|
A homeless encampment in Chicago. (WTTW News)

Chicago’s homeless population would receive significant funding and support from the city under Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s budget proposal. As part of our “Firsthand: Living in Poverty” series, we take a look at how that money would be allocated.

|
Araceli Gómez-Aldana guest hosts a Black Voices/Latino Voices crossover with Chicago journalists on the mayor’s budget proposal. (WTTW News)

Mayor Lori Lightfoot has unveiled her budget plan for 2022, a plan that one alderman called a “Christmas list” of progressive spending items. We break it all down with four Chicago reporters.

|
(David Mark / Pixabay)

Chief Financial Officer Jennie Huang Bennett defended the mayor’s spending plan as a thoughtful plan to “build a bridge toward financial stability while the economy continues to recover.” 

,
|
A rift between Chicago Bears leadership and the owner of Soldier Field— the Chicago Park District — may be brewing, as speculation swarms over whether the team is planning to relocate. (WTTW News)

A rift between Chicago Bears leadership and the owner of Soldier Field— the Chicago Park District — may be brewing, as speculation swarms over whether the team is planning to relocate. 

,
|
(WTTW News via CNN)

The mayor’s latest push for vaccinations invokes the city’s 77 community areas to encourage Chicagoans from all neighborhoods to get vaccinated — and to enlist those who have already been jabbed with the lifesaving vaccine to help others follow their lead.

|
A new Chicago ward map will take effect in time for the 2023 municipal elections — assuming it is not blocked by a judge. (WTTW News via Google Maps)

With efforts well underway to craft new ward boundaries that could shape Chicago politics for the next decade, Chicagoans on Wednesday got a brief glimpse of the heated debate taking shape behind closed doors at City Hall.

|
Mayor Lori Lightfoot presents her budget proposal for 2022 to the Chicago City Council on Monday, Sept. 20, 2021. (WTTW News)

The 2022 spending plan relies on hundreds of millions of dollars in federal COVID-19 relief funding to shore up Chicago’s budget gaps, increases police spending and invests in ward-by-ward community programs. Is it too reliant on federal COVID-19 funding?

,
|
Mayor Lori Lightfoot speaks at the New Life Church on Monday, April 5, 2021. (WTTW News)

The mayor said Wednesday she would not delay her order to require all city workers to be vaccinated against COVID-19 by Oct. 15 — despite pushback from the unions representing Chicago’s 11,000 police officers.

|
Pedro Martinez speaks Wednesday, Sept. 15, 2021 outside his alma mater, Benito Juarez High School in Pilsen. (WTTW News)

The former San Antonio Independent School District superintendent now finds himself leading a district that is struggling to execute contact tracing and COVID-19 testing as students resume in-person learning.

,
|
According to the CPS website’s COVID tracker, since the start of school, 350 students of the more than 340,000 who attend CPS have had what the district calls “actionable” — meaning confirmed — COVID cases. (WTTW News)

State education officials say students who don’t have medical exemptions must be taught in school this year. But in Chicago, there’s still a standoff between the mayor’s office and the teachers union over what in-person learning should look like during a pandemic.

, ,
|
(WTTW News)

Mayor Lori Lightfoot told WTTW News on Monday night she was “disappointed” that efforts to test all Chicago Public Schools students and staff for COVID-19 had gotten off to a slow and confusing start. 

Plus: 4 Chicago alderpeople react to the proposal

|
Mayor Lori Lightfoot appears on “Chicago Tonight” via Zoom on Monday, Sept. 20, 2021. (WTTW News)

As Chicago emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic, Mayor Lori Lightfoot told WTTW News on Monday that city officials must be “bold and transformative” to address not only the immediate damage caused by the pandemic but also the city’s longstanding woes. 

|
Mayor Lori Lightfoot presents her budget proposal for 2022 to the Chicago City Council on Monday, Sept. 20, 2021. (WTTW News)

Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s plan to close a projected $733 million budget gap in 2022 relies on $385 million in federal relief funds and nearly $299 million in savings and efficiencies, but the plan contains “no new tax or significant fee increases” for Chicago residents, she said.

,
|
(WTTW News)

Black Caucus Chair Ald. Jason Ervin (28th Ward) said the City Council should act quickly and loosen the rules because the legal sale of cannabis is “raining hundred-dollar bills” and those hurt by the war on drugs should be able to take advantage of the gold rush.

|
(WTTW News)

More than two months after Inspector General Joseph Ferguson announced he would leave office on Oct. 15, the Chicago City Council on Friday finally took the first steps toward finding his replacement as the city’s watchdog.

,
|
(WTTW News)

Intense criticism has not prompted Mayor Lori Lightfoot to rethink her plan to demand that the Chicago City Council give the city’s Law Department the authority to sue the leaders of Chicago’s gangs and “go after their blood money.”