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66 minutes | Jul 5, 2019
Cook County Medical Examiner talks death, crises and reform
Every summer, Chicago braces for violence. While we talk about the causes and how to address it year after year, there’s an office quietly working at the tail end of the worst cases of it – the Cook County Medical Examiner. It’s tasked with investigating any human death that involves criminal violence, but also suicides, accidents, sudden or suspicious deaths, and potential public health threats. On this episode of The Daily Line’s Aldercast, Dr. Ponni Arunkumar, the current Chief Medical Examiner, talks about her career in the office, how it navigated a 2012 crisis when coolers and hallways were crowded with corpses, and when she took the stand in the trial of Chicago Police Officer Jason Van Dyke. Comments, questions, or suggestions? Email email@example.com
48 minutes | Jun 28, 2019
Rep. Cassidy says ‘Watch the rollercoaster, don’t ride it’
It would be reductionist to say that State Rep. Kelly Cassidy (D-Chicago) has had a big spring. But between being the lead House sponsor of both the bill to legalize recreational marijuana — making Illinois the first state to do so through the legislative process — and one that rewrites Illinois’ abortion law, the fifth-term Democrat has been at the center of attention. Cassidy discusses both of those blockbuster bills, along with the changes she’s seen over her past eight years in Springfield. We also talk about her new puppy, Jack. Comments, questions or suggestions? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
57 minutes | Jun 14, 2019
Scooters are here – what to expect on your street (or sidewalk)
It’s the invasion of the electric scooter – this weekend, 2,500 battery-powered bad boys from ten different companies will hit Chicago’s West Side. After about a year of negotiations between bureaucrats and tech companies eager to unleash the shiniest new thing in one of America’s biggest cities, all eyes are on implementation. Two transportation experts: Audrey Wennink, the Director of Transportation at the Metropolitan Planning Council, and Kyle Whitehead, the managing director of public affairs at the Active Transportation Alliance, will discuss their hopes (fewer cars, more people using transit) and worries (safety and equity) about the four month scooter pilot in Chicago. Plus, Nico Probst from Lime will talk about how competing here compares to other global cities, and tackles other scooter FAQs. Comments, questions or suggestions? Email email@example.com.
40 minutes | Jun 7, 2019
Cabonargi: Make Assessments Boring Again
The Cook County Board of Review — a three-member quasi-judicial body that hears property tax appeals — just closed the books on a record cycle. While property tax bills are expected to go out on time, the office is likely staring down the barrel of more record appeals, as Cook County Assessor Fritz Kaegi amps up reforms launched in the wake of ProPublica and the Chicago Tribune’s reporting on assessment inequities. On this episode of The Daily Line’s Aldercast, BOR Commissioner Michael Cabonargi talks about the “unsustainable” volume of appeals, his take on Kaegi’s reforms, and why the board can blame its odd schedule, in part, on the Great Depression.
43 minutes | May 31, 2019
Fritz Kaegi leaves Springfield empty-handed
Cook County Assessor Fritz Kaegi went to Springfield and came back without a bill he contends is needed to bring true reform to Cook County’s property tax system. Kaegi, who took office in December after a series of reports about inaccuracies and unfair assessments, announced Thursday that SB 1379, his data modernization bill, would not get a vote before the midnight Friday deadline. The Daily Line’s Aldercast spoke to Kaegi the Tuesday prior about why the bill was a top priority, business opposition, and the hurdles to increasing trust in government in an under-resourced office. Comments, questions or suggestions? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
32 minutes | May 3, 2019
Preckwinkle vows to redouble efforts to phase out cash bond as 3rd term begins
After her stunning defeat in the mayoral race, Toni Preckwinkle is in the unusual position of returning to two positions of major executive power – the President of the Cook County board and Chair of the Cook County Democratic Party. Weakened? Sure, but she’s got a bigger, more progressive democratic bloc on the board than ever and a couple more years atop the party. On this episode of The Daily Line’s Aldercast, we’ll talk about Preckwinkle’s priorities for the county –– criminal justice, the census, and the South Suburbs. We’ll also talk about a swirl of scandal at every level of government in Illinois, Kim Foxx, whether the Cook County Democratic Party will continue going after problematic judges, and more. Questions, comments or suggestions? Email email@example.com.
67 minutes | May 1, 2019
‘I never imagined we would have 6’ — Chicago DSA celebrates City Council victories and plans for future as power center
You might’ve noticed more and more rose emojis proliferating on Twitter. The red flower, long a socialist symbol, calls back to strikes in the early 1900s and a speech by feminist socialist Rose Schneiderman, who said workers deserved bread and roses – both the necessities of life and the luxuries for them to enjoy it. Since Bernie Sanders’ 2016 presidential campaign, national membership in Democratic Socialists of America has exploded from a few thousand in scattered local chapters to more than 60,000 members nationally. The election of six socialists to City Council, unsurprisingly, has heads turning. On this episode of The Daily Line’s Aldercast, we’ll talk to Lucie Macias, the co-chair of the Chicago chapter of the DSA, about how the group decided who to endorse (and who not to), its expectations for the new City Council term, rent control, and Bernie Bros. Comments, questions or requests? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
45 minutes | Apr 19, 2019
Why the Chicagoland Chamber believes the city needs more mega-developments
Fresh off the bruising fight over the Lincoln Yards and the 78 mega-developments, the Chicagoland Chamber is throwing its weight behind another proposal that has the potential to reshape a wide swath of the city. It’s called One Central, and could add 20,000 square feet of new development and a shiny new transportation hub to the South Loop. Developers say it would add billions to the city’s coffers and thousands of jobs – without the use of Tax Increment Financing (TIF). On this episode of The Daily Line’s Aldercast, Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce President and Chief Executive Officer Jack Lavin talks about the city’s growth, his decades in city and state politics, and his hopes for Mayor-elect Lori Lightfoot’s administration. Comments, questions or suggestions? Email email@example.com.
56 minutes | Mar 29, 2019
Diagnosing Chicago’s affordable housing shortage
As we approach Tuesday’s election, we know two things thing for sure: We’ll have Chicago’s first black female mayor and she’ll have a full plate. Between a looming pension payment, a summer typically associated with higher crime, and several pending contracts, it won’t be easy for whoever gets sworn in. One issue that’s top of mind for activists, advocates, and both mayoral candidates is housing affordability in Chicago. On this episode of The Daily Line’s Aldercast, we speak with Geoff Smith, the Executive Director of the Institute for Housing Studies at DePaul, about rent control, gentrification and what the next mayor can do to make the city more affordable and less segregated. Questions, comments or suggestions? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
48 minutes | Feb 25, 2019
How will the next mayor handle affordable housing — what will the next contracts for teachers, police look like
The importance of affordable housing, new contracts for police and teachers contracts, ethics, and the role of polling took center stage at an event co-hosted by The Daily Line and the Metropolitan Planning Council on Feb. 19 to help voters make sense of the upcoming election. The Daily Line’s Heather Cherone moderated, while TDL reporter A.D. Quig, WBBM political editor Craig Dellimore, and pollster Jason McGrath, who is working on Lori Lightfoot’s campaign, all participated. One thing was certain — the number of candidates, the complexity of the issues and cascading headlines were leading to plenty of uncertainty. Questions, comments or suggestions? Email email@example.com.
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