Stories by paris schutz

(WTTW News)

Debate Continues Over Plan to Raise Real Estate Taxes on High-Priced Homes to Fight Homelessness in Chicago

Mayor Brandon Johnson recently announced a new proposal dubbed “Bring Chicago Home,” which would raise about $100 million dollars to fight homelessness by raising taxes on all sales above $1 million, and then an additional hike on sales of more than $1.5 million dollars.

A car with a destroyed key start is pictured in August 2023. (WTTW News)

Motor Vehicle Thefts in Chicago Have Jumped by 139% in 3 Years, While Only 4% Are Solved

Adding to the problem, the Chicago Police Department has linked several recent robbery sprees to stolen vehicles. That comes as carmakers Kia and Hyundai face scrutiny for failing to provide adequate security systems for their cars.

(WTTW News)

Cook County Sees Opioid Overdose Record in 2022 With Fentanyl Contributing to 90% of Deaths

There were 103 overdose deaths attributable to fentanyl in Cook County in 2015. That number shot up to a record 1,825 in 2022, according to statistics from the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office. That accounts for more than 90% of all opioid-related deaths in the county.

(WTTW News)

‘Underground Climate Change’ Causing Loop to Sink: Study

July is shaping up to be the warmest month on Earth in recorded history. But that heat isn’t just impacting the atmosphere — it’s having an impact on the ground beneath our feet.

Nekenya Hardy and Les Jenkins work as violence interrupters in the Austin neighborhood. (WTTW News)

Chicago Street Outreach Workers Use Own Experiences to Reach Others in Their Neighborhoods

Violence prevention workers say the job begins by reaching out to young people who might one day become victims or perpetrators of gun violence and giving them guidance.

Highland Park Mayor Nancy Rotering on June 30, 2023. (WTTW News)

Highland Park Mayor Nancy Rotering Reflects on Parade Shooting

Highland Park Mayor Nancy Rotering was marching in last year’s Fourth of July parade when gun shots began to ring out. In the year since, she has seen the town come together in its time of need.

(WTTW News)

How a Group of Highland Park Volunteers Played a Vital Role in Responding to July 4 Parade Shooting

Highland Park’s community emergency response team, or CERT, made up of residents from all walks of life — doctors, businesspeople, scientists — had a vital role to play in response to the mass shooting. 

(WTTW News)

Will the Bears Stay in Chicago? Open Development Sites Provide Potential Options

The Chicago Bears have been stymied thus far in plans to win tax breaks to build a new stadium in Arlington Heights. That’s opened the door to other communities to try and lure the team, but Chicago might still be in the game. Could the city come up with a late comeback and lure the Bears to stay?

(Courtesy of NASCAR)

Touring the NASCAR Chicago Street Race Course With Dale Jarrett, Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Racing legends Dale Jarrett and Dale Earnhardt Jr. took WTTW News correspondent Paris Schutz around the specially designed track that weaves in and out of Grant Park and provides some iconic views for spectators.

(WTTW News)

Nearly Half Million Suburban Cook County Homes at Risk for Toxic Lead Paint

Toxic lead-based paint was banned in 1978, but the threat of poisoning persists. In suburban Cook County, officials say as many as half a million homes have lead paint hazards that present enormous health threats for young children.

(Chicago Police Department / Twitter)

Chicago Police Officer Aréanah Preston Laid to Rest: ‘A Bright Light Taken Away From the City’

Officer Aréanah Preston died after she was shot during an attempted robbery May 6. She was memorialized as being the best of what the Chicago Police Department had to offer: a passionate public servant whose bright future was abruptly taken from her.

(WTTW News)

Ousted Chicago City Council Finance Committee Chair Says He’s ‘Disappointed’

Ald. Scott Waguespack (32nd Ward) is speaking out about Mayor-elect Brandon Johnson's plan to remove Waguespack as chair of the Chicago City Council Finance Committee.

Newton Minow. (WTTW)

In His Own Words, the Life and Work of Newton Minow: ‘Ideas Last Longer Than People’

Newton Minow may have done more to improve the quality of television in the United States than any other person. “I saw using this medium certainly for entertainment, but also for education in the large sense, for stimulation, for ... I would hope, inspiration,” he said.

(WTTW News)

From Leopold and Loeb to Gacy: Cicero Facility Houses Millions of Criminal Records

Criminal history in Cook County is long and sordid — from Al Capone to Leopold and Loeb to John Wayne Gacy. The historical figures may be long gone, but the physical documents and evidence pertaining to their cases are still around.

WTTW News Explains: How Would Ranked Choice Voting Work in Chicago?

What if there were a different way? What if you could rank your choices in order of your preference? Well, there is a system like that and it’s already being used in some jurisdictions. It’s called ranked choice voting. It has its backers as well as detractors.

File photo. (Michael Izquierdo / WTTW News)

Chicago Public Schools Teacher Charged With Stalking Mayor Lori Lightfoot

A 36-year-old Chicago Public Schools teacher is charged with two felony counts of stalking after a confrontation with officers outside of Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s home earlier this week.

(WTTW News)

CTU Members Take Legal Action Against Union for Political Spending

A group of teachers has filed legal action against the CTU, alleging union leaders are wrongly spending dues money on political organizations supporting Brandon Johnson for mayor. They said it’s not about politics, but about their contention that their own union has deceived them.

(WTTW News)

Lead Paint Is Still a Problem in Chicago Apartments, but Expanded Screening Is a Costly Proposition

Recently, a young child was poisoned in his Belmont-Cragin apartment and now faces a host of health problems. It’s spurred a debate on whether the city can do more to fix the problem before another child is affected. 

Jedi Rucizka, 2, of Chicago, was hospitalized for lead poisoning. (WTTW News)

Posing a Danger for Children, Majority of Chicago Homes Contain Hazardous Levels of Lead Paint, Health Officials Say

Paint containing lead has been outlawed in Chicago since 1978, but a WTTW News investigation has found the vast majority of Chicago’s housing stock still contains potentially toxic levels of the substance.

(WTTW News)

State Scraps Plans to Move Migrants to Shuttered Kmart on Chicago’s Southwest Side

A shuttered Kmart will no longer serve as temporary housing for 658 asylum seekers currently living in Illinois. A source close to the situation said some of the migrants have found places to live independently while others will continue to stay at hotels, mostly in the south and southwest suburbs.

(WTTW News)

Chicago Teachers Union Under Fire From Within for Campaign Spending

The Chicago Teachers Union is under fire from within, and the union has been forced to make changes to its election filings or risk violating state law. The union has been front and center with its support of one of its own, Brandon Johnson, as a candidate for Chicago mayor. The big bucks and election actions are now causing some CTU members to speak out.

(WTTW News)

New Legislation Aims to Curb Controversial Cook County Tax Sale

If homeowners are delinquent more than a year on making property tax payments, they’re at risk of owing large interest payments to private investors who buy up that debt. “It’s the poorest people paying the richest people,” Cook County Treasurer Maria Pappas said.

(WTTW News)

State Planning to Move 658 Migrants to Vacant Kmart on Chicago’s Southwest Side

Sources told WTTW News the migrants — mostly asylum seekers — will be relocated from the suburbs, where they are currently staying at hotels. The 100,000-square-foot Kmart has sat vacant at the corner of 71st Street and Pulaski Road since 2016.

Supporters of Joe Dunne march with the Peirce Elementary School contingent during the Jan. 28, 2023, Lunar New Year parade in Uptown. (Credit: Uptown United)

Aldermanic Candidate Apologizes After Supporters Campaign With CPS School Marchers at Parade

Supporters wearing campaign gear of an aldermanic candidate in the 48th Ward marched with an official contingent from Peirce Elementary School in a weekend parade. 

WTTW News Explains: How Does Chicago’s Grid Street System Work?

How exactly are streets organized in Chicago? WTTW News gives you a guided tour of the grid system that organizes the city’s streets and addresses. 

Architect Carol Ross Barney speaks with “Chicago Tonight.” (WTTW News)

Chicago Architect Behind Riverwalk, CTA Stations and Eye-Catching McDonalds Designs Awarded Prestigious Medal

Chicagoans not familiar with the name Carol Ross Barney almost certainly have experienced some of her work. From the Chicago Riverwalk to CTA stations, her designs are part of everyday life in the city.