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  Chicago, IL – Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan met with older citizens in suburban Glenview to ...
Since late last year, the Administration has been aggressively working to combat Zika, a virus ...
WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) and Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) today introduced a ...
SPRINGFIELD, IL – Following the governor’s annual budget address, Illinois State Senator Mattie Hunter (D- ...
SPRINGFIELD, IL– The new state superintendent of schools is getting a generous pension ...
(From New America Media) By Thandisizwe Chimurenga   Los Angeles - Rumors have swirled recently over whether Johannes ...
Top finishers will Advance to National Tournament SPRINGFIELD, IL – The Illinois Department ...
Fact Sheet: The 2015 National Security Strategy Today, the United States is stronger and better positioned ...
Reverend Harry Williams, Urban Fiction Author   Oakland, CA (BlackNews.com) -- Oakland California's murder rate has ...
Alexandria, VA (BlackNews.com) – HBCUConnect.com, in partnership with Microsoft, recently held ...

Archive for the ‘News’ Category

National Urban League Calls on the House to Reject the Financial Choice Act

Posted by Admin On June - 8 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

 

Bill Seeks to Undo Key Dodd-Frank Reforms and Weaken Protections for Consumers

 

WASHINGTON, DC  – National Urban League President and CEO Marc H. Morial publicly released a letter sent to the entire U.S. House of Representatives this morning calling on them to reject the Financial Choice Act.  If passed this bill would upend important reforms enacted after the financial crisis of 2007-2008 and severely weaken the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

 

Morial’s full letter follows and is attached.

June 7, 2017

Dear Congressman –

I write today to urge you to vote against the Financial Choice Act also known as, the Wrong Choice Act. The Wrong Choice Act is a misguided attempt to repeal the Dodd-Frank Act, the landmark financial reform legislation that was enacted to protect American consumers from the excesses that caused the financial crisis less than 10 years ago. Introduced by Jeb Hensarling, Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, the Wrong Choice Act virtually wipes away all of the consumer protections established by Dodd-Frank, including weakening the effectiveness of the lauded Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). The CFPB is a strong watchdog and a zealous advocate for the American people with a proven track-record of success. I oppose any efforts to dismantle Dodd-Frank and the CFPB, especially those based on ideologies not grounded in truth.

I have proudly served as the President and CEO of the National Urban League for nearly 15 years. The National Urban League is a historic civil rights organization focused on economic empowerment for communities of color. We have 88 affiliates in 36 states and the District of Columbia that provide direct services to 2 million people annually. We provide workforce training, afterschool programs, healthcare assistance, and housing counseling, among other impactful services to help lift-up the community. We saw and experienced firsthand the impact of lax federal regulations and the horrors of the financial crisis, which is why we supported the passage of Dodd-Frank and fiercely oppose any efforts to dismantle it.

As you know, African Americans suffered the brunt of the financial crisis. Twenty-five percent of the homes that were in foreclosure or deeply underwater during and after the crisis were owned by African Americans. Consequently, 50 percent of African Americans’ wealth was wiped out through no fault of their own, in most cases. Irresponsible borrowers did not cause the financial crisis–irresponsible products caused the crisis. Lenders steered African Americans into predatory products that they knew could not be repaid. Several mainstream banks were sued for reverse redlining, blatant housing discrimination of African Americans that helped caused the financial crisis.

Dodd-Frank was enacted to counter these excesses. There was broad consensus that Wall Street had to be reined in to protect consumers and to reenergize the economy. The CFPB was created to fight on behalf of consumers and to ensure another financial crisis of the kind and scope that created the Great Recession never happened again. It consolidated the departments of the seven federal financial agencies with consumer protection authority. The agency’s budget was funded through the Federal Reserve and not the appropriations process to ensure it could live out its mission: “to provide a single point of accountability for enforcing federal consumer financial laws and protecting consumers in the financial marketplace,” no matter the political climate.

Since its inception, the CFPB has proven its effectiveness as the nation’s top consumer protection watchdog. The CFPB promulgated the Qualified Mortgage rule and the Mortgage Servicing rule, which helped regulate the industry and ensure that subprime mortgages and the foreclosures that resulted would never happen again. Lenders can no longer offer mortgages without full documentation or charge excessive points and fees and servicers have to ensure borrowers are not forced into foreclosure. Banks cannot engage in redlining activities and other financial products in the market must have consumers’ wellbeing in mind. The CFPB has returned more than $12 billion to approximately 30 million aggrieved American consumers as a result.

The CFPB’s success has not hurt financial markets; it helped increase confidence in the market. Several studies have made this clear. Chairman Hensarling’s effort to weaken Dodd-Frank and the CFPB through the Wrong Choice Act is a deliberate attempt to bolster Wall Street to the detriment of Main Street. Opposition to Dodd-Frank and the CFPB is grounded in false ideology and will hurt American consumers. I urge you to oppose the Wrong Choice Act.

Sincerely,

Marc H. Morial

President and CEO

National Urban League 

Cook County Board Approves Five Tax Incentives Designed to Support Economic Growth

Posted by Admin On June - 8 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Cook County Commissioners approved five proposals from President Toni Preckwinkle’s Bureau of Economic Development (BED) that will provide tax incentives to businesses in Cook County.

The incentives, which will either create new or save existing jobs, were approved in the following communities: Oak Forest, Rolling Meadows, Schaumburg, South Holland and Streamwood.

As a result of redevelopment activities, these incentives should support the creation of an estimated 13 new private sector full-time jobs, retain an estimated 230 full-time jobs and support seven construction jobs.

“The companies receiving these incentives have demonstrated their commitment to our communities and residents,” Preckwinkle said. “I’m pleased that we are able to use our tax incentive tools to either keep or expand businesses in Cook County.”

Details on the incentives follow, listed by municipality:

·         Business Name: Best Western Hotel,  4375 Frontage Road, Oak Forest

Type of Business: Hospitality

Project Description: Improvements to the lobby, breakfast area, pool, exterior and technology upgrades. The applicant will continue to do business as a Best Western Hotel.

Type of Incentive: Class 8

Estimated: eight full-time jobs created; 10 full-time jobs retained; two construction jobs supported

·         Business Name:Steel Supply Company, 5105 Newport Drive, Rolling Meadows

Type of Business: Distributor and processor of steel finish bars

Project Description: In addition to being a distributor and processor of steel finish bars, the applicant also provides warehousing and logistic services for buyers of raw steel. Property has been successfully occupied for 47 years. The applicant wants the incentive to make enhancements allowing them to remain competitive.

Type of Incentive: Class 6B-SER – considered temporary and non-renewable

Estimated:  51 full-time jobs retained

·         Business Name: Mercury Products Corporation, 1201 S. Mercury Drive, Schaumburg

Type of Business: Manufacturing of custom-engineered, stamped or fabricated products

Description: Incentive will allow applicant to upgrade facility and add new equipment.

Type of Incentive: Class 6B-SER – considered temporary and non-renewable

Estimated: 115 full time jobs retained

·         Business Name: Eagle Express Lines, 16901 Van Dam Road, South Holland

Type of Business: Truck repair and storage

Project Description: Applicant is expanding the facility.

Type of Incentive: Class 8

Estimated: three full-time jobs created; 50 full time jobs retained; five construction jobs supported

·         Business Name: Hallmark Industries, Inc., 411 East North Avenue, Streamwood

Type of Business: Wholesale distributor of industrial machinery such as industrial motors, gear reducers and water pumps

Project Description: Applicant is relocating and expanding operation from 6,800 square feet to the subject 23,520 square feet location, which it will own.

Type of Incentive: Class 6B

Estimated: Two full-time jobs created; four full-time jobs retained

For more about the tax incentive programs offered by the Cook County Bureau of Economic Development, go to www.cookcountyil.gov/economicdevelopment.

Groups Announce Rally in Support of a Stronger Sanctuary City Policy in Chicago that Protects All Immigrants

Posted by Admin On June - 8 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Demonstration will highlight the stories of immigrants that are unprotected by the Welcoming City Ordinance, allowing police to turn them over to for deportation. The rally will take place on Thursday, June  15th, at 11:00 AM starting at Daley Plaza.

CHICAGO, IL – A coalition of immigrant rights, racial justice, legal advocacy, and labor rights organizations have called for a demonstration at City Hall one week before the Chicago City Council, where amendments to the Welcoming City Ordinance, Chicago’s “sanctuary city” policy, is expected to be called to a vote.

The groups are calling for a public demonstration after being in numerous conversation with the Office of New Americans, the Office of Public Safety, and the Office of Legislative Affairs, representing Mayor Emanuel,  for two years and finding that the departments are not willing to move forward an ordinance that protects all immigrants threatened by President Trump’s deportation policies.

“Because of a mistake I made when I was 22 years old, the City of Chicago does not want to protect me. In fact, they’ve have insisted that if I ever run into a Chicago police officer I should be turned over to immigration enforcement so that I can be deported,” recounted Antonio Gutierrez, a member of Organized Communities Against Deportations (OCAD) at a recent press conference.

Six years ago, Antonio was arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) and because as an undocumented immigrant he had no access to a Driver’s License, he was charged with a felony. If he had been detained by the Chicago Police Department for any reason, he would have been turned over to ICE. “For me, and people like me, we do not live in a Sanctuary City,” he concluded.

The coalition of groups has been meeting with Aldermen and representatives from the Mayor’s office to close the deportation loopholes in the ordinance so that the city would have no part in the Trump administrations unhinged federal removal plans. They have reached a general agreement with the City except on the issue of fixing four broad carve outs that allow the Chicago police department to assist the Trump administration in detaining and deporting some people.

“ICE detainers and warrants do not satisfy the basic requirements of the Fourth Amendment to the US Constitution that law enforcement officers go before a judge and establish probable cause,” said Fred Tsao, senior policy counsel at the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights.  “Allowing any arrests based on ICE detainers or warrants, without any other judicial finding of probable cause, opens up the city to liability,” he concluded.

The City’s decision to change the ordinance comes amidst increased immigration enforcement raids and fears of deportation in immigrant communities throughout the city. “In this political climate when we most need the Mayor to mean it when he says that we are a Sanctuary city. The carve outs that would remain in the Welcoming City Ordinance would in fact mean that this is not ‘One Chicago’ as the Mayor proclaims, but that in fact there are two Chicagos: One for those the City will protect, and one for those it will help deport,” concluded Tania Unzueta, Policy Director at Mijente, one of the organizations leading the campaign.

The groups are urging city council to pass the original amendments proposed in February with 28 Co-sponsors and to reject any effort by the mayor to water-down the protections with allowances for local law enforcement to participate in Trump’s mass deportation efforts.

Organizations involved in the campaign include Arab American Action Network Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Chicago, Organized Communities Against Deportations, the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, the National Immigrant Justice Center, Southwest Organizing Project, Centro de Trabajadores Unidos – Immigrant Worker Defense Project, the Latino Policy Forum, Mujeres Latinas en Acción, Enlace, Hana Center, Chicago Religious Leadership Network on Latin America, Chicago Community and Workers’ Rights, the Latino Union of Chicago, Brighton Park Neighborhood Council, Communities United, Community Activism Law Alliance, and Black Youth Project 100.

 

Attorney General Madigan Reaches Settlement With Fraudulent Charitable Telemarketers

Posted by Admin On June - 2 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

CHICAGO, IL — Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan announced a settlement with Safety Publications Inc., a professional fundraiser and for-profit telemarketer, and its owners over allegations that the company violated the charitable Solicitation Act and prior consent decrees with Madigan’s office. The Solicitation Act dictates the laws governing charitable solicitations and fundraising activities in Illinois.

The consent decree entered by Cook County Circuit Judge Thomas R. Allen permanently bans Safety Publications and one of its owners Arthur Olivera from charitable fundraising in Illinois and requires Safety Publications to dissolve its operation with the Illinois Secretary of State’s Office. Its other owner, Adam Herdman, is banned for three years from charitable fundraising in Illinois. The settlement also includes a penalty of nearly $160,000 against the defendants.

“The owners of Safety Publications are serial con artists who have shown complete disregard for the law over and over again,” Madigan said. “Today’s order should put an end to their serial fraud in Illinois.”

Today’s settlement resolves a three-count complaint Madigan filed in January 2016 against Safety Publications for: 1) misleading the donating public as to who was making the solicitation and how the donations would be used; 2) acting on behalf of a charity without maintaining the required registration and failing to disclose or account for fundraising activities; and 3) violating the consent decrees Safety Publications and its owners had previously entered into with Madigan’s office.

Madigan has pursued Herdman and Olivera multiple times for violations of the Solicitation Act.

Her allegations stemmed from Safety Publication’s work soliciting donations for VietNow National Headquarters (VietNow), a Rockford, Ill.-based charity that pledges to help veterans overcome joblessness and post-traumatic stress disorder. VietNow hired Safety Publications to raise money, but records show only a fraction of the contributions Safety Publications collected actually went to pay for charitable programs. When making solicitation calls to the public, Safety Publications failed to disclose that it was a paid fundraiser. Safety Publications also failed to disclose or account for its paid fundraising activities on behalf of VNH in annual financial reports filed with Madigan’s office. Records also show that Safety Publications was not registered with Madigan’s office for a portion of the time that is was soliciting donations. In addition, Olivera did not disclose a previous felony conviction on registration documents filed with Madigan’s office.

Bureau Chief Therese Harris, Assistant Bureau Chief Barry Goldberg and Assistant Attorney General Pasquale Esposito handled the settlement for Madigan’s Charitable Trust Bureau.

 

 

Senator Raoul Passes Measure Creating Elected School Board in Chicago

Posted by Admin On June - 2 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

SPRINGFIELD, IL —  Illinois State Senator Kwame Raoul (D-Chicago 13th) secured passage in the Senate of a measure allowing for the election of the Chicago Board of Education starting in 2023.

Before this legislation, the Chicago Public School district was the only school district in the state without an elected school board.

“It’s important that Chicago stay on par with the state, not only with funding but also with democracy,” Raoul said.

Similar legislation passed the House in 2016 but did not advance in the Senate. The measure passed today sets the size of the elected board at 15 members and establishes a redistricting commission to draw districts for board members.

“We amended the legislation to make sure the legislature was not drawing districts but that redistricting was done by people within the city of Chicago,” Raoul said.

Currently, the Chicago Board of Education is composed of seven members appointed by the mayor of Chicago.

HB 1774 passed the Senate 53-2 and heads to the House for a concurrence vote.

Fake E-mails Could Cost You Thousands

Posted by Admin On May - 31 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Think you got an email from a business you know? Scammers sometimes use emails that look legit to trick you into sending money to them.

The email might say it’s from a real estate professional you’re working with, telling you there’s a last-minute change and you should now wire your closing costs to a different account. Or it could seem to be an email – with an invoice – from your utility company, telling you to wire payment. Whatever the story, if you wire that money, it goes to the scammer – and you may never see your money again.

These scammers might get your information by hacking into a business. Once they know about you, they send an email that seems to come from the business, telling you where to send money.  So, how can you spot these scams?

  • Never wire money to anyone who emails – or calls – and asks you to. Instead, check it out.
  • Contact the company through a number or email address you know is real. Don’t use phone numbers or links in the email.
  • Don’t open email attachments, even from someone you know, unless you’re expecting it. Opening attachments can put malware on your computer.

If you’ve already sent in money to a scammer, act quickly.

  • If you wired money through your bank, ask them right away for a wire recall. If you used a money transfer company, like Western Union or MoneyGram, call their complaint lines immediately.
  • Report your experience to the FTC and to the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center at ic3.gov. Give as much information as you can, including all requested banking information. The sooner you get this report in to ic3, the more likely they can help you.
  • If your bank asks for a police report, give them a copy of your report to ic3.gov.

Also, learn more about protecting yourself from phishing.

New White House Commission on “Election Integrity” Is Simply a Cover for Voter Suppression and Discrimination

Posted by Admin On May - 31 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

WASHINGTON, DC  – National Urban League President and CEO, Marc H. Morial, issued the following statement on President Trump’s executive order creating a Commission on Election Integrity:

“President Trump’s executive order to create a Commission on Election Integrity to investigate the non-issue of voter fraud is very troubling.  Despite impartial campaign experts and congressional leaders from his own political party debunking Trump’s claim that millions of people voted illegally in the 2016 presidential election, the President still saw it necessary to authorize tax dollars on a pointless commission.

“The appointment of Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach as the Commission’s Vice-Chair is equally troubling and sends warning flags about the true underlying intent of the Commission – to use it as a front for promoting voter suppression and discriminatory voting tactics that especially impact voters of color, the elderly, the disabled and the young. Kobach is renowned for perpetuating the myths of voter fraud and would bring to the Commission his own agenda to weaken voter protection, not strengthen it.

“Instead of pursuing this dead-end street, we call on President Trump to seek concrete solutions to ensure that no voter is denied the right to vote through oppressive voter ID laws, proof of citizenship requirements, limited early voting periods, changes to polling precincts without adequate notification to voters, or through gerrymandered congressional districts.

“Anything short of this shows an intentionality by the President to deceive the public for the purpose of self and political interests.”

Speaker Madigan Says House Action to Advance Sale of Thompson Center

Posted by Admin On May - 31 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Madigan’s Statement on House Action to Advance Sale of Thompson Center

      

House Speaker Michael Madigan Dunkin says Madigan went into overdrive ...SPRINGFIELD, IL – Illinois Speaker Michael J. Madigan issued the following statement after the House voted to pass Senate Bill 886, which would advance Gov. Bruce Rauner’s requested sale of the Thompson Center: 

“Governor Rauner has prioritized the sale of the Thompson Center and today’s action moves us toward that sale. House Democrats have again demonstrated our willingness to work with the governor to achieve his goals, while ensuring—as is our duty—that these goals are achieved in the best interest of the people we represent. No negotiation can be one sided, and I urge the governor to now join House Democrats in resolving the most important issue facing our state, which is passing a state budget.”

Photo: Illinois Speaker Michael Madigan

NAACP Condemns University of Maryland Hate Crime Murder

Posted by Admin On May - 31 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Baltimore, MD — The NAACP mourns the loss of Richard Collins III, a Bowie State University student stabbed to death three days before his college graduation by an alleged member of an “Alt-Right” hate group and student at the University of Maryland.

The NAACP sends condolences to the family and friends of Mr. Collins, and to the entire Bowie State University community, who mourn the loss of such a positive and accomplished young man who was brutality killed in the prime of life due to hate-inspired terrorism.

“When individuals occupying our nation’s highest office spew hate-filled rhetoric and unapologetically associate with and staff the White House with white supremacists, our entire nation drinks from the same poisonous well,” said NAACP Chairman Leon W. Russell. “We must continually speak out against the mythology of racism and its accompanying rhetoric and replace it with a message that unites us around justice and the truth,” he added.

Sean Christopher Urbanski, a 22-year-old from Severna Park in Anne Arundel County, was arrested and charged with murder in the death of Mr. Collins. He is being held without bond and the FBI is investigating the killing as a possible hate crime.Urbanski was allegedly a member of a right-wing hate group called “Alt-Reich,” one of many emerging White Supremacist groups, spurred on through the racially divisive rhetoric associated with Donald J. Trump’s presidential campaign.

 

According to estimates from the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), over 260,000 hate crimes occur annually in the United States. SPLC notes that in the month following the 2016 presidential election, there were 1,094 bias-related incidents in the United States.

 

Attorney General Madigan Urges Governor to Sign Legislation to Strengthen Hate Crimes Law

Posted by Admin On May - 31 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

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

 

CHICAGO, IL – Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan applauded the Illinois Senate for passing 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 Sen. Omar Aquino, passed out of the Senate by a vote of 44 to 11 and will now go to the governor for final approval. 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.

“A crime committed against any person based on hatred harms and threatens an entire community,” Madigan said. “We must strengthen our hate crimes laws to respond to the growing increase in hate crimes and the number of these crimes committed through technology.”

“I am one of five Latino senators, and I represent a Latino majority district in our state’s most diverse city. I am proud to have sponsored this measure in the Senate because I have seen that Illinois’ diversity is one of our greatest assets,” Aquino said. “I would like to thank the Attorney General for denouncing hate, and I urge the governor to stand with us by signing this into law.”

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 stalking, cyberstalking, transmission of obscene messages and portions of the crime of intimidation to the list of crimes that can be prosecuted as hate crimes.
  • Providing the Attorney General with civil enforcement authority. 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 a 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.

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. As part of that summit, Madigan and the civil rights leaders discussed the need to increase protections against hate crimes.

Along with this legislative effort, Madigan called on Governor Rauner to protect Illinois immigrants and refugees from discrimination and hate crimes. Madigan has also urged the Governor to restore the Illinois Hate Crimes Commission.

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.

 


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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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