Guest View: Investment needed to improve higher education in Illinois

https://ift.tt/2IK4gP7


The Democratic and Republican primaries are over, thankfully, for many of us. But as the candidates transition into a new gear of spending and inundating us with numbers and claims about each other, we should be closely watching what’s happening to our state’s higher education system.

We cannot escape the reality facing Illinois: People are leaving, in droves. The more our political leaders fight, the more uncertainty and angst is created, and the easier it is for talented workers and their families to find somewhere else to call home.

The same holds true for our college and university students, and sadly, it has for some time. As our state grinds further into fiscal disaster, what’s left behind is a sad tale of exodus:

* In 2002, 29 percent of our college-going high school graduates enrolled out of state. By 2016, that number had grown to 46 percent — nearly half of eligible Illinois high school grads choosing to go anywhere but Illinois for college.

* In 2011, almost 880,000 students were enrolled in Illinois higher education. Just five years later, in 2016, that number had dropped by 100,000 students, or nearly a 12 percent drop.

Why are our college students fleeing? Higher education critics, from policymakers to parents, will claim the cost is too high and our campuses haven’t adapted quickly enough to our ever-evolving economy. One other important number is critically important here: Once adjusted for inflation, state funding for higher education operations (not including pensions) has dropped by $1 billion over the last 15 years.

We cannot pretend that a significant disinvestment in our crown jewel of higher education has not contributed to the challenges of cost, innovation and, most important, a growing perception that students can fare better elsewhere. These draconian cuts, to both student aid and institutions, have created a de facto policy that encouraged our best and brightest to leave. And with every student that leaves — almost 170,000 of them over that five-year period — it should be no surprise that our Illinois higher education rankings slipped from the top to the middle of the pack.

Understand the practical and wide-reaching effects of the exodus of college students. Many college-aged students who do come here from other states for their degrees are just visiting. We don’t have the warm weather of Florida, or the mountain hiking of Colorado, or the lure that other states can offer. So if we cannot keep our students here, and we lose others who graduate and head back home, where will we get our next generation of nurses and doctors, classroom teachers, and skilled engineers to plan our roads and infrastructure?

Our high-quality system of community colleges and public and private universities provide many wonderful choices for Illinois residents now, guides them through completing a degree at nationally high rate, and could do so much more if state government embraced the possibilities instead of thwarting them. The 2.5-year budget stalemate, where higher education was a primary victim, provided a window into the harm done to our students and our institutions.

Illinois colleges and universities employ 175,000 Illinoisans and produce an annual economic benefit of $50 billion, far more return on the state’s investment of less than $2 billion. Our campuses outperform virtually any other area of state investment because of outside private and federal investment, further driven by the high priority businesses place on developing and utilizing a skilled workforce when they invest and locate here.

We need a statewide comprehensive road map for improving higher education that recognizes we have helped create this problem, and can only turn it around through real investment and improved performance. I’m encouraged a bipartisan group of legislators has come together to work on this road map. My challenge to all of our leaders is to make higher education a priority on the campaign trail and at the Capitol, and not just a talking point in the latest ad buy.

Dave Tretter is president of the Federation of Independent Illinois Colleges and Universities.

01-All No Sub,02-Pol,03-HL 20,04-Pens 20,08-RK,12-Coll,16-Econ,22-Talk,HE 2 Coalition,HE Blog,RK Client

Region: Springfield,Feeds,Opinion,Region: Central,City: Springfield

via Opinion – The State Journal-Register https://ift.tt/1wGYaRW

April 10, 2018 at 08:16PM

Advertisements
Guest View: Investment needed to improve higher education in Illinois

Higher Ed Awaits Budget Decision

https://ift.tt/2pO03BQ

Higher education leaders are watching Springfield closely, as lawmakers consider what to do about next year’s budget. Southern Illinois University President Randy Dunn says there are lots of political options on the table. "You hear discussion that maybe there could be a full budget bill, and then the governor would have to decide what he wants to do with that," Dunn said. "Would the governor once again veto a bill that he doesn’t like, as he heads into a re-election? I don’t know." Dunn says there is talk of a possible six-month budget that would get the state through the November election, and would require lawmakers to pass another spending bill mid-year. “That would be, maybe not the worst outcome in the world," he said. "I know no one wants to have that as the first go-to, but better something for six months than nothing else." He says after a two-year stalemate that ended last year, it’s critical to maintain funding for higher education going forward.

01-All No Sub,02-Pol,03-HL 20,04-Pens 20,08-RK,12-Coll,16-Econ,HE 2 Coalition,HE Blog

State,Region: Southern,Politics,City: Carbondale,Region: Carbondale

via Jennifer Fuller https://ift.tt/1eKjf7H

March 28, 2018 at 07:16AM

Higher Ed Awaits Budget Decision

Our college students are leaving Illinois in big numbers

http://ift.tt/2FUjpA9



Megan Carmean was one of the 31,477.

In 2016, the Leonore native left home to go away to college in Iowa. That same year, the number of Illinois residents enrolled in an out-of-state four-year institution was 31,477, the Illinois Board of Higher Education reports.

That number was 16,987 students in 2000. Illinois had the second greatest net loss of residents to other states’ colleges in 2016, the board reports.

Carmean, a sophomore, is studying nursing at Luther College in Iowa. She said she enjoys Iowa more than Illinois, and is not sure if she’ll come back after college.

“I like it up here as far as the atmosphere,” she said.

It depends on the job offers she gets after graduation, but she plans on staying around her current area, and she realizes that’s two years away.

When Mike Phillips went to college in the 1980s, it was much cheaper to stay in Illinois, the Illinois Valley Community College instructor said.

Phillips is on the Illinois Board of Higher Education Faculty Advisory Council, so he’s aware of how many students are leaving the state.

Cost is an issue

Addison Lijewski, a 2015 La Salle-Peru Township High School graduate, applied to the University of Missouri on a whim, but she said she ended up falling in love with the college.

And guess what? It was cheaper for her to attend the Missouri college as an out-of-state resident than it was for her to attend the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign as an Illinois resident.

Now that she’s a Missouri resident, her tuition, roughly $11,000, is cheaper than any four-year public Illinois college, according to CollegeIllinois.org.

Cost is a huge factor when it comes to these students leaving Illinois, Phillips said.

Students have the perception it’s no more or less expensive to attend an out-of-state college, Phillips said.

“These out-of-state universities have been actively recruiting Illinois students,” he said, referring to programs such as the Midwest Student Exchange Program, which gives students discounts to certain colleges.

St. Bede Academy senior Maggie Daluga was offered academic scholarships that will cut the tuition in half for both the colleges she’s considering: Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta or the University of Pittsburgh, the Princeton resident said.

She said her tuition at either college will be cheaper than it would be at the U. of I.

State problems create issues

Although the two-year budget impasse had immediate and longtime consequences, IVCC worked toward making sure students knew the college supported them. said IVCC President Jerry Corcoran.

When MAP grant funding from the state was uncertain, IVCC was one of a handful of community colleges to cover the costs for students, he said.

It will be a long time before the state can recover, but he said he’s optimistic for the future.

Rumors of colleges closing from the state budget stalemate, may have deterred students from staying in Illinois, Phillips said.

When students are searching for colleges to attend, they’re not going to attend a college they heard might possibly close, he said.

What problems come from them leaving?

There’s no data to support this, but Phillips said he worries that if a student is already thinking about going to Iowa instead of Illinois State University, the student probably wonders, ‘why should I go to IVCC?’

IVCC’s credits transfer just fine out of state, he said.

Many of the students who leave to get their four-year degree outside the state don’t come back, he said.

JP Perona, a 2012 St. Bede graduate from La Salle, said he recently was offered a job in Chicago, but he doesn’t see himself returning to live in the Illinois Valley. Perona attended the University of San Diego in California.

If we want our economy to grow, we’ve got to grow colleges because these institutions provide an economic base, Phillips said.

There’s a correlation between colleges losing financial support and seeing students leave the state, and keeping students in Illinois is an investment in the state’s future, he said.

When asked if this vast number of students leaving will have an effect on the local economy, La Salle-Peru Township High School superintendent Steven Wrobleski said this could affect our ability to find a qualified workforce, and he also mentioned “brain drain,” which is when educated or highly trained people leave particular areas.

Are there ways to combat the issue?

The council Phillips is on talks about fixing the problem, but the issue comes down to getting college funding back from the state, he said.

Many local students who left Illinois said their major or specific program they entered into was a deciding factor. Does state funding have anything do with this?

“As funding has been cut, universities have had to cut back on programs. Generally, they cut the size of programs,” Phillips said.

When programs get smaller, they are less able to market themselves and can have less appeal to students, which is difficult to change if funding stays low, he said.

“It results in the impression that programs do not exist, when, in many cases, they are just very small,” he said.

High schools look out for students

“Whatever is best for them, that’s what we want,” said St. Bede guidance director Theresa Bernabei.

The school looks out for what is best academically and financially for students.

“Our role in preparing and planning for college is to help students find what they consider to be the best fit for them academically, socially, emotionally, etc.” said Andy Berlinski, principal at Princeton High School.

Ali Braboy can be reached at (815) 220-6931 and countyreporter@newstrib.com. Follow her on Twitter @NT_PutnamCo.







01-All No Sub,02-Pol,03-HL 20,04-Pens 20,08-RK,12-Coll,19-Legal,26-Delivered,16-Econ,HE 2 Coalition,HE Blog

La Salle,Feeds

via http://www.newstrib.com – RSS Results of type article http://ift.tt/2jxCixM

March 22, 2018 at 10:24AM

Our college students are leaving Illinois in big numbers

SIU to consider Springfield for law school satellite office

http://ift.tt/2ptkHau


Southern Illinois University will explore putting a satellite office for its law school in downtown Springfield or Edwardsville, a university official said Tuesday.

The university’s board of trustees encouraged the SIU president to look into the matter by commissioning a market study, which would help determine which city is a better fit for the law school, said John Charles, SIU’s director of government and public affairs.

“It would not be both (cities). It would be one or the other,” Charles said.

A higher education presence in downtown Springfield has been part of the discussion for what should become of the vacant downtown block that once contained the YWCA. Mayor Jim Langfelder wants a park for the space, though Downtown Springfield Inc., is asking for more “mixed-use development.”

Charles said having a law school satellite in Springfield is not necessarily related to Langfelder’s plans for the Y-block. He also said having a Springfield law school is not a new discussion, Charles said.

“The idea of a law school presence in downtown Springfield of some kind has been talked about for 25 years or more,” Charles said.

In 2002, state lawmakers proposed opening a law school through the University of Illinois Springfield to help retain more state workers and give central Illinoisans easier access to a law school.

Charles said SIU has already tapped into the “great medical community in Springfield with the SIU School of Medicine,” which opened here in 1970.

The law school building on the Carbondale campus would remain, but a satellite office would help the school expand and further its regional presence, Charles said.

If the satellite office were to be based in Springfield, access to state government activities at the Capitol would be a big benefit, Charles said. Workers within state agencies who want to get a law degree also could be prospective students, he added.

A satellite office would require classroom space and a law library.

“We are moving quickly as we can,” Charles said. “We don’t have a definite start date (for the market study). Our next steps are to get this market study done and to have more formal conversations with city and county leaders about creating this satellite.”

The SIU School of Law has more than 300 students.

Contact Crystal Thomas: 788-1528, crystal.thomas@sj-r.com, twitter.com/crystalclear224.

01-All No Sub,02-Pol,03-HL 20,04-Pens 20,06-RK Email 11,08-RK,12-Coll,19-Legal,E Chris-Trav,E Stone,HE 2 Coalition,HE Blog

Region: Springfield,Feeds,News,Sang,Region: Central,City: Springfield

via News – The State Journal-Register http://ift.tt/1FxXeUz

March 20, 2018 at 05:21PM

SIU to consider Springfield for law school satellite office

SIU to consider Springfield for law school satellite office

http://ift.tt/2ptkHau


Southern Illinois University will explore putting a satellite office for its law school in downtown Springfield or Edwardsville, a university official said Tuesday.

The university’s board of trustees encouraged the SIU president to look into the matter by commissioning a market study, which would help determine which city is a better fit for the law school, said John Charles, SIU’s director of government and public affairs.

“It would not be both (cities). It would be one or the other,” Charles said.

A higher education presence in downtown Springfield has been part of the discussion for what should become of the vacant downtown block that once contained the YWCA. Mayor Jim Langfelder wants a park for the space, though Downtown Springfield Inc., is asking for more “mixed-use development.”

Charles said having a law school satellite in Springfield is not necessarily related to Langfelder’s plans for the Y-block. He also said having a Springfield law school is not a new discussion, Charles said.

“The idea of a law school presence in downtown Springfield of some kind has been talked about for 25 years or more,” Charles said.

In 2002, state lawmakers proposed opening a law school through the University of Illinois Springfield to help retain more state workers and give central Illinoisans easier access to a law school.

Charles said SIU has already tapped into the “great medical community in Springfield with the SIU School of Medicine,” which opened here in 1970.

The law school building on the Carbondale campus would remain, but a satellite office would help the school expand and further its regional presence, Charles said.

If the satellite office were to be based in Springfield, access to state government activities at the Capitol would be a big benefit, Charles said. Workers within state agencies who want to get a law degree also could be prospective students, he added.

A satellite office would require classroom space and a law library.

“We are moving quickly as we can,” Charles said. “We don’t have a definite start date (for the market study). Our next steps are to get this market study done and to have more formal conversations with city and county leaders about creating this satellite.”

The SIU School of Law has more than 300 students.

Contact Crystal Thomas: 788-1528, crystal.thomas@sj-r.com, twitter.com/crystalclear224.

01-All No Sub,02-Pol,03-HL 20,04-Pens 20,06-RK Email 11,08-RK,12-Coll,19-Legal,E Chris-Trav,E Stone,HE 2 Coalition,HE Blog

Region: Springfield,Feeds,News,Sang,Region: Central,City: Springfield

via News – The State Journal-Register http://ift.tt/1FxXeUz

March 20, 2018 at 05:21PM

SIU to consider Springfield for law school satellite office

Morning Spin: Civic Federation calls for taxing retirement income, maybe closing universities to balance state budget

http://ift.tt/2FZbVrc

Welcome to Clout Street: Morning Spin, our weekday feature to catch you up with what’s going on in government and politics from Chicago to Springfield. Subscribe here.

Topspin

A nonpartisan watchdog group is recommending that Illinois start taxing retirement income and study closing or consolidating university campuses to deal with its budget woes.

Unveiled days before Gov. Bruce Rauner is scheduled to deliver his budget next week, a report from the Civic Federation also suggests expanding sales taxes to services like dry cleaning, landscaping, boat docking and internet access. The gas tax, it says, should go up, too, to pay for construction projects.

While the state’s finances have begun to stabilize in the months since lawmakers passed a major income tax hike over Rauner’s veto, the group says tough choices must be made to fully dig out of the hole.

To achieve that, the group recommends limiting government spending growth to 2.1 percent a year; reducing the amount of penalties the state must pay for falling behind on bills; applying Illinois income taxes to federally taxable retirement income; and expanding the sales tax.

The Civic Federation also suggests placing a constitutional amendment on the ballot to allow for changes to the state’s employee pension system; requiring Chicago Public Schools and all other districts to pick up the cost of teacher pensions; and streamlining government, including studying the possibility of closing or consolidating university campuses. 

Also on the group’s list is establishing a rainy day fund and approving a major infrastructure construction program. It would be paid for by an increase in the gasoline tax, as well as congestion taxes and levies based on how many miles a vehicle has traveled. 

“Building political will to implement more painful tax and fiscal policies will be difficult, but it is necessary in order to secure Illinois’ financial future,” Civic Federation President Laurence Msall said in a statement.  “Recent state-issued documents offered potential investors no assurances that Illinois will enact budgets in future years. This is troubling, as another impasse could wipe out any modest progress made in recent months and leave us with increasingly grim financial decisions.” (Monique Garcia)

 

What’s on tap

*Mayor Rahm Emanuel will speak at an energy efficiency conference and attend a 911 center media briefing on Chicago’s response to the snowstorm.

*Gov. Bruce Rauner will attend a chamber of commerce dinner in Carterville in southern Illinois.

*Democratic U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth will visit the veterans home in downstate Quincy that was the site of the 2015 Legionnaires’ outbreak.

*Snow. Cook County courts and CPS are closed.

 

From the notebook

*“Civic-minded citizens” and IL-3: The Illinois Republican Party failed to find someone to run in the 3rd Congressional District, and it also failed to challenge the nominating petitions of the lone candidate who did. Those failures all but ensure that the GOP nominee will be Arthur Jones, a Holocaust denier and perennial candidate who’d been knocked off the ballot before.

To hear the seven members of the Illinois congressional delegation tell it, however, the blame lies elsewhere. The GOP delegation put out a statement Thursday condemning Jones’ views and candidacy. But the statement also noted the lack of “civic-minded citizens” coming forward to run for the seat (it’s currently held by Democratic U.S. Rep. Dan Lipinski, and he’s being challenged by political newcomer Marie Newman of LaGrange).

Here’s the thing in full: “The Illinois Republican Congressional delegation strongly and unequivocally condemns the racist views and candidacy of Arthur Jones in the 3rd Congressional District. This is not who we are as a party or as a country and we urge civic-minded citizens to get involved in the political process to prevent non-party extremists like Jones from hijacking nominations.”

It was signed by U.S. Reps. Peter Roskam, 6th District; Mike Bost, 12th District; Rodney Davis, 13th District; Randy Hultgren, 14th District; John Shimkus, 15th District; Adam Kinzinger, 16th District; and Darin LaHood, 18th District.

*Raining on Trump’s parade: Democratic U.S. Rep. Brad Schneider of Deerfield introduced a bill Thursday meant to throw cold water on President Donald Trump’s proposal for a large-scale military parade in Washington.

Schneider’s “Preparedness Before Parades Act” would require the U.S. secretary of defense to certify to Congress that such a spectacle would not hurt the military’s readiness or budget. The parade seemed “conceived only to pleasure the whims of the president,” Schneider said.

His bill comes after Democratic U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth on Wednesday blasted the prospect of a military parade, tweeting: “Our troops in danger overseas don’t need a show of bravado, they need steady leadership, long-term funding and resources so they can stay safe while protecting and defending our nation.” (Katherine Skiba) 

*A casino, Frank Sinatra and “Jaws”: Comedian John Mulaney weighed in on Illinois’ gambling laws during a recent appearance on “Late Night with Seth Meyers.”

Mulaney recounts his father taking him to the casino in Aurora to see Frank Sinatra in 1993, for his 11th birthday.

“They basically tied a boat far enough away by rope that you could have legal gambling in the state of Illinois,” Mulaney said.

“You know the length of the roast on the chain in ‘Jaws’? Those idiots with the roast? That’s how far away the gambling boat was,” he said. “But you could gamble, and it was a casino. And it’s gone now, it didn’t work. It was illegal.”

Of course, it wasn’t illegal. And while the boat is gone, there is a casino in Aurora.

*Quick spin: Cook County assessor candidate Fritz Kaegi was endorsed by North Side U.S. Rep. Mike Quigley, Southeast Side Ald. Susan Sadlowski Garza and Democracy for America, the organization foounded by former presidential candidate Howard Dean.

*On the “Sunday Spin”: Chicago Tribune political reporter Rick Pearson’s guests are Kaegi; Tribune statehouse reporter Monique Garcia and Michael Golden, author of “Unlock Congress” who teaches government and democracy at Arizona State University. The “Sunday Spin” airs from 7 to 9 a.m. on WGN-AM 720.

 

What we’re writing

*Rauner won’t give “another nickel” to former ally Illinois Policy Institute.

*Facing lack of money, Kennedy says Democratic voters “quite capable of learning on their own.”

*Caught by a red light camera? The same violation could get you a ticket in one suburb, but not another.

*DCFS worker beaten while on duty last year has died, officials say.

 

What we’re reading

*U.S. Supreme Court to hear arguments this month in major union case sparked by Rauner.

*“Dibs” folding chairs, designed by artists, auctioned for charity.

*John Mahoney was determined to avoid the spotlight.

 

Follow the money

*Track Illinois campaign contributions in real time here and here.

 

Beyond Chicago

*The stock market drops again.

*Shutdown drama continues in Washington.

*Ben Carson’s first year in Trump’s Cabinet.

*The Olympics get going.

01-All No Sub,02-Pol,03-HL 20,04-Pens 20,08-RK,12-Coll,16-Econ,HE 2 Coalition,HE Blog,E TFIC

Chi,Feeds

via Home – Chicago Tribune http://ift.tt/1LjWzdx

February 9, 2018 at 05:33AM

Morning Spin: Civic Federation calls for taxing retirement income, maybe closing universities to balance state budget

Morning Spin: Civic Federation calls for taxing retirement income, maybe closing universities to balance state budget

http://ift.tt/2FZbVrc

Welcome to Clout Street: Morning Spin, our weekday feature to catch you up with what’s going on in government and politics from Chicago to Springfield. Subscribe here.

Topspin

A nonpartisan watchdog group is recommending that Illinois start taxing retirement income and study closing or consolidating university campuses to deal with its budget woes.

Unveiled days before Gov. Bruce Rauner is scheduled to deliver his budget next week, a report from the Civic Federation also suggests expanding sales taxes to services like dry cleaning, landscaping, boat docking and internet access. The gas tax, it says, should go up, too, to pay for construction projects.

While the state’s finances have begun to stabilize in the months since lawmakers passed a major income tax hike over Rauner’s veto, the group says tough choices must be made to fully dig out of the hole.

To achieve that, the group recommends limiting government spending growth to 2.1 percent a year; reducing the amount of penalties the state must pay for falling behind on bills; applying Illinois income taxes to federally taxable retirement income; and expanding the sales tax.

The Civic Federation also suggests placing a constitutional amendment on the ballot to allow for changes to the state’s employee pension system; requiring Chicago Public Schools and all other districts to pick up the cost of teacher pensions; and streamlining government, including studying the possibility of closing or consolidating university campuses. 

Also on the group’s list is establishing a rainy day fund and approving a major infrastructure construction program. It would be paid for by an increase in the gasoline tax, as well as congestion taxes and levies based on how many miles a vehicle has traveled. 

“Building political will to implement more painful tax and fiscal policies will be difficult, but it is necessary in order to secure Illinois’ financial future,” Civic Federation President Laurence Msall said in a statement.  “Recent state-issued documents offered potential investors no assurances that Illinois will enact budgets in future years. This is troubling, as another impasse could wipe out any modest progress made in recent months and leave us with increasingly grim financial decisions.” (Monique Garcia)

 

What’s on tap

*Mayor Rahm Emanuel will speak at an energy efficiency conference and attend a 911 center media briefing on Chicago’s response to the snowstorm.

*Gov. Bruce Rauner will attend a chamber of commerce dinner in Carterville in southern Illinois.

*Democratic U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth will visit the veterans home in downstate Quincy that was the site of the 2015 Legionnaires’ outbreak.

*Snow. Cook County courts and CPS are closed.

 

From the notebook

*“Civic-minded citizens” and IL-3: The Illinois Republican Party failed to find someone to run in the 3rd Congressional District, and it also failed to challenge the nominating petitions of the lone candidate who did. Those failures all but ensure that the GOP nominee will be Arthur Jones, a Holocaust denier and perennial candidate who’d been knocked off the ballot before.

To hear the seven members of the Illinois congressional delegation tell it, however, the blame lies elsewhere. The GOP delegation put out a statement Thursday condemning Jones’ views and candidacy. But the statement also noted the lack of “civic-minded citizens” coming forward to run for the seat (it’s currently held by Democratic U.S. Rep. Dan Lipinski, and he’s being challenged by political newcomer Marie Newman of LaGrange).

Here’s the thing in full: “The Illinois Republican Congressional delegation strongly and unequivocally condemns the racist views and candidacy of Arthur Jones in the 3rd Congressional District. This is not who we are as a party or as a country and we urge civic-minded citizens to get involved in the political process to prevent non-party extremists like Jones from hijacking nominations.”

It was signed by U.S. Reps. Peter Roskam, 6th District; Mike Bost, 12th District; Rodney Davis, 13th District; Randy Hultgren, 14th District; John Shimkus, 15th District; Adam Kinzinger, 16th District; and Darin LaHood, 18th District.

*Raining on Trump’s parade: Democratic U.S. Rep. Brad Schneider of Deerfield introduced a bill Thursday meant to throw cold water on President Donald Trump’s proposal for a large-scale military parade in Washington.

Schneider’s “Preparedness Before Parades Act” would require the U.S. secretary of defense to certify to Congress that such a spectacle would not hurt the military’s readiness or budget. The parade seemed “conceived only to pleasure the whims of the president,” Schneider said.

His bill comes after Democratic U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth on Wednesday blasted the prospect of a military parade, tweeting: “Our troops in danger overseas don’t need a show of bravado, they need steady leadership, long-term funding and resources so they can stay safe while protecting and defending our nation.” (Katherine Skiba) 

*A casino, Frank Sinatra and “Jaws”: Comedian John Mulaney weighed in on Illinois’ gambling laws during a recent appearance on “Late Night with Seth Meyers.”

Mulaney recounts his father taking him to the casino in Aurora to see Frank Sinatra in 1993, for his 11th birthday.

“They basically tied a boat far enough away by rope that you could have legal gambling in the state of Illinois,” Mulaney said.

“You know the length of the roast on the chain in ‘Jaws’? Those idiots with the roast? That’s how far away the gambling boat was,” he said. “But you could gamble, and it was a casino. And it’s gone now, it didn’t work. It was illegal.”

Of course, it wasn’t illegal. And while the boat is gone, there is a casino in Aurora.

*Quick spin: Cook County assessor candidate Fritz Kaegi was endorsed by North Side U.S. Rep. Mike Quigley, Southeast Side Ald. Susan Sadlowski Garza and Democracy for America, the organization foounded by former presidential candidate Howard Dean.

*On the “Sunday Spin”: Chicago Tribune political reporter Rick Pearson’s guests are Kaegi; Tribune statehouse reporter Monique Garcia and Michael Golden, author of “Unlock Congress” who teaches government and democracy at Arizona State University. The “Sunday Spin” airs from 7 to 9 a.m. on WGN-AM 720.

 

What we’re writing

*Rauner won’t give “another nickel” to former ally Illinois Policy Institute.

*Facing lack of money, Kennedy says Democratic voters “quite capable of learning on their own.”

*Caught by a red light camera? The same violation could get you a ticket in one suburb, but not another.

*DCFS worker beaten while on duty last year has died, officials say.

 

What we’re reading

*U.S. Supreme Court to hear arguments this month in major union case sparked by Rauner.

*“Dibs” folding chairs, designed by artists, auctioned for charity.

*John Mahoney was determined to avoid the spotlight.

 

Follow the money

*Track Illinois campaign contributions in real time here and here.

 

Beyond Chicago

*The stock market drops again.

*Shutdown drama continues in Washington.

*Ben Carson’s first year in Trump’s Cabinet.

*The Olympics get going.

01-All No Sub,02-Pol,03-HL 20,04-Pens 20,08-RK,12-Coll,16-Econ,HE 2 Coalition,HE Blog,E TFIC

Chi,Feeds

via Home – Chicago Tribune http://ift.tt/1LjWzdx

February 9, 2018 at 05:33AM

Morning Spin: Civic Federation calls for taxing retirement income, maybe closing universities to balance state budget