Kelly Bauer
APR 14, 2021
Lakeview Pantry client Eustorgia Alcarav receives her first dose of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at the vaccination site next to Wrigley Field on April 5, 2021. [Colin Boyle/Block Club Chicago]

"As cases climb across the country, I encourage everyone to get vaccinated as soon as possible," Gov. JB Pritzker said.

CHICAGO — The state will send 50,000 doses of the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines to Chicago as the city suspends using its Johnson & Johnson doses.

The city and state announced Tuesday morning they’d temporarily halt vaccinating people with Johnson & Johnson doses “out of an abundance of caution.” The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Federal Drug Administration are investigating if the doses are linked to reports of extremely rare but potentially dangerous blood clots found in a small number of women.

The pause is only expected to last several days, officials have said.

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State Sending 50,000 Moderna, Pfizer Vaccine Doses To Chicago While Johnson & Johnson Is Paused

Lakeview Pantry client Eustorgia Alcarav receives her first dose of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at th...
MAR 09, 2020
Cresco senior counsel Jim Boland reviews the company's plan for a dispensary at 436 N Clark St. [Alex Nitkin/The Daily Line]

Downtown Ald. Brendan Reilly (42) excoriated the mayoral-appointed Zoning Board of Appeals as “a joke” on Friday after its members green-lit a proposal for a River North cannabis dispensary over his objections and those of a neighborhood group.

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Alderman rips ‘incompetent’ zoning board after it OKs dispensary despite neighborhood opposition

Cresco senior counsel Jim Boland reviews the company's plan for a dispensary at 436 N Clark St. [...
JAN 24, 2019
The Plan Commission will weigh newly-released plans from Sterling Bay Thursday that will transform the North Branch’s riverfront, just five days after the developer released its new master plan for the 55-acre development.

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Plan Commission set to weigh Lincoln Yards, despite protests

The Plan Commission will weigh newly-released plans from Sterling Bay Thursday that will transfor...
NOV 23, 2021
A person receives a COVID-19 vaccine at the mass vaccination site in the Jones Convocation Center on the campus of Chicago State University on April 7, 2021. [Colin Boyle/Block Club]

This article was first published in Block Club Chicago.

More than 92 percent of city workers have reported their vaccination status, according to a Monday news release.

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92% of city workers have reported their COVID-19 vaccination status

A person receives a COVID-19 vaccine at the mass vaccination site in the Jones Convocation Center...
AUG 24, 2021
Mayor Lori Lightfoot prepares to receive her second COVID-19 vaccine from Dr. Allison Arwady in Chicago's Gage Park neighborhood on Feb. 19, 2021. [Colin Boyle/Block Club Chicago]

This article was first published in Block Club Chicago.

All city workers will soon be required to get vaccinated against coronavirus, Mayor Lori Lightfoot said Monday.

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Chicago city workers will be required to get vaccinated if Lightfoot gets her way

Mayor Lori Lightfoot prepares to receive her second COVID-19 vaccine from Dr. Allison Arwady in C...
JUL 07, 2021
The first floor lobby in City Hall on Wednesday, February 19, 2020. [Colin Boyle/Block Club]

This article was first published in Block Club.

City Hall has reopened to the public after more than a year of being closed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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City Hall reopens to public after 16 months of pandemic closure, but masks still required

The first floor lobby in City Hall on Wednesday, February 19, 2020. [Colin Boyle/Block Club] This...
MAR 31, 2021
Mayor Lori Lightfoot (middle), Chicago Public Schools CEO Janice Jackson (right) and Ald. William Burnett (left) observe a classroom during their tour Feb. 11 at William H. Brown Elementary School. AP Photo/Shafkat Anowar, Pool

CPS CEO Janice Jackson also said the district will soon announce how families will be able to opt in for in-person learning when CPS' fourth quarter starts.

CHICAGO — Mayor Lori Lightfoot aMayor nd public schools chief Janice Jackson celebrated as some students returned to classrooms Thursday, the first day kids are back after officials struck a deal with the Chicago Teachers Union to reopen schools.

The deal was called a “disgrace” by CTU President Jesse Sharkey, who said it didn’t go far enough to protect teachers, students and school communities during the coronavirus pandemic. The union said 67.5 percent of its members who voted approved of the plan, and the majority of CPS families are opting to keep their students at home for now.

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As Some CPS Students Return To Classrooms, Officials Eye Opening High Schools Next

Mayor Lori Lightfoot (middle), Chicago Public Schools CEO Janice Jackson (right) and Ald. William...
MAR 31, 2021
Mayor Lori Lightfoot (middle), Chicago Public Schools CEO Janice Jackson (right) and Ald. William Burnett (left) observe a classroom during their tour Feb. 11 at William H. Brown Elementary School. AP Photo/Shafkat Anowar, Pool

CPS CEO Janice Jackson also said the district will soon announce how families will be able to opt in for in-person learning when CPS' fourth quarter starts.

CHICAGO — Mayor Lori Lightfoot aMayor nd public schools chief Janice Jackson celebrated as some students returned to classrooms Thursday, the first day kids are back after officials struck a deal with the Chicago Teachers Union to reopen schools.

The deal was called a “disgrace” by CTU President Jesse Sharkey, who said it didn’t go far enough to protect teachers, students and school communities during the coronavirus pandemic. The union said 67.5 percent of its members who voted approved of the plan, and the majority of CPS families are opting to keep their students at home for now.

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As Some CPS Students Return To Classrooms, Officials Eye Opening High Schools Next

Mayor Lori Lightfoot (middle), Chicago Public Schools CEO Janice Jackson (right) and Ald. William...
MAR 09, 2021

A last-minute eligibility change frustrated many people — but the state said it was needed because too many appointments were going to non-Chicagoans.

CHICAGO — All of the United Center’s 110,000 vaccination appointments have been taken — but only after technical glitches, eligibility changes and frustration Sunday.

More appointments at the mass vaccination site will open in the weeks to come, officials have said. The center, where up to 6,000 people can be vaccinated per day, will significantly boost Chicago’s and Illinois’ vaccination efforts.

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United Center Fills All 110,000 Vaccination Appointments After Glitches, Late Change To Chicago-Only Online Signups

A last-minute eligibility change frustrated many people — but the state said it was needed becaus...
MAR 09, 2021

A last-minute eligibility change frustrated many people — but the state said it was needed because too many appointments were going to non-Chicagoans.

CHICAGO — All of the United Center’s 110,000 vaccination appointments have been taken — but only after technical glitches, eligibility changes and frustration Sunday.

More appointments at the mass vaccination site will open in the weeks to come, officials have said. The center, where up to 6,000 people can be vaccinated per day, will significantly boost Chicago’s and Illinois’ vaccination efforts.

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United Center Fills All 110,000 Vaccination Appointments After Glitches, Late Change To Chicago-Only Online Signups

A last-minute eligibility change frustrated many people — but the state said it was needed becaus...
DEC 16, 2020
Doctor Marina Del Rios from UI Health receives Chicago's first COVID-19 vaccination from Dr. Nikhila Juvvadi on Tuesday, Dec. 15, 2020, at Loretto Hospital, a 122-bed medical facility in the Austin neighborhood. (Jose M. Osorio/Chicago Tribune/pool)

Tuesday morning's vaccine kicks off what officials say will be a year-long effort to get as many people as possible vaccinated in Chicago to end the COVID-19 pandemic.

AUSTIN — Chicago’s vaccination campaign has officially begun, marking the beginning of the end of the pandemic, officials said.

The city gave its first dose of Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine to doctors, nurses and a patient care technician Tuesday morning at Loretto Hospital. It kicked off what officials say will be a year-long effort to get as many people as possible vaccinated in Chicago to end the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Chicago’s First Coronavirus Vaccine Given To Doctor At Loretto Hospital: ‘The Beginning Of What Will Be An End’ Of COVID-19

Doctor Marina Del Rios from UI Health receives Chicago's first COVID-19 vaccination from Dr. Nikh...
DEC 10, 2020
Influenza vaccination. | DANIEL PAQUET

The vaccine will first go to health care workers and residents and staff of long-term care facilities. But, over the months, the campaign will grow.

LOGAN SQUARE — Chicagoans could be getting vaccinated as early as next week.

Officials outlined the city’s vaccination plan during a Thursday news conference: It will start with a first shipment of the Pfizer vaccine, which could arrive next week and will be distributed among the city’s hospitals. The vaccine will first go to health care workers and residents and staff of long-term care facilities.

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Coronavirus Vaccine Could Come To Chicago By Next Week: Here’s How The City Plans To Distribute It

Influenza vaccination. | DANIEL PAQUET The vaccine will first go to health care workers and resid...
OCT 28, 2020
Patrons purchase beverages from Old Crow Smokehouse's curbside bar on Clark Street in the Wrigleyville neighborhood on June 27, 2020 during the first weekend of Illinois in Phase Four of reopening amid the Coronavirus pandemic. | Colin Boyle/Block Club Chicago

The state's new rules for Chicago include stopping indoor drinking and dining, limiting gathering sizes and putting a curfew on bars and restaurants.

CHICAGO — Bars and restaurants must stop indoor service starting Friday morning, and Chicago is facing other restrictions under new orders from Gov. JB Pritzker.

Chicago is joining six other regions of Illinois under what Pritzker has dubbed “enhanced mitigations.” The mitigations include stopping indoor drinking and dining and imposing an 11 p.m. curfew on bars and restaurants.

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State Cracks Down On Chicago, Banning Indoor Dining And Drinking As Coronavirus Cases Skyrocket

Patrons purchase beverages from Old Crow Smokehouse's curbside bar on Clark Street in the Wrigley...
OCT 20, 2020
Chicago's top doctor Dr. Allison Arwady urged people to stop inviting people to their homes as COVID cases soar.
PROVIDED

Chicago's averaging 508 new cases per day, a 45 percent increase from just one week ago, though testing has only increased 11 percent.

CHICAGO — Mayor Lori Lightfoot warned the city could bring back the restrictions of Phase 3 if the “second surge” of coronavirus doesn’t turn around.

The surge started this month and has quickly gained steam: Chicago’s averaging 508 new cases per day, a 50 percent increase from the start of October. The city’s positivity rate has also jumped to 5.4 percent; the week before, it was at 4.2 percent.

‘We Are In The Second Surge’: Lightfoot Says Chicago Could Return To Phase 3 As Coronavirus Cases Soar

Chicago's top doctor Dr. Allison Arwady urged people to stop inviting people to their homes as CO...
SEP 11, 2020
The city hopes two new programs can help homeowners get rid of lead service lines — but it will take years and billions to remove all of the pipes in Chicago.

CHICAGO — The city will soon begin to help residents who want to get rid of lead water lines, with a focus on people who are low-income.

There are about 380,000 lead service lines in Chicago, many of them used by single-family and two-flat homes, according to the city. It will take years and cost an estimated $8.5 billion for all of those lines to be replaced — but the city’s new initiative will allow homeowners to kickstart the process and cut down on how much it will cost them.

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Lead Water Pipes Can Be Replaced For Free For Low-Income People As City Starts Process Of Removing Them

The city hopes two new programs can help homeowners get rid of lead service lines — but it will t...
JUL 30, 2020

The city has started to fine people for not following its quarantine rules after returning from other states.

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Chicago Is Fining People For Not Quarantining After Returning From Out Of State, Lightfoot Says

The city has started to fine people for not following its quarantine rules after returning from o...
JAN 15, 2020

More than 300 cities and 55 countries around the world have banned single-use plastics in an effort to reduce the millions of pounds of plastic trash clogging our lakes and oceans.

Chicago could be next.

On Wednesday, Ald. Scott Waguespack (32) and Ald. Susan Sadlowski Garza (10) introduced an ordinance that looks to significantly cut down how many plastic forks, plates and spoons are doled out by restaurants and other businesses in the city.

Aldermen propose ban on all Styrofoam, single-use plastic

More than 300 cities and 55 countries around the world have banned single-use plastics in an effo...
FEB 21, 2019
By Kelly Bauer, Block Club Chicago

Early voting in Tuesday’s general elections is on track to be the highest in recent years.

Approximately 60,000 early voting ballots have been cast and another 18,500 vote-by-mail ballots have come in, said Jim Allen, spokesman for the Board of Election Commissioners.

On Thursday alone, 10,000 early votes were cast — the most of any day during this election, Allen said.

That puts the city on pace to surpass the early vote totals it saw in the most recent comparable elections of February 2011 and February 2015.

Those totals don’t even include include military overseas voters and grace period voters, Allen said.

And the board has received nearly triple the amount of vote-by-mail applications as it has in the past, with about a quarter of those returned so far, Allen said.

“We’ll have a solid turnout at this rate,” Allen said.

Election Day is Tuesday. Early voting continues through Monday night. Click here for a list of voting sites.

Early Voting In City Election On Track To Be Highest In Years With 60K Ballots Already Cast

By Kelly Bauer, Block Club ChicagoEarly voting in Tuesday’s general elections is on track to be t...