WBEZ | News http://www.wbez.org/news Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Asian-American activists seek firing of cops in parlor video http://www.wbez.org/news/asian-american-activists-seek-firing-cops-parlor-video-112848 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/Amy Tran.JPG" alt="" /><p><p><span id="docs-internal-guid-c35cc68d-9ab1-6b3e-1266-a5727b480bfd"><span style="font-size: 16px; font-family: Arial; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Asian-American activists in Chicago are expressing outrage over the lack of punishment being recommended by the city agency that investigates police misconduct. Their anger goes back to a 2013 raid on a massage parlor where police arrested Jessica Klyzek, the manager of the salon. The incident was caught on tape, and Klyzek can be heard screaming hysterically.</span></span></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.38;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-401bc456-9aa9-ef31-b74e-3134168ec661"><span style="font-size: 16px; font-family: Arial; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Police respond by yelling at her that she is acting like an animal; they threaten her and her family with death and one yells, &ldquo;You&#39;re not f****** American. I&#39;ll put you in the UPS box and send you back to wherever the f*** you came from.&rdquo;</span></span></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.38;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.38;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-401bc456-9aa9-ef31-b74e-3134168ec661"><span style="font-size: 16px; font-family: Arial; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">A half-dozen officers stand by watching.</span></span></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.38;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p style="text-align: center;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/9bwfdIrb3i0" width="420"></iframe></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.38;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.38;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 16px; line-height: 1.38; white-space: pre-wrap;">According to a spokesman for the Independent Police Review Authority, the agency is recommending suspensions of 25 days and 8 days for two officers involved and a one-day suspension for the sergeant supervising them who never stepped in to stop the abuse and never reported it, according to an attorney for Klyzek.</span></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.38;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.38;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-401bc456-9aa9-ef31-b74e-3134168ec661"><span style="font-size: 16px; font-family: Arial; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Viveka Ray-Mazumder was one of 15 people protesting those recommendations Friday morning outside police headquarters. </span></span></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.38;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.38;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-401bc456-9aa9-ef31-b74e-3134168ec661"><span style="font-size: 16px; font-family: Arial; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">&ldquo;How could you watch that video and not recognize that this is horrifying and that something major needs to happen? That&rsquo;s the question that we&rsquo;re all asking ourselves,&rdquo; said Ray-Mazumder.</span></span></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.38;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.38;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-401bc456-9aa9-ef31-b74e-3134168ec661"><span style="font-size: 16px; font-family: Arial; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Activists from several Asian American community groups are demanding that police Supt. Garry McCarthy fire the officers involved. The police department did not immediately respond to requests for comment.</span></span></p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><em>Robert Wildeboer is a WBEZ criminal and legal affairs reporter. Follow him at <a href="https://twitter.com/robertwildeboer">@robertwildeboer</a>.</em></p></p> Fri, 04 Sep 2015 17:58:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/asian-american-activists-seek-firing-cops-parlor-video-112848 A checkup on Chicago’s health data http://www.wbez.org/news/checkup-chicago%E2%80%99s-health-data-112847 <p><div>Four years ago, in a sweaty Humboldt Park Fieldhouse, <a href="http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2011-08-17/health/ct-met-healthy-chicago-20110817_1_health-care-breast-cancer-public-health" target="_blank">Mayor Rahm Emanuel launched</a> a bold new plan he called <a href="http://www.cityofchicago.org/dam/city/depts/cdph/CDPH/PublicHlthAgenda2011.pdf" target="_blank">Healthy Chicago</a>.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Joined by the health commissioner, the mayor pinpointed 16 key health issues--including teen pregnancy, smoking, stroke death, breast cancer and asthma. They set 2020 &nbsp;progress goals for each of those health issues and promised yearly--even monthly--updates on where Chicagoans stood.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>&ldquo;By having a clear mission with clear priorities and having a way to measure them and make sure we are not only setting goals but achieving them...we will have the greatest impact on our public health,&rdquo; Emanuel said at the time.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>But four years later--about halfway into the 2020 plan--health department officials say they still don&rsquo;t know where we stand on most of them.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>The era of big data brought big promises from the Emanuel administration, but, for a host of reasons, delivering on pledges to post timely health updates didn&rsquo;t happen.&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>&ldquo;Over time what we&rsquo;ve realized is that the data were not always available in a timely fashion,&rdquo; said &nbsp;Health Commissioner Julie Morita who took office this spring. Today, she says, she can update about seven of the original 16 goals. On the others, there&rsquo;s just not enough information.&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>For instance, the <a href="https://www.cityofchicago.org/content/dam/city/depts/cdph/CDPH/HealthyChicagoAnnualReport2013.pdf" target="_blank">most recent data the department released</a> on stroke deaths, birth weight, birth rate and breast cancer came from 2009. The most recent data it has on produce consumption, teen smoking, dating violence and blood pressure comes from 2011.&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>And this information isn&rsquo;t just interesting for journalists who want to keep tabs on city promises, it can be critical to smart funding decisions and, more important, for tracking disease.</div><div>Dr. David Ansell leads the <a href="http://www.chicagobreastcancer.org/" target="_blank">Metropolitan Chicago Breast Cancer Task Force</a>, which is trying to close the breast cancer mortality gap between black and white patients in Chicago. But he&rsquo;s had to rely almost entirely on data from the federal government. That&rsquo;s because, Ansell and others report, essential local health information is getting bottlenecked at the state level.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>&ldquo;It&rsquo;s almost impossible to get the data from the state cancer registry,&rdquo; he says. &ldquo;And I think it&rsquo;s a major public health problem&hellip;. It&rsquo;s almost as if they have the data but they don&rsquo;t share it in a way that&rsquo;s useful. This is a matter of life and death because the goal is to improve the life conditions of the people in Chicago and state--and its absence is a travesty.&rdquo;</div><div style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/HC%20chart.jpg" style="text-align: center; height: 375px; width: 600px;" title="These charts showed where Chicago was and where we wanted to be in 2020 but most of them can’t be updated with the current data available. (WBEZ/Monica Eng)" /></div><div>Illinois Department of Public Health director Nirav Shah points out that the Illinois Cancer Registry has<a href="http://www.idph.state.il.us/public/press13/6.6.13_Cancer_Registry_Receives_Highest_Award.htm" target="_blank"> earned awards</a> as recently as 2013 for 2010 data collection. But he also says he wasn&rsquo;t aware of concerns about data bottlenecks in his department. And, he explains, data sharing is a complicated process.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>&ldquo;Even after data are reported, such as for cancer, they have to then be collected in accordance with federal standards for privacy and quality,&rdquo; he said. &ldquo;We have to make sure that the data are maintained in a secure fashion and that nothing gets out the door that shouldn&rsquo;t get out the door. And that the data on file are of high quality that they have not been duplicated. They also have to be checked for accuracy. That process is not an easy one, and it does take some time.&rdquo;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Indeed, privacy and duplication concerns play a role in slowing the data. But many say methods for addressing them are getting better and faster. Indeed, several local initiatives are underway to improve speed, compatibility and accessibility of health data. But they may not bear fruit for a few years,</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>In the meantime, Health Commissioner Morita is working on Healthy Chicago 2.0, a program that will be unveiled later this year. She says it will create a new set of health priorities for the city, and this time, ensure that systems are in place to actually keep track of the progress.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>The plan will also have the benefit of new data generated by the department itself. Late last year CDPH launched the first Healthy Chicago survey. It was done with more than 2,500 residents who answered a battery of health questions by phone.&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>&ldquo;I feel like it&rsquo;s a recognition of the need to have timely data in areas of concern,&rdquo; Morita said. &ldquo;So we can definitely allocate our resources in the appropriate places.&rdquo;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>While a 2,500-person survey can sound puny, health data experts say that a well-conducted survey of that size could actually be very valuable. Currently a lot of our information comes from the national &nbsp;Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, which only captures a few hundred Chicagoans.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Plus, Morita says, after this first baseline year, subsequent annual surveys will be able to tell us how Chicago&rsquo;s doing year-to-year. And eventually, &ldquo;we&rsquo;ll be able to get down to the community level so we can have health estimates on disease right down to the community level. So we&rsquo;re really looking forward to having that information available in a timely manner.&rdquo;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><em>Monica Eng is a WBEZ producer and co-host of the Chewing The Fat podcast. Follow her at <a href="https://twitter.com/monicaeng" target="_blank">@monicaeng</a> or write to her at <a href="mailto:meng@wbez.org.?subject=Chicago%E2%80%99s%20health%20data%20checkup">meng@wbez.org.</a></em></div><div>&nbsp;</div></p> Fri, 04 Sep 2015 15:57:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/checkup-chicago%E2%80%99s-health-data-112847 CPS deploys street teams for back-to-school reminder http://www.wbez.org/news/cps-deploys-street-teams-back-school-reminder-112846 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/back-to-school_150904_nm.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>On a balmy morning this week Marcus Petty knocks on doors in the South Chicago neighborhood. He&rsquo;s armed with a clipboard and flyers.</p><p>His task is to make sure Chicago Public Schools parents know where their child is enrolled for the fall.</p><p>Petty checks contact information, gives out CPS literature about start times and important phone numbers. He asks questions like: <em>Will the student be there the first day? Do you have any questions or concerns? Can we update your contact info?</em></p><p>This particular morning Petty hits 40 homes. He has a list of addresses from CPS, and he goes from place to place. Many are homes where CPS didn&rsquo;t have correct contact information. In the hot hours he&rsquo;s out, Petty finds a good chunk of abandoned homes or that the family doesn&rsquo;t live there anymore.</p><p>Students in CPS return to classrooms on Sept. 8. But the district often has a hard time reaching all parents to make sure they know where to send their children on the first day of school. Families get lost for myriad reasons: they move, they change contact info. For the past several years, CPS has hired street teams to check in with them.</p><p>Petty is with Black United Fund of Illinois, one of 14 vendors CPS has hired to conduct summer door knocking.</p><p>Black United Fund got about 3,000 addresses to check. The South Side nonprofit pays workers like Petty between $11 and $13 an hour to canvass neighborhoods such as Roseland and South Shore.</p><p>Henry English, CEO of Black United Fund, says using community groups to canvass is critical.</p><p>&ldquo;It makes a difference when Ms. Brown from down the street comes knocking on your door or somebody that you know from the neighborhood comes knock on your door expressing interest about your child&rsquo;s education,&rdquo; English says.</p><p>It&rsquo;s also about the money. School funding follows the child, so attendance is critical. Decreased enrollment &mdash; even by a handful of students &mdash; can mean less money for schools that need every dollar.</p><p>This school year, CPS predicts it will enroll 396,000 students. &nbsp;</p><p>Nkrumah English is program director for Black United Fund and says it&rsquo;s important to keep track of children in a district with many families who move around.</p><p>&ldquo;The families are transferring them out of the school without giving notification,&rdquo; English &nbsp;says. &ldquo;So the school would be expecting them to start the starting date but that kid will be in a whole &lsquo;nother school or maybe whole &lsquo;nother state.&rdquo;</p><p>In total, CPS is paying the 14 vendors $200,000. Kindergarten and 9th grade are sensitive years because it&rsquo;s either the starting point or a transition. In a system of choice, students may change their minds about which school they&rsquo;re attending up until when school starts so CPS focuses more on those families. &nbsp;</p><p>The district&rsquo;s public policy chief Arnie Rivera digs through school data to determine which households need a personal visit.</p><p>&ldquo;We were targeting students that historically had truancy issues, and just lack of attendance on the first couple of days of school and making sure we get those kids especially off on the right foot,&rdquo; Rivera says.</p><p>Rivera says it&rsquo;s important for the district to make contact with students early on &mdash; not just to get them in the door but to assess what additional support they might need.</p><p>&ldquo;If we see that we&rsquo;re seeing some challenges one the first couple of days, it&rsquo;ll give us time to readjust and self correct,&rdquo; Rivera says.</p><p>In the meantime, the door knocking will continue this weekend and through the first day of school.</p><p><em><a href="http://www.wbez.org/users/nmoore-0" rel="author">Natalie Moore</a> is WBEZ&rsquo;s South Side Bureau reporter. <a href="mailto:nmoore@wbez.org">nmoore@wbez.org</a>.&nbsp;Follow Natalie on <a href="https://plus.google.com//104033432051539426343" rel="me">Google+</a>, &nbsp;<a href="https://twitter.com/natalieymoore">Twitter</a></em></p></p> Fri, 04 Sep 2015 15:11:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/cps-deploys-street-teams-back-school-reminder-112846 $50,000 reward offered for capture of suspects who killed Fox Lake officer http://www.wbez.org/news/50000-reward-offered-capture-suspects-who-killed-fox-lake-officer-112842 <p><p>FOX&nbsp;LAKE, Ill. &mdash; Investigators in northern Illinois are hoping a $50,000 reward and new videos will help produce a break in the hunt for three men wanted in this week&#39;s fatal shooting of a police officer. A guide to key aspects of the case:</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><strong>THE SLAYING</strong></p><p>Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz, a 30-year police veteran who was on the cusp of retiring, was shot Tuesday in the village of&nbsp;Fox&nbsp;Lake&nbsp;while pursuing three suspicious men, authorities say. He told dispatchers the three ran into a swampy area and requested a second unit. Dispatchers soon lost contact with him, and backup officers found him about 50 yards from his squad car with a gunshot wound. He died soon after.</p><p>The killing occurred in an open area of trees and marshland bordered by several houses on one end and a public works site on the other. Police say they&#39;ve previously received several complaints about vandalism and squatters in the area, but it was not clear what brought Gliniewicz to the scene Tuesday.</p><p>Fox&nbsp;Lake&nbsp;is about 45 miles north of Chicago.</p><p><strong>THE LATEST</strong></p><p>Motorola Solutions Inc., which has employees who live in the area, has offered up $50,000 in reward money for information leading to the capture and conviction of the killers. And residents and businesses have stepped forward with several more videos in addition to one earlier this week from a resident&#39;s home security system that the homeowner says shows three men.</p><p>Lake&nbsp;County Major Crime Task Force Cmdr. George Filenko told reporters Friday he believes the new videos are &quot;even more relevant,&quot; and that some came from intersection traffic cameras.</p><p>He said he hasn&#39;t yet had a chance to view any of them himself because they&#39;re being analyzed and processed by the FBI and the federal Department of Homeland Security.</p><p>Authorities hope the videos will offer investigators a detailed description of the three suspects. For three days, authorities have had only a vague description of the men that Gliniewicz radioed in to dispatchers: Two are white, the other is black.</p><p><strong>CHASING LEADS</strong></p><p>Filenko says investigators are getting so many tips by phone, email and social media that a second detective has been tasked with filtering through them. Authorities believe there&#39;s a strong possibility the suspects are still in the general area, and detectives are depending on the public&#39;s help.</p><p>&quot;All it takes is one tip or good lead to break a case wide open,&quot; Filenko said Wednesday.</p><p>Filenko has more than 100 people actively deployed to investigate on the ground. They are going back to nearby homes to interview residents, sometimes two or three times.</p><p>During the manhunt, patrols have also searched cabins, barns and forests that dot the rural landscape and its many forest preserves.</p><p><strong>NERVES RATTLED</strong></p><p>Fox&nbsp;Lake&nbsp;is nestled in one of the state&#39;s most popular recreational areas, a boating and fishing playground known as the Chain O&#39;&nbsp;Lakes. It&#39;s especially busy during Labor Day weekend, usually drawing tens of thousands of visitors.</p><p>But concerns mounted that tourists might decide to go elsewhere because of the heavy police presence and fear that the fugitives could be hiding somewhere among the&nbsp;lakes, wetlands and forest glens.</p><p>&quot;People are concerned about those individuals. And the few customers I get in here, that&#39;s all they talk about,&quot; said Marciano Martinez, co-owner of the popular Dockers restaurant.</p><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP_703670657838_0.jpg" title="The late Fox Lake Police officer Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz is displayed on a scoreboard during the first half of an NFL preseason football game between the Chicago Bears and the Cleveland Browns, Thursday, Sept. 3, 2015, in Chicago. Gliniewicz, a 30-year police veteran, was shot Tuesday in the village of Fox Lake. Authorities broadened the hunt Wednesday for three suspects wanted in the fatal shooting of the popular Illinois police officer, even as they acknowledged that they had no indication the men were still in the area where the slaying happened. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)" /></div><p><strong>MOURNING A POPULAR OFFICER</strong></p><p>Gliniewicz, a 52-year-old tattooed officer with a shaved head, was known around town as &quot;G.I. Joe.&quot; Beyond his decades-long career in law enforcement, he was also a mentor and role model in the community, having led a police Explorers post for four years.</p><p>Gliniewicz was planning to retire at the end of the month and had just met Monday with the mayor to ensure that the Explorer post would go on.</p><p>His funeral will be 1 p.m. Monday at Antioch High School, northeast of&nbsp;Fox&nbsp;Lake.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&mdash; <em>The Associated Press</em></p></p> Fri, 04 Sep 2015 13:06:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/50000-reward-offered-capture-suspects-who-killed-fox-lake-officer-112842 Lawsuit: IPRA continues to force investigators to find for cops in shootings http://www.wbez.org/news/lawsuit-ipra-continues-force-investigators-find-cops-shootings-112840 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/Torri-Torreya-Hamilton.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>An official who was fired from the agency that investigates shootings by police in Chicago is suing the city for wrongful termination.</p><p>Lorenzo Davis says he was fired by the Independent Police Review Authority (IPRA) <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/city-fires-investigator-who-found-cops-fault-shootings-112423">because he refused to change his findings in several cases</a> where he found Chicago police officers should not have fired their weapons. In his lawsuit Davis says the head of IPRA, Scott Ando, asked for his reports in Word Document format. Davis says Ando wanted to change Davis&rsquo; reports and attribute the changes to Davis himself.</p><p>The lawsuit also claims that Ando has continued to force other investigators to change their findings since Davis was fired. Davis&rsquo; attorney Torri Hamilton says Ando is regularly changing the investigations to find police officers acted appropriately. She says Ando does not tell investigators to change their findings to conclude that police engaged in misconduct.</p><p>&ldquo;They named themselves the Independent Police Review Authority. It was supposed to be independent of the police department. And I don&rsquo;t think that&rsquo;s what actually is happening,&rdquo; Hamilton said in her office Thursday.</p><p>Hamilton says Chicago aldermen should call for hearings into IPRA. She says they should question the independence of the Independent Police Review Authority. &ldquo;The whole thing is broken. None of what was sold to the city council originally as justification for creating this agency is actually happening,&rdquo; said Hamilton.</p><p>A spokesman for IPRA says the agency doesn&rsquo;t comment on pending litigation.</p><p>In previous WBEZ reports, <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/chicago-agency-chief-denies-pressuring-investigators-change-findings-police-shootings-112467">the agency has called Davis&rsquo; claims baseless</a> and said it&rsquo;s committed to conducting fair and unbiased investigations. WBEZ has repeatedly invited IPRA Chief Administrator Scott Ando to talk about the Davis case and how IPRA investigates shootings by police. Ando has declined all requests.</p></p> Fri, 04 Sep 2015 12:24:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/lawsuit-ipra-continues-force-investigators-find-cops-shootings-112840 Judge tosses lawsuit against sperm bank over biracial child http://www.wbez.org/news/judge-tosses-lawsuit-against-sperm-bank-over-biracial-child-112841 <p><div><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP_13825344608.jpg" style="float: right; height: 285px; width: 200px; margin-left: 10px; margin-right: 10px;" title="In this Oct. 1, 2014 file photo, Jennifer Cramblett is interviewed at her attorney's home in Waite Hill, Ohio. Cramblett has sued a Chicago-area sperm bank after she became pregnant with sperm donated by a black man instead of a white man as she'd intended. (AP Photo/Mark Duncan)" /></div></div><p>CHICAGO&nbsp;&mdash; A DuPage County judge has dismissed a lawsuit against an Illinois sperm bank accused of mistakenly providing sperm from a black donor to a white Uniontown, Ohio woman.</p><div><div><div><p>The&nbsp;<a href="http://trib.in/1KMR9dw" target="_blank">Chicago&nbsp;Tribune</a> reports Judge Ronald Sutter tossed the lawsuit Thursday. But ruled Jennifer Cramblett could refile her lawsuit against Midwest Sperm Bank under a negligence claim.</p><p>Cramblett became pregnant in December 2011 through artificial insemination using sperm donated by a black man instead of the white donor whom she and her partner selected.</p><p>The bank later issued an apology and a partial refund.</p><p>Cramblett, who is white, said she loves her 3-year-old daughter. But she claimed &quot;limited cultural competency&quot; around African-Americans.</p></div><div><div style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</div><p>The sperm bank&#39;s attorney, Bob Summers, argued Cramblett&#39;s claim of &quot;wrongful birth&quot; could not be legally sustained in a case where a healthy child was born.</p><p>This story will be updated.</p></div><p>&mdash;&nbsp;<em>The Associated Press</em></p></div><p>&nbsp;</p></div><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Fri, 04 Sep 2015 12:21:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/judge-tosses-lawsuit-against-sperm-bank-over-biracial-child-112841 Northerly Island nature preserve opens under shadow of Daley raid http://www.wbez.org/news/northerly-island-nature-preserve-opens-under-shadow-daley-raid-112831 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/northerly-island.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Twelve years ago, then Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley, citing security concerns following the 9/11 terror attacks, sent backhoes to carve X&#39;s into the Meigs Field runway on Northerly Island.</p><p>A 40-acre park will open Friday on the southern half of the 91-acre site that in the 1930s hosted the Century of Progress Exposition before it became an airport.</p><p>The city spent $9.7 million to build the park, which features man-made hills, a 5-acre lagoon and a winding bike and pedestrian trail. The cost was covered by $6.3 million in federal funds and $3.4 million from the Chicago Park District.</p><p>Northerly Island is actually a peninsula linked by a land bridge that leads to the Adler Planetarium, the Shedd Aquarium and the Field Museum.</p></p> Fri, 04 Sep 2015 08:16:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/northerly-island-nature-preserve-opens-under-shadow-daley-raid-112831 Progressive alderman blasts Emanuel property tax increase http://www.wbez.org/programs/all-things-considered/2015-09-03/progressive-alderman-blasts-emanuel-property-tax-increase <p><p>Mayor Rahm Emanuel is giving an early peek at his 2016 budget and it includes a hefty property tax hike - and other measures to raise revenue - mostly in the name of paying down the city&rsquo;s mounting pension debts. The City Council&rsquo;s Progressive Caucus put out a statement today blasting the mayor&#39;s 2016 budget plan, for squeezing Chicago&rsquo;s working class families. Alderman John Arena, a long-standing member of the Progressive Caucus joins Melba Lara to talk about this budget.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>(TRANSCRIPT)</p><div><div>MELBA LARA</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Alderman Arena, a property tax increase is not really a surprise for anyone who was paying attention during the race for mayor, but the scope of this seems unprecedented.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>ALDERMAN ARENA</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>It absolutely is and it&rsquo;s startling because the mayor was critical of his opposition about past property tax increases, so to take this step without looking at a broader picture on how we solve the budget crisis, and using the tax increase as a last and least effect on closing the gap seems just too quick.</div><div id="fb-root"><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><a href="https://www.facebook.com/JohnArenaChicago/posts/990222041041471" target="_blank"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/caucus%20fb%20post.PNG" style="height: 560px; width: 540px;" title="A screenshot of 45th Ward Alderman, John Arena's official Facebook page is captured. The picture shows a post from the Arena, calling the public to action. (WBEZ)" /></a></div></div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>MELBA LARA</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>The Progressive Caucus has been saying today that the tax increase will disproportionately hurt working class families. What do you propose then to ease the burden on them?</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>ALDERMAN ARENA</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Well,&nbsp;we introduced some ideas to the mayor - a pretty wide-ranging mix of ideas. Some of them were as simple as imposing higher billboard fees. The billboard companies make huge profits on the advertising, and some of their fees are as low as $50-$200 and&nbsp;they&#39;re popping up all over the place. Those are the folks we should be going to first, instead of a pensioner who&rsquo;s going to see a reduction in benefits...as these challenges to the pension system go on; who have seen higher healthcare costs be imposed on them by the city and by the state; and then are going to be doubly hit because they&rsquo;re going to see a massive property tax increase. We&rsquo;re going to be forcing these folks into very difficult positions. Folks making less than $50,000 a year are going to be struggling to make ends meet.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>MELBA LARA</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>And Alderman Arena we&rsquo;re hearing a lot about of course the big property tax increase proposed, we&rsquo;ve heard about some fees going up...what about cuts?</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>ALDERMAN ARENA</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Well, that&rsquo;s&nbsp;a difficult&hellip;&nbsp;we&rsquo;ve been going through the budget and I know the mayor has done this and I will give him credit for finding ways to do that. But, what we see is it&rsquo;s becoming harder and harder to provide services in a timely manner. We look at things and keep saying &lsquo;oh we just have to keep cutting personnel&rsquo;, but at some point we get to the point where we&rsquo;re hitting bone - and I think we&rsquo;re pretty much there. This again has to be... a more nuanced approach than just a heavy hand of a straight property tax increase.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>MELBA LARA</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Alderman Arena, I did want to play this piece of tape from Mayor Rahm Emanuel who has said that these increases will be painful, but it will finally give the city a permanent fix for the nagging financial problems.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><blockquote><div><em>MAYOR RAHM EMANUEL (TAPE)</em></div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><em>&ldquo;And by the time we&rsquo;re done, in the four years the structural deficit we inherited in 2011 will be eliminated. All the gimmicks and shenanigans that were built up in the system to mask what the real cost of our government was from&nbsp;&lsquo;scoop-and-toss&rsquo;,&nbsp;to raiding the rainy day fund, to borrowing from the future to pay for the present, to using one-time revenue sources - all those gimmicks will be out of the system, and we will have finally righted our financial ship.&rdquo;</em></div></blockquote><div>&nbsp;</div><div>MELBA LARA</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>That&rsquo;s Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, and Alderman Arena, will this be a permanent fix?</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>ALDERMAN ARENA</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Well, whether it&rsquo;s a permanent fix still has to be determined. The idea of moving away from &lsquo;scoop-and-toss&rsquo; and policies that he continued from the previous administration without really having a plan for how&nbsp;we&#39;re&nbsp;going to recover those lost dollars except for going to a property tax increase, I call that bad planning.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>MELBA LARA</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>I know that some groups have suggested the city tap TIF [Tax Increment Financing] money. Is that an option that can be explored?</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>ALDERMAN ARENA</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Well,&nbsp;the mayor is codifying that we surplus 25%. I have...and my colleagues have called for a higher percent of TIF &#39;surplusing&#39;&nbsp;each year from the very beginning when I came into office; same time as the mayor. You know, I think 25% is meagerly, I think there&rsquo;s more money sitting there unused, we can move that up to 50% or 75% relatively quickly and help bring more money into the system. And again, we have to do this in an additive way. Find every single place that we can go to take money that&rsquo;s sitting idle and move it into our operating budget so that we make sure we have a property tax increase that&rsquo;s manageable and doesn&rsquo;t shut down our local neighborhood economies, because that&rsquo;s the biggest challenge I see here in the 45th Ward where we&rsquo;re starting to see some gains and new businesses opening, but if the seniors, if the local families here don&rsquo;t have discretionary money to get an ice cream cone, to get a meal out in the new businesses, we&rsquo;re going to start seeing closures again.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>MELBA LARA</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>upset Do you think you&rsquo;re going to be triggering an exodus from the City of Chicago?</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>ALDERMAN ARENA</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Well, I think Chicago is resilient and I think people have&nbsp;commitment&nbsp;to the city. We hear that a lot whenever we impose any kind of tax. I think Chicago is very diverse, I think it has a great economy. We have to be careful how we move that economy. Yeah, it&rsquo;s going to force some people to make hard choices. I think we&rsquo;re going to weather through this, and I think with the work the caucus is doing in bringing ideas to the table that are more equitable than just this sort of straight line tax, I think we can figure out a way by the time we get to a budget that we see as a final budget that gets voted on that it&lsquo;s not just this straight line tax.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>MELBA LARA</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Alderman Arena, you have proposed in the past a city income tax. Do you think that&rsquo;s workable?</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>ALDERMAN ARENA</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Yeah, we got some numbers back from the budget office when we presented this to them, and by their numbers, if you exempted the first 50,000 of income of all employees, a half a percent on income would bring in $190 million. And what&rsquo;s key about that is one, it protects the lower income brackets from exposure to this, and secondly, it&rsquo;s going to impose a tax on those&nbsp;commuters&nbsp;that come into the city, earn their salaries here, use our infrastructure and go back home. So it&rsquo;s a more diverse tax, it loops in a wider net if you will, and it protects that lower income bracket which is very important to the Progressive Caucus.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>MELBA LARA</div><div>Alderman John Arena of the Chicago City Council, thanks for talking with us today.&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div></div><p>&mdash; <em><a href="https://soundcloud.com/wbez/progressive-alderman-blasts-emanuel-property-tax-increase" target="_blank">All Things Considered</a></em></p></p> Thu, 03 Sep 2015 17:54:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/all-things-considered/2015-09-03/progressive-alderman-blasts-emanuel-property-tax-increase Legionnaires' outbreak contained at Calif. prison; new cases in Illinois http://www.wbez.org/news/legionnaires-outbreak-contained-calif-prison-new-cases-illinois-112829 <p><p>The number of confirmed cases of Legionnaires&#39; disease at California&#39;s San Quentin prison is holding steady at six, one of three outbreaks of Legionnaires&#39; around the country that have sickened dozens and killed 20.</p><p>Another 95 San Quentin inmates are under observation because of respiratory illness,<a href="http://cdcrtoday.blogspot.jp/2015/09/san-quentin-state-prison-legionnaires_2.html"> state officials said</a>, but they have not been diagnosed with Legionnaires&#39; disease. The inmates are being treated at San Quentin&#39;s medical unit.</p><p>&quot;We&#39;ve got transmission control,&quot; Dr. Steven Tharratt, director of health care operations for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, said on&nbsp;<a href="http://www.kqed.org/a/forum/R201509010900">KQED&nbsp;Forum</a>Tuesday.</p><p>Administrators at the Marin County prison are restoring some services that had been suspended, including preparation of hot meals. Inmates had been receiving boxed meals for the past several days. Last Friday, officials confirmed the first case of Legionnaires&#39; disease at the prison. The number of cases had grown to six by Sunday.</p><p>In New York City, health officials announced Wednesday that they had detected Legionnaires&#39; bacteria in the water in one building in the Melroses Houses complex in the South Bronx, where four people have fallen ill. Other buildings there are being tested. Since July there have been&nbsp;<a href="http://www.nyc.gov/html/doh/html/diseases/cdlegi.shtml">124 cases of Legionnaires&#39; disease</a>&nbsp;at various locations the South Bronx; 12 people have died.</p><p>And in Quincy, Ill., the death toll from a Legionnaires&#39; outbreak has risen to eight, health state officials&nbsp;<a href="http://dph.illinois.gov/news/legionnaires%E2%80%99-disease-cases-quincy">reported&nbsp;</a>Wednesday. Forty-one people have been diagnosed. Earlier cases were associated with a state veterans home there, but four new cases, including one death, are not, authorities said.</p><p>Here&#39;s what you need to know about the disease:</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP_368131846448.jpg" style="margin-left: 10px; margin-right: 10px; height: 236px; width: 360px; float: right;" title="A large grouping of Legionella pneumophila bacteria (Legionnaires' disease). Legionnaires' disease has been reported in a handful of states in the summer of 2015, leading to multiple deaths and more than 100 illnesses. The unrelated cases are part of a typical pattern seen with a disease that tends to appear in warm weather and is mostly dangerous for people who are already sick or weakened. (Janice Haney Carr/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention via AP)" /></p><p><strong>What Is Legionnaires&#39; Disease?</strong></p><p>Legionnaires&#39; disease is a type of pneumonia caused by the Legionella bacteria. It is not spread person-to-person. Instead, it is present in water, especially warm water, and is carried by steam and mist. San Quentin officials had shut down many plumbing systems, and suspended cooking &mdash; because steam from cooking could carry the bacteria and infect people.</p><p>According to the&nbsp;<a href="http://www.cdc.gov/healthywater/swimming/rwi/illnesses/legionella.html">Centers for Disease Control</a>, the bacteria are &quot;one of the most frequent causes of waterborne disease among humans in the United States.&quot;</p><p><strong>Who Is At Risk?</strong></p><p>The CDC says that 8,000 to 18,000 people are hospitalized in the U.S. every year with Legionnaires&#39; disease. (By comparison, far more people are sickened every year by the more-common&nbsp;<a href="http://www.cdc.gov/pneumococcal/about/facts.html">pneumococcal pneumonia;</a>&nbsp;it affects 900,000 people.)</p><p>Those most at risk of becoming seriously ill are:</p><ul><li>People over age 50</li><li>Smokers</li><li>Those with chronic lung disease</li><li>People with weakened immune systems</li></ul><p><strong>How Is It Treated?</strong></p><p>While Legionnaires&#39; can be fatal, it is generally successfully treated with commonly available antibiotics.</p><p><strong>Can It Be Prevented?</strong></p><p>Since the Legionella bacteria are waterborne, everything from water storage towers to plumbing to&nbsp;<a href="http://www.cdc.gov/healthywater/pdf/swimming/resources/legionella-factsheet.pdf">hot tubs</a>&nbsp;needs to be properly disinfected. Samples have been collected at San Quentin, officials say, but the source of the contamination has not yet been identified. Lab tests on those samples take about two weeks to process. In the meantime, officials are hopeful that cutting off water supplies at San Quentin stopped the outbreak.</p><p>&quot;We believe the transmission of the organism was stopped last week,&quot; Tharratt said.</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP_760804016.jpg" style="height: 345px; width: 360px; margin-left: 10px; margin-right: 10px; float: right;" title="Dr. Stephen Thacker, right, of the U.S. Center for Disease Control, interviews Thomas Payne in Chambersburg, Pa. Hospital, Aug. 4, 1976. Payne was one of the Legionnaires who became ill after attending a state convention in Philadelphia. He is slowly recovering, although over 20 other Legionnaires have died from the mysterious disease. (AP Photo)" /><strong>Why Is It Called Legionnaires&#39;?</strong></p><p>In 1976, 2,000 members of the American Legion were gathered for a big conference in Philadelphia. Many became sick with a mysterious respiratory illness. The outbreak launched a massive public health investigation, which<a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC358030/">&nbsp;resulted in identification&nbsp;</a>of a new family of bacteria.</p><p>(On a historical note, in the early 1980s, those fighting for a similar public health response to another mysterious disease &mdash; one that was striking gay men &mdash; were sorely disappointed. As early as 1982,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.sfgate.com/health/article/Randy-Shilts-warned-early-about-baffling-2795293.php">there were already significantly more deaths</a>&nbsp;from what came to be called AIDS than had died in the 1976 Legionnaires&#39; outbreak.)</p><p><strong>Where Else Have Legionnaires&#39; Outbreaks Happened Recently?</strong></p><p>As noted, Legionnaires&#39; disease is a fairly common illness. The Associated Press noted these outbreaks around the country this summer, in addition to the Illinois and New York outbreaks:</p><ul><li>Two isolated illnesses occurred &mdash; one at Illinois&#39; Stateville prison last month, the other in July at West Chester University in Pennsylvania.</li><li>High levels of Legionella bacteria were found last week in the water system at a substance abuse treatment unit in Arizona at the Phoenix Veterans Affairs Health Care System, leading authorities to relocate 20 patients. The bacteria were discovered during routine testing and no illnesses have been reported, spokeswoman Jean Schaefer said.</li><li>A building at a GlaxoSmithKline drug manufacturing plant in Zebulon, N.C., was closed temporarily in August after Legionella bacteria were found in the external cooling towers there; no one was sickened.</li></ul><p>&mdash; <a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2015/09/03/437212873/legionnaires-calif-prison-outbreak-contained-new-cases-in-illinois"><em>via NPR&#39;s Shots</em></a></p></p> Thu, 03 Sep 2015 15:29:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/legionnaires-outbreak-contained-calif-prison-new-cases-illinois-112829 The Latest: Police to examine video in cop shooting probe http://www.wbez.org/news/latest-police-examine-video-cop-shooting-probe-112827 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/AP_381127943334.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>FOX LAKE, Ill. &nbsp;&mdash; The latest on the fatal shooting of a police officer in northern Illinois (all times local):</p><p><strong>1 p.m.</strong></p><p>Authorities believe they&#39;ve recovered video that will help the investigation into who killed a police officer in northern Illinois.</p><p>Lake County Major Crime Task Force Cmdr. George Filenko told reporters Thursday that a private resident came forward with the video from a home security system.</p><p>Investigators have not yet viewed it because it&#39;s on a hard drive that requires specialized technology to process. So, it&#39;s been turned over to the Department of Homeland Security.</p><p>Filenko says the resident told investigators it shows three people near the scene of Tuesday&#39;s killing in the village of Fox Lake and he is hopeful it will provide &quot;significant&quot; evidence.</p><p>Authorities are searching for three men in the killing of Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz.</p><p><strong>12:05 p.m.</strong></p><p>Bail is set at $100,000 for a woman accused of phoning in a false report that misled investigators hunting for suspects in a fatal police shooting in northern Illinois.</p><p>Thirty-year-old Kristin B. Kiefer of Vernon Hills is charged with disorderly conduct and falsifying a police report.</p><p>Authorities say she reported that her car broke down Wednesday night and that two men tried to get inside then fled into a cornfield.</p><p>Lake County Sheriff&#39;s Office spokesman Christopher Covelli says she has acknowledged she had lied.</p><p>At Thursday&#39;s bond hearing, Lake County State&#39;s Attorney Mike Nerheim said the report &quot;redirected the entire focus of this investigation for about five hours.&quot;</p><p>The&nbsp;Chicago&nbsp;Tribune (<a href="http://trib.in/1IN4dtF">http://trib.in/1IN4dtF</a>&nbsp;) says he called it a waste of time and resources.</p><p>It isn&#39;t clear if Kiefer has an attorney who can comment on her behalf.</p><p><strong>3:15 a.m.</strong></p><p>A county sheriff&#39;s spokesman says a woman lied to authorities about seeing two suspicious men in northern Illinois near where a police officer was fatally shot, a report that prompted a large police response.</p><p>Lake County Sheriff&#39;s Sgt. Christopher Covelli says about 85 federal, state and local law enforcement officials responded to the scene in Volo after the woman&#39;s report Wednesday night.</p><p>Volo is about 5 miles from Fox Lake, where Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz was fatally shot Tuesday after he pursued three suspicious men into a swamp. A manhunt for the suspects has been ongoing since then.</p><p>Covelli says 11 police dogs and three air support units assisted in the hours-long search until the woman told detectives she had lied.</p><p>Covelli says the woman, 30-year-old Kristin B. Kiefer of Vernon Hills, has been charged with disorderly conduct and falsifying a police report. He says she&#39;s being held at the Lake County Jail until a bond hearing.</p><p>Police say Kiefer told detectives that she was seeking attention from a family that employs her and that she chose the location because she knew about Gliniewicz&#39;s death.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&mdash;&nbsp;<em>The Associated Press</em></p></p> Thu, 03 Sep 2015 13:39:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/latest-police-examine-video-cop-shooting-probe-112827