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The first graduation ceremony for the Circuit Court of Cook County’s Restorative Justice Community Court in Englewood was held on June 29, 2022. (WTTW News)

Participants in the the Circuit Court of Cook County’s Restorative Justice Community Court spent six to nine months learning conflict resolution and job skills, as well as receiving emotional support.  

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Fritz Kaegi, left, faced Kari Steele in the June 28 Democratic primary for Cook County Assessor. (WTTW News)

Cook County Assessor Fritz Kaegi defeated challenger Kari Steele in his bid for a second term in what was the county’s most expensive and high-profile Democratic primary contest on Tuesday.

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Cook County President Toni Preckwinkle announces the launch of the Building Healthy Communities initiative Tuesday, April 12, 2022. (WTTW News)

Cook County budget officials will only have to close an $18.2 million budget shortfall in 2023, the smallest gap in a decade, avoiding tax hikes and layoffs. Thebudget has been boosted by sales taxes, corporate income taxes and revenue generated by the construction boom. 

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Cook County President Toni Preckwinkle, left, debates lawyer Richard Boykin on "Chicago Tonight" on Wednesday, June 15. (WTTW News)

Cook County Board of Commissioners President Toni Preckwinkle and Oak Park lawyer Richard Boykin clashed over whether Preckwinkle’s efforts to reform the county’s criminal justice system is fueling the surge of crime during a debate held Wednesday evening on “Chicago Tonight.”

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A composite image of the candidates for Cook County assessor, incumbent Fritz Kaegi and challenger Kari Steele. (WTTW News graphic)

The candidates for Cook County assessor face off in a “Chicago Tonight” candidate forum.

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The winning flag design. (Cook County Government)

The flag, dubbed “I Will,” was chosen from nearly 300 submissions. It was designed by Drew Duffy, a student at Glenbrook South High School.

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The Cook County Juneteenth Planning Committee. (Credit: Norvell's Photography)

Juneteenth will be recognized as a federal, state and local holiday for the first time this year. The day recognizes the freeing of the last enslaved people in Texas, two years after the Emancipation Proclamation in 1865. 

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Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle speaks about the county’s cash assistance program on May 18, 2022. (WTTW News)

Those who are selected for the program, which will prioritize residents of suburban Cook County, will get monthly payments of $500 to 3,250 residents for two years. The first checks are expected to be cut by the end of the year, officials said.

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Cook County Assessor Fritz Kaegi appears on “Chicago Tonight” on Oct. 22, 2019.

The value of commercial properties increased 56% from 2018 to 2021, compared with 10% for single-family homes and small apartment buildings, according to the data released by the Cook County assessor’s office. That could result in a consequential change in how Cook County’s property tax burden is carved up. 

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(WTTW News)

A reprieve from having to pay a hefty tax bill sounds like a gift, but a monthslong delay in Cook County property tax bills could instead cause headaches for taxpayers, governments and elected officials alike.

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(Geronimo Giqueaux / Unsplash)

The western collar county is once again the healthiest in the state and has ranked in the top 6 healthiest counties since 2011, according to a comprehensive report comparing counties’ health statewide. 

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A residential street in Wicker Park in Chicago. (WTTW News)

The number of evictions carried out in Cook County dropped from more than 3,300 in the five months before the pandemic to fewer than 1,200 in the five months after the eviction ban was lifted, according to data obtained by WTTW News.

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Great egrets and double-crested cormorants at the rookery in the middle of Baker's Lake. (Forest Preserve District of Cook County / Facebook)

The deaths occurred at the Baker’ s Lake forest preserve, the Forest Preserves of Cook County said in a statement on Thursday.

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Cook County President Toni Preckwinkle announces the launch of the Building Healthy Communities initiative Tuesday, April 12, 2022. (WTTW News)

Community-based organizations, health centers, local municipalities and schools in suburban Cook County can apply for funding starting Tuesday. “Working with grassroots organizations is critical in reaching our most vulnerable populations,” said Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle.

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Authorities work the scene outside the Rosemont Outlet Mall where a fatal shooting occurred inside, Friday, March 25, 2022, in Rosemont, Ill. (Tyler Pasciak LaRiviere / Chicago Sun-Times via AP)

A person of interest was taken into custody after Friday night’s shooting at the Fashion Outlets of Chicago mall in Rosemont, a village just northwest of the city, Rosemont police said. Police did not release a motive for the shooting that happened just after 7 p.m. near the mall’s indoor food court.

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(Rebecca Peterson-Hall / Unsplash)

Earth Hour started as a simple “lights out” message to draw attention to climate change but has become a global call for environmental action.