Spotlight Politics: Lightfoot, New City Council Prepare to Take Over

Mayor-elect Lori Lightfoot takes on aldermanic power. Our politics team of Carol Marin, Paris Schutz and Amanda Vinicky takes on that story and more in this edition of Spotlight Politics.

Mayor-elect Lori Lightfoot and the new City Council members already seem on the verge of their first major showdown on the subject of aldermanic power. 

Earlier this week, Lightfoot shared an outline of her planned executive order to strip aldermen of unilateral veto or delay power on decisions like permitting and licensing in their wards. The order does not take away aldermanic privilege, or the unwritten rule allowing alderman to have final say over zoning decisions in their wards. This comes as Lightfoot and aldermen wrangle over who will get coveted City Council chairmanship positions. On Wednesday, a ProPublica Illinois investigation detailed how council committees often do not have much on their agenda, and come loaded with extra money and extra jobs that aldermen spend or employ on issues in their wards, not related to the committee.

Meanwhile, outgoing Mayor Rahm Emanuel continues to burnish his legacy as lawmakers in Springfield take the big issues of the state budget, income tax and legalized pot down to the wire. 

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