* ‘Fast Eddie’ Vrdolyak to be sentenced today
* GM posts $9.6B 4Q loss, burns through $6.2B cash
* New Report: Drop in Chicago Home Sales
The Illinois Association of Realtors says Chicago home sales are down about 25 percent. This January, about 900 homes were sold in Chicago… that’s compared to the nearly 1100 in January 2008. David Hanna is president of the Chicago Association of Realtors.
The report says the average home price last month for the Chicago area dropped below $250,000. The average in January of last year was more than $320,000.
* New reports due on jobless claims, home sales
* Public headaches for private schools
* Durbin urges regulator to fight CN appeal
U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin says Canadian National Railway should have to meet a key condition placed on it before its hotly debated acquisition of a nearly 200-mile railway line encircling Chicago.
CN this week asked a federal court to overturn a requirement from the Surface Transportation Board that CN pay around 70 percent of the costs of building overpasses or underpasses at two crossings.
Montreal-based CN says railroads have historically paid only up to 10 percent.
* Judge approves hospital settlement with uninsured
Tens of thousands of uninsured patients could qualify for up to $3.5 million in refunds on payments they made to eight Chicago and suburban hospitals under a class-action lawsuit settlement approved Wednesday.
* Despite probe, problems continue at psych facility
* Open government will lead to less political corruption
* Feds bag all kinds of bad guys
* Daley: Inspector General Can Stick Around
Chicago Mayor Richard Daley says he’ll reappoint the city’s inspector general if he wants to serve another term. David Hoffman’s investigations have led to some embarrassing reports about city departments and employees. But Mayor Daley says Hoffman’s “done a very good job.” Daley was asked Wednesday if Hoffman had “stepped on any toes.”
DALEY: No, he hasn’t stepped on any toes. No, he hasn’t. He just does his job. I don’t know why you’re [asking if he’s] stepping on toes. He does his job. Rightfully. And that’s what his authorization is. Inspector general.
* Show Us The Money: City Aldermen Want Answers
* Slam brakes on Chicago’s rent-a-tax
* Chicago schools moving ahead with closings
* Protesters Vow to Keep Fighting School Closings
Sixteen Chicago Public Schools will be closed or revamped at the end of this school year. The Chicago Board of Education unanimously approved the plan yesterday.
The district says 12 of the schools are under-enrolled and 4 are performing poorly. Those four will see their entire staff dismissed.
* Former Aviation Commissioner to Take Over CTA
* Cook County to name new hospitals CEO