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Afternoon roundup

Thursday, Jan 5, 2023 - Posted by Rich Miller

…Adding… From Rep. Cassidy: “This language reflects the work of the advocates on these issues who spent 6 months researching and drafting language.” The Senate has not yet signed on…

* Walgreen’s helped drive the crime theme last year, but now the company says “Nevermind”

A top Walgreens

executive on Thursday acknowledged the company may have overblown concerns about thefts in their stores after shrinkage stabilized over the last year. 

During an earnings call, the company’s chief financial officer, James Kehoe, said shrinkage was about 3.5% of sales last year but that number is now closer to the “mid twos.” He also said the company would consider moving away from hiring private security guards.

“Maybe we cried too much last year,” Kehoe said. “We’re stabilized,” he added, saying the company is “quite happy with where we are.” 

Thanks, Emily Litella.

* Interesting move as she makes a push for a Senate appointment

The Illinois Legislative Black Caucus elected state Rep. Carol Ammons, D-Urbana, to become the next Joint Chairwoman.

“I am honored to be chosen by my fellow colleagues to lead the Illinois Black Caucus into the future,” Ammons said. “Our Caucus’ mandate is to make the lives, livelihoods, and opportunities for the African-American community better. I’m confident that under my leadership, we will make more progress in undoing the unjust and institutional racism black Illinoisans often find themselves facing.”

* Center Square headline

Report: Illinois overspending taxpayer money year after year

Except, the data is outdated

An analysis by Pew Charitable Trusts shows that Illinois is one of only two states in the country with total tax revenue shortfalls exceeding 5% of total expenses, and the only ones with annual deficits in each of the past 15 years. The other state is New Jersey.

Pew state fiscal health manager Joanna Biernacka-Lievestro said Illinois is in select company.

“Nine states failed to collect enough revenue to cover their long-term expenses over the 15 years ending in fiscal 2020,” Biernacka-Lievestro said.

Also not mentioned in the story, but which is mentioned in the Pew analysis, is that Illinois is still on a pension payment ramp, which is what drives a lot of those “expense” numbers.

* Delia Ramirez is supporting Brandon Johnson for mayor instead of Chuy Garcia. Others formerly allied with Garcia, including Rep. Lilian Jimenez, who used to work for Garcia and replaced Ramirez in the Illinois House, are also with Johnson. Nevertheless…

* Press release…

Secretary of State Jesse White announced today that the state’s organ/tissue donor registry reached 7.5 million registrants.

“I am so proud that Illinoisans have shown their giving and caring spirit by signing up for this lifesaving program,” said White. “Our mission over the past 24 years has been to strengthen the Organ/Tissue Donor Program through outreach and registration initiatives. We have worked to end the waiting for the approximately 4,000 people statewide. Each year, unfortunately, about 300 people die waiting for a transplant in Illinois.”

Of the more than 12.8 million people living in Illinois, 10,146,583 qualify to become organ/tissue donors. Of those, 74% have registered as organ/tissue donors.

In addition, more than 270,000 16- and 17-year-olds have registered with the program since 2018, when Secretary White initiated a law allowing them to register as organ and tissue donors.

“I believe our public awareness campaign, including television, radio and social media ads have helped encourage people to register,” said White. “It takes less than a minute to register and one person can improve the quality of life for up to 25 people.”

Secretary White has headed the state’s Organ/Tissue Donor Registry since 1999. He has visited countless hospitals, schools, libraries, Driver Service facilities as well as other venues to promote and register Illinoisans for the donor program. Secretary White has a personal connection to organ donation because his sister, Doris Ivy, received a kidney transplant from an anonymous donor that extended her life for 28 years.

Illinoisans can register with the Secretary of State’s Organ/Tissue Donor Registry at or by calling 800-210-2106.

* Isabel’s roundup…

    * Crain’s | Illinois car dealers lose lawsuit to halt Rivian direct sales: Rivian Automotive, which assembles its high-end electric vehicles in central Illinois, can continue to sell directly to consumers in the state after a judge dismissed a lawsuit by the Illinois Automobile Dealers Association that also challenged sales by EV startup Lucid Group.

    * Journal & Topics | Transition Plans In Place To Move Venezuelan Asylum Seekers To Chicago By Month’s End: State Sen. Laura Murphy (D-28th) of Des Plaines, the deputy state senate majority leader, representing parts of both Elk Grove Village and Des Plaines, said she attended a meeting late Tuesday with heads of the Illinois Dept. of Homeland Security, Illinois Dept. of Human Services, deputy governor, members of the Latino Caucus of the Illinois General Assembly, and other “interested parties” to discuss plans for longer-term housing for the Venezuelan asylum seekers.

    * Chalkbeat | Gov. J. B. Pritzker vows to prioritize access to child care for Illinois families in second term: “There is so much more that we can do to make it easier for young families to access quality child care, and early childhood education,” Pritzker said at a press conference Wednesday at the Carole Robertson Center for Learning’s site in Little Village. “But already our improvements have made a profound change.”

    * Daily Herald | Nicor takes first step toward rate hike that could add $9 a month to average bill: The request, filed with the Illinois Commerce Commission, comes on the heels of a $240 million rate increase Nicor implemented in late 2021. The Naperville-based utility is the largest natural gas distribution company in Illinois, serving more than two million customers and encompassing most of suburban Chicago.

    * Crain’s | A call for commonsense gun legislation: Health care providers see the devastating and far-reaching impact of gun violence every day. Beyond the horrors of shootings themselves, we see survivors, their families and the families of fatal victims devastated as they begin their journey down the long road to recovery—physically and emotionally.

    * Daily Herald | Kane County poised to ease campaign contribution limits: The ordinance arose as board members, at that time, decried the possible influence of campaign contributions on the awarding of valuable county contracts. A Daily Herald investigation that year showed more than $17.5 million in county funds went to 43 companies and firms that donated nearly $43,000 to former county board Chairman Karen McConnaughay’s political war chest in 2009.

    * Patch | Ex-Congressman Adam Kinzinger Takes Job With CNN: Adam Kinzinger, an Illinois native, was first elected to Congress in 2010 in the Tea Party wave — he had Sarah Palin’s endorsement.

    * Crain’s | Former federal judge joins Latham & Watkins’ Chicago office: Before joining the firm, Feinerman served 12 years on the bench in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, leaving his post Dec. 31. He also served five years as solicitor general for the state of Illinois.

    * The Atlantic | Biden’s Blue-Collar Bet: Biden also touched on another theme that will likely become an even more central component of his economic and political strategy over the next two years: He repeatedly noted how many of the jobs created by his economic agenda are not expected to require a four-year college degree.


  1. - Anyone Remember - Thursday, Jan 5, 23 @ 2:46 pm:


    Let’s see, that’s 3 1/2 Blago budgets, 6 Quinn budgets, 4 Rauner “somethings,” and 1 1/2 Pritzker budgets. How does the 93.9% number change if we include 2021 and 2022? Based upon the IOC Cash Report (since we don’t have a CAFR, that’s another post), Illinois’ deficit isn’t the General Funds, but bond debt, past pension underfunding, OPEB, and accrued leave. Curious how Center Square will turn that into a pretzel.

  2. - Captain Obvious - Thursday, Jan 5, 23 @ 2:49 pm:

    Nice to see Kinz land right where he belongs.

  3. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Jan 5, 23 @ 2:54 pm:

    ===right where he belongs.===

    Yeah, when you’re rejected by racist thinkers, insurrection sympathizers and conspiracy theorists, it’s good to know that those who aided all those folks don’t want Kinzinger.

  4. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Jan 5, 23 @ 2:56 pm:

    ===right where he belongs===

    He spent many a year auditioning.

  5. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Jan 5, 23 @ 3:00 pm:

    ===He spent many a year auditioning.===

    Reminded me of athletes in their last year or so magically doing tee-vee on off days then retire straight to the booth.

  6. - Facts Matter - Thursday, Jan 5, 23 @ 3:01 pm:

    Center Square article - typical use of misleading and outdated information by the author. From the article - “Still, 15 states including Illinois in fiscal 2016 and 2017 failed to amass enough revenue to cover their annual expenses. That’s despite Illinois commonly ranked as among the highest taxed states in the country.” Fiscal year 2016 was one of the budget impasse years and fiscal year 2017 was the stopgap budget year. Governor Rauner was in office during those years. The author “conveniently” omits that bit of history and they highlight the story with a picture of the current Governor . . . .

  7. - JoanP - Thursday, Jan 5, 23 @ 3:24 pm:

    That’s a gracious move on Garcia’s part.

  8. - Dotnonymous - Thursday, Jan 5, 23 @ 3:33 pm:

    Rep. Kelly Cassidy is a champion of Human Rights.

  9. - Chito - Thursday, Jan 5, 23 @ 11:24 pm:

    Chuy’s classy move will earn him votes from Delia supporters that are disappointed at her flipping on him.

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