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Afternoon roundup

Tuesday, Jun 6, 2023 - Posted by Rich Miller

* Maybe the rhetoric can ease a bit now. CNN

The number of daily encounters along the US-Mexico border has remained low nearly a month after a pandemic-era restriction used by authorities to swiftly turn away migrants was lifted, the Department of Homeland Security said Tuesday.

Authorities had been bracing for a surge in illegal crossings following the expiration of Title 42 last month, and while officials caution that migration flows can change, the average 3,400 daily encounters reported by US Border Patrol is a marked shift from the around 10,000 daily encounters days before Title 42 was lifted.

“As a result of planning and execution – which combined stiffer consequences for unlawful entry with a historic expansion of lawful pathways and processes – unlawful entries between ports of entry along the Southwest Border have decreased by more than 70 percent since May 11,” the department said in a news release on Tuesday.

* Media advisory…

Wirepoints will hold a press conference at Benito Juarez High School – where only 46 of 1,700 students do math at grade level and just 70 read at grade level – to highlight a new report on the results Hispanic families in Chicago are getting from the city’s public education system. Wirepoints has produced the report in both Spanish and English. Ted Dabrowski, President of Wirepoints, will present key findings and will be joined by:

    • Jonathan Serrano – Entrepreneur, former candidate for state representative (IL-03), former CPS employee, and community leader on the city’s west side
    • Mark Ortiz - Chicago law enforcement
    • Rob Cruz - parent advocate, former school board member and candidate for Congress (IL-06)

As of last year, when Rob Cruz scored just 5.76 percent in the GOP primary, he lived in Oak Lawn, not Chicago.

Jonathan Serrano was recruited by the Illinois Policy Institute to run for the House and wound up with 19 points against Rep. Eva-Dina Delgado (D-Chicago). He’s president of the Westside GOP Club and regularly expresses his viewpoints on social media

I couldn’t find anything on Mark Ortiz. He’s not listed on the city’s salary database, either.

* Best press release headline of the day is from Sen. Andrew Chesney (R-Freeport)…

Chesney Urges Northwest Illinois Residents Not to Fall for Governor’s Fancy Budget Rhetoric during Freeport Visit

He’s just so darned fancy.

* Press release…

The Illinois Department of Insurance (IDOI) is expanding its online-only application and payment process for insurance producer and agent licensing across all license types.

Beginning July 1, 2023, initial license applications, renewal applications, and payments must be submitted through the National Insurance Producer Registry (NIPR) electronic application and renewal system for the 22 license types handled by IDOI’s Licensing, Education and Testing unit.

This week, the Department notified Illinois insurance producers and agents that it will no longer accept paper applications and checks for licenses. More than 1,212 paper applications have been processed this year.

* Press release from February…

The Illinois Department of Central Management Services (CMS) announced today the launch of a website for the African Descent-Citizens Reparations Commission (ADCRC). As part of the Economic Opportunity Bill, the ADCRC was established to bring an equity focus on African American communities and residents that have been disproportionally impacted by longstanding disinvestment due to direct and systemic repercussions of slavery.

Still not a whole lot on that site.

* A Crain’s op-ed on reforming the city council has this bit on inadequate ward staffing

The problem is that it’s really expensive to staff 50 ward offices adequately. In most wards the aldermanic staff is hard-pressed just to deal with requests for zoning changes and residents’ service requests, much less prepare the member for complex legislative debates on the council floor. That partly explains Chicago’s tradition of rubber-stamp votes on even crucial bills such as the budget.

From the very same day

Four aldermen have paid more than $48,000 out of their taxpayer-funded expense accounts to a consulting firm run by a former top Chicago Park District official who was asked to resign for his involvement in the Park District’s sexual abuse lifeguard scandal and placed on a do-not-rehire list.

Since a bunch of alderpersons had enough cash laying around to help out a man fired for doing nothing about Park District sexual abuse reports, I ain’t buying that the ward offices are broke. Broken, maybe. Not broke.

* Isabel’s roundup…

    * WTTW | 53% of IDOC Inmates Serving Life Sentences Are Over Age 55. Advocates Call for Giving Some a Second Chance : In 1978, Illinois shifted from an indeterminate to a determinate sentencing system — effectively eliminating parole as most people are familiar with it. Defendants are sentenced with a fixed release date and can earn time off statutorily or through participating in programming, like education or treatment programs. Instead of parole, defendants are under Mandatory Supervised Release upon release for the remainder of their sentences.

    * Crain’s | Of the major auto insurers in Illinois, Geico might be the biggest loser: Since November 2019, the company has seen its number of auto policies here decline by more than 23%, to 308,427 as of last month from 403,136, according to filings with the Illinois Department of Insurance.

    * Daily Herald | Bears can continue to gain revenue from Arlington Park billboard, board decides: Even as the Bears flirt with Naperville, Arlington Heights village board members didn’t use any leverage of their own Monday when they granted an extension to an electronic billboard approval for the new Arlington Park property owner. The sign variations, reaffirmed without discussion via the board’s consent agenda Monday night, will allow the team to retain an extra revenue stream first granted to Churchill Downs Inc. in 2017.

    * Pantagraph | Illinois lawmaker recap: Koehler lauds ‘productive’ session, but key issues remain: Koehler characterized the session as “productive,” pointing to the passage of a Medicaid bill that raises reimbursement rates for hospitals and legislation that incentivizes the use of hydrogen as an energy source. He was also satisfied with the budget process, which included Senate Republicans despite a Democratic supermajority. “They weren’t happy with some of the outcomes, but that’s going to be just a difference of opinion and philosophy. That’s going to happen. But, at least, what I heard loud and clear is that they felt like they were included and they were listened to.”

    * Crain’s | Illinois cannabis sales sluggish in May: Recreational marijuana sales in Illinois rose 2% in May from a year ago, improving slightly from April’s performance when sales were flat. Illinois retailers sold $132.8 million worth of cannabis last month, up from $129.8 million a year earlier, according to state figures.

    * Sun-Times | ‘John killed himself?’ Hours after police standoff, man gets voicemail about brother he hadn’t seen in 15 years: “It was shocking,” said Glen Lichard. “I just wish the SWAT would have called me. I would have gotten on the phone with him or gone down there, or something.”

    * CNBC | Boeing warns new defect on 787 Dreamliners will slow deliveries: Boeing had paused deliveries of the planes for several weeks earlier this year because of a separate problem on a fuselage component on certain 787s. The latest issue currently doesn’t affect Boeing’s full-year outlook for Dreamliner deliveries, the company said. Boeing has estimated that it would deliver between 70 and 80 of the planes this year.

    * WSIL | ComEd Awards Nearly $250,000 in Scholarships for Illinois Students Pursuing Future Careers in STEM: Since its launch in 2022, the ComEd Future of Energy Scholarship has awarded nearly $640,000 to 115 local students. Expanding opportunities for area youth to pursue STEM degrees is critical to ComEd’s work to establish a diverse, qualified talent pipeline that is prepared to support the power grid and the growing number of clean energy jobs that will be created in the years ahead. A recent study commissioned by ComEd projects that 150,000 new jobs in Illinois could be added by the year 2050 as a result of the clean energy transition.

    * Crain’s | Shocking merger of PGA Tour and LIV Golf puts Chicago-based golf sponsors in the rough: Local companies that sponsor the PGA tour include United Airlines, farm equipment maker John Deere, CDW, Grant Thornton, and Aon. Representatives from each company did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Whether companies continue their sponsorship of the combined PGA-LIV likely depends on how they’ve used the PGA relationship in the past — and what they’ve hoped to get out of it, said Mike Mazzeo, a professor of strategy at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management.

    * Tribune | Chicago White Sox prospect Anderson Comás on his decision to come out: ‘Now is when I feel good with myself. Now I accept myself.’: Anderson Comás thought of those who feel like they don’t have support and wanted to do his part to help when he decided to come out as gay in February. “I wanted to open that door for those people that are fighting for their dreams,” Comás said during a videoconference call Friday. “I feel like they cannot do it because of people’s opinions, so I wanted to share a little bit to help, to open that door and to inspire all of them to keep fighting.”

    * WBEZ | She spent years helping victims of Chicago’s gun violence. Now she’s leaning on them.: Mannion has worked since 2016 in the Little Village neighborhood where she grew up as an outreach worker trying to pull people out of gangs, and as a victim advocate — providing services and support to people who survive gunshots and families whose loved ones are shot to death. Her work was at the center of the most recent season of WBEZ’s Motive podcast about former gang members trying to stop the city’s gun violence. […] Mannion has struggled with diabetes for years; it runs in her family. Among her many diabetes-related issues, the disease has started to take a toll on her kidneys and her doctors believe she will need dialysis soon — something Mannion is resisting. Years ago, doctors removed cancer from her gallbladder, but they are now concerned they didn’t get all of the cancer and it has spread to her lungs.

    * Daily Herald | Tollway to offer more I-PASS payment options for cash customers: Tollway directors recently approved a $3.4 million, five-year contract with Brookfield, Wisconsin-based CheckFreePay Corp. to offer I-PASS payment services at retailers including Walgreens, CVS and currency exchanges.

    * Sun-Times | Vienna Beef returning to Bucktown: The hot dog and sausage company will invest $20 million to rehab the site, adding a second-floor office, first-floor retail space for other companies and an outdoor plaza.

    * And Scape | America loved Tina Turner. But it wasn’t good to her.: The public understood Turner as having escaped domestic violence. What was less appreciated was the extent to which her suffering was tied to her identity as a Black daughter of cotton sharecroppers from Tennessee. Some might argue that these circumstances created one of the greatest rock artists in American history. Certainly, they shaped her. But white supremacy did not make Anna Mae Bullock into Tina Turner. Tina Turner made Tina Turner.


  1. - Chivalry - Tuesday, Jun 6, 23 @ 4:22 pm:

    Chappelle does it better…

  2. - ArchPundit - Tuesday, Jun 6, 23 @ 5:57 pm:

    The mainstreaming of cranks is a problem and one many in the press (not all by any means) seem happy to go along with.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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