Chicago News

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    The City Council meets in December 2023. [Michael McDevitt/The Daily Line]

    The City Council will meet Wednesday and take up a proposal to limit the number of dollar stores citywide.

    The council will also consider final approval of millions of dollars in police-related legal settlements, confirmation of the city’s new housing commissioner and an ordinance providing for a comprehensive staffing analysis for the police department. The meeting is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. in council chambers.

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    Chicago’s mayor announced a massive lawsuit against multiple oil and gas companies and an oil industry trade association. And Cook County has received additional philanthropic dollars for a criminal justice reform program.

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    Acting Department of Housing Comm. Lissette Castañeda. [Mayor's Press Office]

    The city’s housing committee unanimously recommended confirming Mayor Brandon Johnson’s pick to lead the Department of Housing during a meeting Friday, sending the final approval to the City Council. 

    Acting Department of Housing (DOH) Comm. Lissette Castañeda was appointed by the mayor to the position in December after former Comm. Marisa Novara exited the role last summer. 

    The City Council Committee on Housing and Real Estate voted to confirm Castañeda Friday after a public comment period where she received glowing endorsements from housing and development organizations and after alderpeople questioned her on various housing-related issues.

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    The CPD emblem adorns the public safety headquarters in this file photo. [Don Vincent/The Daily Line]

    The City Council voted for a second time Thursday to reject a contract provision that would allow police officers facing termination or suspensions of at least a year to have their cases heard behind closed doors instead of the Chicago Police Board. The rejection makes it more likely the matter will be decided by a Cook County judge.

    In an 18-32 vote — and with Ald. Scott Waguespack (32) voting in favor of arbitration after voting no last time — the council voted down the provision for the second time since December, when the matter was rejected 17-33.

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    Chicago Department of Housing Comm. Lissette Castañeda [Courtesy of Mayor's Press Office]

    The City Council Committee on Housing and Real Estate will vote on the appointment of a new housing commissioner on Friday, the purchase of land for a new streets and sanitation facility and multiple sales of city-owned lots.

    The housing committee is slated to meet at noon on Friday in City Council chambers.

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    The Chicago Police Department emblem outside of Chicago's public safety headquarters is pictured in this file photo. [Don Vincent/The Daily Line]

    The City Council is expected to vote Thursday on the arbitration option for police officers accused of serious misconduct, the only outstanding provision of the new contract between the city and Chicago Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) yet to be adopted. 

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    City Hall is pictured in this file photo. [Don Vincent/The Daily Line]

    The City Council Committee on Finance on Wednesday approved four agreements totaling millions of dollars to settle lawsuits stemming from injuries allegedly caused by the actions of Chicago Police officers.

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    The city’s license committee recommended explicitly exempting shoeshine and shoe repair businesses from the city’s checkout bag tax, and the city is attempting to intervene in a lawsuit to throw the real estate transfer tax increase off the March ballot.

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    Chicago Public Health Comm. Olusimbo Ige is pictured during a press conference on migrant housing on Jan. 29, 2024. [Don Vincent/The Daily Line]

    The Committee on Health and Human Relations held an introductory hearing with Chicago Department of Public Health Comm. Olusimbo Ige, giving alderpeople the chance to ask questions of the new health commissioner in a public forum for the first time since she was appointed. 

    Mayor Brandon Johnson appointed Ige last fall after he terminated Allison Arwady in August. Whether or not Ige should receive a confirmation vote from the City Council became a point of contention during Tuesday’s hearing.

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    The historic Hoyt building is pictured. [Commission on Chicago Landmarks]

    A City Council panel gave the OK to a tax incentive for a project to rehabilitate and reuse a vacant historic building in the Cermak Road Bridge District.

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    Alderpeople will on Wednesday consider adding a new exemption to the city’s paper and plastic bag tax law and consider approving the annual special events ordinance. Additionally, the council’s finance committee will consider approving millions of dollars in police-related legal settlements.

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    Ald. Gilbert Villegas (36), the chair of the Committee on Economic, Capital and Technology Development, is pictured in May 2023. [Don Vincent/The Daily Line]

    The City Council Committee on Economic, Capital and Technology Development will meet Tuesday morning and consider appointments and reappointments for multiple Special Service Areas, a resolution calling for a hearing on data storage security and a tax incentive for the redevelopment of the historic Hoyt Building. 

    The committee will meet at 9:30 a.m. in council chambers.

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    Chicago Public Health Comm. Olusimbo Ige is pictured during a press conference on migrant housing on Jan. 29, 2024. [Don Vincent/The Daily Line]

    Alderpeople on Tuesday are expected to hold their first hearing with acting Chicago Department of Public Health Comm. Olusimbo Ige, who was appointed by Mayor Brandon Johnson to lead the health department last fall.

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    Chicago's skyline is pictured in this file photo.

    Following a monthslong public outreach campaign, city planners are likely to prioritize additional pedestrian-only streets, public safety, outdoor spaces and affordable housing when crafting the 20-year update to the guiding document for the downtown area.

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    Ald. Gilbert Villegas (36) attends a City Council meeting in October 2023. [Don Vincent/The Daily Line]

    The mayor and 15 alderpeople are backing legislation (O2024-0007305) that would effectively ban current forms of natural gas energy from being used for heating or appliances in new construction.

    Advocates say it’s a necessary first step, as about 68 percent of Chicago’s greenhouse gas emissions come from the built environment. While having a limited effect on existing buildings, the legislation is seeking to make sure the emissions share doesn’t increase with new developments. 

    But another group representing more than half the City Council is supporting a measure that calls for a cost analysis of the proposal before any decisions are made.

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