Good Wednesday morning, Illinois. Tracy Letts’ ‘Bug” playing at Steppenwolf shines a light on conspiracy theories — and why it’s good to check for clean sheets at a hotel.
Chicago council members continued their battle to redraw the boundaries of their 50 wards yesterday during a zoom call that hinted at some willingness to compromise. (More on that below.)
At stake is how policy will be shaped over the next decade. Black council members are trying to keep hold of power even though the African American population they represent has declined dramatically, especially in the Austin and Englewood neighborhoods. Latinos, meanwhile, are seeing their communities grow and want representation to show that.
Chicago isn’t alone in experiencing these demographic dynamics. It’s happening all over the country.
With that in mind, POLITICO is examining what the black exodus means for the cities losing Black residents. We started in Illinois, and the headline says it all: Black people are leaving Chicago en masse, and it’s changing the city’s power politics.
The demographic changes started years ago when the Chicago Housing Authority pushed residents out of public housing and into communities that didn’t have resources to help them thrive. It destabilized neighborhoods, and forced Black residents to leave. Crime has only exacerbated the problem.
As populations have shifted, the power structure of the City Council is changing, too. That’s what the remap process is showing.
Rep. Danny Davis says it’s more important than ever for Chicago’s minority communities to get along. “It’s what Harold Washington preached,” he told your Playbook host. “There has to be a balance. Now, if one wants to get elected to public office they have to have a balanced approach to representation and have to represent all constituents in some way, form or fashion.”
— Aldermen dial down the rhetoric in City Council’s remap war: “After weeks of strong words, members of both the Black and Latino caucuses say they’d prefer to do a deal,” by Crain’s Greg Hinz.
— The demise of America’s onetime capital of Black wealth: “Chicago was once known for its power marriage of Black business and politics. Today, many Black-owned companies have shuttered, dramatically changing the city’s landscape,” by author Lee Bey for POLITICO.
—How Englewood is trying to keep Black residents, by WBEZ’s Natalie Moore for POLITICO.
Illinois has confirmed its first case of the Omicron variant, health officials announced Tuesday.
“Unsurprising,” said Chicago Public Health Director Dr. Allison Arwady in a statement, adding it should serve as a warning “of the ongoing threat from Covid-19.”
Illinois Public Health Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike reminded: “We don’t have all the answers right now, we know the general prevention strategies we’ve been recommending — vaccination, boosters, masking, testing, physical distancing.”
Details of the first Omicron patient in Illinois point to how transmittable the variant is.
The infected person is a Chicagoan who had been vaccinated, according to health officials. The person was not hospitalized, “is improving” and is “self-isolating since their symptoms began,” according to a joint statement form the Illinois and Chicago health departments.
The Tribune reports: “Chicago is still in the throes of an earlier COVID-19 surge driven by the highly contagious delta variant. Making that vaccination appointment — plus getting a booster shot for adults — is more crucial than ever, Arwady said.”
Chicago might require vax proof at more spots as city hits ‘winter surge’ of Covid-19, by Block Club’s Kelly Bauer
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At Benton Municipal Airport at 9:30 a.m. to announce the widening of Interstate 57 through Southern Illinois. At Alto Pass Community Center at 11:30 a.m. to announce funding for new wastewater infrastructure in the Village of Alto Pass. At Carbondale Warming Center at 12:30 p.m. to tour the Carbondale Warming Center and help unload donations ahead of the holidays. And at the Walker’s Bluff tasting room in Carterville at 1:45 p.m. for the groundbreaking of the new Walker’s Bluff Resort and gaming expansion in Southern Illinois.
No official public events.
In Washington, D.C., to attend the National Association of Counties’ (NACo) County Executives Roundtable.
Legislative remap court case | Oral arguments focus on racial impact: “Each of the [three] cases centers on the question of whether Democrats in the General Assembly violated the U.S. Constitution and the federal Voting Rights Act of 1965 in drawing the maps by diluting the voting power of racial and ethnic minorities – specifically, Hispanic voters in the Chicago area and Black voters in East St. Louis and the surrounding Metro East region,” by Capitol News’ Peter Hancock.
— Pritzker lets water and sewer bill assistance flow ‘to support our most vulnerable’: “The Low-Income Household Water Assistance Program is the latest state effort to help residents pay their utility bills. It joins a $327 million program announced in September to help residents with bills for their energy services,” by Sun-Times’ Rachel Hinton.
— Housing advocates, renters struggle to stay ahead of a rising tide of evictions: “For much of the pandemic, evictions court was not busy, due to dual state and federal bans on evictions to curb homelessness as COVID spread. But in the two months since’ Illinois’ moratorium on evictions expired, Room 6C has filled up once again,” by NPR Illinois’ Caroline Kubzansky.
— ‘Troubling’ power struggle at tollway leaves some senators contemplating legislative fix: “Illinois tollway Chairman Will Evans’ assertion during a Senate hearing Tuesday that he’s the top dog at the agency has some lawmakers wondering if that aligns with state law and where it leaves Executive Director José Alvarez,” by Daily Herald’s Marni Pyke.
— How Madison County plans to distribute $19M in Covid relief funds, by The Telegraph’s Shepard Price
— Plan to allow sports betting at Chicago arenas stumbles amid concerns about casino competition: “Aldermen said they want to see a city-commissioned report that Lightfoot administration officials said shows the two types of gambling have coexisted elsewhere without harming casino tax bottom line. And council members asked for clarification on what the mayor meant when she told reporters earlier this week that the city would be on the hook for “infrastructure work” tied to the sports betting facilities,” by Tribune’s John Byrne and Gregory Pratt.
— Big banks with history of lending inequities dominate competition for city deposits: “Only 11 of the 48 banks contacted responded — even after City Treasurer Melissa Conyears-Ervin reached out to community banks and convinced the City Council to make it easier for smaller banks to compete for city funds,” by Sun-Times’ Fran Spielman.
— Lawndale legal clinic gets $2.9M to help address cycle of incarceration: “With the state’s cash bail system set to end in 2023, the Lawndale Christian Legal Center has partnered with The Bail Project to offer social services to help keep people out of the justice system,” by Sun-Times’ Cheyanne M. Daniels.
— City won’t release investigation on Little Village implosion, dust storm: “Ald. Rodriguez disputes the Lightfoot Administration’s stance that a watchdog report must remain secret for legal reasons and says residents deserve to know about possible negligence by officials,” by Sun-Times’ Brett Chase.
— Pfleger calls for increased witness protections and anonymity in murder cases: “We have to do something more than just taking away days off from police officers, who are already stressed out in this city,” Pfleger said Tuesday as he demanded a number of reforms to stem violence. Sun-Times’ Mitch Dudek reports.
Case set to go to jury today: “During a tense two hours on the stand, the actor said his alleged accomplices, brothers Abimbola and Olabinjo Osundairo, offered to clear Smollett for $2 million payoff,” by Sun-Times’ Matthew Hendrickson and Andy Grimm.
Black farmers in rural Pembroke protest Nicor plan to build gas pipeline through their community: “An economically disadvantaged but environmentally bountiful community, Pembroke is home to one of Illinois’ most prized ecosystems, the Black Oaks Savanna,” by Tribune’s Karen Ann Cullotta.
— Six more Arlington Heights businesses fined for selling alcohol to minors, by Daily Herald’s Christopher Placek
— ENDORSEMENT ON THE MONEY: The state’s top money managers, Treasurer Michael Frerichs and Comptroller Susana Mendoza, are endorsing Cook County Assessor Fritz Kaegi in his re-election bid. Frerichs praised Kaegi for working “to bring fairness, transparency and accountability to this office. And in a separate statement, Kaegi said, “I am proud to have [Frerichs and Mendoza] standing with us as we continue to fight to ensure a fairer and more equitable property tax system in Cook County.”
— Nurses’ union backs Valencia for Illinois secretary of state: “Tori Dameron, the president of the union, said in a statement nurses ‘need the support of strong union allies in office now more than ever’ as the pandemic continues to “strain” frontline workers and others in health care,” by Sun-Times’ Rachel Hinton.
— Jonathan Logemann, a Democrat running for Congress in IL-17, has been endorsed by elected officials across Winnebago County, including Rockford Township Trustee Mustafa Abdall, Winnebago County Board members Angie Goral, Joe Hoffman and Tim Nabors, Rockford Alds. Karen Hoffman, Bill Rose and Janessa Wilkins, and Rockford Fire and Police Board of Commissioner Rudy Valdez.
— Bank predicts $3.6M windfall from Manafort loans: “Surplus cash expected from foreclosure on lending that led to federal prosecutions of former Trump campaign chair and Chicago banker,” by POLITICO’s Josh Gerstein.
— Lawsuit that sought to keep McHenry, Kankakee county jails for immigration detainees is dismissed: “McHenry County officials said they would appeal the ruling and continue in their efforts to overturn the Illinois Way Forward Act, which prohibits county jails from being used to detain those accused of being in the country illegally,” by Tribune’s Robert McCoppin.
— Judge rejects attempt to block state regulators from proceeding with vote on Waukegan casino license, by Tribune’s Dan Petrella
North Shore brothers plead guilty to charges in US Capitol attack on Jan. 6: “Mark Kulas Jr., 27, of Lake Forest, and Christian Kulas, 24, of Kenilworth, pleaded guilty to parading, demonstrating or picketing in a Capitol Building, a misdemeanor that could lead to up to six months in jail and up to a $5,000 fine,” by Tribune’s Stephanie Casanova.
Illinois’ weed tax windfall tops $560 million. Here’s where the money goes: “The state’s collections since early 2020 now outpace that raised from booze sales. The money has been used on everything from buying an opioid reversal drug to funding a Girl Scouts program to fight human trafficking,” by Sun-Times’ Tom Schuba.
We asked whether a political party should require its slated candidates to only endorse each other and no one else: “Individuals are obviously free to do what they want but if you are part of the party’s hierarchy, then that position comes with rights and responsibilities, one of those being to maintain the ‘party line,’” wrote Thomas More Leinenweber. But another reader, who asked not to be named, said “It’s not fair to Blacks and Hispanics” who want to challenge incumbents.
For tomorrow, what movie or play really changed your way of looking at the world? Email to [email protected]
THE FIFTY: Your playbook host drove to Lexington, Ky., recently to interview Mayor Linda Gorton about how that midsize town has handled the pandemic and a racial reckoning. Gorton says a key to the city’s success has been steering clear of politics. It’s Kentucky straight up (and a Bourbon chaser after the interview).
Rep. Bobby Rush’s Emmett Till Anti-lynching Act (H.R. 55) will be taken up by the Judiciary Committee. The measure would make lynching a federal hate crime. “I was 8 years old when my mother put the photograph of Emmett Till’s brutalized body from Jet Magazine on our living room coffee table, pointed to it, and told us, ‘this is why I brought my boys out of Albany, Georgia.’ That photograph shaped my consciousness as a Black man in America and changed the course of my life,” Rush said in a statement. The bill would advance to the House floor after passing through committee. The bill text is here.
— Why officials are raising questions about Biden’s vaccine donations, by POLITICO’s Erin Banco
— House passes workaround to move forward on raising the debt ceiling, by POLITICO’s Sarah Ferris, Jennifer Scholtes and Caitlin Emma
— Senate Dems launch last-ditch effort to change the rules of the chamber, by POLITICO’s Laura Barron-Lopez and Marianne LeVine
Sydney Corryn Holman is a principal in Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies. Holman joins the firm from Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s office, where she was deputy director for Legislative Affairs and House liaison for Legislative Affairs.
Brian Mita, renowned chef and co-owner of Izakaya Mita, dead at 43: “Brian Mita opened his family restaurant with his mother, Helen Mita, in 2014 in honor of his late father Shiyouji, who worked at restaurants for most of his life. Izakaya Mita, a Japanese pub known for its extensive sake collection, was closed for nearly 19 months due to the coronavirus pandemic before reopening its doors in October, according to Eater,” Sun-Times’ Manny Ramos reports.
— Today at 9:30 a.m.: Symposium examines street outreach and how it can be used as a strategy for violence prevention. The free event is at Northwestern University’s Chicago campus. Registration required.
— Tonight at 5 p.m.: Kim Du Buclet, commissioner with the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District, will be feted at an Ugly Sweater Fundraising Party at The Sage Room in Chicago. Special guest is House Speaker Emanuel “Chris” Welch.
— Thursday at 5 p.m.: Philanthropist and civic leader Marjorie Craig Benton, entrepreneur and political donor Fred Eychaner, and Gov. J.B. Pritzker will be honored at a 40th anniversary program for Benton Institute for Broadband & Society.
— Dec. 17: House Speaker Emanuel “Chris” Welch, Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle, and Bulls owner Jerry Reinsdorf headline a fundraiser for Congressman Danny Davis at Cinecity Studios.
TUESDAY’s ANSWER: Congrats to Judge Bridget Hughes and WGN Radio’s Steve Bertrand for correctly answering that Michael A. Bilandic served as mayor of Chicago, alderman of Chicago’s 11th Ward, and a judge of the Illinois Appellate Court (later chief justice of the Supreme Court).
TODAY’s QUESTION: The city of Chicago used to tie together small trees to make one giant Christmas tree each year, but then it switched to finding one single tree — how come? Email to [email protected]
Attorney Nick Colvin, former state Sen. Rickey Hendon, Chicago City Council Assistant Sergeant-at-Arms Curtis Franklin, and Publicis Groupe’s Chief Inclusion Experience Officer Renetta McCann.
via Illinois Playbook https://ift.tt/2NknKhq
December 8, 2021 at 07:31AM