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Summary of Homer District 33C School Board Meeting February 23, 2016

Summary of Homer District 33C School Board Meeting February 23, 2016




Union representative Terri Pellizzari introduced the district’s 5th grade teachers. Math/Science teacher Kaleen DeFilippis and Reading/Language Arts teacher AnnMarie Corcoran spoke on behalf of the group and presented an overview of Hadley’s math workshop and reading program. They shared how teachers are incorporating differentiated instruction into their lesson plans, allowing for more student choice and student-led activities. They also thanked the board for equipping each student with a Chromebook. They use the instructional tools daily.


Non-certified union representatives Susan Koziarski and Stella Kapusta thanked the boar d for working diligently on contract negotiations. They ex- pressed a desire to continue the collaborative process. The 186-member union was recognized by the Labor Board last February.


The Board of Education approved the following personnel recommendations:


  • Amanda Planinsek – 2nd grade classroom teacher at Young School, effective for

the 2016-2017 school year

  • Virginia Killian Lund – 7th grade Reading and Language Arts teacher at Homer Junior High, effective February 8, 2016
  • Jake Ruckman – custodian at Schilling School, effective February 26, 2016


 Request for Leave of  Absence

  • Gloria Feeley – special education teacher at Schilling School, effective January

25, 2016 through February 23, 2016 and then on an as-needed basis

  • Kay Popadowski – paraprofessional at Schilling School, effective January 27, 2016 through March 8, 2016


 Employment Recommendations

  • Patricia Kulak – assignment change from registrar to payroll clerk at Administration, effective February 24, 2016
  • Angie McCarthy – assignment change from paraprofessional to clerical aide at Schilling School, effective February 24, 2016
  • Jeff Jonaitis – K-8 P.E. Differentiation Facilitator, effective for the remainder of the 2015-2016 school year and the 2016-2017 school year


Michael Portwood, Director of Human Resources, presented an update on preliminary student enrollment projections for the 2016-2017 school year. Based on a variety of internal and external factors, such as Will County birth rates, building permits and kindergarten registration numbers, administrators expect the district’s enrollment to remain fairly steady. Some decline is expected at the 4th and 5th grade levels while increases are expected at the 3rd and 6th grade levels. Overall, the dis- trict’s enrollment is expected to be 3,629 for the 2016-2017 school year — just shy of this year’s enrollment of 3,638 students.








Barb Wilson, President Angela Adolf, Vice President Amy Blank, Secretary

Ed Campins, Member Elizabeth Hitzeman, Member Debra Martin, Member

Russ Petrizzo, Member




Kathleen Robinson, Assistant Superintendent for Instruction, presented an update on the English Language Learners Support Programs. Homer 33C has seen a significant increase in the number of students who speak two languages at home. In 2010-11, the district enrolled 47 English Language Learners. This year, it enrolled 215. The largest native languages serviced in the district are Polish (72 students) and Arabic (51). School districts are required to offer Tran- sitional Bilingual Education (TBE) when there are 20 or more students from the same language background at a single school. Goodings Grove added a class

with a bilingual Polish teacher at the beginning of the 2014-15 school year. This year, Schilling School added a class with a bilingual Polish teacher and a class with a bilingual Arabic teacher. Because the district’s English Language Learn- ers population now surpasses 200 students, it is required by the Illinois State Board of Education to hire an EL Coordinator with ESL endorsement to oversee the programs. It is also required to hire teachers with ESL endorsements to ser- vice the Transitional Program of Instruction (TPI) students.  In order to remain compliant and to best serve students working toward English language profi- ciency, the district will be working to fill these positions for the 2016-17 school year.


The Board of Education reviewed and approved the facility use lease agree- ment with Homer Stallions for the use of the Parker Road site for Youth Foot- ball and Lacrosse.


The Board of Education adopted the 2016-2017 school calendar. The first day of school will be Monday, August 22nd. Institute Days will be Thursday, August 18th and Friday, August 19th. The last day of school will be Thursday, June 1st (if no emergency days are used).


The Board of Education reviewed and approved the job description for Secretary/Scheduler.


The Board of Education approved John Fencl’s notice of retirement.

The Next  Regular  School Board  Meeting  is  March 22, 2016  at  7: 30 p.m .

Source: Will County News

Feds seeking to create a new bureaucracy that would intervene in family life

The federal government is seeking to create a new bureaucracy that would intervene in family life and could even see state-appointed monitors conduct routine home visits to assess a child’s well-being.

The U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has published a draft document https://www.acf.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/ecd/draft_hhs_ed_family_engagement.pdf which outlines a plan that will treat families as “equal partners” in the raising of children, opening the door for government intrusion at all levels.

The paper describes how government employees will intervene to provide, “monitoring goals for the children at home and the classroom,” and that if parents are failing to meet the standards set, “evidence-based parenting interventions” will be made to, “ensure that children’s social-emotional and behavioral needs are met.”

The document reveals how the state will help oversee, “constant monitoring and communication regarding children’s social-emotional and behavioral health.”

The program bears the hallmarks of a controversial scheme in Scotland,http://reason.com/blog/2014/06/30/every-child-in-scotland-to-be-supervised set to take effect later this year, under which a “shadow parent” appointed by the government would monitor the upbringing of every child until the age of 18.

“The document argues that Big Brother needs to know about essentially everything, for the supposed benefit of the child it wants to “partner” in caring for,”writes Alex Newman. “Citing “research,” the policy statement claims that “the institutions where children learn cannot ignore family wellness if they want to … fulfill their mission to prepare children for school and academic success.” In other words, every aspect of family life is now fair game under the pretext of checking “family wellness.”

The document also extends the understanding of the word “family,” to include, “all the people who play a role in the child’s life,” a definition that could include not only teachers but government monitors.

In a related development,http://eagnews.org/feds-mull-screening-all-teens-for-depression/  the federal government is pushing for a task force to oversee a program under which pediatricians and doctors would, “screen all students over 12 years old regularly for depression and issue prescriptions or treatment as necessary.”

The program would increase the likelihood of teenagers being given dangerous antidepressant drugs such as Prozac and Lexapro.

The idea of children belonging not just to their parents but to a “community” that involves the state is a common theme of collectivist thinking.


Jim Komaniecki

www.RestoreAmericanLiberty.com, INC.
America Cannot Remain Free Unless Her Citizens Are Governed by Virtue

Source: Will County News

Press Release: North West Homer Fire District Looks to Enhance Services and Safety



Looks to Enhance Services and Safety for the Community


On Election Day, March 15, the Fire District will ask the residents for a 9-cent temporary increase in their Fire Service Fees.

What is needed are larger items that are not able to be funded by our current budget.  The Fire District continues to complete smaller repairs in an ongoing repair schedule.  The two stations were built in 1978 (38 Years Ago) and the Fire District has kept preventative and replacement maintenance at the highest possible point.  As the current equalized assessed value (EAV) of property has declined over the years so has the ability to continue some of these repairs.  Replacement, repair, and maintenance schedules have been extended because of budget money.  As we continue to budget (live) within our means items are still aging and many times parts are not available or difficult to find.  Items on the continued maintenance and replacement schedules:

  • Energy efficient environmental heating systems (HVAC).
  • Insulated overhead doors, 15 of the 17.
  • Replace original distressed windows to energy efficient windows.
  • Station emergency power generators.
  • Brick wall tuck pointing both stations.
  • New flat roofs both stations within 5 years.
  • Replace front of stations cracked and sinking concrete apparatus pads.
  • New Ambulance and Advanced Life Support Equipment (ALS).
  • A new water tanker to replace the 1984 current unit (32 years old).

The last referendum received for the Northwest Homer Fire District was in 1980, which was 35 years ago.


 If you have questions, you can contact

Chief Ken Vrba (kvrba@nwhomer.org),

Deputy Chief Todd Fonfara (tfonfara@nwhomer.org).  

Find us on Facebook or visit our website.

Source: Will County News

Mark kirk wants Obama to get Supreme court Appointment


From Rockford Teaparty 2/25/2016

As suspected Illinois’ Representative to the US Senate Mark Kirk wants the US Senate to hold hearings for Obama’s Supreme Court Appointment http://illinoisreview.typepad.com/illinoisreview/2016/02/republican-us-senator-mark-kirk-calls-for-supreme-court-nomination-and-hearing.html and he wants that appointment approved and will vote to approve it.  Appointing Obama’s pick will finalize the nature of the Supreme Court as an Activist Court that is out to change the way we live our lives in America.
download (1)
The court is currently made up of four activist liberal judges, two moderate judge and two conservative judges. This make up has threatened to unravel Constitutional Protections for the past 20 years from the right to own firearms to the ability of organizations and individuals to participate in free speech.

The power of the Supreme Court is that it doesn’t require the Constitutional legislative process to make laws and can rely on something called a Precedent which subsequently is accepted legally across the nation as defined law. This has brought our nation to a precipice over the last 50 years politically because of the ability of the Politically Motivated Courts to bypass the Constitutionally mandated method of creating laws. Laws are generally no longer fought over in Congress.

They are allowed to be manipulated by this 9 Justice Supreme Court. Thus the heavy emphasis in America on “Laws” and “Political Lawsuits.” Mark Kirk is up for election on March 15th and for him to be the Republican nominee for Illinois to the US Senate would mean that the each on of our votes is a referendum on this. If he is re-elected he has a mandate to vote for Obama’s Nominee to the Supreme Court fro his constituents. Its up to us to say no.

The question is: will you step forward to say no at the voting booth? If you will please reply to this email and tell me that you want to help elect Kirk’s opponent James Marter to the US Senate, and I will organize a group of us to go door to door with some materials to get out the vote prior to the March 15th Primary.   

Source: Will County News

Nation’s ICE Officers Detail How Marco Rubio Betrayed Them

Exclusive: On Eve of South Carolina Vote, Nation’s ICE Officers Detail How Marco Rubio Betrayed Them
by JULIA HAHN19 Feb 2016Washington D.C.
In an exclusive Q&A with Breitbart News, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Council President Chris Crane provides never-before-heard details about the 2013 Gang of Eight immigration fight that are likely to shake up an already tumultuous presidential race.

ICE Council President, Crane represents the nation’s approximately 5,800 frontline ICE officers, agents and personnel who are responsible for enforcing America’s immigration laws in all 50 states and U.S. territories. For the first time ever, Crane details his behind-the-scenes interactions with Florida Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL)79%
as Crane sought to protect the nation’s ICE officers and national security.

Crane was integral to stopping Sen. Rubio’s amnesty plan from passing the House—which, as Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL)80%
recently explained, “was a near-run thing.”

In his responses, Crane addresses an incident—first detailed by Breitbart News— in which Marco Rubio stood idly by as Crane was ejected from a Gang of Eight press conference for trying to ask a question on behalf of law enforcement.

Crane, an active duty ICE officer, has served as an officer for approximately 13 years and has been elected by his peers as the president of their union, as thus their voice on the national stage. Prior to joining ICE, Crane was a United States Marine.

What follows below are the complete, unedited responses of National ICE Council President Chris Crane.

BREITBART NEWS: It is well known that the Gang of Eight reached out to big business groups and amnesty groups in the process of writing the bill. When Sen. Rubio started writing his bill, did he reach out to you and other ICE officers for your ideas and input?

CRANE: Sen. Rubio never reached out to us. He surrounded himself with big business and amnesty groups, most of which were more interested in cheap labor and their own political agendas, and had no real concern for the welfare of immigrants, public safety, or the security of our nation. This while he ignored boots on the ground law enforcement officers who work within our broken immigration system every day and know better than any what’s needed to fix it. Common sense dictates that law enforcement be at the table when creating a bill like this. I think Sen. Rubio knew that, but actively chose to exclude us because of his own personal agenda.

BNN: Did Sen. Rubio meet with you voluntarily or did he have to be pressured into doing so at the last minute? Do you remember how you were ultimately able to secure the meeting? Did it take a long time?

CHRIS CRANE: It was definitely last minute as we met in the evening and they introduced the bill a few hours later that same night. It doesn’t get much more last minute than that. Was he pressured? I definitely think so. Not just by the public, but by some in the media as well. I think appearances on the Greta Van Susteren and Gov. Mike Huckabee shows are what tipped the balance and got us in. I think Gov. Huckabee was especially important in making the meeting happen, he was genuinely concerned that law enforcement was being excluded from the process and reached out to Sen. Rubio on our behalf. Many thanks to him for his attempts to help us.

BNN: What happened in the meeting? Did Sen. Rubio make any promises to you? Did he keep them?

CRANE: To start, even though I had requested to bring someone with me, Sen. Rubio denied the request and demanded that I come alone, which I still believe was highly peculiar and inappropriate.

He, of course, had what appeared to be his entire staff in his office with me. Most of his staff stood behind me as there was no place for them to sit. I raised a series of strong concerns with the bill, and as I raised each issue, Sen. Rubio would look to his staff and ask if that was what the bill said. Each time his staff agreed with my interpretation, and Sen. Rubio would shake his head in disbelief and indicate the bill had to be changed.

Sen. Rubio talked very specifically and very directly to me and his staff saying that the changes I suggested had to be made and specifically said that other Gang of Eight members wouldn’t be happy, but “Oh well.” Obviously the changes I suggested were all serious enforcement related issues, such as establishing a biometric entry-exit system, and cracking down on sex offenders, gang members, violent criminals and other criminal aliens.

When I walked out of his office that night I definitely thought the bill would undergo significant changes, but of course absolutely no changes were made.

BNN: Almost immediately after you met with Sen. Rubio, he introduced bill. Did it include any of the changes you asked for?

CRANE: Not one of the changes we suggested was made to the bill before Sen. Rubio introduced it.

All of his strong statements during our meeting about making the changes we suggested were apparently all just a dodge to get rid of me. It quickly became obvious why he didn’t permit me to take anyone with me to the meeting— he didn’t want any witnesses.

BNN: What happened during the press conference when you tried to ask Sen. Rubio and Chuck Schumer to take a question?

CRANE: I was polite, professional and respectful at all times. I didn’t interrupt anyone or cause a scene. The press was there, but Sen. Rubio and the rest of the Gang of Eight had also filled the large room with amnesty supporters and open borders people to cheer and applaud the Gang of Eight every time they said something. It was a real dog and pony show, sort of a circus.

Because it wasn’t your traditional closed press conference, it didn’t seem at all out of place to me, as an American citizen, to politely ask these elected officials a question about the legislation they were there to discuss. After all, I thought that Congress was the People’s House.

When the floor was opened to reporters to ask questions, I too politely raised my hand and asked, “Will you take a question from law enforcement?”

The amnesty folks immediately started making hateful comments like: you’re not welcome here, you need to leave, you have no right to speak here. A commotion took place on the stage with the Gang of Eight Senators. Sen. Rubio did look directly at me, and it appeared that he told Sen. Flake who I was.

Yet, despite having looked directly at me, Sen. Rubio did absolutely nothing to allow me to ask a question on behalf of the nation’s ICE officers, sheriffs and front line law enforcement.

I was able to ask the same question approximately two more times, before a Senate staffer accompanied by Capitol Hill police approached— demanding that they escort me out.

As I was escorted out by police, some within the amnesty groups applauded, laughed at me, and made hateful remarks. Once police escorted me outside of the main room, police informed me that I was not free to go and that I was to be taken somewhere for questioning.

As a law enforcement officer I knew that their actions met the legal standard for an arrest. At that point I demanded to know the charges against me and why I was being arrested. Television cameras, reporters and microphones came swooping in, and as they did the Senate staffer scurried away like a cockroach, leaving the Capitol Hill police on their own. I was allowed to leave the area, but I think it was only because the police were afraid to handcuff me with reporters filming them.

Senator Rubio and the Gang of Eight stood there and watched it all happen. Anyone of them could have jumped to the mic and yelled for the Senate staffer and the police to stop what they were doing to me, but none did. Sen. Rubio just stood their silently and watched it happen. I am told that Sen. Rubio later stated that I should not have been removed, but he never reached out to me to say that or apologize. To my knowledge he and the Gang of Eight never called for an investigation.

If it had been Mark Zuckerberg in the crowd asking questions the Gang of Eight Senators would have been tripping over themselves to kiss his backside, but as a normal citizen without the means to filter money into their campaigns they had me forced out by police.

BNN: What did you mean when you said in Congressional testimony: “Never before have I seen such contempt for law enforcement officers as what I’ve seen from the Gang of Eight”?

CRANE: As ICE officers, we wrote a letter to Congress expressing strong concerns with the Gang of Eight bill. The letter was endorsed by approximately 150 Sheriffs, to include Sheriff Sam Page of the National Sheriffs Association Border Security and Immigration Committee, as well the National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers and other law enforcement groups. Law enforcement officers were screaming for help from the Gang of Eight to make changes to the bill that would better provide for public safety and national security, but the Gang of Eight ignored all of them. The Gang of Eight not only ignored law enforcement, but actively fought to keep our input out. Only wealthy special interests like the Chamber of Commerce were permitted to be a part of the process. It was dirty D.C. politics at its worst.

BNN: Sen. Rubio touted his bill as “The Toughest Border Security & Enforcement Measures In U.S. History,” do you believe this was an honest representation of the bill?

CRANE: I think that’s absolutely false – there was no real promise or guarantee of stronger border security. The bill actually relinquished Congress’ authority to establish border security measures to the head of DHS. The head of DHS then had something like so six months to unilaterally develop a border security plan after the Gang of Eight bill passed.

So not only was there no real plan, but Sen. Rubio apparently thought that giving a presidentially appointed bureaucrat god-like powers over America’s immigration system was the answer to border security, this as other Republicans are fighting corrupt and incompetent bureaucrats in agencies like the IRS and Secret Service, not to mention the unlawful policies on immigration enforcement enacted by the current President. Rather than being touted as the toughest border security and enforcement plan in history, it could more accurately be touted as the worst.

BNN: Sen. Rubio pledged his bill would provide enforcement first, do you believe this was an honest representation the bill?

CRANE: No, I don’t believe it was an honest representation. Protection from deportation, a type of de facto amnesty, came almost immediately as the first step in a much broader amnesty like process provided in the bill. There was no real promise of border security in the bill, and the bill provided nothing for interior enforcement, but instead made legalization of criminal aliens and gang members a priority. People need to understand that this bill was written by pro-amnesty and open borders groups that have no concern for America’s borders or the safety of its communities. It shouldn’t surprise anyone that the bill was such a lopsided mess.

BNN: Sen. Rubio’s bill legalized sex offenders, drunk drivers, and others with criminal records. From an ICE officer’s perspective, how do you feel about his decision to legalize illegal immigrants with criminal convictions?

CRANE: Under the Obama Administration, ICE released estimates stating that approximately 2 million criminal aliens resided in the U.S. That’s 10 times the size the U.S. Marine Corps, at least when I was in. And I think ICE’s estimates are low.

People need to wake up. We can’t continue to keep taking millions of the world’s criminals without expecting serious repercussions to public safety and expense and burden to our legal system. Local and state jurisdictions are already overwhelmed by the criminal alien problem in our country. To turn this around and get things back under control, the U.S. must take the opposite approach. We must send criminals back to their countries. Especially sex offenders. I can’t understand why any lawmaker or special interest group would support legalizing sex offenders, but it shows how out of control the bill really was.

BNN: In your letter, you specifically protested that the bill would legalize gang members. As an ICE officer, how do you feel that this provision was left in the bill?

CRANE: It disgusts me. Violent street gangs were literally able to lobby Sen. Rubio and the Gang of Eight more effectively than law enforcement, they had more influence on the bill than we did. Gangs were able to get provisions in the law to protect themselves. It’s absolutely insane. What on earth are our lawmakers thinking? I think it’s this type of utterly stupid lawmaking that has caused most Americans to lose faith in Congress.

BNN: Sen. Rubio was on television and radio constantly promoting his bill, which was backed by powerful special interests. What did you learn about Sen. Rubio’s character during that time?

CRANE: In my opinion, Sen. Rubio absolutely knowingly mislead the American people regarding the bill. He was not telling the American public the truth about what that bill contained. Every American will have to determine on their own what that says about his character, but for me I don’t think I’ll ever be able to trust him again.

BNN: What is life like for ICE officers, and what has Sen. Rubio done to help or hurt quality of life for ICE officers?

CRANE: Sen. Rubio has never done anything to help ICE officers do their jobs. With less than 5,000 officers in the United States, Guam, Puerto Rico, Saipan and the U.S. Virgin Islands, Senator Rubio’s Gang of Eight bill provided zero additional ICE officers and zero new resources for ICE officers to enforce U.S. immigration law on the interior of the U.S. This as almost half of all immigration violators entered the U.S. legally and overstayed their visas, so they would have never come in contact with the Border Patrol. So with a force half the size of the Los Angeles Police Department, ICE is tasked with apprehending and deporting over 11 million illegal aliens spread across the entire U.S.

But Sen. Rubio and the Gang of Eight gave ICE no additional resources. Why? Because they don’t want interior enforcement. Or I should say the Chamber of Commerce and other special interests involved in writing Sen. Rubio’s bill don’t want interior enforcement.

Last year, ICE was ranked 314th—or dead last— in morale among 314 federal agencies surveyed by the Office of Personnel Management. Survey data for this year indicates morale at ICE continued to drop this year, even though ICE ranked 318 out of 320 agencies surveyed.

ICE is literally crumbling from within, but efforts by Sen. Rubio and the Gang of Eight were clearly more focused on legalizing criminals than assisting this agency in turmoil.

BNN: Could you compare the Gang of Eight’s treatment of powerful special interests to the Gang of Eight’s treatment of law enforcement?

CRANE: Law enforcement was treated like absolute trash. Republicans and Democrats in the Gang of Eight saw law enforcement as the enemy.

We were the only ones really positioned to tell America that their bill was one big lie that wouldn’t fix our immigration problems but make them worse.

They did everything they could to keep us out of the picture and silent. Special interests on the other hand were treated like kings. It was all about money.

If we had the money, like the Chamber of Commerce and Mark Zuckerberg, we could buy America an immigration law that put the safety of both the American public and immigrants first, but we don’t. So it looks like America will have to settle for the open borders and cheap labor plan the Chamber of Commerce is buying.

BNN: Has Sen. Rubio ever reached out to apologize to you for any of his broken promises during Gang of Eight? Has he ever reached out to you to get ICE officer input for his presidential campaign?

CRANE: Sen. Rubio has never apologized for excluding law enforcement from having input on the bill, or for failing to make the changes discussed at our meeting, or for what happened at the press conference, and he has certainly never sought our input for his presidential campaign or anything else related to the immigration problems our nation now faces.

BNN: What do you make of the fact that some of the same people who funded Sen. Rubio’s immigration plan are now funding his campaign?

CRANE: I think it’s clear that open borders and amnesty proponents are trying to buy their way into the White House. I think that if elected President, Sen. Rubio’s Gang of Eight bill will be reintroduced and this time it will pass. Voters beware.

BNN: Has Sen Rubio done anything to earn back trust of law enforcement officers?

CRANE: No, not according to anyone in law enforcement that I’ve spoken with. Most law enforcement in areas hit hard by the criminal alien problem continue to resent what he attempted to do in the Gang of Eight bill and his exclusion of law enforcement from its development.

BNN: Sen. Rubio has said in several settings that he would not immediately terminate DACA or rescind amnesty papers already issued– what is your response to that as an ICE officer?

CRANE: DACA has resulted in tens of thousands of children being thrown across the U.S. border. Countless numbers of these children have been sexually assaulted, murdered or become trafficking victims – and they just keep coming.

If Sen. Rubio were truly concerned with protecting these kids, he would immediately terminate DACA and remove this carrot that continues to draw these children and place them at risk. Many politicians just don’t seem to get it: enforcing our laws saves lives; it is the truly humanitarian approach to our immigration problems.


Source: Will County News

BLM are slamming the Nashville Public Library’s racist ban from holding meetings that excluded whites

Black Lives Matter slams public library’s ban on blacks-only meetings as racist


– The Washington Times – Monday, February 22, 2016

Black Lives Matter activists are slamming the Nashville Public Library’s anti-discrimination policies as racist after they were banned from holding meetings that excluded white people.

Library officials said all meetings at their taxpayer-funded facilities must be open to the general public and news media, but that has outraged members of Black Lives Matter’s Nashville chapter, who have accused the local government of white supremacy, The Tennessean reported.

In this Dec. 4, 2014 file photo, protestors in Boston hold up signs while chanting "Black Lives Matter" during a demonstration against the deaths of two unarmed black men at the hands of white police officers in New York City and Ferguson, Mo. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa, file) ** FILE **

“Due to white supremacy in our local government, this week’s BLM General Body Meeting location has changed,” reads a notice postedFriday on the group’s Facebook page. “BLM General Body meetings are open to black and non-black people of color only.”

Joshua Crutchfield, a Black Lives Matter organizer, said the group’s only rule is that white people are excluded from attending their meetings. They had several meetings scheduled at the North Branch public library but decided to move to Dixon Memorial United Methodist Church in North Nashville out of protest.

“We were surprised about it, but we shouldn’t have been,” Mr. Crutchfield told The Tennessean of the library’s decision. “We kind of know the history about how this goes in this country. … It’s definitely something we want to make public to tell people what’s going on in the city.”

Sean Braisted, a spokesman for Mayor Megan Barry, said the library system has a policy and that it enforced it properly.

“The issue doesn’t have anything to do with the politics [of Black Lives Matter],” he told The Tennessean. “It’s simply a matter of an open-door, open-meeting policy, and that’s what the library has adhered to.”

But local Black Lives Matter leaders stressed the importance of providing a safe space for members.

“The Nashville Chapter of BLM has this policy in place to center the voices and experiences of people of color that have historically been excluded or segregated within supposedly public spaces,” a statement from the organization reads, The Tennessean reported. “[W]e view these spaces as integral to healing and community building, particularly to those who have experienced racialized violence and ardently maintain this policy as imperative to the work and mission of BLM.”


Source: Will County News

Illinois’ Lesson for Millennials

Kathleen Headshot 2

Illinois’ Lesson for Millennials

By Kathleen Murphy


A new political generation has arrived: the millennials. Joel Kotkin, in a recent commentary, stated, “A Pew poll finds that 43 percent of millennials have positive connotations about the word “socialism…” So, we are seeing the embrace of an openly socialist septuagenarian by a generation that, within a decade, will dominate our electorate and outnumber baby boomers as soon as 2020.”


As soon as the feeling returns to your fingertips, I want you to reach out to every college student you know. Tell them to text, Tweet, Snapchat or YikYak (it’s a thing – look it up) anyone they know at a state university in Illinois to ask them how big, liberal government is working out for them.


It might be hard. A lot of the kids they used to know at Illinois state colleges aren’t attending anymore because their MAP Grant funding just got cut. After over a decade of exclusively liberal rule and wanton government spending, the state’s ability to pay its bills and balance its budget has deteriorated.


Thanks to the “progressive” leadership of the past decade, the future of the state’s public universities, a door to upward mobility for tens of thousands of teens every year, is threatened.


State universities have lost students in droves because of a shrinking pool of high school graduates and competition from cheaper-tuition schools across the state line. Since 2009, according to the State Higher Education Executive Officers Association, the system has suffered the steepest enrollment plunge (17.8 percent) by a wide margin among the 50 states.


State universities are held hostage by the state’s credit rating and its threat of higher borrowing costs. Their costs are driven even higher because of the many problems that plague state government. Illinois spends over $12,000 per full-time equivalent student, while the national average is around $6,500. At the same time, tuition is 30 to 60 percent higher for Illinois’ public universities when compared to universities in neighboring states.


Additionally, the state pays more per student and students are paying more in tuition, because the cost of providing an education in Illinois is so high. Higher minimum wages, prevailing wage requirements, collective bargaining, unfunded mandates, exorbitant pension costs, and workers compensation all drive up the cost of education.


That is what big government policies do: they create layers and layers of bureaucracy, foster waste and abuse, and offset the critical balance between the people who are served by government and the people who fund government. And, right now, there is not a Safe Space left that can protect Illinois college students from that reality.


In this progressive mess, however, there is a ray of hope. A Reason.com study found that when different economic systems were described to them, 64 percent of millennials identified the best system as being a free enterprise system.


Source: Will County News

Trump Could Testify in Fraud Case as Primaries Draw Down

PhoTrump Could Testify in Fraud Case as Primaries Draw Down
By Greg Richter | Tuesday, 23 Feb 2016 10:30 PM

Image: Trump Could Testify in Fraud Case as Primaries Draw Down
Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump is scheduled to be on the witness stand in a civil suit alleging fraud by his now-shuttered Trump University just as the primary season comes to an end, reports Yahoo News’ Michael Isikoff.

Trump is set to testify in federal court in San Diego as attorneys for both sides listed him as a witness in court filings on Friday, Isikoff reported.

The final pre-trial conference is May 6, and if the trial itself takes place in May, it would come just as voters cast ballots in Nebraska, West Virginia, Oregon and Washington state. On June 7, New Jersey, Montana, New Mexico and South Dakota voters go to the polls along with California, with 172 delegates.

“This is pretty amazing,” GOP consultant Scott Reed told Yahoo News. “Usually, you clean this stuff up before you run for president.”

The case involves courses Trump promoted in 2005 in which Trump promised, “I can turn anyone into a successful real estate investor, including you.” Trump also says in the promotional video, “Are YOU My Next Apprentice?” and, “Learn from my handpicked experts how you can profit from the largest real estate liquidation in history.”

The courses were not actually a university and no degrees were offered.

Plaintiffs say they spent upward of $60,000 for seminars in hotel ballrooms. The say they received “mentoring” from Trump’s “hand-picked” real estate experts, but say the got little guidance, and the experts “mostly disappeared.”

More information:

Check Trumps text for the course http://www.amazon.com/Trump-University-Real-Estate-101/dp/0470455829

Article from 2013 http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/28/trump-university_n_3831556.html

Trump response http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/26/donald-trump-eric-schneiderman_n_3816787.html




Source: Will County News

Illinois public sector jobs increase while manufacturing leaves

A recent Gallup poll showed that Illinoisans are the “least positive” about their state economy compared with residents of every other state. Here’s one reason why: An average of 56 Illinois manufacturing workers received pink slips for every workday in 2015, on net.
Illinoisans are not going to regain their confidence until they stop seeing factories closing and manufacturers heading for the nearest border. Manufacturing is one of a few industries in which workers can find opportunities to rise in the blue-collar middle class. But in Illinois, policymakers put enough roadblocks in place that the industry as a whole struggles to provide the rewarding jobs that Illinoisans deserve.
Policy problems are a big reason why manufacturing workers in Illinois are getting pink slips, while workers in Kentucky, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio and Wisconsin are getting new jobs and promotions.

2015 had 251 workdays. On the average workday, 56 Illinois manufacturing workers received pink slips, on net. That means that for every workday in 2015, 56 middle-class families found out their prospects had grown dimmer, and the possibility of slipping out of the middle class had become much more real. And yet policymakers have done nothing to address these lost futures, or the ongoing blue-collar job losses that continue unabated. Meanwhile, surrounding and Great Lakes states gained a combined 200 new manufacturing opportunities each workday, on net.

Some say Illinois’ manufacturing problems have resulted from global trade knocking out American jobs. There is some truth to that, especially with respect to the job losses that occurred between 2000 and 2010. But now, American manufacturing is competing and growing again, and companies in states around Illinois are adding manufacturing jobs. Illinois, however, has relegated itself to the sidelines by sticking with its uncompetitive tax, regulatory and labor policies.
Illinois manufacturers themselves are ready to up their game, but politicians are not. Any proposals that would help make Illinois manufacturing more competitive, such as workers’ compensation reforms, a property-tax freeze, or Right-to-Work laws, have been dismissed by Democrats in the General Assembly as “an attack on the middle class.”

That’s simply not true. If Illinois embraced these reforms, its blue-collar workers would find manufacturing opportunities once again. These reforms would mean an end to Indiana’s easy poaching of Illinois manufacturers just by laying out the benefits inherent in the Hoosier State’s tax and regulatory environment (coupled with a few tax incentives as sweeteners). It would mean that Illinois’ blue-collar middle class could have a bright future again.

Until the state enacts significant reforms, Illinoisans will answer the same way every time Gallup conducts its polls. No one likes to admit that his state has become uninspiring, short on dynamism, and a black hole for blue-collar opportunities. But nothing will change until Illinois has the policy environment that manufacturers say will bring them back to the Land of Lincoln.

Michael Lucci
Vice President of Policy

Source: Will County News

Congress: Obama’s EPA doesn’t make the laws

power120514Lawmakers are working to walk back President Barack Obama’s overreaching climate rules for power plants by arguing in court that the Environmental Protection Agency is attempting to undermine congressional authority.

In an amicus brief filed Tuesday, more than 200 lawmakers expressed serious concern that the Obama administration is essentially attempting to allow the EPA to wield the power of a fourth branch of government.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) and Reps. Fred Upton (R-Mich.) and Ed Whitfield (R-Ky.) are leading the fight against Obama’s out of control EPA.

“This case involves a new regulation where the agency fails to ‘conform’ to clear congressional instructions and is seeking to usurp the role of Congress to establish climate and energy policy for the nation,” wrote the lawmakers.

The lawmakers also noted that Congress “has not authorized EPA to make the central policy choices in the final rule and, in many respects, has affirmatively rejected those policies, as it certainly did with respect to cap-and-trade programs for [carbon dioxide] emissions from power plants.”

The brief supports a bevy of lawsuits filed by states and utilities facing serious economic damage if Obama’s EPA is able to keep the rules in place.

Those litigants called the EPA’s Clean Power Plan a “breathtaking expansion” of federal power in court documents filed last week.

“The rule’s restructuring of nearly every state’s electric grid would exceed even the authority that Congress gave to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the federal agency responsible for electricity regulation,” they said.

“EPA’s newly-discovered authority threatens to enable the agency to mandate that any existing source’s owners in any industry reduce their source’s production, shutter the existing source entirely, and even subsidize their non-regulated competitors.”

The new EPA rules, which were finalized last year, are a key pillar of the outgoing Obama administration’s heightened effort to build a legacy around environmental activism.

But for now, the power plant rules are on hold thanks to a stay issued by the Supreme Court earlier this month. A battle in the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit is brewing with oral arguments over the rules set to begin in June.

Source: Will County News