WBEZ | budget http://www.wbez.org/tags/budget Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Budget stalemate prevents exonerees from getting compensation http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-11-09/budget-stalemate-prevents-exonerees-getting-compensation-113701 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/prison flickr Todd Ehlers.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Thanks to the state budget stalemate, if you play the lottery and win more than $600, you get an IOU. But people who buy scratch-offs are just one of the groups affected by the political gridlock in Springfield. Another? Exonerees &mdash; people who were wrongfully convicted and then released from prison.</p><p><a href="https://twitter.com/JarrettFocused?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor">Jarrett Adams</a>, an adjunct professor at Loyola&rsquo;s School of Law and an exoneree himself, joins us to discuss.&nbsp;</p></p> Mon, 09 Nov 2015 12:43:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-11-09/budget-stalemate-prevents-exonerees-getting-compensation-113701 Governor Bruce Rauner, Mayor Rahm Emanuel and one dead fish http://www.wbez.org/news/governor-bruce-rauner-mayor-rahm-emanuel-and-one-dead-fish-113580 <p><div><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/rauner%20at%20paulina%20meat%20market.JPG" style="height: 400px; width: 300px; margin-left: 10px; margin-right: 10px; float: left;" title="Governor Bruce Rauner at Paulina Meat Market. (WBEZ/Tony Arnold)" />The public battle between two of Illinois&rsquo; most powerful politicians culminated Friday with the use of a familiar political weapon: A dead fish.&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner referenced local political lore Friday, as he held up a plastic-wrapped fillet of tuna for reporters and said he would send it to Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel in jest. &nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>The fish stunt was Rauner&rsquo;s attempt to add some levity to the tension that&rsquo;s been heating up between he and the mayor, ever since Chicago&rsquo;s City Council approved Emanuel&rsquo;s budget for 2016 and as the State of Illinois is about to enter its fifth month without a budget. The budget includes a property tax increase for city residents and businesses. The historic levy will mostly go toward funding the city&rsquo;s ailing police and firefighters&rsquo; pensions.&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>In recent weeks, Emanuel and Rauner have been in private talks over some initiatives the mayor needs the Statehouse to approve. That includes an exemption to that recently-approved property tax increase, for residents whose homes are worth less than $250,000. And Emanuel is still waiting for Rauner to say he&rsquo;ll sign off on a new payment schedule for those financially struggling pension funds.&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Emanuel criticized Rauner for not supporting what the mayor called &ldquo;the economic engine&rdquo; of Illinois, referring to the City of Chicago. In response, a Rauner spokesman said Emanuel needed to &ldquo;get serious&rdquo; about if he&rsquo;ll endorse the governor&rsquo;s policies, or become, a &ldquo;tax-and-spend&rdquo; politician who is already planning to raise more taxes.&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>On Friday, the public back-and-forth escalated even further.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>&ldquo;You&rsquo;re 120 days behind budget, $6 billion and counting and not paying bills,&rdquo; Emanuel said, referring to the ongoing state budget impasse. &ldquo;Stop name-calling and just do your job.&rdquo;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Soon after, Rauner held his own news conference at a Chicago meat market -- and this is where the fish came in The governor said he would send the cut of tuna to Emanuel, a reference to the<a href="http://foreignpolicy.com/2008/11/06/the-five-most-infamous-rahm-emanuel-moments/" target="_blank"> infamous story</a> that, years ago, Emanuel once sent a dead fish to a political operative.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>But the humor only lasted so long. While Rauner said he&rsquo;s &ldquo;very fond&rdquo; of Emanuel, he later grew more serious when asked about Chicago&rsquo;s property tax increase.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>&ldquo;Chicago, I believe, has made a fundamental mistake,&rdquo; Rauner said. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s the reason I&rsquo;m opposed to what the mayor has done. He&rsquo;s put a massive tax hike on the people of Chicago without significant structural reform. I think that&rsquo;s a mistake.&rdquo;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Rauner also said Emanuel, on principle, wants some of the policies that he&rsquo;s pushing for, like changes to workers compensation.&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>&ldquo;There&rsquo;s some hiding, dodging,&rdquo; Rauner said of Emanuel. &ldquo;We need structural reform.&rdquo;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Emanuel and Rauner are old friends and often speak privately. But the public dispute is a sign that the political impasse stretching out in the Statehouse is reaching the City of Chicago.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><em>Lauren Chooljian and Tony Arnold cover politics for WBEZ. Follow them <a href="https://twitter.com/laurenchooljian" target="_blank">@laurenchooljian</a> and<a href="https://twitter.com/tonyjarnold" target="_blank"> @tonyjarnold.</a></em></div></p> Fri, 30 Oct 2015 17:59:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/governor-bruce-rauner-mayor-rahm-emanuel-and-one-dead-fish-113580 Morning Shift: October 29, 2015 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-29/morning-shift-october-29-2015-113554 <p><p>These days, uniformed police officers are the norm for lots of schools. And, by now, we&rsquo;ve all seen the shocking video of the South Carolina school cop who forcibly removed a female student from the classroom after she refused a teacher&rsquo;s order. We talk about <a href="http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-29/police-role-school-disciplinary-process-113552">cops in schools</a> &mdash; the role that they play, the limits they should have and whether it&rsquo;s a good idea to have them there in the first place. Plus, a <a href="http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-29/book-soul-food-highlights-connection-civil-rights-movement-113550">soul food tour</a> of the south...with a few stops up north. And we hear the details of the <a href="http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-29/breaking-down-mayor%E2%80%99s-budget-113551">budget </a>passed by Chicago&#39;s city council Wednesday. And a conversation with <a href="http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-29/wbez-25-ira-looks-back-113553">Ira Glass</a> about the evolution of his radio show, This American Life.</p></p> Thu, 29 Oct 2015 12:52:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-29/morning-shift-october-29-2015-113554 Breaking Down the Mayor’s Budget http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-29/breaking-down-mayor%E2%80%99s-budget-113551 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/rahm budget_0.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>As expected, aldermen <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/chicago-city-council-approves-emanuels-challenging-budget-113540">passed Mayor Rahm Emanuel&#39;s proposed 2016 budget</a> yesterday. Chicago property taxes are going up and for the first time, there&rsquo;s going to be a garbage collection fee.</p><p>WBEZ political reporter <a href="https://twitter.com/laurenchooljian?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor">Lauren Chooljian</a> and <a href="https://twitter.com/vouchey">Mike Fourcher</a> of the Chicago politics website <a href="https://www.aldertrack.com/">Aldertrack</a> explain more on the budget and what it means moving forward.&nbsp;</p></p> Thu, 29 Oct 2015 12:34:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-29/breaking-down-mayor%E2%80%99s-budget-113551 ‘Trust issues’ with Springfield have aldermen looking for property tax relief plan B http://www.wbez.org/news/%E2%80%98trust-issues%E2%80%99-springfield-have-aldermen-looking-property-tax-relief-plan-b-113491 <p><div>Citing &ldquo;trust issues&rdquo; with Springfield lawmakers, many Chicago aldermen are looking for another way to help homeowners stomach higher property taxes.&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>More than 30 aldermen have signed their names on proposals that would give rebates to struggling taxpayers. Two members say that without the assurance of that plan B, they&rsquo;ll vote no on the budget.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Mayor Rahm Emanuel has long said his proposed $543 million property tax hike would come with a break for homes valued at $250,000 or less and a doubling of the homeowner&rsquo;s exemption. But the mayor&rsquo;s plan requires approval from state lawmakers and Gov. Bruce Rauner, and so far it has only passed through one committee. State lawmakers won&rsquo;t meet again until November, and aldermen are scheduled to cast their budget vote on October 28th.&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP_821590849688.jpg" style="text-align: center; height: 200px; width: 300px; margin-left: 10px; margin-right: 10px; float: right;" title="Illinois Speaker of the House Michael Madigan, D-Chicago, speaks to lawmakers while on the House floor during session at the Illinois State Capitol Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2015, in Springfield, Ill. Democrats in the General Assembly continue attempts at flanking the Republican governor on the budget impasse, advancing legislation that would distribute money that's already been collected to local governments, lottery winners and more. (AP Photo/Seth Perlman)" /></p><div>Alderman John Arena (45) said he and his colleagues have &ldquo;trust issues&rdquo; with deadlocked Springfield, and that makes it tough to believe lawmakers will come through on the exemption plan.&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>&ldquo;We&rsquo;re gonna hope that they do their job, we hope they&rsquo;ll do the right thing, so that Chicago can deal with this very important issue, if not, let&rsquo;s do what we can within our purview,&rdquo; Arena said.&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Providing property tax relief through rebates is not a new idea at City Hall: Mayor Richard M. Daley started a <a href="https://www.cityofchicago.org/city/en/depts/mayor/press_room/press_releases/2009/october_2009/mayor_daley_announces.html" target="_blank">rebate program</a> as part of his 2010 budget. But Ald. Michele Smith (43) said as the budget vote gets closer, there is &ldquo;rising sentiment in the council for a rebate program.&rdquo;&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Smith introduced an ordinance this week that would assist homeowners age 60 or older who have owned their homes for 18 years or more and are facing triennial assessments higher than 30 percent. <a href="https://chicago.legistar.com/LegislationDetail.aspx?ID=2501244&amp;GUID=A8909CD3-6249-4D5D-82CD-CFCAC6B167F5&amp;Options=Advanced&amp;Search=" target="_blank">Her plan</a> is an attempt to widen another rebate plan from <a href="http://www.ward1.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/RELIEF.pdf" target="_blank">Ald. Proco &ldquo;Joe&rdquo; Moreno (1) who proposed a relief program</a> for households earning $100,000 or less a year -- an announcement he made weeks before the mayor&rsquo;s official budget announcement.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><a href="https://chicago.legistar.com/LegislationDetail.aspx?ID=2469616&amp;GUID=E60FA614-1C64-40BC-AE85-9214DC5F6760&amp;Options=Advanced&amp;Search=" target="_blank">A third proposal from members of the Progressive Caucus</a> would distribute funds that members say are still left over from Daley&rsquo;s rebate program in 2010. &nbsp;One of the sponsors, Ald. Carlos Ramirez Rosa (35) said without a rebate program or final approval in Springfield on the homeowner&#39;s exemption, he&rsquo;d cast a no-vote next Wednesday. Arena is with him, calling a budget without either of those items a &ldquo;deal breaker.&rdquo;&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Emanuel&rsquo;s staff didn&rsquo;t say whether the mayor would be open to including one of these rebate programs in the budget. Instead, they repeated what Emanuel and his staff have constantly said about the homeowner&rsquo;s exemption: That the plan has never been contentious or controversial in Springfield before, so there is no reason it will be now.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><em>Lauren Chooljian covers Chicago politics for WBEZ. Follow her <a href="http://twitter.com/laurenchooljian" target="_blank">@laurenchooljian</a>.</em></div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div></p> Fri, 23 Oct 2015 16:58:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/%E2%80%98trust-issues%E2%80%99-springfield-have-aldermen-looking-property-tax-relief-plan-b-113491 Morning Shift: October 23, 2015 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-23/morning-shift-october-23-2015-113485 <p><p>What makes for a great story? How about someone who&rsquo;s been toiling away and not getting the recognition they deserve? That could apply to so many Chicago musicians throughout the years, but the story of one underappreciated musician is pretty unique. The soul singer Syl Johnson really could have been the superstar that Al Green became in the 1970&rsquo;s. We talk with the director of the new documentary <a href="http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-23/chicago-music-legend-syl-johnson%E2%80%99s-life-now-documentary-film"><em>Syl Johnson: Any Way The Wind Blows</em></a>.&nbsp;</p><p>We also have live music from a band that was formed in 1975, the bluegrass sounds of Chicago&rsquo;s <a href="http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-23/special-consensus-celebrates-40-years-bluegrass-113480">Special Consensus</a>.</p><p>Plus, we have the 411 on the <a href="http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-23/411-city-budget-and-311-113484">Chicago City Budget</a>. We find out where City Council is in its work to pass a spending plan.</p><p>And we hear about a new initiative helping Chicago&#39;s <a href="http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-23/new-initiative-will-provide-more-storage-lockers-homeless-youths">homeless youth</a>.</p></p> Fri, 23 Oct 2015 13:18:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-23/morning-shift-october-23-2015-113485 The 411 on the City Budget (and 311) http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-23/411-city-budget-and-311-113484 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/budget money flickr Tracy O.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>The latest on the ongoing maneuvering over Mayor Rahm Emanuel&#39;s proposed 2016 city budget: Emanuel&#39;s lining up votes. Alderman are doing their last-minute lobbying for tweaks. And Chicagoans are waiting to see where the cards will fall and what it means for them.&nbsp;</p><p>The final version of the budget goes to a vote next week. We review some of the top-line items: The property tax hike, the homeowner&rsquo;s exemption to that tax hike, garbage fees. City Hall reporter <a href="https://twitter.com/laurenchooljian?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor">Lauren Chooljian</a> and WBEZ state politics <a href="https://twitter.com/tonyjarnold">Tony Arnold</a> share their perspectives.</p></p> Fri, 23 Oct 2015 13:15:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-23/411-city-budget-and-311-113484 Civic Federation says proposed Chicago budget a good step http://www.wbez.org/news/civic-federation-says-proposed-chicago-budget-good-step-113335 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/18651701188_aa83d388c8_k.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>A Chicago-based government research group supports the city&#39;s proposed $7.8 billion budget with a property tax increase, but says more work is needed to stabilize finances long-term.</p><p>The Civic Federation <a href="https://www.civicfed.org/press-room/Chicago_FY2016analysis" target="_blank">released a report</a>&nbsp;Wednesday amid ongoing budget hearings.</p><p>Mayor Rahm Emanuel has proposed an <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/emanuel-pushes-budget-political-risk-113034" target="_blank">incremental $543 million property tax increase</a> for police and fire pensions.</p><p>He&#39;s also asked for a $45 million for schools and other fees to narrow a budget gap.</p><p>Civic Federation President Laurence Msall says&nbsp;Chicago&nbsp;must make more cost-cutting efforts and be more efficient. He suggests a review of public safety operations.</p><p>He&#39;s also pushing for details in how&nbsp;the city will address an upcoming pension payment and retiree health care costs. Chicago&nbsp;has the worst-funded pension system of any major U.S. city and a budget shortfall.</p></p> Wed, 14 Oct 2015 11:47:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/civic-federation-says-proposed-chicago-budget-good-step-113335 What happens at City Council budget hearings? http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-09/what-happens-city-council-budget-hearings-113261 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/city council flickr Daniel X. O&#039;Neil.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>About two weeks ago, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel gave his <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/emanuel-calls-nearly-600-million-property-tax-hike-113019">2016 budget address</a> before City Council. It included a massive property tax hike to cover the unfunded pensions that cast a dark cloud over everything.</p><p>A week later, the 50 members of that body started their question and answer sessions with people like city CFO Carole Brown, Budget Director Alex Holt, the Business Affairs Commissioner, the Police Superintendent, and other department heads to determine everything from &ldquo;do we really need to spend X money in Y place,&rdquo; to &ldquo;how am I supposed to sell these big tax and fee increases to the people in my ward?&rdquo;</p><p>But what&rsquo;s really going on in these hearings? Are aldermen engaged? Are they asking the tough questions...the right questions? WBEZ&rsquo;s Political Reporter <a href="https://twitter.com/laurenchooljian?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor">Lauren Chooljian</a> does a little &ldquo;demystification,&rdquo; and WBEZ criminal justice reporter <a href="https://twitter.com/robertwildeboer?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor">Robert Wildeboer</a> provides insight.&nbsp;</p></p> Fri, 09 Oct 2015 11:32:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-09/what-happens-city-council-budget-hearings-113261 Who will win in Chicago: Uber or taxis? And what does that mean for consumers? http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-06/who-will-win-chicago-uber-or-taxis-and-what-does-mean-consumers <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/taxi flickr Chris Eason.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>If Mayor Rahm Emanuel&rsquo;s budget makes it through City Council as is, it&rsquo;s going to be a bit more expensive to get around the city. Additional fees could be on the way for services like Uber and Lyft as well as for traditional taxi cabs.</p><p>These and other tweaks the mayor&rsquo;s proposing had us thinking about how we regulate transportation here in Chicago, whether we&rsquo;re doing it right, and what it means for all of us as we travel around the city...as well as those companies that provide the services.</p><p><a href="http://www.law.northwestern.edu/faculty/profiles/jamesspeta/">Jim Speta</a>, professor at <a href="http://www.law.northwestern.edu/">Northwestern University School of Law</a> who studies internet policy, has been looking into what the de-regulation of the telecom and airline industries can tell us about what&rsquo;s going on with Uber and taxis here in Chicago.&nbsp;</p></p> Tue, 06 Oct 2015 12:24:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-06/who-will-win-chicago-uber-or-taxis-and-what-does-mean-consumers