Saturday, December 9, 2017

WLS: Bill Campbell, former ABC7 colleague, recovering from stroke

[VIDEO] When I found this video on WLS' YouTube channel I looked up Bill Campbell's linkedin page. Had no idea he went to Harlan Community Academy and eventually launched his career in local TV until he retired from our local ABC affiliate in 2010. I also heard that he also attended Bennett Elementary School so alright.

In this video it was revealed that he suffered a stroke, and as a fellow alum of both schools wish him a speedy recovery. Now GO FALCONS & because I'm old school and somewhat disappointed that Bennett has changed their mascot GO BADGERS!!!!

Friday, December 8, 2017

Forrest Claypool to resign

I wish I had done something of an anatomy of this current scandal. Claypool - a former county commissioner, a former President of CTA, and current CEO of CPS - is expected to resign his current post at CPS due to ethical lapses. It seemed to have been a slowly burning storm as I started seeing headlines for this during the course of the week.

This is a shame because I believe him to be a great public servant and even was a fan of his tenure at CTA.

I will include two tweets. To start Rich Miller at Capitol Fax shared some other tweets about this story and then later updated with news that Claypool will resign from CPS.
Next I will share with you a story regarding Claypool's resignation from WBEZ.
Another WBEZ post such as revolving door with the top spot at CPS. The current Chief Education officer Janice Jackson succeeds Claypool and she may have some support with the Chicago Teacher's Union.
It's a shame as CPS got more bad press with regards to the decreasing enrollment at many of CPS high schools and the possibility that other schools may close in the future.

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

South Side Mason Temple in Englewood - demolition imminent...

If you've been following our ig page we discovered through Eric Allix Rogers that demolition is imminent for the South Side Masonic Temple in Englewood (6400 S. Green). As noted over the years that historic building has seen a serious deterioration and unfortunately something is about to give here. Sadly in an emerging neighborhood of the future in Englewood is losing a building that had a great potential for reuse.

Refer to these following posts referring to the old masonic temple in Englewood then check out the instagram post below.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Additional thoughts on a new Englewood high school

You know I didn't do coverage of a new high school in Englewood the justice it deserved this year. A recent post shared several stories talking about underutilized and low enrollment high schools. That in addition to the closure of four Englewood area high schools that will close for a new high school. So allow me to go back to June of this year with this article from the Sun-Times where CPS chooses Englewood for a new high school set to open in 2019.

Then earlier in the year I wrote this piece before the decision was made. A new high school could've also been placed in Chinatown or Roseland. In light of the other news involving the low enrollment of 17 other CPS high schools, I just wanted to share this post written in January on the "Shedd School" blog.

Basic gist of that post, a new high school better have something to offer that the other high schools in an area doesn't. I wasn't talking about selective enrollment or magnet programs exactly though certainly programs that would ideally attract those families with a child who will soon transfer to high school. So at this point I would like to share that post with you all.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Todd Stroger drops out of the race...

Never fear though, he's only dropping out of the race for Cook County Board President. According to NBC Chicago's Mary Ann Ahern he plans to run instead for Water Reclamation District.
Stroger himself comes from a political family as his father John Stroger was a former County Board President and commissioner. So another excuse for him dropping out of a rematch with his successor Toni Preckwinkle
It's almost inconcievable that he'd have difficulty getting or exceeding 25,000 signatures since he came from a political family. He should still have those connections that his father had that helped him in his political career years ago.

I really wanted to joke that he's not running because of this blog he had when he was county board president. Either way, I find this story unbelievable though it seems for the moment he's taking on a much less demanding political race.

BTW, I just had to add this from conservative activist Dan Proft
Mr. Proft was looking for a Nixon-like comeback. Heh.

Previous Post

Sunday, December 3, 2017

30 years ago, we lost Harold Washington...

[VIDEO] I intended to mark this event in Chicago's history late last month and unfortunately never got around to it. On November 25, 1987 - 30 years ago - Mayor Harold Washington died of a heart attack. Washington was Chicago's first Black mayor.

As you see in the video above CBS Chicago marks the legacy of Harold Washington as mayor roughly around the anniversary of his untimely demise.

Tonight I would like to share with you something you might see in this month's edition of Chicago magazine discussing his death.
The Chicago Tribune’s coverage of that day depicted a city convulsed in grief: “Women sank, sobbing, onto plaza benches. A man sat and buried his head in his hands.” A memorable photo showed a police officer standing guard outside the mayor’s City Hall office—where Washington had collapsed just hours earlier—wiping tears from his face.

Washington, a former U.S. congressman, was 65 years old, overweight, an ex-smoker, and a notorious workaholic in a stressful job, yet his death hit Chicagoans—especially African Americans, 98 percent of whom had voted for Washington in the first election—like a gut punch. To many black residents, the loss of their charismatic, Bronzeville-born mayor threatened to extinguish four and a half years’ worth of progress in a city that had long been ruled by machine politics and marred by racial injustice.

During that period, having overcome fierce opposition from an obstructionist group of mostly white aldermen known as the Vrdolyak 29, Washington increased the number of minorities in local government, awarded a record number of contracts to minority-owned businesses, improved governmental transparency by granting the public access to official records, and formed an ethics commission to root out corruption. The mayor envisioned those and other moves as merely a start, quipping after his April reelection that he was going to be “mayor for life” and die at his desk. His prediction proved uncannily true, and all too soon.

Two days after Washington’s death, his body lay in state in the City Hall rotunda, drawing thousands of mourners. He was buried four days later at Oak Woods Cemetery, not far from his Hyde Park apartment. Early on December 2, over the vociferous objections of protesters who supported Washington’s widely acknowledged heir apparent, Timothy Evans, a majority of the City Council selected Eugene Sawyer, an African American alderman favored by the late mayor’s foes, to succeed Washington. In the eyes of many Chicagoans, the machine had regained power, and a momentous era was over.

But for a great number of those who knew and worked with the man, their impressions of Washington have faded little in three decades, and the things he fought for feel more urgent than ever. For a handful of people who lived through that November day in 1987, the memories are indelible.
Another perspective is from the Chicago Reader just click the tweet below

Ten years ago, I had shared a link to an NPR program called This American Life which had an episode discussing the time of Harold Washington as Mayor of Chicago. And apparently it re-aired last month also. Give it a quick listen.

Friday, December 1, 2017

WBEZ: Will Chicago Close Another 50 Schools?

In 2013 CPS closed 50 schools on Chicago's south and west sides. Now the debate restarts.
From the WBEZ article:
Nearly five years after shuttering a record number of under-enrolled schools, Chicago once again confronts the same stark realities: plummeting enrollment and more than 100 half-empty school buildings, most on the city’s South and West sides, according to a WBEZ analysis of school records.

Chicago Public Schools has lost 32,000 students over the last five years, nearly the same enrollment drop as in the 10-year period leading up to the closures of 50 elementary schools in 2013. Those missing students could fill 53 average-sized Chicago schools.

This massive enrollment decline comes as a self-imposed five-year moratorium on school closings lifts in 2018. Despite that, political observers and CPS insiders said they are not betting on Mayor Rahm Emanuel closing 50 more schools — at least not all at once.

Now bear in mind back in April 2012 when the issues of school closings were being discussed. It could've been as many as 100 schools at one time instead of 50. This time around the expectations would be it would be a slower process than it was in 2013.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Bye-bye pop tax...

It's about to be that time, if you're ready for the taxes on sugary beverages to sunset in Cook County it will. According to WGN-TV, it begins at 12 midnight on December 1st. As I type this post it'll be five minutes before midnight. Drink up and get all the pops or sugary beverages you wish.

Meanwhile one side effect will be apparent, the Chief of the Cook County Courts is suing to prevent any layoffs from the end of this tax.

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving & Happy Holidays

[VIDEO] Today is Thanksgiving and I hope sincerely you're enjoying a great meal with your friends & family today. If you're looking for some entertainment before dinner or before football - assuming you're not boycotting the NFL this year - check out A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving. Yes I am a fan of Charlie Brown, it wouldn't be a holiday season with the "Peanuts" crew.

Have a happy and safe Thanksgiving - especially if you're traveling to meet with family & friends!

Monday, November 20, 2017

Todd Stroger is back....

[VIDEO] You might remember him from 2006 to 2010 he had been the county board president and was formerly an Alderman and committeeman in the 8th ward in addition to being a state legislator in Springfield. He had floated his name for a variety of offices in recent years for example to replace Jesse Jackson Jr. for the 2nd Congressional District or for Water Reclamation District. Today he announced that he wants his old job as county board president back.

Toni Preckwinkle the current president defeated Stroger in the 2010 Democratic primary utilizing voter anger against a sales tax hikes instituted by Stroger for the county hospital and other services. Preckwinkle had that sales tax repealed only to re-institute that tax at some point during her tenure which is something Stroger himself sees as vindication. Also we should mention the recent penny-per-oz. soda tax which is scheduled to expire next month which is seen as another cause of voter anger against Preckwinkle.

It won't only Stroger facing Preckwinkle at the county in the 2018 Democratic primary - which more often than not is the race to watch not the Novemeber general election unfortunately - former 2nd ward Alderman and former mayoral candidate Bob Fioretti is also running in the primary. Time will tell if either man is able to successfully challenge Preckwinkle for the Democratic nomination and essentially the county board president.

BTW, I just had to note in 2006 Stroger controversially was installed to replace his father on the ballot as Democratic nominee for county board president. John Stroger  who was then president had been bested by a stroke not long before the 2006 Democratic primary and he still won the election. However, the elder Stroger was medically unable to continue and Todd was his replacement on the ballot and ultimately was election county board president. John Stroger died in 2008.

BTW, I still wonder if this was HIS blog.

EDIT 9:12 PM Greg Hinz wrote about Stroger running for his old job next year:
Todd Stroger, who endured a rocky stretch as Cook County Board president before being unseated by Toni Preckwinkle in the 2010 Democratic primary, says he intends to challenge her in the next primary. (Check out his TV interview at the end of this story.)

"The incumbent has shown her true colors," Stroger told me today. "Her (political) base is crumbling."

He has done little politically since his defeat, but his name is known from his four years in office and from the decades his father, John Stroger, served as a county commissioner and board president.

Todd Stroger lost the president post largely because of a revolt over a penny-on-the-dollar sales tax he pushed through—and because of continuing criticism over how, in 2006, he was installed as the candidate for board president by insiders after his father fell seriously ill.

Preckwinkle repealed and then reinstated that sales tax, saying the money largely was needed to pay off unfunded county pension liability.
I keep forgetting all these tax increases from the soda tax to the sales tax to the state income tax are all about funding these public pensions.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

SNL Watch Party at SMG-Chatham

You may have seen this from Worlee Glover on Nextdoor and on Concerned Citizens of Chatham.
Saturday, November 18th. Come join SMG Chatham as we host a free LIVE watch party of Saturday Night Live to support our friend and community partner, Chance the Rapper. He’s done so much for our community, so let's rally around him and celebrate his successes. Doors open at 9:00 pm with DJ performance in the lobby from 9:00 pm to 11:00 pm.
SMG Chatham is located at 210 W. 87th Street.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

9th ward job fair & hiring event

9th ward job fair & hiring fair at Tuley Park - 501 E. 90th Place tomorrow Wednesday, November 15, 2017 from 9 AM to 2 PM. Refer to flyer below if you seek more information!