1 Unchartered waters
UNO, the largest charter-school operator in Illinois, won’t yet receive the final $15 million of a $98 million state construction grant. So says Governor Quinn, who froze the funds amid an SEC investigation into possible securities fraud by the organization. UNO operates 16 schools throughout the state, including one called the Soccer Academy High School, which sounds totally awesome. [Sun-Times]
2 Now what?
Having kicked the budgetary can down the road to December, pols have decided not to wait until another shutdown looms to begin negotiating over the nation’s finances and general direction. In other words, they’re actually doing their jobs. [New York Times]
3 Going Dutch
Europe has plenty of unbending pols. But unlike Ted Cruz et al., their fringe members have largely been brushed to the side as most Continental nations have figured out how to govern in spite of extreme ideologies. Some of it has to do with having room for more than two parties, and some of it has to do with an extra millennium of dealing with insane people. [Bloomberg]
4 Road to somewhere?
The proposed Illiana Expressway cleared a major hurdle yesterday when Chicago’s planning agency voted 11-8 to include it in its comprehensive regional plan. Proponents say that the estimated $1.3 billion the expressway will cost can be covered by tolls, while opponents point out that we are totally, utterly, and frighteningly broke. [Sun-Times]
5 Fire extinguished
Rufus McDonald, the man who threatened to torch that trove of historic papers unless Harvard agreed to his ransom, was totally kidding. “They tried to play games with me, but I showed I can play games too,” he said. [Sun-Times]
6 That makes sense
Tesla has leased 16,500 square feet in Highland Park, from which it will deal its fancy electric sports cars to residents of the North Shore. Yep. [Crain’s]
7 Democracy in action
Unbranded is something like Etsy with a ballot box. Designers submit sketches to the site, where its users vote on whether they’d buy the product. Grid’s Meg Graham reports on another way that the Internet is giving power to the little guy. [Grid]
8 Salt in the wound
It’s nobody’s idea of a picnic to spend an afternoon at the IRS. What’s worse is getting turned away because they’re too busy to see you. That’s what happened yesterday in Chicago as the drowsy federal government stumbles out of bed. [New York Times]