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Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s 2012 closure of city-run mental health clinics continues to provide grist for his political foes, with challenger Paul Vallas the latest to point to lingering resentment over the move.
Vallas on Thursday said Emanuel should have used part of a $10.4 million settlement with Uber and Lyft over the companies’ failure to meet city standards on background checks to reopen six mental health centers he closed as part of his first city budget after his 2011 election. Emanuel announced this month he would use the ride-share money for youth mentoring programs.
“(The clinics) should never have been closed in the first place, when you look at what they’re spending money on and what they saved on the mental health clinics,” Vallas said during a news conference to announce his economic development plan for the city. “That was like cruel and unusual punishment.”
The city continues to operate six clinics, and Emanuel and his administration have repeatedly contended that Chicagoans get better mental health care through those and other care facilities funded by the state and federal governments.
But critics have long pointed to the closures as an early example of what they say is the mayor’s lack of concern over the plight of lower income residents. (John Byrne)
What’s on tap
*Mayor Emanuel will tour construction of the Olive-Harvey College Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics Center and later appear at a health center in Brighton Park.
*Gov. Bruce Rauner will be at the Du Quoin State Fair.
*Democratic governor candidate J.B. Pritzker will be in southern Illinois, stopping in Carterville, Anna, Marion and Du Quoin.
*U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin will have a downtown news conference about his meeting with President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.
*The Democratic National Committee meets in Chicago, and U.S. Rep. John Lewis, of Georgia, will have a news conference in front of Trump Tower on Sunday.
From the notebook
*On the “Sunday Spin”: Tribune political reporter Rick Pearson’s guests are state Rep. Chris Welch, D-Hillside, on the fate of the Southern Illinois University system and higher education; Chicago Tribune reporter Michael Hawthorne on the new Trump administration carbon rules; and SIU Carbondale professor John S. Jackson on political regionalism and taxes. The “Sunday Spin” airs from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. on WGN AM-720.
What we’re writing
*Some Chicago aldermen leery of Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s $10 billion pension borrowing plan.
*Tollway board approves extending online payment grace period to 14 days.
*Judge accused of taking handgun into courthouse is scheduled for bench trial in October.
*Protest organizers announce route for planned Kennedy Expressway shutdown.
*Ex-Ford Heights mayor charged with stealing from village, keeping almost $150,000 in secret accounts.
What we’re reading
*Reputed gang member convicted of gunning down Hadiya Pendleton.
*Dan Bigg remembered as “revolutionary” for approach to heroin crisis, pioneered life-saving naloxone, needle handouts.
*Sterling Bay buying ADM wheat mill in Fulton Market, eyes adding Metra station.
Follow the money
*Attorney General Jeff Sessions says politics won’t influence Department of Justice.
*Rudy Giuliani: President Donald Trump asked for advice weeks ago about pardoning Manafort.
*National Enquirer publisher David Pecker has immunity in Trump probe.
*U.S. Rep. Duncan Hunter pleads not guilty.
Courts,Region: AH,Region: Suburbs
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August 24, 2018 at 06:57AM