Illinois Insights: An Update from Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies (1/6)

January 6, 2023


New COVID Variant XBB 1.5 Quickly Rising in Dominance. Here’s Why That Matters, by NBC 5 Chicago.

IDPH Reports 73 Illinois Counties at an Elevated Community Level for COVID-19, from the Illinois Department of Public Health.



House passes ‘assault weapon’ ban, sending bill to Senate after making some revisions; Durkin votes ‘yes’: “The Illinois House took a historic step Friday morning passing a bill that would make Illinois the ninth state to ban “assault weapons.” The bill passed the House after midnight Friday morning 64-43. The proposal was mostly unchanged from the version that was heard in three subject matter hearings last month though some changes were made to address concerns raised by stakeholders who testified at the hearings,” by The Daily Line.

House advances abortion bill in response to end of Roe, but differences with Senate still to be ironed out: “The House passed a bill (SB1534) late Thursday night making several changes to Illinois’ abortion law as a response to last year’s end of Roe v. Wade, but it’s not clear where the Senate stands on the proposed legislation,” by The Daily Line.

Illinois Supreme Court sets March timeline for oral arguments in cash bail appeal: “An appeal to the Illinois Supreme Court regarding the constitutionality of a state law that would end cash bail appears to be at least two months away from resolution under a new timeline approved by the court Thursday,” by Crain’s Chicago Business.


City of Chicago makes voluntary advance pension payment

Mayor Lightfoot announced yesterday that the City will follow through on its expected and approved $242 million advance pension payment to the City’s four pension funds as part of a new fiscal responsibility policy that will prevent unfunded liabilities from growing.

“Financial stability is the bedrock for economic growth and continued investments in the City,” said Mayor Lightfoot. “This payment demonstrates our ongoing commitment to ensuring a prosperous Chicago as well as fulfilling our promises to secure the retirements of police officers, fire fighters, and city employees that provide essential services to keep our City safe and growing.”

The new policy was a major contributor to the City’s improved ratings by agencies such as S&P Global Ratings, who noted that that a key driver of the upgrade was “… largely based on the expanded debt and pension policy, as well as the city’s demonstrated ability to execute the type of financial discipline that will be required under the new policy.”


Environment committee to consider Urban Forestry Advisory Board appointments 18 months after voting to create the board: “The City Council Committee on Environmental Protection and Energy is set to meet at noon Friday to consider six appointments to the Urban Forestry Advisory Board created in 2021,” by The Daily Line.

Lightfoot Trails Chuy García, Brandon Johnson And Paul Vallas In New Mayoral Election Survey: “Twenty-five percent of respondents said they’d vote for García, 25 percent said they’d vote for Johnson — and 11 percent said they’d vote for Lightfoot,” by Block Club Chicago.

Chicago Awarded $144 Million Through the New Bridge Investment Program to Rehabilitate Illinois International Port Calumet River Bridges: “Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot and U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) Thursday welcomed Vice President Kamala Harris to Chicago to announce $144 million in federal funding awarded to the City of Chicago to rehabilitate the Illinois International Port Calumet River Bridges,” from the Office of Mayor Lightfoot.

Mayoral candidates Johnson, Vallas, Lightfoot launch new TV ads with less than two months until Election Day: “The race for Chicago mayor notched up a level Wednesday with the launch of new TV ads from three candidates including the first for both former Chicago Public Schools CEO Paul Vallas and Cook County Comm. Brandon Johnson (D-1). Mayor Lori Lightfoot also launched a TV ad bashing challenger U.S. Rep. Jesus ‘Chuy’ Garcia (D-Ill.) and what her campaign has dubbed ‘shady ties and pay-to-play politics,’ according to a news release from her campaign,” by The Daily Line.

10 Candidates Are Vying To Replace Retiring Ald. Harry Osterman. Here’s What 48th Ward Voters Should Know: “Ten candidates have made the ballot for the open 48th Ward aldermanic seat, which represents the northern half of Uptown, Edgewater and East Andersonville. If no candidate secures 50 percent of the vote, the top two vote earners will proceed to a runoff April 4. Osterman is leaving the post after first being elected in 2011. He is part of a wave of retirements on the City Council, leading to a historic number of open seats in the Feb. 28 election,” by Block Club Chicago.



Live updates: GOP leader McCarthy loses 13th ballot for House speakership, but inches closer to gavel as opposition softens, by CNBC.


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