PI Original Aricka Flowers Friday June 17th, 2016, 2:26pm

The PI Week In Review

The week that was in Illinois and national news and politics (June 13, 2016 - June 17, 2016).

Chicago and Cook County News:

Frustrated teachers and parents called on local Chicago aldermen to stand up and make individual commitments of support to public school teachers and students during the ongoing budget crisis on Saturday.

McDonald's is moving its headquarters to Chicago, with plans to be in the Windy City by the spring of 2018.

Chicago's Independent Police Review Authority has deemed a fatal June 2011 police shooting to be unjustified

Chicago aldermen are calling for city council hearings about the elevated lead levels found in the drinking water at over a dozen local public schools.

Chicago Housing Authority CEO Eugene Jones, Jr. spoke at the City Club of Chicago Monday afternoon, detailing the agency's progress toward reaching a key goal under the original Plan for Transformation and lauding the agency's success. But some housing advocates are not that impressed.

Water has tested positive for high lead levels in a total of 23 Chicago public schools, district officials said Tuesday. The district is planning several upcoming community meetings to discuss the lead issue. 

The U.S. Justice Department's pattern and practice probe into the Chicago Police Department will be the focus of four upcoming public forums to be held across the city. 

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and South Side religious leader Father Michael Pfleger, pastor of Saint Sabina Church, launched a new youth jobs program this week in the Auburn Gresham neighborhood. 

Housing activists interrupted Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel's speech at the Crain's Future of Chicago Conference Wednesday morning.

Chicago Ald. Raymond Lopez (15th) says he wants renewed attention placed on curbing the "proliferation" of assault weapons in the city, noting that such firearms have been used in several recent gang-related shootings in or near his South Side ward. 

Chicago workers burst into cheers Thursday after a city council committee advanced legislation to make earned paid sick leave a requirement in the Windy City.

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is delaying the introduction of a plan to get rid of the Independent Police Review Authority (IPRA) and replace it with some type of civilian agency.

Chicago parents rallied on the city's Northwest Side Friday morning to press for state and city solutions to the budget crisis at Chicago Public Schools. 

Former workers of a now-closed Old Country Buffet in Chicago are suing for back pay compensation after the restaurant abruptly shut down in early March.

State News:

An Illinois House committee held a second subject matter hearing Monday morning in Chicago on the issue of interest rate swaps.

Former Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn is spearheading petition drives to create term limits for Chicago's mayor and establish an independent consumer advocate in the city.

Former Lt. governor and state senatorial candidate Sheila Simon wants state lawmakers to override Gov. Bruce Rauner's veto of a spending bill that would have funded social services as well as colleges and universities. 

A ballot initiative to change the way legislative maps are drawn in Illinois has taken a significant step forward.

One step forward, two steps back. That's how some Illinois environmentalists describe new federal rules on toxic substances that could limit the state's own protections.

Monday marked 50 years since the U.S. Supreme Court made Miranda warnings mandatory, and legal experts say Illinois is taking small but positive steps in bolstering those rights for young people accused of crimes.

Even though the state saw downgrades by two credit rating agencies last week -- and was given a negative outlook by a third -- Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner defended plans to borrow $550 million later this week. 

Despite the Rauner administration's attempts to highlight the "record low" interest rate with which the money was borrowed, an analysis of Thursday's $550 million bond sale shows that Illinois faced a hefty penalty in the bond market because of its "deteriorating fiscal condition."

Meanwhile, Illinois Treasurer Michael Frerichs says the state is losing $2.6 million in investment profit per month as a result of the ongoing budget impasse.

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan has filed suit against GMI Recycling Services, Inc. after a fire at the facility potentially compromised air and water quality.

The Rauner administration is asking the Illinois Labor Relations Board to rule on the status of its contract negotiations with AFSCME Council 31 ahead of a recommendation from an administrative law judge. 

SEIU* Healthcare Illinois officials say the state's Child Care Assistance Program is now serving 55,000 fewer children because of budget cuts made by the Rauner administration.

An Illinois legislative committee advanced a plan Tuesday allowing the State Museum in Springfield to charge a $5 adult admission fee.

Twenty-nine parents and students from Palatine-Schaumburg High School District 211 released an open letter Wednesday in support of giving all transgender students in the district full access to bathrooms and locker rooms corresponding to their gender identity. 

A new union at Northern Illinois University has been certified by the Illinois Labor Relations Board. 

The Illinois unemployment rate fell to 6.4 percent in May, the first decline in seven months, but the dip was due to a diminishing workforce.

Illinoisans will have to wait until August 1 to get a glimpse of the proposed Affordable Care Act premiums for 2017. 

Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner's stopgap budget plan has the support of Illinois lottery officials, who say the measure will ensure lottery winners can collect their prizes after the current fiscal year ends on June 30.

National News:

Illinoisans joined the nation in mourning the massive loss of life following the Sunday morning terrorist attack in an Orlando nightclub.

U.S. Rep. Bob Dold (R-IL,10) expressed his support for several "commonsense" gun control measures on Tuesday, saying on the House floor that "thoughts and prayers are not enough. And it's time for action."

A federal judge has granted the American Civil Liberties Union's request to intervene in a lawsuit filed by a group of parents against the Palatine-Schaumburg High School District 211 and U.S. Departments of Justice and Education over locker room access for a transgender student.

A federal court has upheld the Federal Communication Commission's decision to treat the Internet like a utility - a victory for consumers say advocates of net neutrality.

U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk (R-IL) co-introduced legislation Thursday that would result in the FBI being automatically notified when terror suspects attempt to purchase a firearm. 

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers arrested 331 undocumented immigrants with criminal convictions in six Midwestern states, including Illinois, during a monthlong enforcement action.

U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) on Friday echoed his support for pending federal legislation that would prevent suspected terrorists from purchasing firearms and expand gun background checks to include gun shows and online purchases.

Cartoons of the Week:

PI editorial cartoonist Chris Britt on:

the terrorist attack at an Orlando nightclub Sunday morning, which led to the deaths of at least 49 people

Gov. Bruce Rauner's recent veto of a spending bill that would have funded higher education and social services in the state

the ongoing gun control battle on Capitol Hill

the growing number of Chicago Public Schools testing positive for elevated lead levels in the drinking water

the growing prevalence of mass shootings in the U.S.


*The SEIU Illinois State Council sponsors this website.


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