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Morning shorts

Wednesday, Feb 20, 2008

* AMEREN wants 10 percent profit

* Major change in count

The number of flood-damaged homes in Pontiac went from 246 to 443 as a result of the new damage assessment conducted Sunday and Monday, Mayor Scott McCoy told the City Council Monday.

In Watseka and Iroquois County, the number rose from 246 to 559, he said.

* Millions for tribute, not a penny for defense

* Pension Problems: Not Causing Just a Bloomington Budget Problem

* States to compete for $30 million for improvements to passenger train service

* Durbin: ‘Expanding Amtrak to Q-C makes sense’

* Post-Vote Battle Over Real Estate Transfer Tax

A forty percent hike in Chicago’s real-estate transfer tax won’t go into effect until April, but there’s already controversy over how the city aims to collect it.

Chicago’s Revenue Department is drafting rules that clarify when home buyers have to pay. For example - one idea’s to pay the whole transfer tax at once, even when buyers purchase homes by installment.

Another’s to have the city keep the tax even when a buyer forfeits a down payment and the deal’s nixed.

5th Ward Alderman Leslie Hairston worries the revenue department is moving too fast.

* Stroger ends bid for hospital funds - Wanted 120K for PR for facility named after his father

Cook County Board President Todd Stroger is laying the groundwork to turn to taxpayers for more money to help in his struggling public relations efforts.

In a proposal to the County Board, Stroger’s hospital chief asks for $120,000 for a five-month contract with a clout-heavy PR firm to spread the good word about the hospital and its services.

It comes as the cash-strapped county is in the final days of a budget battle. But Tuesday, after the Chicago Sun-Times asked about it, Stroger staffers said the request was withdrawn, claiming it was put on today’s meeting agenda by mistake.

* Split GOP in Kendall issues call for unity

* Bill Foster’s “Blue Plate” Special

* Bill Foster the “Mad” Scientist

* Costello, Shimkus vow to restore some Rend Lake funding

* Former labor leader named to state development job

* Court Date for Owner of Horses in Illinois Trailer Accident

* Illinois Offering Horse Rescue Licensing Option

“There have to be checks and balances for rescues,” Ewing said. “With this licensing, Illinois has become a model state for helping horses.”

* NU to build $90-million home for music school

* Regime change in Cuba won’t be boost for Illinois

- Posted by Kevin Fanning        


2 Comments
  1. - Tribby - Wednesday, Feb 20, 08 @ 8:12 am:

    Just read page 2 of the Chicago Tribune as always. What is with Robert Molaro?


  2. - Levois - Wednesday, Feb 20, 08 @ 8:57 am:

    I remember the Ryan story about him going to Cuba as Governor. So that was all just a Ryan story and there was really going to be no benefit to Illinois business when he went to Cuba.


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