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Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
2:19pm
Thu Nov 13

'Chuy' Garcia Talks Race, Inequality In Chicago; Supports Graduated State Income Tax

Chicago mayoral candidate and Cook County Commissioner Jesus "Chuy" Garcia stressed his support for a graduated state income tax at a Thursday morning University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) panel discussion on race and inequality.

Garcia said property taxes, which are a major source of revenue for public education in the city and state, are "very regressive in terms of how they affect the general population" and are "not the best source to fund schools."

"A fairer system of taxation would be a graduated state income tax, or something that is more progressive tied to an income tax," Garcia said in a follow-up with reporters after the talk, which was sponsored by UIC's Great Cities Institute. "I think that is a much more sustainable funding source for schools, for human services and things of that nature. I think it's one that we really need to look at. States that have that type of progressive taxation tend to have better-funded school systems and less disparities in education."

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
4:39pm
Tue Nov 11

Chicagoans Rally For Economic Justice, Policies To Support Working Families (VIDEO)

Hundreds of Chicagoans hit the city's downtown streets Tuesday afternoon to rally for economic justice. Progress Illinois provides highlights from the "Take Back Chicago" march and rally.

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
3:30pm
Mon Nov 10

Worker Advocates Protest 'Unsafe' Conditions At Nippon Sharyo Rail Car Manufacturing Factory

Worker advocates are sounding the alarm on "dangerous" and "unhealthy" working conditions at Nippon Sharyo's passenger train factory in Rochelle, Illinois.

Employees at the Rochelle plant -- which has received millions in grants, tax credits and training money from the state -- build railcars for Metra and other public transit agencies.

With the help of the AFL-CIO, current and former factory employees filed a complaint last month with the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), alleging that workers "are exposed to serious, unsafe conditions on an ongoing basis."

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
2:56pm
Mon Nov 10

Should The State Legislature Boost Exelon's 'Economically Stressed' Nuclear Plants?

Chicago-based nuclear giant Exelon Corp. insists several of its Illinois power plants are in dire financial straits, and the company appears poised to request a legislative fix from state lawmakers next year to avoid closing facilities. Progress Illinois takes a closer look at the issue.

Quick Hit
by La Risa Lynch
7:58pm
Wed Nov 5

Chicago West Side Voters React to Quinn's Gubernatorial Loss

Support for Gov. Quinn seemed strong among black voters in Chicago's Austin community on Tuesday, but that didn't translate into a win for the incumbent who was seeking his second full-term in office.

Quinn lost his re-election bid to Republican challenger Bruce Rauner, who dumped $27 million of his own money into his campaign war chest. 

Rauner and his running mate Evelyn Sanguinetti garnered 1,742,403 or 50.6 percent of the vote versus Quinn's 1,585,332 or 46 percent of the votes.

An early Rauner supporter, Rev. Marshall Hatch said he was not surprised by the election results. Hatch said Quinn's low approval rating signaled a pending change. Quinn, he added, made a major misstep by selecting Paul Vallas as his running inmate as opposed to former city treasurer Stephanie Neely. That move, Hatch said, showed Quinn took the black community for granted.

"I think Quinn left the Republicans a major opening," said Hatch, pastor of New Mount Pilgrim Baptist Church in West Garfield Park.

Quick Hit
by Bob Skolnik
6:10pm
Tue Nov 4

Voters Offer Dueling Views On Governor's Race In Southwestern Suburbs

How one voted in the governor's race is not an infallible indication of how someone voted on the non-binding referendum to raise the minimum wage. At least that's the case at the polling place at the Crest Hill branch of the White Oak Library District, where subdivisions meet cornfields on the outskirts of Lockport and Joliet in Will County.

Michael Arbanas, a semi-retired iron worker and antiques dealer from Crest Hill, voted for Bruce Rauner for governor, but also voted in favor of raising the minimum wage.

"I believe that Pat Quinn, by raising taxes on big business, he drove business out of the state and I think it's time for a change," Arbanas said.

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