24
May , 2017
Wednesday

Sign the petition to Congress: “Thanks to the Supreme Court, the Voting Rights Act is weaker ...
Encourages passage of marriage equality during veto session SPRINGFIELD, IL – As ...
Playing in Chicago, IL at the Harold Washington Cultural Center on January 25, 2014 at ...
Pat Brady: “We will find the source of the problem”    Chicago, IL – Illinois Republican Party Chairman ...
Mobilizing, activating and empowering young people, in grades 5-12, to get organized and ...
Protest at Chicago's Egyptian consulate expected to draw hundreds to support Egyptian grassroots movement for ...
(From Latino Union of Chicago) Family, Latino Union Demand His Release Before Father's Day At the same ...
Englewood, Lawndale Know Your Rights Campaign Vows to Deliver 100 "What to do When Stopped ...
This tax season, law enforcement agencies are seeing enhanced efforts by criminals to scam taxpayers ...
Their relationship is a love story, not only for each other, but also for the ...

Archive for May 1st, 2017

Job Losses Reported in More Than Half of the Metro Areas

Posted by Admin On May - 1 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Unemployment rate declines in most areas

CHICAGO, IL –Unemployment rates were down over-the-year in all but one of Illinois’s metro areas. Six of the metro areas had increases in nonfarm jobs and eight reported declines, according to preliminary data released today by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES).

“This month’s report almost mirrors last month’s,” said IDES Director Jeff Mays. “The only difference is the overall increase in jobs is down when compared to last month. Even though the unemployment rate is lower, we still don’t have enough people working.”

Illinois businesses added jobs in six metro areas, in which the largest increases were seen in: Kankakee (+1.1 percent, +500), Elgin (+0.6 percent, +1,500), and Springfield (+0.6 percent, +700). Total nonfarm jobs in the Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights Metro Division increased (+0.8 percent or +28,500). Illinois businesses lost jobs in eight metro areas including Carbondale-Marion (-2.6 percent, -1,500), Rockford (-2.3 percent, -3,500), and Peoria (-1.5 percent, -2,600). The industry sectors recording job growth in the majority of metro areas were: Education and Health Services (10 of 14), Professional and Business Services (nine of 14) and Mining and Construction (eight of 14).

Not seasonally adjusted data compares March 2017 with March 2016. The not seasonally adjusted Illinois rate was 4.7 percent in March 2017 and stood at 12.2 percent at its peak in this economic cycle in January 2010. Nationally, the not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 4.6 percent in March 2017 and 10.6 percent in January 2010 at its peak. The unemployment rate identifies those who are out of work and looking for work, and is not tied to collecting unemployment insurance benefits.

 

 Not Seasonally Adjusted Unemployment Rates

 

Metropolitan Area

Mar.

2017

Mar.

2016

Over-the-Year Change

Bloomington

4.3%

5.5%

-1.2

Carbondale-Marion

5.0%

6.3%

-1.3

Champaign-Urbana

4.5%

5.4%

-0.9

Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights

4.2%

6.3%

-2.1

Danville

6.4%

7.9%

-1.5

Davenport-Moline-Rock Island, IA-IL

4.8%

6.0%

-1.2

Decatur

5.7%

7.1%

-1.4

Elgin

5.4%

6.4%

-1.0

Kankakee

5.9%

7.3%

-1.4

Lake-Kenosha, IL-WI

5.0%

6.0%

-1.0

Peoria

6.0%

7.1%

-1.1

Rockford

8.3%

7.2%

1.1

Springfield

4.4%

5.5%

-1.1

St. Louis (IL-Section)

4.7%

6.3%

-1.6

Illinois Statewide

4.7%

6.4%

-1.7

* Data subject to revision.

 

Total Nonfarm Jobs (Not Seasonally Adjusted) – March 2017

Metropolitan Area

Mar.
2017*

Mar.
2016**

Over-the-Year Change

Bloomington MSA

93,400

93,600

-200

Carbondale-Marion MSA

56,800

58,300

-1,500

Champaign-Urbana MSA

110,600

110,100

500

Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights Metro Division

3,682,100

3,653,600

28,500

Danville MSA

28,400

28,700

-300

Davenport-Moline-Rock Island MSA

181,500

180,700

800

Decatur MSA

51,100

51,200

-100

Elgin Metro Division

249,900

248,400

1,500

Kankakee MSA

44,000

43,500

500

Lake-County-Kenosha County Metro Division

400,600

402,300

-1,700

Peoria MSA

172,100

174,700

-2,600

Rockford MSA

146,600

150,100

-3,500

Springfield MSA

114,700

114,000

700

Illinois Section of St. Louis MSA

235,100

235,200

-100

Illinois Statewide

5,962,800

5,935,200

27,600

                  *Preliminary    **Revised

Not Seasonally Adjusted Unemployment Rates
(percent) for Local Counties and Areas

Labor Market Area

Mar-17

Mar-16

Over-the-Year Change

Chicago-Naperville-Elgin IL-IN-WI MSA

4.5%

6.3%

-1.8

Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights, IL Metro Division

Cook County

4.4%

6.5%

-2.1

DuPage County

3.4%

5.1%

-1.7

Grundy County

5.6%

7.9%

-2.3

Kendall County

3.9%

5.7%

-1.8

McHenry County

4.2%

6.0%

-1.8

Will County

4.6%

6.7%

-2.1

Elgin, IL Metro Division

DeKalb County

5.3%

6.0%

-0.7

Kane County

5.4%

6.5%

-1.1

Lake & Kenosha Counties, IL-WI Metro Division

Lake County

5.2%

6.1%

-0.9

Cities (with total population of at least 100,000) *

Aurora City

4.8%

6.1%

-1.3

Chicago City

4.5%

6.8%

-2.3

Elgin City

6.8%

8.2%

-1.4

Joliet City

5.9%

8.4%

-2.5

Naperville City

3.1%

4.7%

-1.6

 

* Unemployment rates for cities with total population of 25,000 or more can be found atwww.ides.illinois.gov/LMI/Pages/Current_Monthly_Unemployment_Rates.aspx

Lake & Kenosha Counties, IL-WI Metro Division

The not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate decreased to 5.0 percent in March 2017 from 6.0 percent in March 2016. The last time the March rate was equal to or lower than the current rate was in 2001 when it was 4.8 percent. For the month of March 2017, the estimated number of unemployed people in the labor force was 22,900.

Total nonfarm employment declined -1,700 compared to March 2016. The Leisure-Hospitality (-3,200) and Professional-Business Services (-2,200) sectors recorded the largest employment declines compared to one year ago. Manufacturing (+1,400), Government (+700), and Transportation-Warehousing-Utilities (+700) sectors reported the largest payroll gains.

 

Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights, IL Metro Division

The not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate decreased to 4.2 percent in March 2017 from 6.3 percent in March 2016. The March 2017 unemployment rate of 4.2 percent is the lowest March unemployment rate since 1990. For the month of March 2017, the estimated number of unemployed people in the labor force was 158,900.

Total nonfarm employment increased +28,500 compared to March 2016. Financial Activities (+10,200), Leisure-Hospitality (+9,200), and Educational-Health Services (+7,900) reported the largest payroll gains. The Manufacturing (-1,800), Construction (-1,500), and Retail Trade (-1,100) sectors recorded the largest employment declines compared to one year ago.

Elgin, IL Metro Division

The not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate decreased to 5.4 percent in March 2017 from 6.4 percent in March 2016. The last time the March rate was equal to or lower than the current rate was in 2007 when it was 4.3 percent. For the month of March 2017, the estimated number of unemployed people in the labor force was 17,400.

Total nonfarm employment increased +1,500 compared to March 2016. Educational-Health Services (+1,300), Government (+1,000), and Wholesale Trade (+800) reported the largest payroll gains. Construction (-600), Leisure-Hospitality
(-600), Manufacturing (-300), and Other Services
(-300) sectors recorded the largest employment declines compared to one year ago.

Note:
Monthly 2016 unemployment rates and total non-farm jobs for Illinois metro areas were revised in February and March 2017, as required by the U.S. Dept.of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics(BLS).Comments and tables distributed for prior metro area news releases should be discarded as any records or historical analysis previously cited may no longer be valid.

State Rep. Welch Bill Closes Tax Loopholes, Requires Wealthy Pay Fair Share

Posted by Admin On May - 1 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

SPRINGFIELD, IL – In an effort to close current tax loopholes and provide monetary relief for the middle class, Illinois State Rep. Emanuel “Chris” Welch, D-Hillside, is sponsoring House Bill 3393.

 

“Illinois needs revenue in order to protect and fund higher education, social services, senior citizens and the most vulnerable among us, and this should not be done on the backs of middle-class families” said Welch. “One way to find that revenue would be to close the carried interest loopholes that the super wealthy have enjoyed for a long time. According to the Department of Revenue, this additional revenue estimation that the legislation would yield is as much as $1.7 billion each year.”

 

Welch is sponsoring House Bill 3393 in order to close corporate loopholes and establish a fairer tax structure for Illinois residents. In a time when Illinois’ economy is struggling, finding revenue without taxing the middle class and eliminating antiquated loopholes could result in much needed funds for service providers, institutions of higher education and seniors.

 

“Hard working families do not enjoy huge tax loopholes that allow them to collect untaxed income. They have had to work for every dollar they have earned, and still are legally bound to pay federal, state and local taxes for each dollar,” Welch said. “Illinois’ tax structure is broken and needs to be fixed, but it needs to be fixed in a way that lifts up working and middle-class families by allowing them to keep more of their money.”

 

Rep. Stratton Honors Chance the Rapper’s Donation to the Chicago Public Schools

Posted by Admin On May - 1 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS
 

SPRINGFIELD, IL – Illinois State Rep. Juliana Stratton, D-Chicago, honored Chance the Rapper by passing a House Resolution recognizing his donation of $1 million to Chicago Public Schools (CPS) and an additional $10,000 to nine CPS schools.

 

“Chance is a young man who at age 23 donated over $1 million to the public school system that shaped him into the man he is today,” Stratton said. “As our governor refuses to do his job, it’s inspiring to see a young man, like Chance, who is willing to step up and lead. I knew that the Illinois House of Representatives should honor him after his donation influenced other groups, like the Chicago Bulls, to also donate to CPS.”

 

Stratton passed House Resolution 294 honoring Chance’s dedication to the young people of Chicago. Chance the Rapper, born Chancelor Johnathan Bennett, is a Chicago native, and a graduate of the Chicago Public Schools. Chance has become known as a Grammy-winning artist that has simultaneously become active in combating Chicago’s issues concerning gun violence, homelessness and racial prejudice.

 

After meeting with Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner in March 2017 on the issue of school funding, Chance announced he would donate $1 million to CPS. Chance also donated $10,000 to nine other schools, one of which, Hirsch High School, is located in Stratton’s district. Last year, Hirsch lost over 10 percent of its budget due to budget cuts.

 

“Chance has clearly inspired a generation of young people to become active in the community,” Stratton continued. “I look forward to the progress he will continue to push for our community.”

 

 

 

 

Family Sues ICE, City of Chicago, After Gang Database Information Led to Violent Immigration Raid That Left Immigrant Severely Injured

Posted by Admin On May - 1 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Wife of the man suing ICE, Detention Center and the Chicago Police Department to speak at May Day Rally to demand justice for her husband, call out the City of Chicago for sharing erroneous data with ICE that led to a violent immigration raid and the detention of her husband. Read a draft of the complaint here.

  • WHAT: Ms. Celene Adame, wife of Wilmer Catalan-Ramirez, who is filing a lawsuit today, to speak at the May 1st rally and press conference at Union Park. Ms. Adame and attorneys representing her husband in the lawsuit will be available for interviews after the press conference and during the rally.
  • WHEN: Monday, May 1st, 12:30 PM
  • WHERE: Union Park, 1501 West Randolph
  • WHO: Ms. Adame will be joining a broad coalition of organizations speaking regarding the May 1st rally. The speakers at the press conference include Ms. Celene Adame, Organized Communities Against Deportations; U.S. Senator Dick Durbin; Tania Unzueta, Mijente; Lawrence Benito, Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, and other community leaders. After the press conference, Ms. Adame will join a series of speakers at Union Park to rally the crowd before the march begins.

CHICAGO, IL– The Chicago Police Department’s sharing of its so-called “Gang Database” with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) triggered a nightmarish chain of events that left Wilmer Catalan Ramirez imprisoned, in severe physical pain and mental anguish, and fighting deportation, according to a federal civil rights lawsuit filed on Monday.

Catalan Ramirez is a devoted father and a mechanic who has never belonged to a Chicago street gang. Despite this fact, CPD mistakenly labeled him as a gang member and conveyed this false information to ICE. ICE relied on this erroneous information during one of its March 2017 “Gang Ops” during which ICE targeted community members who have alleged gang ties.

In January 2017, in his Back of the Yards neighborhood, Catalan-Ramirez was a bystander during a drive-by shooting that left him with multiple gunshot wounds. These injuries left him with fractures to his skull and shoulder, a traumatic brain injury and partial paralysis. Catalan-Ramireq has spent the months since the shooting in rehabilitation with the assistance of his wife Celene Adame.

On March 27, around six ICE agents entered Catalan-Ramirez’ family’s apartment without a warrant, slammed him to the floor and handcuffed him – aggravating his pre-existing injuries, according to the suit filed in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.

“I saw the immigration agents slam my husband to the floor while we told them he was injured, but they still hurt him and took him to detention,” explained Ms. Adame, “There needs to be consequences for everyone responsible for hurting our family, for my husband, and so that it doesn’t happen to others. That’s why today we are here marching and why we are filing the lawsuit,” she concluded.

The suit alleges violations of unreasonable search and seizure, and due process protections in the U.S. Constitution. The suit also alleges that the manner in which CPD gathers and disseminates falseinformation about gang membership violated the Illinois Civil Rights Act, which prohibits racial andethnic discrimination.  In addition to CPD and ICE agents, defendants include the City of Chicago; Ricardo Wong, ICE’s Chicago Field Office Director; McHenry County; and several officials working atthe McHenry County Jail, which contracts with ICE to imprison immigration detainees awaitingresolution of their cases.

While in the McHenry County Jail, Catalan-Ramirez has been denied needed medical care for his injuries and spends most of his day isolated in a cell. Because of the lack of medical care, he risks living for the rest of his life with partial paralysis.

Catalan-Ramireq is represented by the Roderick and Solange MacArthur Justice Center and the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild and the National Immigrant Justice Center and supported by Organized Communities Against Deportations (OCAD) and Mijente, two organizations that organize against harsh immigration enforcement tactics, and who have been advocating for an expansion of Chicago’s Sanctuary “status by removing the gang database, amongst other reforms.

“Wilmer’s case is an example of how local city policies, such as the Gang database, put immigrantcommunities in the path of Trump’s deportation machine,” said Xanat Sobrevilla, an organizer withOCAD. “If the City of Chicago truly wants to be a sanctuary city where immigrants can seek safe refuge, it should stop sharing its Gang Database with ICE and inform ICE the database is rife with inaccuraciesand is not a legitimate law enforcement tool,” she added.

“The past 100 days of the Trump Administration have meant mass raids and deportations for immigrantcommunities across the country. The injuries suffered by Mr. Wilmer Catalan-Ramirez exemplify theextreme level of ICE abuse in raids carried out by this Administration. Mr. Wilmer Catalan-Ramirez is a long time resident of Chicago, beloved father of young U.S. citizen children, and recent gunshot victim with severe medical complications. It is clear that he belongs back with his family and community in Chicago where he can receive critical medical care. These rogue ICE raids must cease, said Sejal Zota, Legal Director, National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild.

For more information, contact:
Sheila A. Bedi, MacArthur Justice Center
312-503-2492 (sheila.bedi@law.northwestern.edu)

Tania Unzueta, Mijente & OCAD
773-387-3186 (tania@mijente.net)

Vanessa del Valle, MacArthur Justice Center
312-503-5932 (vanessa.delvalle@law.northwestern.edu)

About the Roderick and Solange MacArthur Justice Center
Founded in 1985, the Roderick and Solange MacArthur Justice Center is one of the premier civil rightslaw firms in the United States. The MacArthur Justice Center has offices in Chicago, St. Louis, NewOrleans, and Oxford, MS. For additional information, visit law.northwestern.edu/legalclinic/macarthur Follow us on Twitter (@MacArthrJustice) and on Facebook (www.facebook.com/macarthurjusticecenter) for timely updates.

About the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild
The National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild (NIPNLG) is a national non-profitorganization that provides technical assistance and support to community-based immigrantorganizations, legal practitioners, and all advocates working to advance the rights of noncitizens. (nipnlg.org)

About Organized Communities Against Deportations
Organized Communities Against Deportations (OCAD) is an undocumented-led group that organizesagainst the deportation and criminalization of Black, Brown and immigrant communities in Chicago andsurrounding areas. (organizedcommunities.org)

About Mijente and Expanded Sanctuary
Mijente is a national political home for Latinx and Chicanx grassroots organizing that comes out of the Not One More Deportation Campaign. The campaign to expand sanctuary aims to push for policies thatcreate ‘Sanctuaries’ in our cities for immigrant and U.S. born people of color. In Chicago, the campaignis in partnership with OCAD and Black Youth Project 100. (mijente.net)

 

Real Men Cook Seeking Volunteer Cooks to Showcase Their Skills on Father’s Day

Posted by Admin On May - 1 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Rare opportunity to show off cooking skills while uplifting families

Attention men who are cooks, aspiring cooks, weekend cooks or wannabe cooks

You’re invited to showcase your culinary skills and prepare your favorite dish as a volunteer at Real Men Cook 2017!

As a cook, you’ll be part of the greatest national Father’s Day celebration that promotes positive images of black men in relationship to their families and communities.  By joining the fun as a cook or volunteer, you will play a major role in lifting up fathers, sons, uncles, brothers, coaches, teachers, and mentors that provide hope and examples for the next generation.

All of the fun and celebration of men takes place on Father’s Day, June 18.

Registration and certification meetings are Wednesday, May 3 at Hales Franciscan – 4930 S. Cottage Grove, Wednesday May 10 at Mosque Maryam – 7351 S. Stony Island and Sat. May 20 at the Quarry, 2423 E. 75th Street.

According to Ayinde Cartman, executive director, volunteering at an event as noble as Real Men Cook uplifts the men who will be celebrated, and provides the participant with the sense of satisfaction that making a difference represents. At the same time, it offers an opportunity to spotlight your culinary skills before an appreciative – and hungry — audience.

Now in its 28th year, Real Men Cook has become a tradition. Families look forward to coming out, cooking, serving others and feeling the love that being together represents.

“Real Men Cook highlights men who want to be involved and make a difference,” said Cartman. “On this day, we lift them up and shine a light on them. By volunteering or serving as a cook, you join a Movement that shatters stereotypes and presents black men as caring fathers, leaders and everyday men who strive to do the best for his family and community.  So, let’s create a magical event for our families and communities together!”

Yvette Moyo, co-founder, said those who volunteer or cook will receive special gifts and recognitions.

If you’re ALL IN and want to star as cooks, and donate time and resources on Father’s Day, contact Ayinde Cartman at AyindeCartman@gmail.com or Lafayette Ford at LafayetteFord@gmail.com or call 773-484-0624.

 

 

 

Belvidere Physician Sentenced to Nine Years and Ordered to Pay More Than $2.7 Million for Health Care Fraud

Posted by Admin On May - 1 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

ROCKFORD — A suspended physician was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Frederick J. Kapala on charges of federal health care fraud.

CHARLES S. DEHAAN, 62, of Belvidere, was sentenced to nine years in federal prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release.  He was also ordered to pay restitution of $2,787,054.

 

DeHaan pleaded guilty on May 20, 2016, to two counts of health care fraud in connection with a scheme to defraud Medicare that included overbilling and billing Medicare for treatment of patients that were already deceased.

 

According to a written plea agreement, DeHaan during the course of the scheme was a physician licensed in Illinois.  Between January 2009 and January 2014, DeHaan primarily billed Medicare for in-home patient visits and certifications for patients he deemed homebound. DeHaan admitted in the plea agreement that he knew Medicare authorized payment for home visits and physician services only if those services were actually provided and were medically necessary because of disease, infirmity, or impairment. The plea agreement further states that DeHaan billed Medicare for medical services purportedly provided to patients, when he knew he did not provide any reimbursable medical service. This included DeHaan billing Medicare at the highest reimbursement levels for routine, non-complex visits with new and established patients, even though DeHaan knew the visit did not qualify for the highest levels of reimbursement, and further included billing Medicare for patients DeHaan never actually treated. According to the plea agreement, some of the patients DeHaan billed for had died prior to the date of the alleged visit.

 

The sentencing was announced by Joel R. Levin, Acting United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Michael J. Anderson, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Office of Federal Bureau of Investigation; and Lamont Pugh III, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Regional Office of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General. The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation assisted in the investigation.

 

The government was represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Scott R. Paccagnini and Talia Bucci.

Source: FBI

Most ID Theft Victims Don’t Need a Police Report

Posted by Admin On May - 1 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

When it comes to reporting and recovering from identity theft, we’re simplifying the process by eliminating the need for a police report in most cases.

How does it work? When you report identity theft using IdentityTheft.gov, you’ll answer some questions about what happened. IdentityTheft.gov then uses your information to create the tools you need to begin your recovery, including:

  • a personal recovery plan
  • pre-filled letters to send to merchants, banks, and others affected by the identity theft, and
  • an “Identity Theft Report,” which is your official statement about the crime.

In most cases, you can use your Identity Theft Report in place of a police report to clear your account and credit records of transactions that resulted from the identity theft. That’s because when you use IdentityTheft.gov, you’re reporting the crime to the Federal Trade Commission, a federal law enforcement agency. Just like when you file a police report, you’re legally obligated to tell the truth to the best of your knowledge, and subject to criminal penalties if you don’t. That makes your Identity Theft Report powerful evidence that you’re telling the truth.

By reducing the need for police reports, IdentityTheft.gov helps you get started on your recovery quickly, and helps free local police to focus on public safety. Still, contact the police to report identity theft if:

  • you know the identity thief, or have other information that could help a police investigation
  • an identity thief used your name in a traffic stop or any encounter with police, or
  • a creditor, debt collector, or someone else affected by the identity theft insists that you produce a police report.

To learn more about identity theft, browse our recovery steps, or visit our Privacy and Identity page for prevention tips.

Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs Honors Over 150 Vietnam War Veterans

Posted by Admin On May - 1 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Glen Ellyn, IL – Vietnam War Veterans were honored and thanked for their service during the Vietnam War by the Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs Veterans at the College of DuPage.  During the ceremony, over 150 Veterans were honored with a 50 year commemoration pin.  This national commemoration was authorized by Congress, established under the Secretary of Defense, and launched by the President as follows: In 2007, the 110th Congress incorporated language in H.R. 4986 authorizing the Secretary of Defense to conduct a program commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War.  

“The celebration is to honor and thank veterans of the Vietnam War, including personnel who were held as prisoners of war, or listed as missing in action, for their service and sacrifice on behalf of the United States, and to thank and honor the families of these veterans,” said IDVA Director Erica Jeffries. “These veterans put their lives on the line for us. They deserve our recognition and respect for the sacrifices they undertook for our nation.”

 

The Commemoration honors all United States veterans who served on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces at any time between November 1, 1955  and May 15, 1975, regardless of location. The Department of Veterans Affairs estimates that today there are 7 million living Vietnam veterans and 9 million families of those who served in this time frame. We make no distinction between veterans who served in-country, in-theater, or who were stationed elsewhere during the Vietnam War period. All were called to serve and the overwhelming majority of these veterans served honorably and admirably.

Treasurer Frerichs Announces First Quarter Investment Returns

Posted by Admin On May - 1 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Longer-Term Investments Produce Higher Yields

 

SPRINGFIELD, IL – A shift in investment strategy that embraced longer-term investments and higher yields allowed the state to more than double its investment income to $26 million in the first quarter of this year, said Illinois State Treasurer Michael Frerichs.

The shift is possible after an analysis showed that core investment strategies could be more aggressive and still follow the office’s primary objective to ensure the safety of principal.

 

“We had too many overnight investments that precluded us from earning higher rates,” Frerichs said.

“We examined how money flows in and out of accounts, compared that flow to how much cash is needed to pay bills, and shifted our strategy so that we could earn more money in interest,” Frerichs said. “We did what households do every day. We looked to see how much money is needed in checking, what does that leave for savings, and what can be directed toward investing for our long-term goals.”

 

The shift, along with higher market rates, has enabled the state to double its investment income return in the first quarter of calendar year 2017. In Q1 2016, the state earned $12.753 million. In Q1 2017, the state earned $26.292 million.

 

The earned interest increase in the $13 billion state portfolio is attributed to a move into longer-held positions; the legislative change allowing investments into higher yielding corporate bonds; the investments into higher yielding municipal and supranational bonds; and the stability of the transportation lockbox legislation that prevents the Governor from using that money to pay non-transportation-related bills.

Weighted Average Maturity

1/31/2016

3/31/2017

86.53 Days

196.5 Days

 

Projecting future improved earnings is difficult given unknown changes in Illinois’ political climate and the national economy. If Illinois had a budget, additional funds could be shifted to a longer-term investment strategy generating even higher returns.

Attorney General Madigan: Legislation to Strengthen Hate Crimes Law Passes Illinois House

Posted by Admin On May - 1 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Madigan Applauds Support for Legislation Following Hate Crimes Summit with Civil Rights Leaders on Impact of Federal Immigration Executive Orders

 

CHICAGO, IL – Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan announced the Illinois House passed legislation to strengthen Illinois’ hate crimes law. House Bill 3711 would better protect Illinois residents from escalating incidents of hatred and bias.

 

House Bill 3711, sponsored by state Rep. Litesa Wallace, passed out of the House by a vote of 89 to 22 and will now be considered by the Senate. Madigan initiated the legislation in response to a national increase of crimes motivated by hatred based on religion, national origin, gender identity and sexual orientation since the 2016 election. The bill adds the crimes of cyberstalking, transmission of obscene messages and certain acts of intimidation to the list of crimes that can be prosecuted as hate crimes to address the increasing use of technology to attack victims. The legislation also ensures all victims of hate crimes are afforded the ability to file a civil cause of action in response to these incidents and imposes civil penalties.

 

“The rise in hate crimes around the country is deeply disturbing and does not reflect the founding principles of our country,” Madigan said. “A threat against any person based on hate is a threat to our communities. Strengthening our law will enhance all people’s safety.”

 

“Illinois is a rich and diverse state, and we must take a stand against those who seek to divide us based on where we are from, who we love or how we worship,” Rep. Wallace said. “I am proud to join with Attorney General Madigan in condemning hate in Illinois, and I encourage members of the Senate to join us.”

 

Chicago Police Department data shows that hate crimes reached a five-year high in 2016 and are outpacing that level in 2017. The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) also recently released a study showing a dramatic 85 percent increase in anti-Semitic incidents, including assaults, vandalism and harassment, during the first quarter of 2017 compared to the same time period in 2016. The ADL also found that anti-Semitic incidents at non-Jewish elementary, middle and high schools increased 106 percent, and a new anti-Semitic message is posted on social media every 83 seconds.

 

HB 3711 strengthens the Illinois Hate Crimes Act by:

  • Expanding the reach of protection from hate crimes to address perpetrators’ increased use of technology to attack victims. The measure adds the existing crimes of intimidation, stalking, cyberstalking and transmission of obscene messages to the list of crimes that can be prosecuted as hate crimes.
  • Providing the Attorney General with civil enforcement authority by giving the Attorney General’s office authority to civilly enforce Illinois hate crime laws. Illinois would join at least six other states that have similar authority.
  • Ensuring all victims of hate crimes are afforded a civil remedy. Offenses such as telephone harassment, harassment through electronic communications or disorderly conduct currently do not give rise to civil cause of action under Illinois’ current hate crimes law. HB 3711 closes that gap.
  • Allowing judges to impose a civil penalty of up to $25,000 for each violation.

Sen. Omar Aquino will sponsor the measure in the Senate.

 

In February, Attorney General Madigan convened a summit with civil rights leaders to discuss the impact of federal Executive Orders on the nearly 2 million immigrants who live in Illinois. Madigan condemned the Executive Orders as unconstitutional, unlawful and un-American and filed amicus briefs in support of challenges to the executive actions.

 

In the wake of the executive orders, Madigan also called on Governor Rauner to refuse to deputize Illinois law enforcement to act as immigration officers and protect Illinois immigrants and refugees from discrimination and hate crimes. Madigan has also urged the Governor to restore the Illinois Hate Crimes Commission.

 

The Attorney General also issued advice about the possibility of scam artists and unscrupulous immigration services providers illegally posing as lawyers or demanding up-front fees for assistance in the wake of the executive actions.

 

Attorney General Madigan’s Civil Rights Bureau protects the civil rights of all Illinois residents. The Bureau enforces civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination, works to strengthen the civil rights laws, and participates in community outreach programs. The Bureau also investigates complaints of patterns and practices of discrimination in housing, public accommodations, employment, and financial matters. Attorney General Madigan encourages individuals to contact her office to report instances of discrimination or harassment by calling her Civil Rights Hotline at 1-877-581-3692.

 

Recent Comments

Welcome to CopyLine Magazine! The first issue of CopyLine Magazine was published in November, 1990, by Editor & Publisher Juanita Bratcher. CopyLine’s main focus is on the political arena – to inform our readers and analyze many of the pressing issues of the day - controversial or otherwise. Our objectives are clear – to keep you abreast of political happenings and maneuvering in the political arena, by reporting and providing provocative commentaries on various issues. For more about CopyLine Magazine, CopyLine Blog, and CopyLine Television/Video, please visit juanitabratcher.com, copylinemagazine.com, and oneononetelevision.com. Bratcher has been a News/Reporter, Author, Publisher, and Journalist for 33 years. She is the author of six books, including “Harold: The Making of a Big City Mayor” (Harold Washington), Chicago’s first African-American mayor; and “Beyond the Boardroom: Empowering a New Generation of Leaders,” about John Herman Stroger, Jr., the first African-American elected President of the Cook County Board. Bratcher is also a Poet/Songwriter, with 17 records – produced by HillTop Records of Hollywood, California. Juanita Bratcher Publisher

Recent Posts