorry reflection on the muni bond community that they only start talking about this now. We've been saying here for years that you have...
"You would think that with the Chicago area's low home inventory that our home prices would be taking off. They are advancing but not nearly as fast as the rest of the nation and we are in fact falling further and further behind the rest of the country." Comment: This author, Gary Lucido, always does a particularly good analysis of the Case-Schiller Index, which is the only meaningful one on home prices.
Northwestern University has awarded nearly $165,000 to professors through two programs intended to "further their diversity initiatives" and help them explore “the psychological consequences of biases.” Comment: Higher education has descended into a reliable source of comic entertainment. See Campus Reform's weekly roundup linked here.
By The Bond Buyer's Yvette Shields. The CAFR (the actual financial statements) flags its reliance on borrowed money and its need for more state funding to stay afloat.
Comment: Ironic that Northwestern University Hospital generally does not accept patients covered by plans offered through the Obamacare marketplace.
More than 40 percent of the more than 30,000 refugees who have settled in various parts of Chicagoland since 2002 are from the seven countries specifically mentioned in Donald Trump's latest executive order.
Metra’s plans to raise fares go into effect February, hurting commuters and failing to raise enough for stated capital needs.
Caterpillar Inc. (CAT) announced today it will locate a limited group of senior executives and support functions in the Chicago area later this year and reaffirmed the ongoing importance of its presence in Peoria and Central Illinois.
For Kathy, the owner of a 90-year-old jewelry store in Berwyn, Illinois, every piece of her jewelry adds up to a larger, richer history about the business that she joined as a 16-year-old part-time employee and ended up running. A lot of small businesses are labors of love, but the story of Kathy and Hursts’ Berwyn Jewelers is a love story in more ways than one.
A task force has been put together to tackle the property tax issue and they have come up with 27 recommendations to make them lower.
Starting February 1st, you're going to be charged seven cents for each bag you get after shopping at a grocery store and at retail outlets.
About 65 percent of African-American, Latino and Asian households in Chicago have so little savings and other assets that a sudden job loss, medical emergency or other income disruption would throw them into poverty within three months, according to a report on wealth inequities in the city. Behold the legacy of the party of the underprivileged.
Chicago In Crosshairs Of Trump’s Sanctuary Cities Crackdown; $3.6 billion at risk – Better Government Association
A new executive order signed by President Donald Trump sets up a showdown over immigration enforcement that could threaten at least $3.6 billion in federal aid this year for the city of Chicago and sister agencies, a BGA analysis shows.
Chicago and Illinois lost residents faster than any other state or major U.S. city in the last few years. But some are returning.
Matt Maloney , the CEO of Grubhub whose post-election email to employees sparked a Twitter firestorm by Donald Trump supporters, has deleted his account.
The university announced late Thursday that over the next year it will spin off the 65-year-old nonprofit into an autonomous group with less direct control by the university.
Protests continued Sunday night with hundreds again gathering inside and outside the international terminal.
Buried among the facts and figures in the Justice Department’s recent book-length report on the failings of the Chicago Police Department was a telling statistic: The rate of suicide among CPD officers is 60 percent higher than other departments across the U.S. An average of three officers will take their own lives each year.
Appeals panel: City of Harvey can’t argue its way out of paying police pension fund $7M – Cook County Record
Perhaps ending a dispute that dates back more than a decade, an Illinois appeals court has ordered the city of Harvey to pay more than $7 million to its police pension fund.
The chaotic day at the airport came a day after Trump signed the order barring refugees and green card holders from seven Muslim-majority nations from entering — or returning to — the country.
Comment: No, it's going to take lots more than the usual game of funding for city projects, described here. That's especially true respecting Trump and the federal government. The real game will end up being changes to the federal Bankruptcy Code and legislation perhaps similar to Puerto Rico's.
In Jan. 2007, the average Willowbrook home was worth $305,000. Eight years later, in Jan. 2015, it was valued at just $182,000.
Chicago law firm releases report noting trends in workplace class-action litigation – Cook County Record
Nationally, while wage-and-hour litigation, and related regulatory actions were on the rise in 2016, the monetary value of top employment-related class action settlements were on the decline last year. “Workplace class-action litigation has increased geometrically over the past decade,” said Gerald L. Maatman Jr, a partner at Seyfarth Shaw. “More often than not, it poses unique 'bet-the-company' risks for employers.
A Palatine bar that planned to offer a “Build-A-Wall” burger adorned with Mexican condiments has walked back on the special after receiving criticism from some saying it was offensive—though not everyone agrees.
Seaway Bank was once the largest black-owned bank in the U.S.
Comment: A college prof on CNN saying something nice about Trump. How 'bout that?
Comment: The tech solution that's ultimately key is simple -- birth control. Don't have a baby without a committed partner and the financial means to raise a child.
Dropping home values, high property taxes push Illinois toward financial cliff, analyst says – West Cook News
Illinois residents burdened with falling home values and high property taxes are headed toward a cliff if Springfield doesn't do something soon to pull the state back from the precipice, said Wirepoints writer Mark Glennon.
The Chicago Police Department last year solved fewer than one in five murders committed during the year, the lowest rate for that crime in at least a half century, according to new police figures.
Similar crimes "are going on all over the Chicago area," Naperville police Cmdr. Lou Cammiso said, but police do not believe they are connected or the work of a single group.
The Chicago Public Schools (CPS) ended its last fiscal year with a bigger-than-expected deficit and will need to find new revenue or make major spending cuts in order to sustain operations over the long term, according to the district's annual audit.
British vacuum maker Dyson Ltd. is the latest global company to get in on the action in the trendy Fulton Market neighborhood in Chicago. The company will relocate its U.S. headquarters from 600 W. Chicago Ave. to the brand new commercial development at 1330 W. Fulton St.T he company expects to add 100 jobs in the Chicago area along with the change of venue.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel is spending money promised for rebates on police body cameras, a legal defense fund for undocumented immigrants and other programs.
"Now he's Rahm who fights on behalf of Latinos to keep Chicago as a sanctuary city, protective of undocumented residents here in this country illegally."
In an interview with Business Insider, he said his firm was doing its part by contributing to Chicago's public schools. Duffy said firms in cities across the US had a "moral responsibility" to play a key role in fighting societal ills, and he called community improvement a team effort.
Appeals panel: City of Harvey can’t argue its way out of paying police pension fund $7M – Cook County Record
An Illinois appeals court has ordered the city of Harvey to pay more than $7 million to its police pension fund.
For Trump and others, a strong federal hand might be the only answer, as it is when needed to “nsure the domestic tranquility” of “we, the people.”
As the city’s school board announces a third round of budget hearings to deal with still-private plans to close most of a $215 million budget gap, one member raised the possibility of shortening the school year.
The question now is, how much, if anything, it will cost Chicago to remain a sanctuary city. And how much money Emanuel is prepared to lose.
Comment: "Fake policy." Rahm loves it.
Be thankful that your tax dollars aren’t funding the school system in Evanston, Illinois. If they were, you would be infuriated that they are being used to further a blatantly partisan cause.
The latest pricing has at least one analyst worried enough that it reminds him of Puerto Rico, circa 2013.
If President Donald Trump is serious about his promise to rebuild the nation's infrastructure, Chicago officials have a plan ready to go that would modernize and expand Union Station.
Cash-strapped Chicago State University spent about $200,000 over the past two years to lobby state lawmakers, including contracts with consultants closely tied to legislative leaders whose inability to pass a state budget has contributed to the school's financial crisis.
Toni Preckwinkle campaigned for county board president as a tax slasher but later pushed new and increased levies. Debate rages over whether she has imposed enough austerity on county government to justify a course correction on taxes. Comment: A/K/A to our readers here as Taxwinkle or Peckerwanker.
Pink yarn is running low at craft stores after thousands of women created "pussyhats" for the weekend Women's March.
Parents, teachers and disability rights advocates say new oversight protocols keep kids from getting services they need, while BGA analysis raises questions about Chicago Public Schools' claims that minority students are over-identified for special ed.
By the Numbers: The Department of Justice investigation on the Chicago Police Department – Project 6
The far-reaching report gave statistics and data on many different aspects of the CPD, its operations and the problems with the department. Some of the important data from the DOJ report is in this article. Comment: Project 6 is the new, privately funded government accountability task force in Chicago.
"As the economy recovers and energy prices go down and the older cohort of millennials starts to get married in larger numbers, residential patterns may change significantly, with important consequences for America’s politics and geography." Comment: Will be interesting to see if that develops in Chicago, where millennials so far have shown little interest in the suburbs.
A northwest suburban school board member has resigned after a tweet in which he referred to women who attended Saturday’s anti-Trump marches as “vagina screechers.”
The proposed northern boundary in 1817 for Illinois, according to the study, was a "straight line from the southernmost tip of Lake Michigan (in Indiana) to the Mississippi River just south of the Rock River confluence with the Mississippi River."
“I know damn well they will not save any money,” said Bill Iacullo, president of the International Operating Engineers Local 143. “They’re wasting big-time money, and they know it.” Comment: Note the source.
How left-wing and racist radicals are infiltrating our children’s minds (at New Trier High School) -The Hill
True to form, a link to this article and supporting comments were deleted from the New Trier Parents page on Facebook.
The Women's March on Chicago Saturday was reportedly the third largest march of its kind outside Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles, organizers said.
In effect, Emanuel has said to Moody’s, if you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all. He bald-facedly ask them to quit reporting on us. This service rates our bonds so that investors know a little about what they are buying. We are at the bottom of their ratings, worst in the country.... It is time to say, if we don’t get concessions from the unions on the pensions, we cannot tax our way out of this fiasco....
Local officials’ failure to address skyrocketing property taxes has pushed residents out of McHenry County at astonishing rates.
Ald. Anthony Beale (9th) is pronouncing the unprecedented minority outreach campaign as doomed to failure without immediate changes to the hiring process itself.
Comment: Wouldn't it be fun to write the spec for this job?
TV shows like FOX’s “Empire” and NBC’s “Chicago Fire,” “Chicago PD” and “Chicago Med” film in the state. That lineup is set to add “Chicago Justice,” which started filming in September. Online media services like Netflix and Amazon also air shows filmed in Illinois.
Just moments after Trump was sworn in, his team hit the go button on a revamped White House website that highlights the "thousands of shootings in Chicago last year alone."
They're taking a stand against hate, right?
Local officials’ failure to address skyrocketing property taxes has pushed residents out of McHenry County at astonishing rates.
A Chicago-based advocacy group that has led a national crusade to expose sexual abuse by Catholic clergy is being sued by a former executive who claims the not-for-profit colluded with lawyers who sued the church in exchange for “kickbacks” on the multimillion-dollar settlements they won.
A Washington attorney whose law firm helped guide the city through the U.S. Justice Department’s investigation of the Chicago Police Department has been chosen by Mayor Rahm Emanuel to replace departing Corporation Counsel Steve Patton. Edward Siskel, a former deputy White House Counsel under President Barack Obama, also served as a deputy attorney general in the Department of Justice.
Chicago's spread penalties in the primary market hit a new peak Thursday when it priced a $1.2 billion general obligation sale. The city's tax-exempt spreads landed at 339 to 347 basis points over the Municipal Market Data's AAA benchmark.
Yields topped out at 6.20 percent for bonds due in 2038 with an infrequently seen 6 percent coupon. The city's so-called credit spread over Municipal Market Data's benchmark triple-A yield scale widened to 347 basis points for bonds due in 12 to 17 years and to 339 basis points in 2038, according to MMD.
The Chicago Teachers Union and its allies launched a series of demonstrations at schools citywide Thursday morning, joining a national effort organized by education labor unions and left-leaning advocacy groups to repudiate President-elect Donald Trump and his pick to lead the U.S. Department of Education.
Comment: The primary underlying cause is obvious -- having a baby before you are in a committed relationship and have the financial means to raise a child.
Comment: Working exactly as intended.
As Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Wednesday defended four unpaid furlough days just imposed on Chicago’s public schools, the Chicago Teachers Union announced plans to join national protests against school spending cuts.
Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle on Wednesday stopped short of throwing the shortcomings of the Chicago Police Department at the feet of Mayor Rahm Emanuel, but said she wished he had done more, and done it sooner. Comment: Best to distance yourself from Rahm if you want to run for mayor.
Adam McKay, who won an Oscar for his film "The Big Short," is executive producing a movie called "Crook County," based on the true story of the massive 1980s FBI sting in Chicago that took down dirty Cook County judges, sheriff's deputies, police officers, court officials and one state legislator.
Yeah, we know this isn't really important. But the Fish of the Week got lots of pageviews last week so here we go again.
The habit will cost a smoker an estimated nearly $1.8 million throughout his or her lifetime, making Illinois among the costliest states in the nation for users, according to a new study.
Chicago bills itself as a ‘sanctuary city,’ but advocates worry about limits to protections for undocumented immigrants – Reader
Comment: There should be exactly zero controversy over whether illegals with serious criminal records are protected.
This is a place where children often see gangbangers as close friends. "Mr Lopez, don't blame the gangsters," the student's letter says. "My friend's family is mostly gangsters and they love me and I love them."
By The Bond Buyer's Yvette Shields.
The author, Faisal Khan, is CEO of Project 6 and former Legislative Inspector General of Chicago City Council.
The ride-hailing company said Wednesday it has expanded a program that allows riders to use commuter benefits debit cards for UberPool rides, which arranges rides with other passengers going in the same direction for a discounted price.
Vallas, known for transforming urban schools districts, called CSU’s financial and structural problems a “microcosm” of what he endured as CEO of Chicago Public Schools from 1995 to 2001. But he said he’s confident the university can endure a turnaround.
They will be joined by millions more around the country, the largest women’s march expected in Washington D.C. While organizers say it isn’t necessarily an anti-Trump rally, they aren’t sure there would have been a march had Hillary Clinton won.
"Area red-light camera tickets a boon for clouted company."
Besides a tragic human toll, a far less traumatizing, but still damaging, byproduct of the violence is the erosion of businesses in neighborhoods wracked by violence. Stretches of boarded up shops line thoroughfares and once booming retail epicenters are shells of their glory days. Poverty, depopulation and political neglect have played a role in suppressed development.
Comment: Buy now while you still can!
So… you promise to be more fiscally responsible… later. Yeah, that’s very convincing. We’ll believe you’ll stop scoop-and-tossing if you actually stop scoop-and-tossing. This is not a difficult concept.
The obscure Bank of the Ozarks, based in Arkansas' capital, in the past six months has committed more than $430 million in construction loans for what will be the tallest building south of Willis Tower and a new 35-story structure to house CNA Financial. It also is one of two lenders bankrolling the redevelopment of the old Chicago Public Schools headquarters.
As the U.S. Justice Department asks Chicago to address deep flaws in police officers' use of force, a group of aldermen is accusing Mayor Rahm Emanuel's Law Department of enabling the misconduct and is asking federal authorities to investigate.
New Trier High School Teaches ‘Blackenomics,’ ‘Trans-Rights,’ and ‘White Genocide Against Blacks’ – Breitbart
Comment: Many parents in this high school district are livid about this pathetic day of extremist propaganda, at which attendance is required.
An almost comical case of point-missing arose again this week in Chicago, when the city awarded a $1.1 million preliminary planning contract to an engineering firm for a project in Woodlawn, one of the South Side neighborhoods that has become a killing field. Rahm wants to raise tens of millions of dollars to…watch out…build a luxury golf course in Woodlawn's Jackson Park.
Cook County is ahead of schedule on its goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 80 percent by 2050, a new report shows. Comment: At what cost? Nodody knows. Nobody cares.
The company plans on moving its white-collar workforce to Naperville, while keeping its manufacturing plant in Michigan.
Amtrak wants to enhance its route from Chicago to Milwaukee from seven round trips a day to 10 to accommodate increased ridership. You know what you’re getting, if you buy a house right next to railroad tracks. But some suburban homeowners say a proposal to expand an Amtrak line that will increase train traffic is too much.
“Consent decrees are traditionally very expensive for cities like Chicago. If they can work to resolve issues without paying a federal monitor hundreds of thousands of dollars and they can accomplish the same thing, that’s a good practice to save citizens money.”
Harvey, who grew up in Cleveland, provided no details of what that help might entail, but suggested it could be similar to mentoring programs he is already involved in.
Chicago is putting up for sale about 40 properties, most of them empty school buildings shuttered in the historic 2013 school closings, officials announced Thursday. Chicago Public Schools so far has sold only nine of the 50-some buildings closed in 2013 and found other purposes for five.
Des Plaines State Rep Moylan plays cheerleader for House Speaker Madigan. Literally. – North Cook News
Interesting because it shows how a suburban leader can be co-opted by Madigan to do the bidding for Chicago, which is inverse to his own constituents' interests.
A property tax increase of that size, through, would weaken the city’s “political and practical ability” to increase taxes to fund pensions and other city services, Moody’s said.
We're only second to last!
An Amazon delivery driver was held up at gunpoint by two masked men at 84th and South Hermitage Tuesday morning, marking the 12th armed robbery of a delivery driver in Chicago since December.
No, no, it's not City Hall. It's the floor of the Calumet TARP Pumping Station pump rooms rest far below Chicago's Riverdale neighborhood at 400 E. 130th St.
That guy who wrote the letter to the Tribune about leaving Chicago is actually from Indiana.
The Justice Department’s probe of Chicago Police misconduct found the Independent Police Review Authority used biased techniques to investigate officers — and police received poor training at all levels, the Chicago Sun-Times has learned.
Our suggestion for a different: "Why I won't be getting any money for my district."
Under the city worker pension plan, city taxpayers would contribute millions more a year to the municipal workers’ and laborers’ pension funds. To pay for the increased contributions, the City Council approved a new tax on city water and sewer service.
Pretty please? And never mind all that stuff I said about racism and that you "play with dark forces."
Comment: Big mistake by Rahm picking a fight on this. The rating agencies are already far too lax. Smart people know that and he'll trigger a backlash.
You think Trump’s news conferences are rough? Go to Chicago’s City Hall – John Kass – Chicago Tribune
At least Trump didn't threaten to spit on reporters. And he didn't get drunk and order underlings to remove a reporter's desk from the press area. Or announce that a reporter should get a whipping. Or verbally assault a reporter for his lack of hair. And he didn't suggest sticking the barrel of a rifle up a reporter's behind and then pulling the trigger to make his political point on gun control. That and more have happened in Chicago.
In Chicago, officials originally announced a plan in 2015 to place a nine percent tax on cloud-based services. As an extension of an existing personal property tax, the new proposal would cover both streaming video and services like general cloud-based streaming. After negotiations, the tax rate was reduced to 5.25 percent and went into effect Jan. 1.
An appeals court ruling in December determined that the village of North Riverside doesnt have an adequate reason for shorting the pension fund for several years prior to 2013 an issue that started in an administrative hearing and wound its way through the courts for more than two years.
Chicago has an overwhelming number of problems that have no simple fix. Collectively, they make what would be a remarkable city the premier example of urban decay.
Creamer was exposed by James O’Keefe’s Project Veritas as the key figure in a complex scheme involving a tactic called “bird-dogging,” which involved planting trained activists at Donald Trump’s campaign rallies and other Republican events. The activists were trained to provoke members of the audience into reacting violently, and to provide footage to the media. Memo to Jeff Sessions: Sic 'em.
“We acknowledge that there will be a need for future revenue increases." Hee hee.
Rahm Emanuel isn't happy with Moody's Investors Service, so he's trying to make the rating agency go away. Emanuel's administration disclosed Tuesday that the mayor formally asked Moody's to withdraw all of the city ratings. The disclosure came ahead of investor meetings set for this week. Moody's declined. Comment: A reminder that ratings agencies are prostitutes, but they are forced prostitutes. If they try to be honest they'll be whipped, and certainly won't get hired. If you don't know how...
The U.S. Justice Department will conclude in a report to be released Friday that the Chicago Police Department displayed a pattern and practice of violating residents' constitutional rights over years, a law enforcement official said Wednesday.
"I’ve come to understand that Chicago, and its surrounding areas, have become hell on Earth for any thinking person with a modicum of self-respect. This has become an insane, dangerous, soul-destroying place, and I’ve had enough."
The intersection of Harlem Avenue and Cermak Road, a "citation supernova," has generated more than $20.7 million in red-light camera citations since the start of 2014. Comment: Fellow victims of some of these know they are little more than drive-by, random tax shots hitting you.
Analysis: North Riverside retired firefighters will collect $39 million more than they saved – West Cook News
In 2016 alone, the seventeen North Riverside retired firefighters collected at least $1.154 million in benefits-- nearly as much in a single year as they all saved combined during their careers.
More than a year after a stampede of clout players put forward proposals, Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s administration still has not closed a deal on a major planned revamping of Midway Airport’s concessions.
Chicago is conducting a full court press with investors this week to promote its budget and pension funding gains ahead of a $1.16 billion general obligation sale. Even if investors downplay the city's own looming fiscal pressures, its spread penalties next week could suffer from fallout from the Chicago Public Schools' fiscal woes and the state government's political dysfunction, market participants said.
Trump, with a little help from Congress, will have broad presidential powers to crack down on "sanctuary cities" that protect undocumented immigrants. In what could become a major conflict between the new president and local governments, the showdown likely will result in legal challenges testing how far the White House can go in dictating its priorities.
But Rahm, you told us everything was fine now.
According to CBRE, Chicago is slated to get 2,142 new rooms this year. In addition to the Marriott Marquis, Chicago will get a new trendy ACE Hotel in the Fulton Market District, a luxury Viceroy hotel in the Gold Coast, and a Nobu Hotel, co-owned by actor Robert De Niro. The city will also welcome EMC2, part of the Marriott Autograph Collection. Kimpton Hotels and Restaurants’ former Hotel Burnham will be rebranded to The Alise Chicago, a StayPineapple Hotel.
‘Returning to Where it All Began’: Obama Pens Heartfelt to Chicago Ahead of Farewell Speech – NBC Chicago
"Over the course of my life, I’ve been reminded time and again that change can happen." Yes, indeed.
Brazenly partisan propaganda. Lakeshore liberalism at its worst. Comment: I let my son who is a student there think and decide on his own, but he'll be free to stay home that day.
Illinois governor pans state legislature’s bill for Chicago’s muncipal and laborers’ pensions – Reuters
“The bill essentially authorizes another property tax hike on the people of Chicago and sets a funding cliff five years out without any assurances that the city can meet its obligations,” Rauner spokeswoman Catherine Kelly said in a statement. “The governor cannot support this bill without real pension reform that protects taxpayers.”
Denis Lawlor was overheard giving rookie MWRD cop Daniel Varallo an unorthodox orientation to life on the job at the floodwater control agency’s Stickney plant in 2015, including the location of a secret room where officers kept a beer fridge, and calling another officer a “stupid Alabama hill n—–.”
There are stunning new crime numbers from the FBI: in Chicago, it isn't just murders and shootings that are up - it is all violent crime. Newly-obtained FBI data show that the crime surge in Chicago goes beyond the end of a gun. Overall violent crime - an umbrella figure that includes murder, rape, robbery and assault - jumped significantly here the first half of last year, an increase more than four times higher than the rest of the nation.
It’s not a small problem. Zion is stuck with about 1,000 tons of extremely hazardous spent nuclear fuel rods. The rods sit inside stainless steel canisters encased in concrete on Lake Michigan’s shoreline, an option that environmentalists consider unacceptably inadequate because the waste is not in containers hardened sufficiently to withstand a terrorist attack or a direct hit by a fuel-laden commercial airliner.
It's unclear just how serious the mayor was being when he spoke at the event about the future of transportation. But even if Emanuel had his tongue in his cheek, taxi drivers and medallion owners may not see the funny side.
Chicago Public Schools officials have issued a call for new charter schools amid a $215 million budget hole and a cap on new charter expansion.
A bill to help salvage two city worker pension funds now heads to the governor, who has vowed not to sign it without pension reform. It provides for taxpayers and government employees putting more money into retirement systems that cover laborers and municipal workers. The Illinois House passed the bill in December. But Gov. Bruce Rauner won’t support the bill without pension reform. Comment: Good for Rauner, but the scary part here is that Sen. Radogno is apparently negotiating on...
A Wicker Park elementary parent called out the Chicago Teachers Union over the weekend on a national stage, claiming the union stopped parents who volunteered to staff their children’s school library after its librarian was laid off.
The $20 million was set aside to inoculate the mayor and aldermen from at least some of the blame for a record $588 million property tax increase for police and fire pensions and school construction. Comment: The rebate was fake policy -- it was designed to fail and a political stunt.
Downtown office landlords continued to distance themselves from the depths of the recession at the end of 2016, with the vacancy rate dropping to its lowest level in nearly 16 years. Now those building owners will find out if the rally has legs in 2017, as they brace for the impact of several new towers under construction or recently completed.
"Chicago’s position at the bottom of the ranking is no surprise to anyone who follows municipal finance. The Windy City has become a poster child for financial mismanagement, having suffered a series of ratings downgrades in recent years. Aside from having thin reserves and large volumes of outstanding debt, Chicago is notorious for its underfunded pension plans."
Top Economists Meet in Chicago to Grapple With Public Disdain for Initiatives They Championed – Wall Street Journal
The conference took place in the shadow of the 1,400-foot Trump International Hotel and Tower, with its giant embossed letters glistening above the Chicago River: TRUMP. Chicago’s single-digit temperatures meant anxious discussions took place among economists quite literally shivering in black or gray overcoats.
"We have an opportunity for you to win some money—$500 to be exact. If you are able to come up with a creative way to approach this negative perception, be it a video series, blog post, photo, or something else (and better) entirely… Keep in mind that the audience is a high school student and his/her family.”
Rahm Emanuel is pitching Wall Street investors on the latest city borrowing plan, a $1.2 billion package that, like previous versions, pushes hundreds of millions of dollars of debt into the future at higher costs to taxpayers.
Comment: I admit to wondering seriously whether I'm the one with a cognitive dissonance problem.
Financial exchanges like CME Group and trading firms such as Citadel have generated tens of millions of dollars in new swaps business, and they'll be reluctant to let go of the new infrastructure built on Dodd-Frank's Title VII, which set up a framework for the regulation of swaps markets.
Top airline carriers increased their service in Chicago helping to drive a record 54.1 million visitors to Chicago in 2016 — a 2.9 percent increase over the previous year
600 city vendors gave Emanuel $7 million in campaign cash during the past four years and received $2 billion in city payments since 2002. Comment: It's why the business community remained mostly silent while Chicago collapsed. Crony capitalism is pervasive.
Chicago retailers are getting an extra month to comply with the city’s new checkout bag tax, but critics of the plan say it won’t produce its promised environmental benefits.
Zion is staggering. Crushed by the loss of half its property-tax base when the power plant was closed in 1998, it faces the foreseeable future as a nuclear waste dump. People can’t sell their houses because of the taxes so they rent them. About two-thirds of them are now rental units. A particularly well-done but sad article.
UIC Professor Claims University Forced Him To Teach Math Because ‘Asians Are Good At Math’ – Huffington Post
A Korean-American professor filed a lawsuit against the University of Illinois at Chicago last week, claiming that officials in his department “systematically harassed” him because of his ethnicity and forced him to teach a math class because he was Asian.
A detailed look at his impact on the city.
"When the librarian was let go, parents volunteered to help. But that’s a union job only, we were told."
And don't forget to order your Chia Obama souvenir, shown above.
Obama betrayed his Chicago base too. "At the very least, I expected the City That Doesn’t Work to reap the socialist rewards of an Obama Presidency. His federal stimulus cost taxpayers $830 billion but is there one person on Chicago’s South Side that is any better off for it? What portion of Obama’s $9.9 trillion in added debt went to the poverty-stricken neighborhoods of Englewood or Ashburn Gresham? What benefit did they receive?"
Comment: Chicago and Illinois may be the worst, but others with unsustainable financial models will collapse, too. Their common denominator can't be denied: They're Democratic.
Obama’s embrace of the Black Lives Matter movement has been a disaster for the city. As Mayor Emanuel said himself in 2015, commenting on the increased scrutiny of police — a result of BLM’s nationwide rise: “We have allowed our police department to get fetal and it is having a direct consequence … They have pulled back from the ability to interdict … they don’t want to be a news story themselves, they don’t want their career ended early,...
“Three years ago we set a goal for Chicago to reach 55 million visitors by 2020,” Mayor Emanuel said. “We had an incredible and record-breaking year in 2016, but we are not stopping there," they mayor said.
Why did CNN air a documentary about the band Chicago produced by band members? – The Washington Post
CNN pre-empted its usual prime-time programming on New Year’s Day for a special two-hour film about the group Chicago. Only at the conclusion of the program did viewers get a subtle clue about the film’s origins. A credit line read: “Produced by Chicago.” Comment: This article raises a good question, but it sure is ironic for the Washington Post to be criticizing CNN. Each has lost credibility.
"I don't think it was evil...just bad home training."
Officials say gang violence is increasingly spilling over onto Chicago's expressways, with innocent drivers sometimes caught in the crossfire, while the state police force is shrinking.
Caterpillar will consider moving production of large wheel-loaders and compactors to its Decatur plant, and production of medium wheel-loaders to a facility in Little Rock, Arkansas. After manufacturing is moved out of Aurora, only an office for engineering and product support would remain open.
The “pursuit-rated” hybrid will be made at the company’s Torrence Avenue plant. The hybrid and another new police vehicle will be outfitted with police equipment at another Ford operation on the South Side. No information was immediately available about whether Ford would hire workers to make the new police vehicle.
Mike Shields is trying to reclaim his job as president of the Fraternal Order of Police — three years after being suspended for making the explosive charge that two police contracts handed down by an independent arbitrator had been “rigged” in the city’s favor.
Northwestern University students raised a Black Lives Matter flag above the student union Tuesday morning as many of them partake in a two-week program to focus on the activist movement. The program, hosted by several different student groups, will include a series of evening panels and discussions, as well as a candlelight vigil for lost black lives.
Comment: This was about an email exchange in which Rahm responded to our Wirepoints article, "The shock and awe budget address Rahm should have given." This article describes our piece as "radical." Just wait until they see the consequences of ignoring the need for radical reform. And you'd think the Sun-Times would at least give us attribution for our article, given that we send them tens of thousands of pageviews.
Chicago law department is sanctioned again for withholding police shooting records – Chicago Tribune
Mayor Rahm Emanuel's law department again has been sanctioned for withholding records involving a fatal police shooting, marking the eighth time in recent years a federal judge has formally punished the city for failing to turn over potential evidence in a police misconduct lawsuit. U.S District Court Judge Joan Gottschall on Tuesday ruled that the city acted in "bad faith" when it ignored a court order and made little effort to provide documents to the lawyer for the family of...
Chicago's Honey Butter Fried Chicken is among a couple of dozen restaurants across the country to sign onto a new "sanctuary restaurant" movement meant to offer safe workplaces for immigrants, Muslims and other communities they feel are under threat in the current political climate. They place prominent signs that state "SANCTUARY RESTAURANTS: A Place At the Table for Everyone" at their establishments. Comment: Let's just say it wouldn't be wise to park a car in front with a "Make America...
Givetoothrs.com's mission is to connect non-profits with businesses and individuals who want to help by donating supplies, toys, and equipment among other posted needs.
Chicago is bleeding. And Chicago's Democratic president and the Democratic mayor are impotent to stop it, even in the Democratic city, in this dark blue and fiscally ruined Democratic state.
A look at the issue and some of the options that might be available.
Comment: Throw more money at violent communities -- that's what this article says -- the standard answer from a standard prog, Ben Joravsky. No, this is a social issue, too. Countless populations of poor people today and throughout history have been safer from violence than Chicago's today. Unless and until African-American communities themselves take ownership of the crime problem, it won't be solved.
Comment: I can't find much "learning" in this article.
300 workers coming. Good news for a change.
Rep. Jan Schakowsky, D-Ill., protesting a GOP drive to crack down on live streaming from the House floor, live streamed on Facebook Live from the House floor before the vote Tuesday. Comment: Wonder if she was soliciting contributions as part of it, as she did before from the House floor, a blatant rule violation.
Comment: This was part of the email exchange Rahm had about our Wirepoints article, "The shock and awe budget address Rahm should have given." We wrote about that email exchange here. The irony is that his claim about eliminating healthchcare coverage is bunk, as we wrote.
Chicago State University officials said the university will burn through cash reserves and eventually need to make additional cuts, according to documents sent to state officials responsible for funding.
“So what’s happening, and this is ironic, is that a movement with the goal of saving black lives at this point is getting black lives taken, because 80 percent of our murder victims here in Chicago are male blacks,” McCarthy said. “Less than half of 1 percent of all the shootings in this city involve police officers shooting civilians.”
The bill to sound-insulate a small test group of such older homes is averaging more than $101,000 per residence — four times the city’s $25,000 average for non-historic dwellings, records obtained by the Chicago Sun-Times show.
What Ari Emanuel’s unabashed volatility in Hollywood says about Rahm Emanuel’s public-image problem in Chicago – Chicago Reader
"In its portrayal of Ari's celebrated dickishness, Powerhouse invites a comparison with the superagent’s mayor brother."
Trump did not offer what type of federal help he has in mind – or what he was prepared to do as president to help the city where he owns a major downtown hotel.
The city of Chicago paid out about $670,000 last year to plaintiffs in lawsuits alleging that officials violated open records law — nearly five times what the city paid in the previous eight years combined.
Police warned drivers to stay alert in downtown Chicago after reports of people being robbed as they sit in traffic.
Deaths in Will County in 2016 attributable to heroin or fentanyl – the latter an increasingly common, far more lethal heroin substitute – stood at 75 as of Friday, O'Neil said. That was 42 percent higher than the previous record of 53 reported in 2012 and 2015.
Will Democratic state reps re-elect Madigan as their speaker? Will they doom themselves to the punishing attacks that would follow such a vote?
Former Chicago Ald. Sandi Jackson, who is seeking a divorce from ex-U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., said in court filings this week that he has income of at least $10,250 a month while she is out of work and has been borrowing from friends and selling her belongings to stay afloat.
Several towns in Cook County, Illinois are balking at a minimum wage hike that will require local businesses to nearly double baseline salaries and provide paid sick leave for workers. Comment: Three minimum wage laws, actually. The real one is zero.
Chicago Review of Books Among the Hysterical Opponents of Publishing a Right Winger’s Book – The Daily Caller
The Chicago Review of Books announced that it will not review a single Simon & Schuster title in 2017 in protest of a Milo Yiannopoulos book deal. Comment: Widespread, open contempt for freedom of expression is the modern left's most dangerous trait.
"Once again, Chicago is making national headlines for all the wrong reasons. New York Times readers woke up Thursday morning to see a crime-related story about Chicago. Meanwhile, CBS news show '60 Minutes' is set to air a comprehensive look at crime here on Sunday."
JPMorgan Chase & Co. offered a crucial lifeline to the ailing Chicago Public Schools by purchasing almost $1 billion of short-term notes from the junk-rated system in the last four months. When the New York-based bank put some of its holdings up for sale, nobody made the trade.
Uber, food trucks and Airbnb: Chicago’s 3 biggest over-regulation stories from 2016 | Illinois Policy | Illinois’ comeback story starts here
It’s no secret Chicago aldermen aren’t friendly to outsider businesses and innovative industries. Here’s a look at some of the most egregious examples from 2016.
Comment: In other words, responsibility of the federal government to control immigration should be ignored and spread, instead, among the hodgepodge of different views taken by universities and colleges (as well as towns and cities, for which they also support sanctuary status). That's madness, even if you support normalization for non-criminal Dreamers and certain others (as I happen to). This is really just a reminder that the Sun-Times editorial writers are wackjobs.
The Chicago Stock Exchange moved closer this month to approval for its sale to a Chinese buyer, but a decision by the Securities & Exchange Commission remains, and that could trip up the deal in President-elect Donald Trump's administration.
Comment: For many of these communities effective rates remain suicidally high. Keep in mind as you read them that the average effective rate nationally in urban areas is just 1.5%. We've written extensively about this and will again shortly.
Rents have dropped in areas of downtown where there has been massive new construction of luxury high-rise apartment buildings, and rents are rising only modestly throughout the metropolitan area, according to Axiometrics, a Dallas firm that tracks rental data throughout the country.
Cara Smith, chief policy officer for Sheriff Tom Dart, divulged few details of the ongoing probe but confirmed 60 sheriff’s deputies are the target of an “alleged attendance fraud” investigation.
Comment: A 20-year veteran Chicago cop told me this will mean "the end of policing as we know it" and violent crime will probably increase 30%.
City Hall can’t tax mortgage transfers, because mortgages don’t equal ownership, appeals panel says – Cook County Record
Wow, the sticky fingers let one get through.
Progressives Have Let Inner Cities Fail for Decades. President Trump Could Change That. – The Daily Beast
Increasingly, at least in the centers of the greatest hipster infestation, minorities and working class families are being driven into less desirable areas, often further from work locations. This helps create new social tensions and, in many places, notably Chicago, more social unrest, and now the most murders in more than two decades. Overall, the rate of violent crime in urban cores remains almost four times higher than the national average, according to FBI data.
Comment: WTF? This may be the dumbest opinion piece of the year, though we still have a few days left. Most perplexing, it's not labeled as an opinion piece, which author Fran Spielman usually does when she occasionally steps aside from reporting (and she's a great reporter). In terms of the substance of this opinion, good grief. Rahm is toast.
This year, according to Guglielmi, officers have come under fire 31 times in Chicago, compared with 18 times in 2015 and 15 times in 2014. No Chicago Police officers have been killed this year.