Illinois Insights: An Update from Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies (10/26)

October 26, 2022


Illinois reports 2,404 new COVID cases, 17 new deaths, by ABC 7 Chicago.



Governor Pritzker and CREATE Program Partners Celebrate Groundbreaking for Forest Hill Flyover and 71st Street Grade Separation Projects: “Governor JB Pritzker joined Chicago Region Environment and Transportation Efficiency (CREATE) Program partners to break ground on the largest CREATE project, The Forest Hill Flyover (P3), Tuesday at CSX Forest Hill Railroad Yard,” from the Office of Gov. JB Pritzker.

Public, private sector employees make pitch for Amendment 1 as mechanism to improve public services: “First responder unions are calling attention to the benefits they believe their members and the public will receive if Amendment 1, also known as the Workers’ Rights Amendment, is approved by voters next month. Lawmakers passed the proposed amendment (SJRCA11) in spring 2021 that says, ‘employees shall have the fundamental right to organize and to bargain collectively’ on negotiations including ‘wages, hours and working conditions, and to protect their economic welfare and safety at work,’” by The Daily Line.

Ness fighting to hang on to 66th House seat as Republicans eye the district to boost their numbers: “Rep. Suzanne Ness (D-Crystal Lake) is asking voters for a second term in the House even as Republicans are eyeing her seat as an opportunity to take a seat away from the Democrats’ super majority in the House. Ness is facing off against Connie Cain, a Republican accountant from Gilberts in the 66th House District. The new district runs from Crystal Lake to the west side of Elgin, picking up parts of Lake in the Hills and West Dundee in between,” by The Daily Line.

Aurora council OKs $50 million incentive for casino move amid protests during meeting: “Despite protests, the Aurora City Council on Tuesday unanimously approved more than $50 million in financial aid to move the Hollywood Casino out of the downtown area,” by Daily Herald.


City Council committee shoots down “transparency checkpoint” proposal

The City Council Committee on Committees and Rules voted 24-17 against Ald. Brendan Reilly’s proposal to “bring transparency to the legislative process.”

“As it stands today, there is nothing to stop the administration from directly introducing substitutes to committees, whether they’re emergencies or not,” Reilly said.

The proposal (R2022-687) would have required that legislation introduced directly to committee be sent to alderpersons and publicly posted at least 48 hours before a hearing, along with an “unbiased summary” and “statement explaining the urgency.”

Aldermen opposed to the proposal raised concerns that requiring 48 hours of notice would slow down measures that are time sensitive.


Public hearing on 2023 budget proposal set for Wednesday, no votes on Anjanette Young ordinance or car booting after all: “Multiple aldermen during Wednesday’s City Council meeting were planning to call a vote on proposed legislation that has faced delays over the past months and years, but backers of two of the four measures had withdrawn their calls by Tuesday evening. Wednesday’s City Council meeting will also include a public hearing on Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s proposed 2023 spending plan,” by The Daily Line.

City Council wraps up budget hearings ahead of October meeting: “The Chicago City Council Budget Committee wrapped up 12 days of departmental budget hearings on Monday. With a budget vote not scheduled until Nov. 7, aldermen are now gathering in their respective caucuses to decide their budget priorities before final negotiations with Mayor Lori Lightfoot and her team,” by Crain’s Chicago Business.

Lightfoot Asks Alderpeople to Identify Vacant Warehouses, Big Box Stores to Shelter Immigrants Arriving from Texas: “Struggling to manage an influx of immigrants bused to Chicago from Texas, Mayor Lori Lightfoot asked members of the Chicago City Council on Friday to identify vacant warehouses or big box stores that could shelter between 500 and 1,000 people,” by WTTW.

City asked to provide lead water filters to address ‘crisis’: “Three environmental organizations and state Sen. Ram Villivalam, D-Chicago, called on City Hall to improve access to free water filters to address the ‘crisis’ of lead exposure. That move should also be part of a larger program to warn low-income residents about the hazards of lead, especially among children,” by The Chicago Sun-Times.

Most Chicago employers are mandating workers come to the office at least once a week: “More than 6 in 10 employers surveyed by Crain’s reported that they are mandating employees come in at least once a week, citing collaboration and training as the top two reasons for this decision,” by Crain’s Chicago Business.

A new 58-mile bike trail will connect Chicago to Michigan: “The Marquette Greenway Trail Project will stretch 58 miles and connect Calumet Park on the city’s Southeast Side to downtown New Buffalo, Mich. The project is funded in large part by a $17.8 million grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation to the Northwest Indiana Regional Planning Commission, in addition to millions of dollars in other federal, state, local and private grants,” by Crain’s Chicago Business.

City Colleges of Chicago faculty, staff set strike date for next week: “City Colleges of Chicago faculty and staff have set a strike date for Nov. 2 as contract negotiations continue over pay and class sizes. Nearly 1,500 faculty and staff at seven campuses will strike next week if a contract isn’t reached, the Cook County College Teachers Union announced Tuesday. Negotiations began last October,” by The Chicago Sun-Times.


Cozen Currents: Industrial Policy is Back

  • After several decades in which industrial policy was out of fashion in Washington, a bipartisan consensus has emerged around the need for the US to have its own, largely to counter China.
  • A rare point of agreement on Capitol Hill over the past two years was providing funding to create US jobs and to compete better with China, culminating in the CHIPS and Science Act.
  • Some provisions that didn’t make it into the final CHIPS and Science Act could make a reappearance during the lame duck session, but the outlook for significant congressional action on trade under divided government is dim. The focal point for trade is likely to shift towards the White House.

Read the full Cozen Currents article here.


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