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Afternoon roundup

Thursday, Sep 14, 2023 - Posted by Rich Miller


The Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) announced today that the unemployment rate increased +0.1 percentage point to 4.1 percent, while nonfarm payrolls were almost unchanged, down -100, in August, based on preliminary data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and released by IDES. August total nonfarm payrolls remained above the pre-pandemic number of total nonfarm payroll jobs. The July revised unemployment rate was 4.0 percent, unchanged from the preliminary July unemployment rate. The July monthly change in payrolls was revised from the preliminary report, from +11,200 to +3,400 jobs. The August unemployment rate and payroll jobs estimate reflect activity for the week including the 12th.

In August, the industry sectors with the largest over-the-month job gains included: Educational and Health Services (+4,400), Leisure and Hospitality (+800), and Manufacturing (+400). The industry sectors with the largest monthly payroll job declines included: Professional and Business Services (-3,300), Trade, Transportation and Utilities (-1,100), and Other Services (-700). […]

The state’s unemployment rate was +0.3 percentage point higher than the national unemployment rate reported for August. The national unemployment rate was 3.8 percent in August, up +0.3 percentage point from the previous month. The Illinois unemployment rate was down -0.4 percentage point from a year ago when it was at 4.5 percent.

Compared to a year ago, nonfarm payroll jobs increased by +75,600 jobs, with gains across most major industries. The industry groups with the largest jobs increases included: Educational and Health Services (+39,900), Government (+28,400), and Leisure and Hospitality (+25,200). Professional and Business Services (-15,300), Manufacturing (-9,400), and Information (-5,200) reported the largest declines in payroll jobs. In August, total nonfarm payrolls were up +1.2 percent over-the-year in Illinois and up +2.0 percent in the nation.

The number of unemployed workers was 266,200, up +4.4 percent from the prior month, and down -8.0 percent over the same month one year ago. The labor force was almost unchanged (0.0 percent) over-the-month and down -0.2 percent over-the-year.

* Crain’s

Chicago will be home to a new math and biology research institute funded by a $50 million grant from the National Science Foundation and the Simons Foundation.

Northwestern University will lead the research institute in partnership with the University of Chicago that will involve 80 faculty and 120 graduate and post-doctoral students from the two schools. The National Institute for Theory & Mathematics in Biology will be focused on basic research and will be housed in Streeterville near Northwestern’s medical campus.

It’s the second major new biomedical research facility announced in Chicago in less than a year, joining the Chan Zuckerberg Institute that will be located in Fulton Market. The NSF grant is a prestigious win for Northwestern and U of C.

* The Tribune on some legislative react to the Chicago Bears’ announcement that it won’t try to move a bill during veto session

[ Rep. Marty Moylan] on Wednesday said that “obviously, our bill wasn’t ready yet and they want to explore other options.

“And good for them. And I say, ‘Let’s go Bears.’”

State Rep. Mary Beth Canty, an Arlington Heights Democrat who worked with Moylan on the legislation, emphasized that “megadevelopment” projects should benefit local governments and not just the team and its stadium. She said Wednesday’s announcement was “not a terrible position for the Bears to take.”

“I didn’t see much interest in Bears-specific legislation in Springfield in the spring and it seems unlikely that support for Bears-specific legislation would grow over time,” Canty said. “So, I think that’s right for them to stay focused on what they’re trying to do, what they’re trying to accomplish and what they can control.”

* Gaming Board…

The Illinois Gaming Board (the “IGB” or “Board”) marked an historic summer overseeing the opening of three newly authorized casinos and a new sportsbook, among other significant actions as reported during today’s September meeting.

The summer began with the IGB conducting pre-opening operations assessment/audit and practice gaming sessions under IGB Rules 3000.230(e) and (f) at the new Golden Nugget Casino in Danville from May 22 through May 25. Based on the results, IGB Administrator Marcus Fruchter issued a temporary operating permit (“TOP”) and on May 27, Golden Nugget Danville opened to the public as Illinois’ 13th casino. Golden Nugget Danville paid $25.3 million in upfront fees that were deposited into the Rebuild Illinois Projects Fund for use on capital and infrastructure projects throughout the state.

Following the June and July public Board meetings, the IGB conducted the pre-opening operations assessment/audit and practice gaming sessions at Walker’s Bluff Casino Resort in Carterville from August 21 through August 24. After the successful testing at Walker’s Bluff, Administrator Fruchter issued a TOP and on August 25, the casino commenced operations as Illinois’ 14th casino. Walker’s Bluff Casino Resort will pay approximately $28.3 million in upfront fees into the Rebuild Illinois Fund.

After the Labor Day holiday, the IGB conducted the pre-opening operations assessment/audit and practice gaming sessions at Bally’s Chicago temporary casino at Medinah Temple from September 5 through September 8. Administrator Fruchter issued Bally’s Chicago a TOP and on September 9, Bally’s Chicago opened as Illinois’ 15th casino. Bally’s Chicago will pay $135.5 million in upfront fees into the Rebuild Illinois Fund.

Following enactment of the 2019 gaming expansion law, five newly authorized casinos have opened in Rockford, Waukegan, Danville, Carterville, and Chicago since November 2021.

* Press release…

Today, Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin (PPWI) announced it will resume offering abortion care on Monday, September 18. Since Roe v. Wade was overturned, Planned Parenthood of Illinois (PPIL) saw a 600% increase in patients from Wisconsin. Starting in July of 2022, PPWI and PPIL shared a unique partnership where PPWI clinicians traveled to the PPIL Waukegan health center to provide care.

“Today we celebrate with Wisconsinites as they regain access to essential abortion care.” Jennifer Welch, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Illinois. “More access to care benefits everyone. We are thrilled Wisconsin patients have a choice and are not forced to flee their state for health care and clinicians can provide care in their home state. We are proud to serve patients from Wisconsin and look forward to continuing our partnership in a meaningful way. Our doors are open as we continue to fight for everyone to have access to reproductive and gender-affirming health care.”

* Isabel’s afternoon roundup…

    * WBEZ | Downstate leaders say they will need help handling the historic end to cash bail: “Our state might as well be in two different countries,” Cass County Sheriff Devron Ohrn said. “I think this would have been a great [law], if this is what Cook County wants. But don’t do it down here. The views and the needs of the people here are so much more different.” But backers of the law said concerns are overblown, and any implementation challenges are a worthwhile trade-off for a more just system. Ben Ruddell, an attorney at the ACLU of Illinois, said much of the opposition is because county officials are worried about losing out on revenue. “I think what they’re really concerned about are their own budgets, in terms of sheriffs, and people like that, who have concerns that perhaps their jails aren’t going to be as full as they’d like them to be,” Ruddell said.

    * Bloomberg | DeSantis offers $5,000 bonus for Chicago cops to relocate to Florida: The Republican Governor is funding an advertising campaign in the Greater Chicago area to recruit Illinois law enforcement to his home state of Florida, offering a $5,000 signing bonus to relocate, according to a statement. The effort is part of a broader 2022 recruitment law signed by DeSantis that so far has lured 2,700 officers to Florida — though only about 37 from Illinois.

    * Chicago Law Bulletin | Lea Gutierrez named new ARDC administrator: The Illinois Supreme Court has appointed Lea S. Gutierrez as the new administrator of the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission (ARDC), making her the first person of color to lead the agency. The appointment marks a return to the ARDC for Gutierrez, who previously served as the founding director of diversity and inclusion. She will take the administrator role effective Oct. 23, the ARDC said Thursday. Jerome Larkin, who joined the agency in 1978 and was named administrator in 2007, is retiring.

    * SJ-R | Springfield postal workers among 19 indicted on fraud charges related to COVID-19 loans: A federal grand jury has indicted 19 U.S. Postal Service workers, including 10 from Springfield, on wire fraud charges. All are accused of defrauding people through various COVID-19 relief programs in 2020 and 2021. Shawntelle Lynn, 31, was indicted in October in U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois on two counts of wire fraud. Patrice Green, 47, and Diamond Vinson, 29, were charged in August on four counts of wire fraud.

    * Crain’s | No-show workers add wrinkle to Stellantis-UAW union contract talks: Stellantis has made fixing absenteeism a priority in contract talks with the UAW for its 43,000 unionized workers. The absentee rate at its US plants was 23% last year, according to a copy of the company’s initial contract proposal reviewed by Bloomberg. Absent workers led to $217 million in lost sales in 2021 and 2022, the company estimated.

    * Sun-Times | Far South Side residents divided on migrant camp landing on their turf: Many residents at the often tense meeting said they were sympathetic to the migrants’ plight, but were opposed to the idea of a tent city in the area. They raised concerns about whether the migrants had been vaccinated, if they had background checks, where they would learn English, how the tent city would be kept clean and if it would affect property values.

    * Sun-Times | Nearly 65% of homeless population in Chicago lives in doubled-up, temporary housing: “These doubled-up families are not in typical home-sharing situations,” said Paler-Ponce. “It’s situations of poor Chicagoans that can’t afford to live on their own or formerly contributed to household costs. These are precarious, often overcrowded, always temporary situations that are often missing in data.”

    * Tribune | Revised property transfer tax plan, a hallmark of Mayor Brandon Johnson’s campaign to address Chicago homelessness, takes a step forward: Johnson’s team this summer hammered out a new version that offers a tiered tax rate system designed to hit the most expensive properties hardest. The measure applies to all sales of homes, commercial and apartment buildings in Chicago, though it decreases the tax rate on buildings priced below $1 million and increases it on those above that threshold.

    * Tribune | South Shore affordable housing protections to be proposed at City Council amid fears of Obama center gentrification: A group of community advocates and residents, along with Aldermen Desmon Yancy, 5th, and Jeanette Taylor, 20th, plan to introduce an ordinance Thursday at the City Council in an effort to preserve and create more affordable housing in the South Shore and Woodlawn neighborhoods, two communities where fears of gentrification and displacement from people like Robinson run high as the Obama Presidential Center takes shapes in nearby Jackson Park.

    * NBC Chicago | Can’t remember when your last COVID shot was? Use your Illinois digital vaccine card: If you don’t remember when your last COVID shot was — or you’ve misplaced your original COVID vaccine card, you can check your Illinois vaccine record using the Illinois Department of Health’s “Vax Verify” system. Following a registration and verification process, Illinois residents through the “Verify Vax” portal can check their immunization record, including their most recent COVID shots.

    * AP | Planned Parenthood to resume offering abortions next week in Wisconsin, citing court ruling: Planned Parenthood announced Thursday that it will resume offering abortions in Wisconsin next week after a judge ruled that an 1849 law that seemingly banned the procedure actually didn’t apply to abortions.

    * Daily-Journal | Former NFL player to take over strength training for Kankakee High School: On Monday, the Kankakee School Board approved a contract with Johnson Training LLC, owned by retired NFL player Charles Johnson. Johnson spent seven years as a wide receiver for teams including the Philadelphia Eagles, New York Jets, Carolina Panthers, Minnesota Vikings, Cleveland Browns and Green Bay Packers.

    * Block Club Chicago | Gilligan The Pig Is Living His Best Life At Belmont Harbor: The portly swine is named after the lead character in the 1960s sitcom “Gilligan’s Island.” He spends plenty of time on The Penalty Box while Tom Serbin gets people out on the water with his charter boat company, S.S. Charters Chicago, 2 W. Belmont Harbor Dr. Michele Serbin is a graphic designer who has made merch featuring their pet.

    * Sun-Times | Ken Griffin, a character in ‘Dumb Money,’ slams movie’s ‘false implications and inaccuracies’: “The original script contained numerous fabrications, and Citadel felt an obligation to flag those to Sony. Thanks to our letter, Sony corrected them and the final film did not include a number of falsehoods that would have been blatantly misleading to the audience,” said a statement from Tom A. Clare, an attorney representing Citadel.


  1. - Three Dimensional Checkers - Thursday, Sep 14, 23 @ 2:55 pm:

    ===Ken Griffin, a character in ‘Dumb Money,’ slams movie’s ‘false implications and inaccuracies’===

    Alexa, what is the definition of fiction?

  2. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Sep 14, 23 @ 2:58 pm:

    Things I know;

    Griffin “leveraged” Rauner to take on being a public figure instead of himself (Griffin) being the “the guy in the Big Chair”. Griffin continually wants the opportunity to get *his* wants or be selfishly ugly… without having to face…the ugly in a mirror, on a ballot, or in a film.

    Cowardly delicate.

  3. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Sep 14, 23 @ 3:04 pm:

    This is adorable.

    ===Our state might as well be in two different countries,” Cass County Sheriff Devron Ohrn said. “I think this would have been a great [law], if this is what Cook County wants. But don’t do it down here. The views and the needs of the people here are so much more different.”===

    Is it about the differences… or the budget and the monies?

    ===Ben Ruddell, an attorney at the ACLU of Illinois… “I think what they’re really concerned about are their own budgets, in terms of sheriffs, and people like that, who have concerns that perhaps their jails aren’t going to be as full as they’d like them to be,” Ruddell said===

    It’s about the money, not about “two states”.

    Keeping in mind who are “payers” and “takers”…

  4. - TheInvisibleMan - Thursday, Sep 14, 23 @ 3:17 pm:

    “But don’t do it down here. The views and the needs of the people here are so much more different.”

    This guy is just begging for someone to look closer at the people his county has let out simply because they had the money. A lot of sheriffs and SAs are getting arrogant because they know there is no local news to follow up on anything they say.

  5. - levivotedforjudy - Thursday, Sep 14, 23 @ 3:22 pm:

    I really think the Bears misplayed their hand by not pushing the multi-billion development instead of just the stadium and not getting the local officials to work on the Assessor’s Office on how the property tax will be valued even before they enhance the value. Oh well.

  6. - Excitable Boy - Thursday, Sep 14, 23 @ 3:22 pm:

    - Ken Griffin, a character in ‘Dumb Money -

    My first thought was that the movie had to be about the Irvin campaign.

  7. - levivotedforjudy - Thursday, Sep 14, 23 @ 3:24 pm:

    Different topic: So the ACLU was right and it is the money the downstate sheriffs are concerned about.

  8. - Norseman - Thursday, Sep 14, 23 @ 4:01 pm:

    The differences are that some put money over morality and disregard the rights of people.

  9. - ESR - Thursday, Sep 14, 23 @ 6:40 pm:

    “unemployment rate increased +0.1 percentage point to 4.1 percent, while nonfarm payrolls were almost unchanged, down -100, in August.”

    “The July monthly change in payrolls was revised from the preliminary report, from +11,200 to +3,400 jobs.” 🫨🫨🫨🫨🫨

  10. - Proud Papa Bear - Thursday, Sep 14, 23 @ 6:47 pm:

    DeSantis to offer $5,000 to Chicago cops who relocate to Florida.
    That will help offset the $30,000 pay cut they’ll take.

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