Stories by heather cherone

Gov. Pritzker Lifts State Mask Mandate on Public Transportation After Federal Judge Strikes Down CDC Rule

CTA free face mask dispenser. (Courtesy of Chicago Transit Authority)

Gov. J.B. Pritzker issued the revised executive order hours after Chicago health and transportation officials told riders a state order required them to keep masking up.

Newton Minow: Ariel Investments’ John Rogers Should Run for Chicago Mayor

Newton Minow appears on “Chicago Tonight” via Zoon on April 18, 2022. (WTTW News)

A Chicago native, John Rogers is a longtime friend of former President Barack Obama.

30 Days Left for City Council to Reach Deal on Chicago Ward Map

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

To avert the first ward map referendum since 1992, 41 alderpeople must agree on a map no later than May 19, the deadline for the June 28 primary election ballot to be finalized.

Police Brass Interfered in Probe of Officer’s Suicide: Watchdog

(WTTW News)

Two high-ranking police officials interfered with the investigation of the shooting death of a Chicago Police sergeant, according to a report released Friday by the city’s interim watchdog.

City Workers Disciplined for Slurs, Harassment, Assault: Watchdog

(WTTW News)

The wrongdoing was detailed in the first — and likely only — quarterly report issued by interim Inspector General William Marbeck, who is set to be replaced with a permanent watchdog later this month.

As Final COVID-19 Vaccine Deadline Passes, At Least 1,500 Chicago Police Officers Won’t Have to Get Vaccinated: Lightfoot

(WTTW News)

Officials granted nearly double the number of COVID-19 vaccine exemptions to members of the Chicago Police Department than to members of any other city department, according to data provided by the mayor’s office.

Former Ald. Danny Solis Pleads Not Guilty, as Chicago’s Lawyers Tell Feds He Victimized City

Ald. Danny Solis (WTTW News file photo)

Chicago officials will get a chance to argue that the entire city was victimized by former Ald. Danny Solis, who is set to avoid prison and keep his city pension after helping investigators probe other politicians.

Weeks After Taking Office, Ald. Nicole Lee Focused on Crime, Backlog Left by Daley Thompson

(WTTW News)

Ald. Nicole Lee (11th Ward) said she hopes the fact that she is Chicago’s first Chinese American City Council member helps combat a wave of anti-Asian crime that has frightened residents of Chinatown.

Applications for Lottery to Determine Who Will Get $500 Per Month For 12 Months to Open April 25, Lightfoot Announces

(benscripps / Pixabay)

The program, which is expected to include 5,000 Chicago households, will study whether a universal basic income could reduce poverty in the city. Applications will close at 11:59 p.m. May 13.

Ethics Committee Lauds Lightfoot’s Pick of Deborah Witzburg as Inspector General

A unanimous endorsement of the Ethics and Government Oversight Committee means Deborah Witzburg’s nomination is set to win the approval of the full City Council April 27. 

City Panel OKs Proposal to Boost Fines for Sexual Harassment, Extend Complaint Deadline

(WTTW News)

Victims of sexual harassment in Chicago would have a full year to file a complaint with the Chicago Commission on Human Relations — and businesses could face fines of up to $10,000 if those allegations are proven — under a measure that cleared a City Council committee Wednesday.

Wilson Contributes $5M to His Bid for Mayor, Lifting State Limits on Campaign Contributions

Philanthropist and businessman Willie Wilson is once again running for mayor. (WTTW News)

Philanthropist and businessman Willie Wilson is once again running for mayor. It’s the third time he has sought the top job at City Hall. Wilson’s previous two mayoral bids were unsuccessful, as was his run for the U.S. Senate in 2020.

Hammered by Complaints, Push for Chicago Casino Faces Bumpy Final Stretch

Slot machines sit ready for players willing to try their luck. (Pixabay)

With three community meetings complete, the roulette ball bounces back to Mayor Lori Lightfoot, who is expected to make her decision within the next two months and pick one of three proposed Chicago casino locations. 

Former Ald. Danny Solis Admits Taking Bribes; Will Likely Avoid Prison After Helping Feds Probe Burke, Madigan

(WTTW News)

Disgraced former Ald. Danny Solis is scheduled to be arraigned on one charge of bribery Wednesday morning by Judge Andrea Wood. But Solis will not be facing down the prospect of a long prison sentence if convicted. 

Ethics Board Finds Probable Cause Ald. Sposato Violated Ordinance With Facebook Photo

The Chicago Board of Ethics found probable cause that Ald. Nicholas Sposato violated the city’s Governmental Ethics Ordinance by posting this photo on his Facebook page. (Facebook)

The unanimous action by the Chicago Board of Ethics on Monday, which was disclosed Tuesday, did not name Sposato in keeping with its rules of procedure, found that there is probable cause to conclude that the alderperson violated two provisions of the city’s Government Ethics Ordinance.

Willie Wilson to Run for Mayor, Setting Up Rematch With Lightfoot

Willie Wilson announces he will run for mayor of Chicago. (Heather Cherone/WTTW News)

Flanked by a large group of friends, supporters and religious officials, Willie Wilson made the announcement Monday in his condominium overlooking Lake Michigan and Navy Pier.

Former Ald. Danny Solis Charged With Bribery, Years After He Helped Feds Probe Burke, Madigan

Ald. Danny Solis, 25th Ward, appears on “Chicago Tonight” on Nov. 26, 2018.

Former Ald. Danny Solis was charged with taking money from an unidentified real estate developer when he was chair of the City Council Zoning Committee in 2015.

Lopez Rules Out Reelection Bid for City Council, Says He Is ‘All In’ with Mayoral Bid

(WTTW News)

In his bid to oust  Mayor Lori Lightfoot from her 5th floor suite of offices, Lopez will give up his seat on the City Council representing Brighton Park, Back of the Yards and Gage Park and West Englewood.

Shared E-Scooters From Lime, Spin, Superpedestrian and Divvy to Hit Chicago’s Streets in May

(WTTW News)

The program got the green light from the Chicago City Council in October after two pilot programs in 2019 and 2020 convinced city officials that the motorized two-wheelers will reduce congestion and encourage the use of public transportation throughout Chicago.

Lightfoot’s $12.5M Plan to Giveaway $150 Gas Cards, $50 CTA Passes Hits Pothole

(WTTW News)

Skeptical members of the Chicago City Council blasted the proposal as an election-year stunt that would benefit oil companies without offering Chicagoans real relief from the pain at the pump.

Ald. Raymond Lopez Announces Bid for Mayor, Setting Up Clash With Lightfoot

Ald. Raymond Lopez appears on Chicago Tonight by Zoom on May 20, 2021. (WTTW News)

Raymond Lopez, first elected to represent the 15th Ward on the Chicago City Council in 2015, has been one of Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s most frequent critics.

Chicago Officer Who Shot, Killed Man Sunday Was Not Equipped With Body-Worn Camera

A 2017 file photo shows a Chicago police officer wearing a body camera. (Matt Masterson / Chicago Tonight)

The officer is a member of the department’s SWAT Team, who are not equipped with body-worn cameras, according to a statement from the agency known as COPA, which is charged with investigating police misconduct.

Chicago Ward Map Referendum Will ‘Fan Flames of Racial Division,’ Asian Groups Warn

(WTTW News)

Leaders of the groups that successfully pushed Chicago elected leaders to support a map that redraws the 11th Ward to include a majority of Asian American voters warned members of the City Council that asking voters to decide the boundaries of the city’s 50 wards “fans the flames of racial division.”

Lightfoot Starts to Make Chicago’s Case for the 2024 Democratic National Convention

(Regina Shanklin / Pixabay)

Led by Mayor Lori Lightfoot, Gov. J.B. Pritzker, and Sen. Tammy Duckworth, who is the vice-chair of the Democratic National Committee, Illinois Democratic leaders unveiled their plan to bid for the convention on Wednesday. At an unrelated news conference Thursday morning, Lightfoot began showcasing Chicago’s attributes.

Under Pressure, Lightfoot Unveils $12.5M Plan to Giveaway $150 Gas Cards, $50 CTA Passes 

Mayor Lori Lightfoot looks on as CTA President Dorval Carver addresses the news media. (Heather Cherone / WTTW News)

The plan calls for offering residents 50,000 prepaid cards that will cover $150 worth of gas as well as 100,000 passes that will cover $50 worth of CTA fares. 

Lightfoot Taps Former Public Safety Watchdog Deborah Witzburg as Inspector General

(WTTW News)

Two sources told WTTW News that Lightfoot will ask the Chicago City Council to confirm Deborah Witzburg as the city’s inspector general. Witzburg resigned as Chicago’s deputy inspector general for public safety on Nov. 1, saying she would apply for the top job.