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Rahm Emanuel


Quick Hit
by Matthew Blake
Mon Oct 15, 2012

Ravitch Says CTU Strike Was Galvanizing Moment For Teachers

Diane Ravitch, who was assistant secretary of education under George H.W. Bush and then became a national spokeswoman against the so-called education reform movement, says that Chicago has taken the lead on education reform – and the revolt against such policies.

Now a professor at New York University, Ravitch told reporters at the Chicago Teachers Union headquarters Monday that the strike gave “vicarious exhilaration” to teachers across the nation that were “beaten down” by evaluations based on standardized tests and charter schools.

Ravitch says Chicago is distinctive on education issues because of a “more militant” teachers' union, noting that in much of the south, west and now to an extent in northern states such as Wisconsin, “Teacher collective bargaining rights are eliminated.”

Quick Hit
by Matthew Blake
Wed Oct 10, 2012

Why Is Emanuel Touting 'No New Taxes'?

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel presented his 2013 budget to the city council today, profusely emphasizing that the budget contains no new taxes.

“This is a budget that allows us to make critical investments by reforming government instead of raising taxes,” Emanuel said in a statement. “As I pledged, we will not raise sales taxes; we will not raise the fuel tax; we will not raise the amusement tax.”

So are no new taxes a good thing?

Quick Hit
by Matthew Blake
Wed Sep 26, 2012

Buyer, Clean-Up Plans Still Unknown For Chicago Coal Plant Sites

A mayoral task force released a report Saturday with broad guidelines for how to redevelop the site of two Chicago coal-fired power plants on the Southwest Side that shut down in August. A main recommendation was that the sites be used to create local jobs in non-polluting industries.

Community advocates who live in the Pilsen neighborhood, the site of the closed Fisk plant, and Little Village, home of the shuttered Crawford plant, credit Mayor Rahm Emanuel not just for working with Midwest Generation company to shut down the plants, but also for using a task force to spark community dialogue.

“Usually task forces are where something goes to be forgotten,” says Nelson Soza, executive director of Pilsen Alliance and a member of the task force. “But this task force raised the profile of these sites.”

However, the panel did not weigh in on a central concern of community residents: who will take on remediation, i.e. the process of cleaning up the industrial site. The report reads that, “The issue of remediation was discussed by the Task Force, but the Task Force was unable to reach consensus on a recommendation for further action.”

PI Original
by Matthew Blake
Tue Sep 25, 2012

Pat Quinn's Roadmap Toward A Gambling Bill - And Lou Lang's Skepticism

Gov. Pat Quinn vetoed legislation to expand Illinois gambling at the end of August, but he also may have laid the framework for compromise in the fall veto session. Quinn dropped his objection to slot machines at horse racing tracks and set in motion a plan to link gaming revenue with replenishing the state education budget.

PI Original
by Matthew Blake
Mon Sep 24, 2012

The New Face Of Chicago Gang Violence

Like overall city violence, gang violence is on a long-term decline despite the uptick this year. Moreover, there are changes in what constitutes a gang and how gangs use violence. Gangs are not just more splintered, their leadership is increasingly younger and more fluid.