Illinois Insights: An Update from Cozen O’Connor (6/14)

June 14, 2023

Editor’s Note: There will be no Illinois Insights updates on Friday, June 16th or on Monday, June 19th. Updates will resume on Wednesday, June 21st.  



Waukegan mayor invites Chicago Bears to consider move to suburban city: “The mayor of Waukegan made the latest pitch to the team to lure the Bears north,” by ABC 7 Chicago.

Gov. Pritzker Announces Opening of $31 Million Expanded Terminal at MidAmerica St. Louis Airport: “Governor JB Pritzker joined state and local officials to announce the grand opening of MidAmerica St. Louis Airport’s expanded terminal – a $31 million multi-year project bolstered by $7 million in grant funding from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) in addition to $24 million in federal dollars,” from the Office of Gov. JB Pritzker.

Former Gov. Rauner returns to Springfield to unveil portrait, but stays clear of politics: “The former governor made a public return to the state Capitol Monday to hang his portrait in the Hall of Governors on the Capitol’s second floor,” by The Daily Line.

Pritzker highlights major construction projects in downstate Illinois: “ Gov. J.B. Pritzker made stops in downstate Illinois Tuesday highlighting construction projects as part of his Rebuild Illinois initiative,” by The Center Square.


Chicago Public Schools unveil $9.4 billion district budget

Chicago Public Schools Tuesday unveiled a proposed $9.4 billion overall district budget that keeps spending steady in 2023-24.

The budget allocates $4.8 billion directly to schools, $220 million more compared to last year. The funds would go towards hiring teachers and other support staff dedicated to students with disabilities. CPS is also issuing a 5 percent property tax increase, the highest allowed, to help support its budget.

“This proposed budget is a step toward fulfilling CPS’ commitment to providing resources for every school community so that our students are healthy, safe, engaged and on the path to long-term success,” Johnson said in a statement.

Officials presented a scaled-down $155 million capital budget plan to address pressing facility needs but said they plan to propose more detailed construction projects and request additional capital funding later this year.


Pedestrian and traffic safety committee to hold hearing on NASCAR closures and safety measures for motorists, pedestrians, cyclists: “The City Council Committee on Pedestrian and Traffic Safety will hold a hearing Wednesday on downtown closures to accommodate the upcoming NASCAR street race event, with a focus on how planned street closures and event setup will impact the safety of motorists, pedestrians and active transportation users downtown,” by The Daily Line.

Finance committee to meet for first time under new leadership, consider police-related settlements and TIF funding: “Members of the City Council Committee on Finance will meet at 10 a.m. Wednesday to consider approving four settlements totaling more than $9 million and proposals for tax-increment finance funding for developments across the city. Wednesday will mark the first time the finance committee is meeting under the new leadership of chair Ald. Pat Dowell (3). Ald. Bill Conway (34) is the vice chair of the committee,” by The Daily Line.

Committee sends citywide expansion of program that offers purchase assistance to homeowners to full City Council: “The housing committee unanimously approved the citywide expansion (O2023-1588) of the city’s Building Neighborhoods and Affordable Housing Purchase Price Assistance Program citywide. Monday’s approval means the full City Council will consider the proposal during its meeting next week,” by The Daily Line.

FOP demands same 12 weeks of paid parental leave Johnson gave teachers: “If Mayor Brandon Johnson was willing to give Chicago Public Schools employees 12 weeks of paid parental leave without demanding that it be negotiated at the bargaining table, he should do the same for police officers, according to their union president,” by the Chicago Sun-Times.

City Ethics Board to seek changes to contractor oversight following Tribune report: “Chicago’s Ethics Board will look to amend the city’s ethics ordinance in response to a Tribune story that detailed how several aldermen used tax dollars to pay a former top Park District official tens of thousands of dollars as a consultant after he’d had been asked to resign and placed on the district’s “do not rehire” list for his role in that agency’s sexual abuse lifeguard scandal,” by the Chicago Tribune.

After days of delays, city moves migrant families from North Side to Daley College: “Mayor Brandon Johnson’s chief of staff said families with children needed to move to Daley College so the High Ridge YMCA could be used only for single men, who make up the majority of the 500 or so people still sleeping in Chicago police stations,” by the Chicago Sun-Times.


Cozen Currents: Corporate America Caught in the Political Crossfire

  • The culture wars continue to present a challenge for corporate America, resulting in diminished influence of the “Chamber of Commerce” business perspective in Washington. But the bipartisan legislative successes of the past two years provided meaningful support to specific industries, suggesting that businesses still have the ability to effectively shape policy outcomes.
  • One of the most prominent culture war issues that Republicans and Democrats battle over is the application of environmental, social, and governance factors to the private sector, with companies caught in the middle.
  • US-China policy used to be greatly influenced by corporate considerations, but the role of businesses in the relationship between the world’s two largest economies has diminished in recent years as national security concerns overshadow commercial interests.

Read the full Cozen Currents article here.


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