WBEZ | budget http://www.wbez.org/tags/budget Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en DCFS tells providers to prepare for 10 percent cuts as budget impasse continues http://www.wbez.org/news/dcfs-tells-providers-prepare-10-percent-cuts-budget-impasse-continues-112389 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/State-Capitol-Front-1_WBEZ_Tim-Akimoff_4.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>With no signs of a long-term budget agreement, or break in the political stalemate, contractors with Illinois&rsquo; Dept. of Children and Family Services are being told to prepare for 10 percent cuts.</p><p>The threat of reduced services comes as a federal judge mandated the state continue the same level of care for vulnerable children during the ongoing impasse as it did at the end of the previous fiscal year, which ended June 30. The agency has given no indication of when the 10 percent reduction in contracts would be implemented, leaving child welfare service providers little direction for how to plan their own budgets.</p><p>The order from DCFS to its contractors does not contradict Judge Jorge Alonso&rsquo;s ruling on the existing consent decree, which was intended to provide consistency to service providers. The threat of reductions adds to the uncertainty many child welfare providers, including Children&rsquo;s Home and Aid, have faced since July 1. Those groups are now left to balance maintaining the same level of services for now, while potentially facing a condensed schedule later in the fiscal year to enact drastic cuts.</p><p>&ldquo;Where the contracts, I think, create some confusion, is while they don&rsquo;t deal immediately with July 1, they give us a number to work toward for the entire fiscal year, and that number is certainly being reduced,&rdquo; said Jassen Strokosch, with Children&rsquo;s Home and Aid.</p><p>Strokosch said his agency has contracts with DCFS to continue providing payments to foster care families or investigating allegations of child abuse or neglect in the short-term in compliance with Judge Alonso&rsquo;s mandate. But he said administrators at Children&rsquo;s Home and Aid remain unclear on several fronts, including what services would be cut, and whether its current court-mandated contracts will end if there&rsquo;s a budget agreement from state lawmakers and the governor.</p><p>Strokosch also doesn&rsquo;t know if Children&rsquo;s Home and Aid will have to eventually absorb the full 10 percent in reductions later in the fiscal year, or if it should begin implementing those cuts immediately.</p><p>&ldquo;In response to ongoing budget negotiations, we have been required to initiate steps to responsibly manage the departments (<em>sic</em>) finances and have cut contracts by 10 percent,&rdquo; DCFS spokeswoman Veronica Resa said in an emailed statement responding to questions about how the department settled on telling contractors to cut 10 percent when there hasn&rsquo;t been a set budget agreement.</p><p>&ldquo;They don&rsquo;t yet know, and so we don&rsquo;t yet know, what they want to do 10 percent fewer of if that indeed would be the full amount that&rsquo;s cut for the full year&rsquo;s budget,&rdquo; said Marge Berglind, President of the Child Care Association of Illinois, which represents the political and financial interests of many DCFS contractors.</p><p>But not all observers are sure the cuts will happen.</p><p>American Civil Liberties Union attorney Ben Wolf has taken DCFS to court several times over the past few decades over the quality of services provided to youth. He said he didn&rsquo;t believe the 10 percent cuts to be &ldquo;real&rdquo; and that amount could change depending on the overall state budget that may eventually be adopted.</p><p>&ldquo;It certainly would be bad for the children if some of the better non-profit agencies started to have to feel like they can&rsquo;t plan for the future and they have to lay off staff,&rdquo; Wolf said. &ldquo;Any tentative, interim, proposed cuts that the people have heard about will not be maintained if they are inconsistent with the consent decree, which means they should not be maintained if they cause harm to children in the custody of the state.&rdquo;</p><p>Wolf said he can&rsquo;t go back to Judge Alonso over the possibility of budget cuts yet. But he&rsquo;ll be watching to see if child welfare providers end up cutting their services now in response to the threat of cuts and if those reductions in services end up violating the federal judge&rsquo;s court order that was intended to maintain a level of consistency during budget negotiations between Gov. Bruce Rauner and Democratic legislative leaders Michael Madigan and John Cullerton. Both Rauner and Madigan have said they&rsquo;re open to a full state budget that reflects cuts in government services and increases in revenue, but no specific agreement has been reached.</p><p>&ldquo;The future in Illinois is somewhat uncertain but I think the protections of our consent decree are quite a bit more certain than most of the Illinois budget,&rdquo; Wolf said.</p><p><em>Tony Arnold covers Illinois politics for WBEZ. Follow him </em><a href="https://twitter.com/tonyjarnold"><em>@tonyjarnold</em></a><em>.</em></p><p><em>WBEZ&rsquo;s Shannon Heffernan contributed reporting to this story. Follow her </em><a href="https://twitter.com/shannon_h"><em>@shannon_h</em></a><em>.</em></p></p> Tue, 14 Jul 2015 14:59:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/dcfs-tells-providers-prepare-10-percent-cuts-budget-impasse-continues-112389 CPS releases budgets for schools http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-07-14/cps-releases-budgets-schools-112379 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/9549882898_9274fea9bf_z.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/214693141&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 22px;">Chicago Public Schools officials delivered bad news to principals Monday. Two-thirds of the city&rsquo;s public schools will see their budgets slashed. The cuts are driven, in large part, by declining enrollment. But are also driven by debt payments and pension obligations that are devouring the revenues that would otherwise be spent in the classroom. Joining us to sort through what schools are hardest hit is WBEZ&rsquo;s education reporter Becky Vevea.&nbsp;</span></p></p> Tue, 14 Jul 2015 12:15:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-07-14/cps-releases-budgets-schools-112379 Morning Shift: July 10, 2015 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-07-14/morning-shift-july-10-2015-112387 <p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/214538029&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 22px;">Illinois State Senators talk about the stalemate with the budget, Chicago Public Schools will be doing more to ensure there&rsquo;s no discrimination when it comes to girls and high school school sports and we get a preview and plan of how to conquer Taste of Chicago.</span></p></p> Fri, 10 Jul 2015 13:46:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-07-14/morning-shift-july-10-2015-112387 Ball could be in State Senate’s court for a temporary state budget http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-07-14/ball-could-be-state-senate%E2%80%99s-court-temporary-state-budget-112386 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/17123235909_bc94df9fcd_z.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/214536455&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 22px;">The Illinois House passed a temporary budget on Thursday and there&rsquo;s an important amendment as the bill advances. It includes a requirement to pay state workers through the end of the month. The Democrats bill would also fund many social service providers. Now, the Senate needs to vote on if it can go forward in its new form. Both sides of the aisle are attacking their colleagues for slinging for party leaders. So what do lawmakers think of the impasse and what needs to be done next? We talk to a Democratic Sen. Kwame Raoul and Republican Senator Matt Murphy about what they will do to get a state budget.</span></p></p> Fri, 10 Jul 2015 13:39:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-07-14/ball-could-be-state-senate%E2%80%99s-court-temporary-state-budget-112386 State budget deadline comes — and goes — with no deal http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-07-01/state-budget-deadline-comes-%E2%80%94-and-goes-%E2%80%94-no-deal-112297 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/JanetandPhil_1.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/212813116&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false" width="100%"></iframe><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; line-height: 22px;">Wednesday is the deadline for the state to pass a budget and stave off a government shutdown that would affect services and state workers&rsquo; paychecks. Governor Rauner says a shutdown may be necessary to get reforms to set the state on a better fiscal path. Democratic leaders think the cuts are extreme and that it&rsquo;s more important to ensure services. We have the latest from the Capitol and how both sides of the aisle and waging the budget battle.&nbsp;</span></p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><strong style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: inherit; font-size: inherit; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: inherit; vertical-align: baseline;">Guests:&nbsp;</strong><a href="https://twitter.com/tonyjarnold">Tony Arnold</a> is WBEZ&#39;s statehouse reporter</p></p> Wed, 01 Jul 2015 12:33:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-07-01/state-budget-deadline-comes-%E2%80%94-and-goes-%E2%80%94-no-deal-112297 Democratic lawmaker 'mad as hell' over Rauner's veto of state budget http://www.wbez.org/news/democratic-lawmaker-mad-hell-over-rauners-veto-state-budget-112258 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/LIGHTFORD.JPG" alt="" /><p><p>Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner&rsquo;s rejection of a spending plan gives Illinois lawmakers less than a week to find an agreement and avoid the starting point of a government shutdown. But a Thursday rally on Chicago&rsquo;s West Side shed some light into just how far apart things remain between Rauner and Democratic legislators.</p><p>The rally came after several reports of increasing tensions between Republican Governor Bruce Rauner and Democrats. In that time, a lot of the voice and tone of Rauner&rsquo;s opposition has come from Democratic House Speaker Michael Madigan, who has a reputation for his low-key, matter-of-fact way of speaking.</p><p>For months now, Madigan has been saying he&rsquo;s working with Rauner even as the two sides have been inching toward the very dramatic possibility of a government shutdown. And the tone of the Democratic opposition got a serious injection of adrenaline Thursday when a group of African-American lawmakers organized a rally on Chicago&rsquo;s West Side.</p><p>Those at the rally were from community groups addressing state funding of autism programs, energy assistance for the poor, and mental health services. Some of those groups receive state money and stand to lose some of it.</p><p>Near the end of the event, Sen. Kimberly Lightford (D-Westchester), who is in Senate leadership, stepped outside to talk to reporters.</p><p>And that&rsquo;s when the news broke that Rauner had vetoed almost all of the spending plan for state government for the next year. It was in this moment when the rhetoric started to match the stakes of those tensions that have been talked about so much in recent months.</p><p>&ldquo;You can&rsquo;t just bring your whole campaign agenda in year one and pit it against the budget and say, &lsquo;Either you give me what I want or not.&rsquo; The campaign is over. People are hurting. It&rsquo;s time to govern,&rdquo; Lightford said.</p><p>Lightford says the governor hasn&rsquo;t been willing to negotiate with legislators. Rauner&rsquo;s administration denies that characterization of the debate, and Republicans have said it&rsquo;s Democrats who aren&rsquo;t willing to accept that voters elected a Republican as governor.</p><p>After she finished talking with reporters, Lightford still had something else to do: Break the news to those attending the rally in the other room.</p><p>When Lightford entered, tears streaming down her face, the crowd moved in tighter.</p><p>&ldquo;Don&rsquo;t confuse my tears as signs of weakness,&rdquo; she said. &ldquo;I&rsquo;m mad as hell and I want to fight.&rdquo;</p><p>That&rsquo;s when Lightford got more personal in her comments, referring to Rauner&rsquo;s personal wealth as the crowd looked for somewhere to direct its anger.</p><p>&ldquo;I don&rsquo;t give a damn how much money he has. He can sit up in his mansion and not be affected but all of us will feel the pinch. It might not be in your house but it&rsquo;s gonna be in your neighbor&rsquo;s house,&rdquo; she told the crowd.</p><p>As those in the crowd asked her for a plan of action, Lightford said she&rsquo;d have to talk to her fellow Democrats.</p><p>&ldquo;We&rsquo;re gonna have to march on this governor like nothing before,&rdquo; she said. &ldquo;And I think we need the elders in this room to show us how to do it. You did it in the &lsquo;50s, you did it in the &lsquo;60s, we need you to do it in 2015. We need help today.</p><p>For his part, Rauner <a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/commentary/ct-rauner-budget-veto-perspec-20150625-story.html">wrote an editorial</a> published in the Chicago Tribune Thursday, saying he vetoed the budget because the budget wasn&rsquo;t balanced. He said he still wants to change workers compensation benefits and approve term limits before a spending plan is approved. In that editorial, he also addressed the underfunded pension issues facing Chicago public school teachers and Cook County workers.</p><p>The response to Rauner&rsquo;s veto from Speaker Madigan did not reflect the anger felt on Chicago&rsquo;s West Side. Instead, Madigan&rsquo;s spokesman issued a written statement to reporters that says the wheels are in motion for hearing from government officials about how they&rsquo;re preparing for a shut down.</p><p><em>Tony Arnold covers Illinois politics for WBEZ. Follow him </em><a href="https://twitter.com/tonyjarnold"><em>@tonyjarnold</em></a><em>.</em></p></p> Fri, 26 Jun 2015 07:39:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/democratic-lawmaker-mad-hell-over-rauners-veto-state-budget-112258 Afternoon Shift: Looking back at Governor Rauner’s first 100 days in office http://www.wbez.org/programs/afternoon-shift/2015-04-21/afternoon-shift-looking-back-governor-rauner%E2%80%99s-first-100-days <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Flickr%20182nd%20Airlift%20Wing.jpg" style="height: 388px; width: 620px;" title="(Flickr/182nd Airlift Wing)" /></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/201928189&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><font color="#333333"><span style="font-size: 24px; line-height: 22px;">&quot;Right to work&quot; and balancing the budget define Governor Rauner&#39;s first 100 days in office</span></font></p><div style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: inherit; font-size: inherit; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: inherit; vertical-align: baseline;">April 21 marks the 100th day since Governor Bruce Rauner took office in Illinois. It&rsquo;s a milestone traditionally used to take stock of how things have gone so far. Two issues that have dominated these first few months are the state of Illinois&rsquo;s finances and the governor&rsquo;s fight to challenge unions. Anders Lindall, spokesman for the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Council 31; Greg Baise, president and CEO at the Illinois Manufacturers&rsquo; Association; and Laurence Msall, president of the Civic Federation join us to discuss the early goings of the Rauner administration.</p><p dir="ltr"><strong><span id="docs-internal-guid-799d777f-ddec-97ec-17e6-17cfa7db8537">Guest:</span></strong></p><ul dir="ltr"><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-799d777f-ddec-97ec-17e6-17cfa7db8537"><a href="https://twitter.com/alindall">Anders Lindall</a></span> is spokesman for the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Council 31.</em></li><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-799d777f-ddec-97ec-17e6-17cfa7db8537">Greg Baise is president and CEO at the </span><a href="http://www.ima-net.org/">Illinois Manufacturers&rsquo; Association</a>.</em></li><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-799d777f-ddec-97ec-17e6-17cfa7db8537"><a href="http://www.civicfed.org/civic-federation/staff/laurence-msall">Laurence Msall</a></span> is president of the Civic Federation.</em></li></ul></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/201927861&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><font color="#333333"><span style="font-size: 24px; line-height: 22px;">Chicago sports teams showing strong potential</span></font></p><div style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: inherit; font-size: inherit; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: inherit; vertical-align: baseline;">In the NBA Playoffs, the Bulls are up two games against the Milwaukee Bucks. The &#39;Hawks are up two games to one against Nashville. And both the White Sox and the Cubs have called up exciting prospects from the minors. Joining us to talk Chicago sports is WBEZ&#39;s Cheryl Raye-Stout.</p><strong><span id="docs-internal-guid-799d777f-ddee-fd1e-a114-e5adaf2aa6b2">Guest:&nbsp;</span></strong><a href="https://twitter.com/Crayestout?lang=en"><em>Cheryl Raye-Stout</em></a><em> is WBEZ&rsquo;s sports contributor.</em></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/201928010&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><font color="#333333"><span style="font-size: 24px; line-height: 22px;">Shortage of homes in housing inventory makes for a seller&#39;s market</span></font></p><div style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: inherit; font-size: inherit; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: inherit; vertical-align: baseline;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-799d777f-ddf0-be74-0b79-0e8d58d1be89">According to a </span><em>Crain&rsquo;s Chicago Business</em> report, there are fewer single family homes on the market in Chicago since the beginning of the housing market crash over eight years ago. So why is the housing inventory so short and what does it mean for potential buyers? Dennis Rodkin of <em>Crain&rsquo;s Chicago Business</em> joins us with answers.</p><strong><span id="docs-internal-guid-799d777f-ddf0-be74-0b79-0e8d58d1be89">Guest: </span></strong><em><a href="https://twitter.com/Dennis_Rodkin?lang=en">Dennis Rodkin</a> is a Crain&rsquo;s Chicago Business reporter.</em></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/201928362&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><span style="font-size: 24px; line-height: 22px; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);">Court proceedings continue against Bolingbrook man accused of trying to join ISIS</span></p><div style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: inherit; font-size: inherit; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: inherit; vertical-align: baseline;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-799d777f-ddf0-be74-0b79-0e8d58d1be89">A&nbsp;</span>19-year-old man accused of trying to join the so-called Islamic State was back in court on Tuesday. The charges against Hamzah Khan of Bolingbrook include attempting to provide material support to the terrorist group. WBEZ&rsquo;s Lynette Kalsnes was at the federal courthouse and joins us with details.</p><strong><span id="docs-internal-guid-799d777f-ddf2-465b-fa10-a9d4fe35e3d8">Guest: </span></strong><em><a href="https://twitter.com/LynetteKalsnes">Lynette Kalsnes</a> is a WBEZ reporter.</em></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/201927443&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><font color="#333333"><span style="font-size: 24px; line-height: 22px;">Tech Shift: Tracking venture capital investment in Chicago</span></font></p><div style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: inherit; font-size: inherit; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: inherit; vertical-align: baseline;">The amount of venture capital investment in Chicago startups is on the rise. Or maybe not. Depending on how you crunch the data, the first quarter of this year was either lackluster or spectacular. Regardless of how the numbers break down, hundreds of millions of dollars in venture capital are flowing to companies in our city every year. So, where&rsquo;s all that money going? And what effect is it having? Jason Heltzer is a Chicago-based VC who&rsquo;s a partner at Origin Ventures. He also teaches at the University of Chicago&rsquo;s Booth School of Business. He joins us with a venture capitalist&rsquo;s perspective on the local VC economy.</p><strong><span id="docs-internal-guid-799d777f-ddf4-727e-13e9-6cb5d7394038">Guest: </span></strong><em><a href="http://www.twitter.com/jheltzer">Jason Heltzer</a> is a partner at Origin Ventures and Adjunct Assistant Professor of Entrepreneurship at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.</em></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/201876190&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><font color="#333333"><span style="font-size: 24px; line-height: 22px;">After detective&#39;s aquittal in fatal shooting, prosecutors face criticism</span></font></p><div style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: inherit; font-size: inherit; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: inherit; vertical-align: baseline;">Chicago police detective Dante Servin has been cleared of all charges after fatally shooting 22-year old Rekia Boyd. Servin says justice was served, but others say the detective deserved to go to prison. They&rsquo;re slamming both the acquittal and the way the case was prosecuted. WBEZ West Side bureau reporter Chip Mitchell has more.</p><strong><span id="docs-internal-guid-799d777f-ddf6-ec5d-ae8b-10f07f1725ab">Guest: </span></strong><em><a href="https://twitter.com/ChipMitchell1?lang=en">Chip Mitchell</a> is WBEZ&rsquo;s West Side bureau reporter.</em></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/201928514&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><font color="#333333"><span style="font-size: 24px; line-height: 22px;">Chicago Department of Health urges parents to vaccinate</span></font></p><div style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: inherit; font-size: inherit; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: inherit; vertical-align: baseline;">In honor of National Infant Immunization week, the Chicago Department of Public Health is encouraging parents to vaccinate their babies. While recently we&rsquo;ve seen the emergence of vaccine-preventable diseases, vaccination rates haven&rsquo;t dipped, and some are at an all-time high. The Dept. of Public Health&rsquo;s Julie Morita joins us with details.</p><strong><span id="docs-internal-guid-799d777f-ddf8-c8ca-dda9-642cca4fe34c">Guest: </span></strong><em><a href="https://www.cityofchicago.org/city/en/depts/cdph/auto_generated/cdph_leadership.html">Julie Morita</a> is Commissioner of the Chicago Department of Public Health.</em></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/201928710&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><span style="font-size: 24px; line-height: 22px; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);">Scandal continues for the College of DuPage</span></p><div style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: inherit; font-size: inherit; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: inherit; vertical-align: baseline;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-799d777f-ddfa-04de-a981-fb33a1108b00">In the latest of a series of scandals for the College of DuPage, the </span><em>Chicago Tribune</em> reports that trustees and administrators have been paying for alcohol at the school&rsquo;s upscale restaurant with money that&rsquo;s supposed to be used for student scholarships. Student Body President, Stephanie Torres, joins us to talk about how this is affecting the morale of COD students.</p><strong><span id="docs-internal-guid-799d777f-ddfa-04de-a981-fb33a1108b00">Guest: </span></strong><em><a href="http://www.cod.edu/news-events/news/15_march/15_torres_iccb.aspx">Stephanie Torres</a> is student body president at the College of DuPage.</em></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/201928208&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><font color="#333333"><span style="font-size: 24px; line-height: 22px;">State Senator weighs in on reports of Puerto Rican citizens receiving addiction treatment in Chicago</span></font></p><div style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: inherit; font-size: inherit; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: inherit; vertical-align: baseline;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-799d777f-ddfa-04de-a981-fb33a1108b00">I</span><span id="docs-internal-guid-799d777f-ddfb-6ac2-fcaa-426670b157b5">n collaboration with our colleagues at </span><em>This American Life</em>, we aired a special report last week about Puerto Rican citizens receiving addiction treatment in Chicago. The story was brought to light by reporter, Adriana Cardona Maguigad, editor of <em>The Gate</em> newspaper newspaper in Chicago&rsquo;s Back of the Yards neighborhood. Illinois State Senator William Delgado&rsquo;s district includes areas where some of these facilities are located. He joins us to talk about what&rsquo;s going on and what he thinks should be done.</p><strong><span id="docs-internal-guid-799d777f-ddfb-6ac2-fcaa-426670b157b5">Guest: </span></strong><em><a href="http://www.senatordelgado.com/biography">William Delgado</a> is an Illinois state senator who represents neighborhoods including Belmont Cragin, Logan Square and Hermosa.</em></div><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Tue, 21 Apr 2015 16:32:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/afternoon-shift/2015-04-21/afternoon-shift-looking-back-governor-rauner%E2%80%99s-first-100-days Emergency room visits for mental health skyrocket in Chicago http://www.wbez.org/news/emergency-room-visits-mental-health-skyrocket-chicago-111890 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/Ambulance_0.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>It&rsquo;s no secret that both the city of Chicago and the state of Illinois have major budget problems. Both governments have made cuts to services in recent years. But there is evidence that shrinking mental health services could actually cost money.</p><p>Heather Linehan is a paramedic with the Chicago Fire Department. She is tall, with strong arms and gray hair. She has the kind of presence that is gentle, but also seems to say, you probably shouldn&rsquo;t mess with me.</p><p>Linehan said she has developed that demeanor from working over 30 years in emergency medical services. She said that kind of work gives her a particular view of the city. When you deal with emergencies you see what is not working. You are with people in their worst moments, the times when all the other safety nets have failed.<br /><br />&ldquo;On the street we say, you know what rolls down hill and who it lands on,&rdquo; she said.</p><p>Linehan said when policy decisions get made, she sees a difference in who shows up in her ambulance. Years ago, she noticed when state hospitals started to close and not enough community-based services filled the gap. More recently she noticed when the state cut funding and later when the city closed half of its mental health clinics.</p><p>If Gov. Bruce Rauner&rsquo;s proposed budget passes she will be bracing herself again.<br /><br />Linehan is not alone. People who work on mental health say the cuts to Medicaid and mental health services would mean more people with mental illness visiting emergency rooms.</p><p>It is a trend that is already underway. Data WBEZ obtained from the state show startling increases in Chicago. From 2009 to 2013, 37 percent more patients were discharged from emergency rooms for psychiatric treatment. The biggest jump came in 2012, the same year the city closed half of its mental health clinics.</p><p>The city did not agree to an interview for this story. But in a statement it said the mental health infrastructure in Chicago is stronger than it was four years ago.</p><p><span style="font-size:22px;">Inside an Emergency Department</span></p><p>The emergency room spike has already forced some emergency departments to make big, costly changes, just so they can keep these patients safe, including literally rebuilding parts of their hospitals.</p><p>Sheri Richardt is the manager of Crisis and Behavioral Health at Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center, where construction is underway on a new behavioral health unit.</p><p>Richardt said when a psychiatric patients come in to the emergency department they need special examination rooms. She pointed out how the pipes under the sink and toilet are covered.</p><p>&ldquo;There is nothing on the walls you could hang yourself with or hurt yourself with,&rdquo; she said.<br /><br />As visits climbed the hospital needed more spaces like this. The new rooms will be designed for safety, but also to give the patients a more quiet and private space, away from the hustle of the rest of the emergency department.</p><p>Richardt said she witnessed one reason why psychiatric ER visits rose by 37 percent.&nbsp;She said hospitals often recommend Medicaid patients that follow up with a therapist or maybe psychiatrist after they are discharged from the emergency room.<br /><br />But &nbsp;Richardt&nbsp;said some patients live in areas where there just are not enough places to get care. She said these patients could wait as long as nine months for an appointment, &ldquo;and if you come to the emergency room because you are in crisis and then you can not get follow up care for nine months you are probably going to go back to the emergency room for care.&rdquo;</p><p><span style="font-size:22px;">The $2.5 million patient</span></p><p>Richardt&nbsp;saw the same patients rotate in again and again. So she pulled one patient&rsquo;s files and found that woman had visited the Illinois Masonic Emergency Room 750 times over the course of about 10 years.</p><p>Richardt&nbsp;said the patient was picked up by an ambulance or police officer almost daily. Sometimes the emergency department would discharge her, only to have her appear back a few hours later.</p><p>&ldquo;The cost of that for us was two and a half million dollars. Medicaid dollars,&rdquo; said Richardt. &ldquo;And that&rsquo;s only at our hospital. This an individual who went between multiple hospitals and so we don&rsquo;t have the true cost.&rdquo;</p><p>Like many patients, she had different, interconnected problems. She had mental health needs, drank too much, fell down a lot. She didn&rsquo;t have stable housing and started having seizures.</p><p>&ldquo;And it wasn&rsquo;t only about the money; this is an individual we believed was going to...die on the street,&rdquo; said Richardt.</p><p>Richardt and her team decided to take full responsibility for this patient. They coordinated all aspects of her care, helped her get an apartment and worked with nurses and a chaplain. It worked. She&rsquo;s only visited the emergency room a handful of times in the last year.</p><p>About a year ago they launched a team with social workers, chaplains and nurses to provide the same type of care to more patients. They work with the hardest cases, including people with mental illness who often visit the emergency room frequently.</p><p>The hospital said their visits have begun to plateau.</p><p><span style="font-size:22px;">Shifting Cost</span></p><p>The kind of wrap-around care performed at Illinois Masonic relies on a range of services. Those services are threatened under Rauner&rsquo;s proposed budget, which cuts millions from community services and housing.</p><p>We contacted his office and asked to speak to anyone from the administration about his budget. In a statement his office said cuts are needed because of reckless spending from the past. They refused to do an interview.</p><p>So we called other state Republican leaders and were referred to Rep. David Leitch. Leitch is a conservative who hates government bureaucracy and believes in fiscal responsibility. And that&rsquo;s exactly why he says he opposes these mental health cuts.</p><p>The cuts mean &ldquo;the emergency rooms pick up more and the jails pick up more. Any cuts the state makes, simply means somebody else has to pick up the cost,&rdquo; said Leitch.</p><p>But don&rsquo;t take Leitch&rsquo;s word that cuts one place may show up as costs somewhere else. Take it from someone who lives it.</p><p>Kathy Powers went to the city&rsquo;s Northtown Rogers Park Clinic for bipolar disorder. Even before the city closed her clinic, she was having trouble getting an appointment with a psychiatrist there, or anywhere else.</p><p>&ldquo;So I went to the emergency room, because I was a girl with a purpose,&rdquo; she said.</p><p>Workers at the emergency room said they had a reference for a psychiatrist at Northtown Rogers Park Clinic &mdash; the exact place she had not been able to get care.</p><p>&ldquo;And I said, I just came from Northtown Rogers Park clinic&hellip; don&rsquo;t recommend it anymore, they don&rsquo;t have any psychiatrists,&rdquo; said Powers.<br /><br />Eventually the emergency doctors renewed her prescription for lithium. Medicaid picked up the tab. It really gets to Powers how much that simple prescription costs taxpayers. She said we could be giving her much better care for less money.&nbsp;</p><p><em>Shannon Heffernan is a WBEZ reporter. Follow her <a href="https://twitter.com/shannon_h">@shannon_h</a></em></p></p> Thu, 16 Apr 2015 11:01:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/emergency-room-visits-mental-health-skyrocket-chicago-111890 How organizations brace for Illinois budget cuts http://www.wbez.org/news/how-organizations-brace-illinois-budget-cuts-111793 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/raunerpresser_0.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Gov. Bruce Rauner has said Illinois has a spending problem.</p><p>&ldquo;We have been living beyond our means, spending money that Illinois taxpayers could not afford,&rdquo; he said in his address to lawmakers introducing his proposed spending spending plan for next year.</p><p>Rauner&rsquo;s introduced the idea of big cuts almost across the board.</p><p>It&rsquo;s a very strong &ndash; and a very public &ndash; starting point in negotiations.</p><p>And that&rsquo;s created some panic.</p><p>If you stop and look around Chicago, you can see the influence of money from Springfield in almost every corner of the city.</p><p><em>Tony Arnold covers Illinois politics. Follow him </em><a href="http://twitter.com/tonyjarnold"><em>@tonyjarnold</em></a><em>.</em></p></p> Tue, 31 Mar 2015 10:38:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/how-organizations-brace-illinois-budget-cuts-111793 Rauner signs into law compromise plan to fix budget hole http://www.wbez.org/news/rauner-signs-law-compromise-plan-fix-budget-hole-111779 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/raunerpresser.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>SPRINGFIELD, Ill. &mdash; Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner has signed a compromise plan to plug a $1.6 billion hole in this year&#39;s budget and avert shutdowns of state programs and services.</p><p>Rauner signed the legislation Thursday evening, hours after the Democratic-led Senate approved it 32-26, with all 20 Republicans voting for it. Two days earlier, the House also approved the bills with full GOP support.</p><p>Following weeks of negotiation, Rauner reached the deal with Democratic legislative leaders, even though the majority of Democrats in both chambers voted against the compromise.</p><p>The plan authorizes him to transfer $1.3 billion from other purposes, including parks and conservation. The rest comes from a 2.25 percent across-the-board budget cut. It also gives Rauner authority over $97 million to distribute to needy schools.</p></p> Fri, 27 Mar 2015 08:35:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/rauner-signs-law-compromise-plan-fix-budget-hole-111779