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City Hall

The most thorough coverage of Chicago’s City Hall. Get the latest scoops on Mayor Lori Lightfoot and her administration as well as the latest news affecting City of Chicago workers.

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Fighting gun violence in Chicago with trees, rakes and cleanup crews

The city is spending millions to beautify the public spaces where shootings are most likely to occur. It’s a strategy research has found can help fight crime as well as neighborhood blight.

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CPS adds murals, mosaics at schools amid a move to enhance arts education

Benito Juarez, Englewood STEM, McAuliffe Elementary among the schools to gain public art. Each mural ‘serves a different purpose,’ Logan Square principal says. ‘Some of them honor our school namesake, some of them help us express our mission and vision, and others help us honor our cultures and traditions.’

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Is Chicago’s first openly-gay mayor laying the groundwork for gay set-asides on city contracts?

In 2003, Ald. Tom Tunney (44th) broached the subject of gay set-asides, only to drop the idea after plenty of pushback from the gay community. Now, Mayor Lori Lightfoot is raising it again.

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Alderman wants more spots for electric vehicles to power up

Ald. Brendan Reilly’s (42nd) ordinance would require new buildings with parking to be wired for charging stations.

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Sweeping ordinance allows public pot use in licensed Chicago businesses, but Lightfoot ally says it was mistakenly introduced

Ald. Villegas’ plan would allow consumption in cannabis showrooms, licensed bars and even in the offices of doctors and "beauty professionals."

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Four cops fired for lying about Laquan McDonald shooting are suing to get their jobs back

The lawsuits, filed last month, are up for initial court dates in December

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Seniors flood City Hall to push for their ‘bill of rights’

The ordinance — introduced Wednesday by Housing Chair Ald. Harry Osterman (48th) — would codify protections for seniors living in subsidized rental buildings.

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Banning pot shops from downtown ensures Loop remains ‘family friendly,’ Lightfoot says

The mayor also wants to ensure the shops are evenly distributed throughout the city.

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Lightfoot critics stir up trouble; is broader City Council rebellion brewing?

The mayor accused Aldermen Anthony Beale (9th) and Ray Lopez (15th) of a ‘political stunt,’ said she won’t tolerate a "back door to aldermanic prerogative."

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City Council clears the way for release of inspector general’s most sensitive reports

Joe Ferguson’s reports on the death of David Koschman and the police shooting of Laquan McDonald may finally be released over the FOP’s strenuous objections

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City Council approves Lightfoot’s plan to go easier on scofflaws

The city will start by reducing fines, expanding payments plans and stopping drivers’ license suspensions for non-moving violations

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No weed shops in the Central Business District under Lightfoot’s proposed recreational marijuana zoning rules

The mayor would also prohibit the sale of legal weed in the Central Business District, within 500 feet of schools and in districts zoned ‘residential.’

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O’Shea proposes 45-day deadline to ‘light a fire’ under city to eliminate gap between sanitation violation and citation

The Southwest Side alderman proposed the 45-day window in response to audit accusing Law Department of blindsiding homeowners and businesses and forfeiting revenue by allowing way too much time to pass between the time a sanitation code violation is committed and citations are issued.

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Chicago reparations movement opts for a go-slow approach

Gone are a series of commitments from cash-strapped city agencies, including free rides on the CTA and free tuition at City Colleges. Instead, the resolution calls for creating a ‘Chicago Citizens of African Descent Reparations Commission.’

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Why is Rahm Emanuel’s name still on city stickers?

No, you’re not in a time warp, the Chicago city clerk’s office says.

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Health Department abdicated responsibility to enforce air pollution standards, audit shows

From 2015 through 2017, 19% of facilities that should have had annual inspections were not inspected at all, according to city Inspector General Joe Ferguson.

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Despite $15 million cost, Lightfoot’s debt relief program advances to full City Council

Several aldermen wondered aloud about the compliance consequences of essentially turning the city into a permissive parent "enabling" chronic scofflaws.

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Lightfoot and her most outspoken City Council critic both want action against e-cigarettes, vaping products

While the mayor is focused on the flavored nicotine products that some say target teens, Ald. Ray Lopez (15th) would go further; he wants a city ban on all e-cigarettes, flavored or not.

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Is Clerk Karen Yarbrough ‘best official’ in county — or is patronage hiring flap only ‘tip of the iceberg’?

If true, the accusations laid out in the 12-page motion government watchdog Michael Shakman filed Wednesday suggest Yarbrough is injecting politics into an office tasked with maintaining the integrity of elections.

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Glenn Eden named chair of Choose Chicago

The mayor taps PR executive to lead city tourism efforts.

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Aldermen who moonlight as attorneys advised to steer clear of cases involving cops

Ald. Howard Brookins (21st) asked the Chicago Board of Ethics to interpret the ethics ordinance championed by Mayor Lori Lightfoot to rein in indicted Ald. Edward Burke (14th). Brookins got his answer Friday, but it was not the one he wanted to hear.

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Madigan mops up after Mapes mess — speaker assures staffers no pressure to do politics

It’s another clean-up effort for Madigan after a series of negative headlines from a string of workplace culture and harassment issues in his government and political organizations.

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Under fire for cutting down trees and tearing up streets, city to test alternatives to water main replacement

The Department of Water Management is launching a pair of pilot programs to test pipe-lining technologies to extend the life of water mains and private drains.

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A database of FBI files on people with Chicago and Illinois ties

The Sun-Times has compiled a database of FBI records on notable people with ties to Illinois, including politicians, gangsters and religious leaders. Keep checking back for updates.

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$9.5M city settlement triggered by cyclist’s injuries on Hyde Park street

Catalin Dumitrescu was "significantly disfigured and disabled" on Oct. 25, 2014, when he fell off his bike while riding on East 56th Street in Hyde Park.

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WLS City Hall reporter Bill Cameron celebrating 50 years in broadcasting

Cameron joins this week’s ‘The Fran Spielman Show’ to reflect on his storied career.

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2 aldermen fronted measures for embattled Ald. Edward Burke that benefit his law clients

Patrick Daley Thompson and Michael Zalewski put their names on moves that would bring millions of dollars in property tax breaks to businesses that hired the now-indicted Southwest Side alderman.

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FBI files shed light on nearly a century of threats to Chicago politicians — and an alderman suspected of being a secret communist

The ire that’s been directed over the years at political figures in Illinois often has been about race, patriotism and gun control, according to a new Sun-Times database compiled from FBI reports.

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Lightfoot facing budget dilemma on eve of Navy Pier reception for state lawmakers

The mayor will deliver her first budget address five days before the fall veto session begins. She needs to outline a plan to erase an $838 million shortfall without knowing how much help, if any, she can count on from Springfield.

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Cruz on Lightfoot’s call to visit Chicago to discuss gun violence:  ‘The invitation as I perceive it is to a political circus.’

‘Oh, I’d be happy to go to Chicago,’ said Cruz, immediately qualifying his answer. ‘But given the tone and anger in her response, I’m not sure we would see a civil or substantive conversation rather than just a political show.’

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CPS’ handling of sexual abuse cases ‘tragic and inexcusable,’ feds say in ordering major overhaul

CPS entered into a legally binding oversight agreement after federal investigators found widespread "disturbing" cases of sexual violence against students.

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Lightfoot unveils $6 million in investments to bolster West Side traffic safety

Although pedestrian fatalities are declining, they still have a a disproportionate impact on poor people and minorities. African-Americans are more than twice as likely to die in traffic accidents than whites.

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‘Time is ticking’ on new teachers contract; Chicago schools chief says she’ll join talks when ‘appropriate’

"As we get closer to ... finalizing and landing this thing there will be a role" for her, Jackson, said Wednesday.

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Scrap metal recycler General Iron reaches deal to vacate North Side site

The company will close by end of 2020 and start new operations on the Southeast Side.