Archive for the ‘Preckwinkle’s Rules of Order’ Category

Citing a BGA investigation, nine lawmakers requested a funding freeze in the wake of former House Speaker Michael Madigan’s 22-count federal indictment on charges he traded his office to enrich himself and his friends.

Ann Williams

State Rep. Ann Williams, D-Chicago, leads a group of lawmakers calling to freeze payments on projects earmarked by indicted former House Speaker Michael Madigan.

Following a review by state bureaucracies, Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s office has lifted a freeze on funding for projects earmarked by Illinois’ now-indicted former House Speaker Michael Madigan.

The temporary freeze came after a group of nine Democratic state representatives requested it in the wake of Madigan’s 22-count indictment on corruption charges on March 2.

“Although some of the funding for these projects may have already been allocated,” said the March 7 letter submitted to Pritzker by the lawmakers. “We request another layer of review to determine whether they were an appropriate use of taxpayer dollars.”

The lawmakers cited a Jan. 21 investigation by the Better Government Association, published in the Chicago Sun-Times, that found four projects included by Madigan in a 2019 infrastructure bill all benefited those to whom the former speaker has personal, professional or political ties.

But two days after their initial letter to Pritzker the same group of lawmakers, led by State Rep. Ann Williams, D-Chicago, backtracked and asked Pritzker to unfreeze the funding after getting pushback from other lawmakers in the state’s Latino caucus.

“They and other community leaders have been vocal advocates for these projects, and they remain vital investments in their communities,” the lawmakers wrote in a second letter to Pritzker. “We stand behind their need to get these projects finished.”

Read more from the Better Government Association here.

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By John Kass

You see by the photo that it was a time of smiles and many sweet dreams for Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx. And her ambition could taste them all.

She excitedly tweeted out this photo or herself at a left-wing Emily’s List fundraiser with her BFF, soon-to-be Vice President Kamala Harris. She’d moved beyond being merely the hatchet for Cook County Democratic Party chair Toni Preckwinkle. She was about to hit the big leagues. That brass ring was within Kim’s reach.

There was speculation among the politicos that there might be some big things in Kim’s future. Or at least, she thought so.

U.S. Sen. Kim Foxx (D, Boss Toni)?

Dick Durbin wouldn’t live forever, would he?

But after the Jussie Smollett fiasco of her own making, she stumbles on that boulevard of broken political dreams.

Yet there is just one other dream involving Foxx. And many voters in Illinois are dreaming of it:

A recall of Kim Foxx.

Recall her now. Not next year. Now.

Read on here.

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MaskThe city of Chicago will be lifting most COVID-19 mitigation mandates by the end of the month, but private businesses may still require masks and vaccine proof.

Since the beginning of the year, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot has mandated most businesses require customers to show proof of vaccination for entrance. The city also has had a mask mandate for indoor settings. Lightfoot said the announced end of the mandates on Feb. 28 doesn’t have to do with a lawsuit challenging the vaccine mandates for customers.

“We follow the data and the science,” Lightfoot said. “Look, I’m a 30-year veteran litigator. I’m not afraid of a lawsuit.”

The Liberty Justice Center on Feb. 10 filed a federal lawsuit against Chicago and Cook County to end their “illegal and discriminatory proof of vaccination’ requirements.”

“Chicago and Cook County residents claim the orders violate the rights of equal protection, due process and freedom of religion provided by the U.S. Constitution, while also violating state law, the Illinois state constitution and Chicago’s own municipal code,” Liberty Justice Center said in a statement.

Lightfoot said businesses can choose to continue the requirements for vaccine proof and masks after Feb. 28.

Chicago Department of Public Health Director Dr. Alison Arwady said the COVID-19 statistics are heading in the right direction for mandates to be lifted.

“We’re at a place where those can be lifted at the city level,” Arwady said. “I, of course, remain supportive of businesses and other settings that continue them, particularly in the short term.”

More here.

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JB Pissed

Earlier this week, a bipartisan legislative committee in Springfield suspended the renewal of the state’s emergency mask mandate in schools.

As a result of that action, the Illinois Fourth District Appeals Court ruled, “None of the rules found by the circuit court to be null and void are currently in effect…Accordingly, for the following reasons, we dismiss defendant’s appeal because the expiration of the emergency rules renders this appeal moot.”

The ruling posed late Thursday night is a setback for Governor Pritzker, who sought to keep the mask mandates in place inside schools despite his plan to loosen mask restrictions in the state come February 28.

The dismissal comes after a downstate judge ruled at the beginning of February in favor of a group of parents from across the state who sued over the mask requirement.

The governor then appealed that ruling, but in the meantime, a legislative committee made up of Republicans and Democrats voted Tuesday against extending the mask mandate in schools as the state waited for guidance from the appellate court.

More here.

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J.B. Pritzker

Shortly after a downstate judge threw Pritzker’s mask mandates into question, a bipartisan committee voted against reimposing another K-12 school mask mandate.

On Feb. 15 the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules (JCAR) of the Illinois General Assembly voted 9-0-2 against extending Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s emergency rules to enforce state mask, vaccine and testing mandates.

The Illinois Department of Public Health attempted to reissue an emergency rule to counteract a Feb. 4 Sangamon County court order temporarily halting the enforcement of the statewide school mask mandate, COVID-19 quarantine policies, and school staff vaccination and testing rules.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker called the Sangamon Court ruling “misguided” and said it would deprive schools of “sufficient tools to keep students and staff safe.” The attorney general said he was appealing it.

The new JCAR ruling prevents Pritzker and the IDPH from reissuing a statewide school mask mandate for K-12 public and private schools.

“Today, the Joint Committee of Administrative Rules made it clear that we would not accept the governor’s attempts to go above a court ruling made by a co-equal branch of government,” said state Sen. Sue Rezin, R-Morris. “In his quest for power and control, Pritzker and his administration was willing to further the chaos and confusion for schools throughout the state. With this bipartisan vote, I hope that the Governor finally recognizes that his go-it-alone tactic is not in the best interest of our state or its people.”

Pritzker announced last week that Illinois will lift the statewide indoor mask mandate for most residents Feb. 28, except in schools, hospitals, retirement homes and on public transit.

More here.

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The District 220 Board of Education meets this evening at 7:00 PM at Barrington Middle School – Station Campus, 215 Eastern Avenue, .  A copy of the agenda can be viewed here.

The meeting will be livestreamed on the district YouTube channel.

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Ugly Mask

Chicago and Cook County health officials announced plans to revoke pandemic masking and vaccination entry requirements by Feb. 28, the day Illinois’ statewide mask mandate will be lifted. Pritzker has warned Illinoisans to keep masks handy.

Chicago and Cook County health officials said they will lift the city’s proof of vaccination requirement and indoor mask mandate by Feb. 28, nearly two years under COVID-19 mitigations.

The news follows Gov J.B. Pritzker announcement that the statewide indoor mask mandate will be lifted on Feb. 28, excluding in schools, hospitals and on public transit. Pritzker said the indoor mask mandate will remain in effect at these venues throughout the city, county and state.

“We are on track to come out on the other side of this latest COVID storm in better shape than even the doctors expected,” Pritzker said at a news conference Feb. 9. “If these trends continue, and we expect on Monday, Feb. 28, we will lift the indoor mask requirement for the state of Illinois.”

The decision to phase out statewide pandemic protocols coincides with announcements this week that New York, New Jersey, California, Delaware, Connecticut, Nevada and Oregon will do the same.

Read more here.

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This year’s “State of the Barrington Region” economic summit will take place virtually on Wednesday.

The public is invited to hear firsthand updates from area village leaders, including: Karen Darch of Barrington; Brian D. Cecola of Barrington Hills; Greg Rusteberg of Deer Park; John Tatooles of Inverness; Nandia Black of Kildeer; Kevin Richardson of Lake Barrington; Bill Jacob of Long Grove; Eleanor Sweet McDonnell of North Barrington; Keith Vogeler of Port Barrington; Paula McCombie of South Barrington; and David Parro of Tower Lakes.

The event is 8:30 to 10 a.m. Wednesday. Registration is $10.

Sign up at BarringtonChamber.com to receive the Zoom link.

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220 Admin

February 6, 2022

Dear Barrington 220 Community:

Many of you are aware that there are two lawsuits in Illinois regarding COVID mitigations and school districts. Friday afternoon, Judge Raylene Grischow ruled in favor of a Temporary Restraining Order for both cases. We have consulted with our legal counsel and effective Monday, February 7, 2022:

  • Barrington 220 will be in a mask recommended, but not required environment for all students and staff. (The ruling also means the district will not be able to enforce the mitigation plan, which included situational masking, that the Board of Education approved at its Jan. 31 meeting.) That being said, the district highly recommends students and staff continue wearing masks in alignment with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH).
  • Masks will still be required on any school-based transportation due to the federal CDC order.
  • Due to the ruling, Barrington 220 will not be contact tracing or excluding close contacts. 
  • Per the Lake County Health Department, students and staff who test positive will be required to isolate and will be excluded from school.
  • Any students and staff who are currently excluded due to being a close contact may choose to return to school effective Monday, Feb. 7.
  • SHIELD Testing will continue for those who choose to participate.
  • Staff members who are unvaccinated will not be required to test weekly.

It is important to note that it is likely that the attorney general will file a motion to stay and appeal the judge’s decision. If a stay is ordered or the appellate court overturns the decision, Barrington 220 will be required to return to universal masking.

As we return to school on Monday, we know that moving to a mask recommended, but not required environment will be a big change for our students and staff. One thing that is not changing is all of the other mitigation measures we have in place. These measures have allowed us to maintain a healthy and safe environment throughout this school year. We want to reassure you that the health and safety of our students and staff are our top priority. It is critical now more than ever that you partner with us so that we can keep our schools open. Please make sure you are monitoring your child’s health and keep them home if they are not feeling well.

Lastly, I want to stress the importance of treating everyone with respect and kindness during this time as our students and staff make individual choices regarding masking. We need to continue to work together as a school and community as we move forward.”

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220 Mask

District 220 parents and students rallied in downtown Barrington Saturday after Friday’s announcement of a temporary halt to mask mandates.

Elgin Area School District U-46 said Saturday that its superintendent, administrators and legal counsel are in the process of reviewing the judge’s decision.

Naperville District 203 and Wheaton Warrenville District 200 also said they are consulting with legal counsel about the ruling and haven’t decided whether COVID-19 policies will be updated yet.

Superintendent Lori Bein announced District 25 elementary schools will no longer require masks, but instead “highly recommend” mask-wearing. Masks will still be required on school transportation.

Similarly, Superintendent David Schuler announced that Northwest Suburban District 214 will no longer require masks in school buildings but continue to require masking on transportation due to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s federal requirement. People who have been exposed to COVID-19 don’t have to quarantine and unvaccinated staff members no longer have to test weekly.

Read more here.

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