Stories by heather cherone

While ComEd Negotiations Remain Stalled, Lightfoot Extends Deadline for New Proposals

(WTTW News)

Firms have until July 30 to submit their pitch to operate and manage the electric distribution system that serves residents and businesses in Chicago, officials said. 

Our Democracy is in Peril, Obama Tells Economic Club of Chicago

Former President Barack Obama addresses the Economic Club of Chicago, June 4, 2021 (Credit Economic Club of Chicago)

Former President Barack Obama warned Chicago’s business leaders Friday afternoon that American democracy is imperiled by persistent economic inequality and structural racism, and said corporate America has a responsibility to call out voter suppression efforts.

Outreach Workers to Go Door-to-Door in Neighborhoods Where COVID-19 Vaccinations Are Lagging

(WTTW News)

City officials are targeting the 13 Chicago neighborhoods that have the lowest rate of vaccination as part of a push to bring the life-saving shots directly to those most at risk of falling ill and dying from COVID-19.

Effort to Greenlight Scooters Permanently in Chicago Hits Pothole

Chicagoans took approximately 540,000 rides on electric scooters during a four-month second trial run in 2020, officials said. (WTTW News)

A push to make electric scooters a permanent part of the city’s transportation system stalled Thursday, with several aldermen telling transportation officials that the two-wheelers would create a nuisance on Chicago’s streets and sidewalks.

Effort to Landmark Muddy Waters’ North Kenwood Home Advances

Plans are in the works to preserve the North Kenwood house Muddy Waters bought as a museum, recording studio and more. (WTTW News)

The landmark designation would preserve the legacy of African Americans in Chicago and ensure that future generations recognize Muddy Waters as the father of the blues, supporters said.

Chicago to Fully Reopen June 11, Lightfoot Announces

(WTTW News)

Amid a steep decline in the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, Chicago officials will lift all restrictions on businesses and gatherings next Friday, Mayor Lori Lightfoot said. 

Pritzker Signs Law Allowing Those Who Get COVID-19 Vaccine to Get Free Booze

Plus: Our Spotlight Politics team breaks down Springfield’s contentious spring session

(Photo by Lightscape / Unsplash)

Illinois bars and taverns can now offer their thirsty patrons an incentive for getting vaccinated against COVID-19. The new law starts June 10 and runs through July 10. 

Ethics Bill Passed by General Assembly Leaves Chicago’s Laws Intact, Officials Say

(WTTW News)

A package of new regulations designed to tighten ethics rules for state lawmakers and Springfield lobbyists will not override Chicago’s ethics rules, much to the relief of city officials.

Goodbye, Alderman. Hello, Alderperson

Members of the Chicago City Council meet on Wednesday, May 26, 2021. (WTTW News)

For 184 years, members of the Chicago City Council have been known as aldermen — even though its first female members were elected a half-century ago. That is set to change.

New Rules for Chicago’s Home-Sharing Industry Set to Kick In

(WTTW News)

New rules for Chicago’s home-sharing industry are set to take effect Tuesday, including a ban on short-term rentals that last only one night, in an effort to block huge parties that have become a regular nuisance in some neighborhoods.

No States Covered by Chicago’s COVID-19 Travel Order, As City Hits Major Milestones: Officials

(StelaDi / Pixabay)

For the first time in nearly a year, visitors to Chicago from anywhere within the United States do not have to quarantine for 10 days or record a negative test for COVID-19, city officials announced Tuesday.

Mass Vaccination Site Near Wrigley Field to Close Saturday, As Officials Focus on ‘Hyper-Local’ Efforts

(WTTW News)

After two months and 42,000 jabs, the city-run mass vaccination site near Wrigley Field will close Saturday, as efforts to bring a COVID-19 vaccine directly to residents ramp up, officials said.

Top Cop Has Yet to Act 1 Month After Investigators Recommended Suspension for Officer Who Shot Anthony Alvarez

An image from body camera video released April 28 by the Civilian Office of Police Accountability shows Anthony Alvarez, 22, in the moments before he was shot by a Chicago police officer March 31, 2021. (WTTW News via COPA)

A Chicago Police Department representative did not respond to questions about why Brown has yet to act on the recommendation made by the Civilian Office of Police Accountability, known as COPA, April 28.

Museums May Have to Change Addresses if Outer Lake Shore Drive is Renamed for DuSable: Officials

(WTTW News)

Changing the addresses of the four museums could cost the institutions a significant amount of money and complicate their efforts to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, officials said.

As Lightfoot Asks for More Federal Funds to Remove Lead Pipes, City Push Hasn’t Gotten Off the Ground

A water lead testing kit. (WTTW News)

The city has yet to replace a single lead service line in the eight months that have elapsed since Mayor Lori Lightfoot rolled out her plan, officials acknowledged.

Push to Rename Lake Shore Drive for DuSable Blocked, For Now

(docaz / Pixabay)

Opponents of a plan to rename 17 miles of Lake Shore Drive for Jean Baptiste Point DuSable, Chicago’s first permanent non-Indigenous settler, blocked a vote on the measure Wednesday, enraging supporters of the plan, who called the move racist. 

Ban Booze Sales at Stores After 10 p.m. to Improve ‘Quality of Life’: Lightfoot

(WTTW News)

The proposal brought an immediate backlash not just from those who enjoy an impromptu late-night tipple, but business owners who said the rules would push sales outside the city — and give bars and restaurants an unfair advantage over stores. 

Lightfoot Backs Reimposed 15% Cap on Fees Charged by Delivery Companies

(Photo by logan jeffrey on Unsplash)

Mayor Lori Lightfoot included the cap on fees as part of larger package designed to help Chicago businesses recover from the COVID-19 pandemic “quickly and holistically.” 

Police Reform Advocates, Aldermen Blast Lightfoot’s Plan for Police Oversight Board

Supporters of the Empowering Communities for Public Safety plan call for more police accountability during a rally April 21, 2021. (Heather Cherone / WTTW News)

Police reform advocates and progressive aldermen blasted Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s plan to create a seven-member civilian board to oversee the Chicago Police Department, saying Tuesday that it would not help restore trust in the beleaguered department.

Aldermen Set to Pay $750K to Settle 2 Police Misconduct Cases

(WTTW News)

Both lawsuits claim police officers improperly arrested men for crimes they did not commit. The settlements are set for a final vote Wednesday by the full City Council.

Plan to Transform Moody Bible Campus Into New Neighborhood Advances

A rendering of the proposed North Union Development. (Credit: JDL Development)

The project is backed by Ald. Walter Burnett (27th Ward) and Ald. Brian Hopkins (2nd Ward), putting the massive development on track to win final approval at Wednesday’s City Council meeting.

Aldermen Pave Way for Sale of Thompson Center

The James R. Thompson Building, designed by architect Helmut Jahn. (WTTW News)

The measure unanimously advanced by aldermen Tuesday would pave the way for the sale of the much beloved and equally loathed James R. Thompson Center in the heart of the Loop.

No Boil Order for Morgan Park, Beverly After Another Pumping Station Outage: Officials

Some Chicagoans were under a boil order for 20 hours ending Friday, May 7. (Holger Schue / Pixabay)

A boil order was not necessary on Tuesday “because of the temporary nature of the issue,” according to Chicago water officials. 

Lightfoot Unveils Plan for 7-Member Elected Board to Oversee CPD that Gives Mayor Final Say

(WTTW News)

Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s proposal would keep the power to run the embattled police department concentrated in the mayor’s office even after decades of scandals, misconduct and brutality. 

Acrimony Grounds Push to Create Database of Complaints Against Chicago Police Officers

(WTTW News)

A joint session of the City Council’s Public Safety and Finance committees declined to advance the measure backed by Mayor Lori Lightfoot and blasted by Inspector General Joseph Ferguson and other transparency advocates as nothing more than “smoke and mirrors.”

Cardinal Reinstates Pfleger to St. Sabina After Child Abuse Investigation

The Rev. Michael Pfleger appears on “Chicago Tonight” on Sept. 19, 2019. (WTTW News)

Cardinal Blase Cupich reinstated the Rev. Michael Pfleger as senior pastor of St. Sabina Catholic Church after an investigation of allegations of sexual abuse of a minor more than 40 years ago “concluded that there is insufficient reason to suspect Father Pfleger is guilty of these allegations.”