Illinois Dems staff up – POLITICO – POLITICO

Happy Thursday, Illinois! We’re plugging in to the final hours of the legislative session in Springfield that’s supposed to end Friday, though you just never know.

FIRST IN PLAYBOOK: The Illinois Democratic Party has hired new staffers for fundraising, data, organizing and communications, making it the largest full-time staff the party’s ever had outside of an election year, according to insiders.

The new positions are permanent and will operate year-round, an indication party Chair Lisa Hernandez is sticking to her promise to pull together an organization that works beyond election season.

Madeline Doctor becomes the state party’s finance director, focusing on building the donor base beyond Gov. JB Pritzker, who’s been the fuel behind much of party’s recent growth. Doctor previously served as Illinois finance director for Sen. Tammy Duckworth and was finance director for Betsy Dirksen Londrigan’s congressional bid.

Feet on the ground: The party now has six regional political organizers within the state and is also working to expand its national donor base.

They got to party, party: A fundraising gala for the organization is also planned for later this year.

Other hires: Jarae Hines is field director. He comes from Brandon Johnson’s mayoral campaign and earlier was an organizing director for Congresswoman Lauren Underwood.

Randall Webster is the party’s data director (was with America Votes). Jessica Genova is deputy political director (was with state Rep. Lindsey LaPointe). Allison Janowski is press secretary (was with Pritzker’s reelection campaign). And Alex Lineberry is the new file manager (was with Democratic Party of Wisconsin).

DEEP DIVE: 10 years later, more than half of Chicago’s closed schools remain unused: “School officials promised all the empty buildings would be repurposed on an ambitious timeline. They’d be sold by the end of 2014 and their redevelopment underway by early 2015,” report by WBEZ and the Sun-Times. With visuals.

“Today, only 20 buildings — or 43 percent of the original facilities — are back in use, “Most of them eventually became housing or offices or private schools. Few have been returned to use for the community, as neighborhood residents begged for before their schools were closed,” according to the report.

If you are Lisa Hernandez, Playbook would like to know details about the fundraising gala. Email [email protected].

No official public events.

No official public events.

In Evanston at 10 a.m. to mark recent efforts to address homelessness across suburban Cook County.

Thank you for reading Illinois Playbook! Drop me a line sometime: [email protected]

Supreme Court refuses to block assault weapons bans in Illinois: “Wednesday’s move by the high court is the latest example of the justices staying out of Second Amendment-related disputes for the moment, after the conservative majority last year issued a major ruling expanding its scope,” via CNN. Tribune’s take by Dan Petrella and Jeremy Gorner. Sun-Times’ take by John Seidel.

Tax breaks for Bears punted to state legislature’s fall veto session: “A legislative proposal to help the Bears pay for a new stadium and entertainment complex in Arlington Heights got its first hearing, but final action is still a ways away,” by WBEZ’s Alex Degman.

“Now they know how their fans feel,” writes Sun-Times’ Tina Sfondeles of the Bears having to wait for legislative help.

How might Bears advance subsidy bill downfield? By giving Chicago a bigger cut, writes Daily Herald’s Christopher Placek

As budget negotiations continue, Pritzker announces launch of stalled tax incentive program: “Blue Collar Jobs Act was approved on bipartisan lines in 2019 before governor froze it amid pandemic,” by Capitol News’ Jerry Nowicki.

Bill allowing punitive damages in wrongful death suits advances House: “Rep. Jay Hoffman (D-Swansea) said his bill would give heirs the same right as families of an injured person, who can presently seek punitive damages. Suits against government officials, state and local, would still be exempt from damages if the legislation passes,” by State Journal-Register’s Patrick Keck.

The Secretary of State’s office has hired its first diversity, equity and inclusion officer, by WCIA’s Danny Connolly

Legislators considering a range of environmental bills, by Daily Herald’s Jenny Whidden

Legislators OK putting Illinois on path toward a new state flag, by Tribune’s Hank Sanders

City mourns Aréanah Preston: “The slain police officer was memorialized Wednesday in an emotional tribute before a crowd of family, friends, fellow officers, Mayor Brandon Johnson and former Mayor Lori Lightfoot,” by Block Club’s Colin Boyle. With photos.

Johnson administration distances itself from $12B tax plan co-written by member of transition team: “The plan by the Action Center on Race & the Economy and the People’s Unity Platform “has nothing to do with what we’re trying to do,” said Jason Lee, a senior adviser to Mayor Brandon Johnson. The mayor’s approach, Lee said, involves “sober analysis of what might be feasible,’” by Sun-Times’ Fran Spielman.

As CHA moves to sell public housing land to XS Tennis owner, activists vow to fight: “Kamau Murray’s plan to build 39 two-flats and townhomes for tennis employees on the former Robert Taylor Homes awaits federal approval. Housing activists say they won’t let it happen,” by Block Club’s Jamie Nesbitt Golden and Mick Dumke.

Lightfoot was warned about email electioneering 10 months before campaign tried to recruit CPS students, writes the Tribune’s Gregory Pratt

Chicago’s population is declining, but it’s still the nation’s third most populous city, new census data shows, by Tribune’s Robert McCoppin, Lizzie Kane and Kori Rumor

— Population shifts from Cook County may help Chicago lure younger residents, according to CoStar real estate report. With chart.

98-year-old who still goes to work shares his secret: Joe Grier works at Victory, a Planter company in the North Austin neighborhood and is believed to be the “country’s oldest full time employee,” by Fox 32’s Joanie Lum.

Tribune to buy Daily Herald plant, move printing operations to Schaumburg in coming months: The Tribune was forced out of the Freedom Center to make way for Bally’s Chicago Casino. As part of the Schaumburg plant acquisition, “Tribune will begin printing the Daily Herald under contract, sources said,” reports Tribune’s Robert Channick

Cook County has been giving felony records to people who should not have them: “For at least three years, a data error has caused chaos in the lives of people who were promised a clean record if they did probation,” by WBEZ’s Shannon Heffernan.

A new era in Buffalo Grove as Eric Smith takes over as village president, by Daily Herald’s Steve Zalusky

Wheeling is the first to approve a cannabis consumption lounge in Cook County, via Fox 32

Metra dreams big for Rock Island line’s future, but money’s an issue:As Covid funds are set to expire, Metra seeks ways to keep services attractive to a ridership increasingly different from the 9-to-5 Loop commuters that once formed its base,” by Sun-Times’ David Struett.

CTA is rolling out more electric buses, by Tribune’s Sarah Freishtat

Minnesota prosecutors drop charges against R. Kelly: They say “the disgraced R&B singer has already been sentenced to decades behind bars on two separate federal convictions. … Earlier this year, Cook County prosecutors dropped their four pending cases against Kelly [saying] resources would be better spent elsewhere,” by Tribune’s Megan Crepeau and Jason Meisner.

We asked if whether you stay on camera for Zooms or not

Cook County Commissioner Donna Miller: “Cameras on during meetings helps foster a professional environment.”

Janice Anderson: “As an executive assistant, the camera is off for client calls so we can take notes. For internal meetings, we are on camera.”

Stella Black: “I keep my camera on. It’s more personal.”

Jan Kostner: “Camera on.”

Josh Witkowski: “Camera on if I’m presenting. Camera off if I’m just attending.”

Thomas Yates: “My face is on Zoom far more than I would like as I manage a hybrid work force.”

What deadline project have you finished at the very last second? Email [email protected]

— Sen. Tammy Duckworth, a combat veteran and member of both the Senate’s Foreign Relations and Armed Services committees, met with members of Ukraine’s Parliament “to discuss the United States’ continued commitment to helping Ukraine and its people against Vladimir Putin’s war of choice in Ukraine,” her team said in a statement.

Florida Democrats think the unthinkable: We’re in play, by POLITICO’s Gary Fineout

Southern courtesy, the ‘mail business thing,’ and other surreal moments from the abortion pill argument, by POLITICO’s Alice Miranda Ollstein and Josh Gerstein

Congress crosses its fingers for the new Big Four to avert debt disaster, by POLITICO’s Sarah Ferris and Burgess Everett

— Jeremy Daniel was confirmed by the Senate to serve as a judge on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.

— Matthew Muench is now head of jobs and skills at JPMorgan Chase. He was chief impact officer at P33 Chicago.

— Jill Manrique has been named executive director for Chicago Jobs with Justice (Chicago JWJ). She has been with Chicago JWJ for two years organizing around worker health and safety.

— Chris Cardona is joining MacArthur Foundation as managing director of Exploration, Discovery and Programs. Yamini Mishra will become director of the foundation’s India office. Cardona has been a senior program officer at the Ford Foundation, and Mishra has been with Amnesty International. They start their new roles in August.

— Tuesday: Community policing and the “challenges and opportunities” in selecting the next Chicago Police supervisor are the subject of a City Club luncheon discussion. On the panel: Civic Committee VP for public safety Robert Boik, Community Commission for Public Safety and Accountability President Anthony Driver and Chicago Neighborhood Policing Initiative advocacy director Mecole Jordan-McBride. WBEZ’s Alden Loury will moderate. Register here

WEDNESDAY’s ANSWER: Congrats to James Nowlan for correctly answering that Norma Jean the elephant was buried right where she died, in the town square of Oquawka in Henderson County.

TODAY’s QUESTION: What one-time Chicago mayor and congressman organized the Union League Club of Chicago in 1879? Email [email protected]

Former Corn Products CEO Sam Scott and Cook County courts executive clerk Carmen Navarro Gercone.


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via rk2’s favorite articles on Inoreader

May 18, 2023 at 09:05AM

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