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Archive for May 10th, 2017

Indivisible Chicago Statement on “Unprecedented and Troubling Firing” of FBI Director James Comey

Posted by Admin On May - 10 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Passage of President Trump’s American Healthcare Act a “Shameless Act of Political Cowardice”

Posted by Admin On May - 10 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Letters to Editors

From: Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle


We saw a loss for basic human decency last week when the House voted to pass President Trump’s American Healthcare Act. While the financial burden of this bill would be devastating for Cook County, we are far more concerned about the lives and well-being of thousands of Cook County residents that would be at risk of losing their health care coverage should this bill pass the Senate.


Those who voted for this bill, including the three Republican representatives from Northern Illinois were acting out of political cowardice. This is unacceptable. We Democrats promise that we will continue to serve every patient who comes to our door, regardless of their insurance status or citizenship. No one should have to sacrifice their health because they cannot afford it.


We will continue to advocate for health care as a basic human right. I ask you to join us in fighting for people’s lives: consider making a contribution to our organization so that we can continue to fight the good fight. We ask for $51 – the number of votes we need to defeat this bill in the Senate. You can make a contribution here, or paste this link into your browser: https://act.myngp.com/Forms/-178043317504309248


I joined a few of the members from the Illinois Democratic Congressional Delegation along with health care experts and advocates at Stroger Hospital to voice our concerns about President Trump’s AHCA bill on Monday, May 8th. You can watch WGN’s coverage of our press conference on their website here: http://wgntv.com/2017/05/08/county-officials-and-members-of-congress-blast-ahca/


Toni Preckwinkle

Proposed New Charter School in Elgin Awarded $950,000 in Federal Start-up Grants From Charter Schools Program

Posted by Admin On May - 10 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Charter school will offer families an innovative approach to learning


ELGIN, IL – The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) announced a federally funded $950,000 award to the Elgin Charter School Initiative. The two-part grant will support the opening of the Elgin Math and Science Academy Charter School within School District U-46. The proposed school will focus on closing opportunity and achievement gaps in the Elgin community through the hands-on and explorative Expeditionary Learning (EL) model.

The grant is part of the federally funded Charter Schools Program, through which ISBE can award $42 million total in federal funds to expand the number of high-quality and educationally diverse charter schools in Illinois and evaluate the effects of charter schools on student academic achievement, staff, and parents.

“Congratulations to the Elgin Charter School Initiative and the Elgin community,” said State Superintendent of Education Tony Smith, Ph.D. “High-quality school options allow families to find the best learning environment for their children’s unique interests and needs. I encourage high-performing charter school operators across the state to consider applying for the next round of Charter Schools Program funds to expand opportunities for more families. I encourage school district leaders to take advantage of the opportunity to bring additional federal funding and high-quality school choices to their communities.”

The Elgin Charter School Initiative will use the $150,000 in Program Design funds and the $800,000 in Initial Implementation funds to provide staff and teachers with intensive supports and training in the EL education model, which encourages students to learn by doing. Educators at the Elgin Math and Science Academy Charter School will shepherd students to be leaders of their own learning and achieve bold goals.

“Our team at the Elgin Charter School Initiative is grateful for the Charter Schools Program funding and for ISBE’s vote of confidence in our proposed Elgin Math and Science Academy Charter School,” said Kerin Kelly, president of the Elgin Charter School Initiative. “We are excited to bring a unique math and science charter school based on the EL education model to School District U-46. As an all-volunteer team, the CSP grant will allow us to have a great start and to make important hires prior to our school opening in 2018.” 

ISBE plans to release the next Charter Schools Program Request for Proposals in July.

Court Continues Today Against ICE, Detention Center, for Mistreatment of Detained Immigrant

Posted by Admin On May - 10 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

In the federal lawsuit, which will begin hearings tomorrow, Chicago resident Wilmer Catalan-Ramirez and his attorneys will present evidence that he has been the victim of unnecessary violence and retaliation in the hands of the Chicago immigration office and officers at the detention center. Click here to read the lawsuit.

Continuation of hearing with Wilmer Catalan-Ramirez. The hearing will focus on the treatment that Mr. Catalan-Ramirez has received by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in Chicago as well as those in charge of supervising the McHenry County detention center, including McHenry County, and the health company that provides care for those detained at the detention center, Correct Care Solutions.  During yesterday’s hearing, ICE and the detention center agreed that he would no longer be shackled when he is being transported. The judge also affirmed that Chicago ICE Director Wong does have responsibility over the health and care of individuals in his custody. Today the testimonies will continue.

The hearing will be held Wednesday, May 10, 2017, 2:00 PM, at 219 South Dearborn Street, Chicago.

On March 27, 2017, ICE agents raided Mr. Catalan-Ramirez’ home while he was recovering from a multiple gunshot wound injury that resulted in a fractured right skull and right shoulder, a traumatic brain injury, and partial paralysis on his left side. During the raid, several ICE agents slammed Mr. Catalan-Ramirez on the ground and fractured his left shoulder, despite his pleas of pain and repeated notifications of his shooting-related injuries.

Until today, Mr. Catalan-Ramirez has not been provided adequate rehabilitative services and medical care while in ICE custody at McHenry County Jail. As a result, Mr. Catalan-Ramirez is experiencing a number of medical issues including but not limited to extreme pain in his left shoulder and arm, and losing range of motion on the left side of his body. It has been more than 1 month since his detention, and these urgent medical issues have yet to be addressed.

Mr. Catalan-Ramirez spends most of the day isolated in his cell due to the pain and his inability to safely walk without his left-side ankle brace and proper sneaker footwear. He has also been the victim of retaliation by guards, who have threatened to punish Mr. Catalan-Ramirez for asking others to help him get dressed and eat.  Security staff insists on shackling Mr. Catalan-Ramirez during transportation—despite the fact that he poses no safety risk and the shackling exacerbates the pain from his injuries.

The federal hearing will provide evidence to these allegations, which specifically name the Chicago ICE Field Office, Chicago ICE director Ricardo Wong, McHenry County, and others. 

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

Founded in 1985, the Roderick and Solange MacArthur Justice Center is one of the premier civil rights law firms in the United States (law.northwestern.edu/legalclinic/macarthur)

Mijente is a national political home for Latinx and Chicanx grassroots organizing that comes out of the Not One More Deportation Campaign (www.mijente.net)

The National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild (NIPNLG) is a national non-profit organization that provides legal support to community-based immigrant organizations, legal practitioners, and all advocates working to advance the rights of noncitizens (www.nationalimmigrationproject.org )

New FTC Website Helps Small Businesses

Posted by Admin On May - 10 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

When scammers and hackers attack small businesses, it hurts not only the businesses’ reputations and bottom line, but also the integrity of the marketplace. Today, FTC Acting Chairman Maureen Ohlhausen announced a new FTC website, FTC.gov/SmallBusiness, to help business owners avoid scams, protect their computers and networks, and keep their customers’ and employees’ data safe. If you own a business you’ll want to check it out!

At FTC.gov/SmallBusiness you’ll find:

  • Tips on how to avoid scams that target businesses
  • Advice to help you protect your customers’ and employees’ sensitive data
  • Videos that show what you can do to secure your business’s networks

You can also find the FTC’s newest article Small Business Computer Security Basics, which has tips to help companies protect their files and devices, train employees to think twice before sharing account information, and keep their wireless network protected. The article also tells you what to do if a hacker gets into your computers or networks.

Go to FTC.gov/SmallBusiness, bookmark it and visit it often. And subscribe to the FTC’s business blog to stay connected.

Up to $10 Million Reward Offered for Information on the Leader of the al Nusrah Front

Posted by Admin On May - 10 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

The FBI is seeking information on the leadership of the al Nusrah Front (ANF), a foreign terrorist organization, to include information on Muhammad al-Jawlani. Today, the U.S. Department of State’s Rewards for Justice program announced a reward of up to $10 million for information leading to the identification or location of Muhammad al-Jawlani.

In 2011 al-Jawlani, also known as Abu Mohammed al-Jawlani, Abu Mohammed al-Julani, and Abu Muhammad al-Golani, established ANF. In 2013, al-Jawlani, as a leader of ANF, pledged the organization’s allegiance to al Qaeda and its leadership. In 2016, al-Jawlani claimed that the ANF was changing its name to Jabhat Fath Al Sham, or “Conquest of the Levant Front,” which has also been known as Jabhat al-Nusrah, Jabhet al-Nusra, The Victory Front, and al-Nusrah Front for the People of the Levant.

The U.S. State Department designated ANF as a foreign terrorist organization under the Immigration and Nationality Act and a specially designated global terrorist entity. In May 2013, al-Jawlani was named a specially designated global terrorist, by the U.S. State Department, blocking all his property and interests in property subject to U.S. jurisdiction and prohibiting U.S. persons from dealing with him.

The FBI is seeking information on the leadership of the al Nusrah Front (ANF), a foreign terrorist organization, to include information on Muhammad al-Jawlani.

Al Jawlani in a 2016 interview

On July 24, 2013, the UN Security Council ISIL (Da’esh) and al Qaeda Sanctions Committee placed al-Jawlani on its list of sanctioned terrorists, making him subject to an international asset freeze, travel ban, and arms embargo.

Individuals with information regarding ANF leadership, to include al-Jawlani, are asked to contact the FBI or the nearest American Embassy or Consulate. Individuals also may submit a tip on the FBI’s website by visiting tips.fbi.gov or on the U.S. Department of State’s Rewards for Justice website at rewardsforjustice.net. Tips can remain confidential.

Source: FBI

Abandoned Property, Foreclosure Prevention Program Funding Extended

Posted by Admin On May - 10 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Senator Collins: “It’s time for relief for the hardworking taxpayers and homeowners who bailed out these banks.”


SPRINGFIELD, IL – To ensure continued funding for two programs aimed at addressing the aftermath of the recession on the housing market in Illinois, State Senator Jacqueline Collins successfully argued for the passage of legislation in the Senate.

“Historically, we know that the stability of the housing market has been crucial in leading the broader economy out of recessions,” Collins said. “Abandoned properties, left unsecured and unmaintained, destabilize families, decimate communities, and destroy any hope of future economic development. That is why extending these programs is important.”

The Abandoned Property Program and the Foreclosure Prevention Program are both funded through filing fees levied on lenders. The Abandoned Property Program provides funds to local governments for the purposes of demolishing or rehabilitating such homes, while the Foreclosure Prevention Program provides counseling and other services to help families at risk of foreclosure to gain firm financial footing and stay in their homes. Both fees are structured to exact the highest costs on the institutions which deal in the most foreclosures.

“Something is amiss in society when we continue to reward, to the tune of millions of dollars, the failure of the financial elite who brought our economy to the brink of disaster,” Collins said. “It’s time for relief for the hardworking taxpayers and homeowners who bailed out these banks.”

Rounding up Foreign Lottery Scammers

Posted by Admin On May - 10 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

In the past, we’ve told you about a group of Jamaican scammers who called people in the US with phony prize, sweepstakes and lottery offers. Just last week, the US Department of Justice (DOJ) announced that eight Jamaicans were extradited to the US and now are in custody in North Dakota. These eight people were charged with using a lottery scam to trick at least 90 people out of more than $5.7 million dollars.

This case is part of a law enforcement operation that has taken years of work by the FBI’s Bismarck office, the US Postal Inspection Service, the US Attorney’s Office, DOJ, and the government of Jamaica – which arrested this group last year. Here at the FTC, we want to make sure you know how to spot these scams – and tell us when you spot them.

Why do foreign lottery scams work? Because these scammers play on our hopes for good fortune. After all, who doesn’t want to win the lottery? But, if you get a call or letter offering a chance to play – or saying you’ve already won a foreign lottery, know this:

  • Playing a foreign lottery is illegal. Both by phone and by mail.
  • Never pay for a prize. And never wire money (or give the numbers from a prepaid card or gift card) to anyone who asks you to. These are sure signs of lottery scams.
  • Buying even one foreign lottery ticket means your name gets added to lists that scammy telemarketers buy and sell to each other. You’ll get lots more calls and letters with scam offers.

If you get mail that looks like a foreign lottery, give it to your local postmaster. And remember: you can help the FTC fight these scammers by telling us when you spot a foreign lottery offer.

Beatles Festival to Celebrate 50-Year Anniversary of Sgt. Pepper

Posted by Admin On May - 10 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Jeffersonville, IN  – The timing could not be better for the WAVE 3 News Abbey Road on the River to pay homage to the iconic and acclaimed album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. The album was released by The Beatles exactly 50 years ago in 1967, and is set for the much anticipated re-release on May 26, which coincides with the five-day festival, coming up May 25-29, 2017.


Sgt. Pepper, regarded as one of the first ever concept albums, is known for being one of the most influential and innovative albums of all time. It won four Grammy’s, and included hits like “Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds,” “With a Little Help From My Friends,” and “A Day in the Life.” The new, remixed special anniversary edition of the Sgt. Pepper album includes previously unreleased takes from their recording sessions.


More than 15 events will celebrate the groundbreaking album throughout the weekend, including 9 concerts, a presentation by internationally recognized Beatles expert Scott Freiman, and a “Pepper at 50” panel discussion with author Bruce Spizer, Beatle best friend and long-time aide Tony Bramwell, and “Beatle Brunch” Radio Host Joe Johnson. On Saturday, May 27th at 11:45pm, a listening party will be held for the release of the new Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band Anniversary Edition.


The WAVE 3 News Abbey Road on the River will be held in Jeffersonville, IN at the Big Four Station Park on Memorial Day weekend, May 25-29. The 2017 lineup includes Herman’s Hermits starring Peter Noone, Grammy-winner Peter Asher, Rock-n-Roll Hall of Famers The Family Stone, The Grass Roots, Mark Lindsay of Paul Revere and the Raiders, Ambrosia, and former Wings band members Laurence Juber (guitarist) and Steve Holley (drummer). More than 50 bands from around the world will perform on eight indoor and outdoor stages over the course of the five-day event.


The festival has partnered with 91.9 WFPK Independent Louisville to host a free kick off concert starring Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band’s sax man Jake Clemons on Thursday, May 25th. Live music begins at 2:00pm, and Jake Clemons will take the stage at 8:45pm. Admission is free all day.


Tickets are available at arotr.com, and discounted general admission tickets are available for $20 each at all 45 area Thorntons stores. Tickets purchased at Thorntons also include free admission for one guest 21 and under.


The WAVE 3 News Abbey Road on the River is sponsored by WAVE 3 News, StarVista Live, Southern Indiana Tourism, City of Jeffersonville, Coca-Cola, Budweiser and Bud Light, Four Roses Bourbon, AML Inc., 91.9 WFPK Independent Louisville, Louisville Magazine, Louisville.com, Clark Memorial Hospital, Gretsch Guitars, Crosley Radio and Thorntons.


For more information and to purchase tickets for this year’s event, visit www.arotr.com.



Minority-Owned Firm Building Resilient Homes for New York Poospatuck Reservation Families Left Homeless by Superstorm Sandy

Posted by Admin On May - 10 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Oden Development Homes Rebuilding Team

Nationwide (BlackNews.com) – The New York Governors Office of Storm Recovery (GOSR) helped fund housing through the “New York Housing Recovery Program”. The Governors Office of Storm Recovery assists property owners who have been impacted by Superstorm Sandy, including those on the Poospatuck Reservation.

The Poospatuck Reservation is home to a Native American community and the smallest Indian Nation in New York State. The tight knit community led by Chief Harry Wallace is located in Suffolk County in Mastic, New York on the north side of Poospatuck Creek. As a result of the development expertise of Oden Development LLC, a firm owned by Walter Oden, eight families will move into their manufactured homes this spring.


Chief Wallace stated, “Those eight families selected Oden Development to rebuild their homes ultimately because Walter has a great heart, his team cares and it shows in their craftmanship!”


Watch the Video: https://vimeo.com/215593520

Hurricane Sandy Rebuilds became one of Oden’s priorities once he saw the desperate conditions New York families were facing as a result of the storm. For Oden, the impact of Hurricane Sandy was personal – he had his own experience of suffering devastation during Miami’s Hurricane Andrew in 1992 – so he dedicated himself to helping these displaced families recover from similar hardships. Oden left his prior role as the Head of the Small Business Administration’s New York office and put his insights around storm strategies and disaster relief to work. With no effort wasted, Oden Development was awarded the GOSR contract to assist families in need of home replacement.


Oden committed to replacing homes on the Poospatuck reservation with manufactured homes as opposed to traditional stick-built homes to expedite the speed to market. The project included taking advantage of the efficiency of manufactured homes while leveraging storm mitigation strategies to ensure survival for future storms. Innovation is not new to Oden’s team; another project in Brooklyn being developed with intermodal shipping containers is indicative of Oden Development’s non-traditional strategies to deliver a product of equal or better quality over traditional methods in less than half the time.


“Manufactured housing makes so much sense, especially here in New York,” says Oden. “Manufactured homes are typically more affordable than site-built homes. Constructing the housing structure off-site provides the inherent and economic advantages of a shorter build time, limited inspections, and energy efficiency. There is hardly any other construction method as versatile, practical, and applicable for any situation and environment.” Oden’s homes are manufactured by Champion Homes of Pennsylvania which also builds commercial structures including multifamily homes, student housing, and hotels.


Oden is certainly not alone in his excitement for manufactured homes. With more Hurricane Sandy homes falling under the umbrella of GOSR’s coverage, families on Long Island and on the Poospatuck Reservation are sure to take comfort and excitement in manufactured homes as well.

About Oden Development LLC
Oden Development LLC is a certified manufactured home dealer and developer utilizing the highest construction standards in the industry. From manufactured, manufactured, or intermodal container homes to military barracks, student housing, hospitality structures, and other commercial structures, Oden Development tailors each project to meet a buyer’s needs with great attention to structural details and refined finishes. Oden Development has a uniquely qualified team that can help procure land, design the project, secure financing, and build anyone’s dream living or commercial space. For more details, visit www.odendevelopment.com


Photo Caption: Rebuilding Team: Thomasina Mack (Trustee, Unkechaug Nation), Walter Oden (CEO, Oden Development), Tafara “Harry” Tigire (Oden Development – Project Manager), and Chief Harry Wallace (Unkechaug Nation)



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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

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