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Archive → November 15th, 2017

Illinois ranked 49th in taxypayer burden after several years of one party control

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Truth in Accounting

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Chicago, IL – 60661

Source: Will County News

Woman reportedly grabbed knife teen held to her neck during robbery attempt

Nov. 15, 2017
Woman reportedly grabbed knife teen held to her neck during robbery attempt

by Bill JonesA 43-year-old woman who had a knife pressed to her throat by a would-be robber was able to grab it and force the Park Forest teenager to walk away at an Orland Park drug store.

Officers responded shortly after 6:30 p.m. Nov. 14 to the Walgreens at 7960 W. 159th St. in reference to an armed robbery, according to a press release issued the next day by the Orland Park Police Department.

Jakhari Carrell, 18, of 3 Sauk Court, allegedly entered the store, walked to the rear of the building and placed a knife to the woman’s throat in an attempted robbery. But she was able to grab the knife and started screaming, which caused Carrell to walk away, police said.

Carrell was accompanied into the store by Sylvina Marquez, 22, of 15616 Center Ave. in Harvey, police said. When the victim notified a Walgreens employee of what happened and police were summoned, Carrell gave the knife to Marquez, who hid it in her purse, according to the press release.

Upon their arrival, police reportedly located both Carrell and Marquez still inside the store. While being held in Orland Park lockup, Carrell damaged a mattress in the cell in which he was being held, police said.

Carrell was charged with one count each of attempted armed robbery, a Class 1 felony; aggravated battery, a Class 3 felony; and criminal damage to property, a Class 4 felony. Marquez was charged with one count of obstruction of justice, a Class A misdemeanor.

The victim was transported to Palos Community Hospital in Palos Heights for a minor laceration to her hand, police said. She reportedly was treated and later released.

Source: Will County News

Trades jobs could be answer to problem of high unemployment for minorities

Trades jobs could be answer to problem of high unemployment for minorities


The Illinois Department of Employment Security says the skilled trades are a perfect avenue for at-risk youth to get a good-paying job instead of going into a life of crime.

At more than 12 percent, black unemployment in Illinois is among the highest in the country and could lead to high crime rates. IDES Business Services Manager Tory Davis said a trades jobs fair in Springfield may have the answer.

“The trades would definitely be beneficial to a number of kids, not only African Americans, but to all kids,” Davis said. “So the answer is to talk to those kids when they’re young about the various trades that are around. … It takes a community to help kids, but definitely having opportunities to employment will help curb some of that violence.”

Davis said there are thousands of open positions right now in trades in Illinois, such as 6,700 tractor trailer jobs, 2,200 industrial engineering jobs, and over 2,000 jobs for operating engineers.

“With opportunities like [Springfield’s trades jobs fair], we get young people interested in these opportunities and hopefully they’ll be able to fill these positions going forward,” Davis said.

Not having enough young people to fill the ranks is a constant theme with the skilled trades.

Plumber, Steamfitters and HVAC Local 137 training director Andrew Fuchs said they’re retiring twice as many workers than they’re inducting into the ranks.“The Baby Boomers are starting to hit the exit gates,” he said. “We’re seeing 25 to 30 retirees every year. We’re bringing about 15 people to replace that 30, so it’s a problem. There really hasn’t been too much of a problem the last couple of years because we haven’t really had a lot of growth, but as soon as that turns around we’re going to be struggling to fill them jobs.”

Fuchs said schools can do more to engage young people with the trades but so can the unions. That outreach relies on economic growth, however, he said.

“Illinois needs to grow, and when it starts growing, the trades will grow, too,” Fuchs said.

For Jacob Griffin, a pipe fitters apprentice, what’s persuasive is the economics of joining the trades out of high school. He said he learned early that college isn’t for everyone, especially for young people who don’t want to go into student loan debt.

“I come out ahead,” Griffin said. “I’m making money while they’re spending money.”

More employment information is available at IllinoisJobLink.com.

Source: Will County News

Chicago taxpayers on hook for $41,700 each to cover city’s debt By Greg Bishop | Illinois News Network

Chicago taxpayers on hook for $41,700 each to cover city’s debt

FILE - Snow, snowy day in Chicago, trains, Metra
Shutterstock photo


With Chicago’s $37 billion shortfall, mainly from unfunded pension obligations, each of the city’s taxpayers would be on the hook for more than $41,000 just so Chicago could break even.

Accordingly, the city received an “F” grade for its fiscal health in a new report from government finance watchdog Truth In Accounting.

“If everybody kindly sent a check to the city of Chicago for $40,000, we’d be back to even, but that’s not going to happen,” said TIA Research Director Bill Bergman.

Bergman notes each layer of government has growing debt for which taxpayers eventually will have to foot the bill.

“But guess what, you’re also a resident of Cook County and a resident of the state of Illinois,” Bergman said. “And not to get really depressing, but we’re also citizens of the United States of America.”

On top of the $41,700 per household in Chicago, TIA said Cook County government puts taxpayers on the hook for an additional $5,100 each. Don’t forget to add Illinois’ taxpayer burden, which TIA puts at more than $50,000. Add on the nation’s’ staggering taxpayer burden of more than $600,000, that’s a grand total of more than $696,000 per Chicago taxpayer.

State Sen. Kyle McCarter, R-Lebanon, said Chicago’s bad fiscal behavior is squeezing the rest of the state’s taxpayers as well. Lawmakers OK’d nearly half a billion dollars to bail out Chicago Public Schools this past summer, McCarter noted. And with a fiscal 2018 budget that Gov. Bruce Rauner says is $1.7 billion out of balance, the Chicago bailout makes up about a quarter of that deficit, McCarter said.Bergman said TIA’s review of Chicago’s debt didn’t include Chicago Public Schools, which has its own financial problems.

“Interestingly, the city of Chicago doesn’t include the Chicago Public Schools in its own financial statements,” Bergman said, even though the city operates the city’s public schools. “That’s a problem almost as bad as the city of Chicago itself, so that’s on top of the pile as well.”

McCarter said that Chicago’s debt affects all state taxpayers, not just Chicago’s.

“All of that financial irresponsibility comes back on to taxpayers as a whole on this state,” he said.

What happens if the huge amounts of long term debt isn’t addressed?

Bergman said people begin looking for greener pastures and less taxpayer burden. And it’s not just rich people that look to flee the city, “but poor people as well that have had taxes raised on them in ways that also haven’t reciprocated in the types of social service spending that have taken a hit from the city’s financial condition.”

Bergman said the high costs of the city’s pension and other debt crowds out spending on other services.

McCarter said taxpayers are fed up with all levels of governments living beyond their means.

“We’re tapped out to the point where we can’t just be making up for [government] mistakes whether they be in Chicago, whether they be in Springfield, or whether they be in municipalities or counties or townships,” McCarter said.

Bergman said TIA’s grade rating is better for taxpayers to understand than the bond ratings credit rating agencies issue to cities because the credit rating agencies information is meant for bond investors. Having a simple letter grade gives a more general picture to the taxpayer of the governmental unit’s health, Bergman said.

TIA is continuing to review data from different cities across the state. More information can be found on the finances for Chicago, Illinois and other units of government at TIA’s website.

Source: Will County News

Lisa Bickus Announcement Kick Off for IL. State Rep. dist. 85 November 29th 2017

Colleagues and Friends, 

Illinois is our home!  Our families are being devastated by high taxes, irresponsible government spending, small and medium size business leaving.  Our communities are losing their legacy as our families are being separated by the results of the current economic policies in place that have been master-minded by the Madigan Machine.

I have spent the last six weeks walking the neighborhoods in my district there is one story that is consistent, “our state is in crisis and there is nothing we can do!.” The conversations that I am having with our neighbors are the same. “My son and daughter had to leave Illinois because they could not find a good job or the taxes in this community prohibit me to live here any longer.  My grandmother left Illinois and now lives with her sister in Wisconsin because the taxes chased her out of the first home she bought.”

It wasn’t long ago, when Illinois was the economic engine of the Midwest.   We employed the best and the brightest. Small and medium sized privately held business provided for our families. Our government had checks and balances.  Our families lived a few short miles from each other and our communities were vibrant and alive.

Our state needs new leadership and a representative whom will fight for new reforms to put this state back on track.  I have decided to take a stand for our future and the generations to be.  I am looking for your support to help me rebuild our future!

I would like to personally invite you to join me on Wednesday,

November 29th as I kick off my campaign for State House Representative in district 85.

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I am excited to announce my candidacy for State Representative of the 85th district!  My family and I would be honored if you would join us on November 29th to kick off my campaign to help us bring new vision, leadership and accountability to our State.


With your help we can push for reforms to put our STATE back on track

Will you HELP me take our State back and make Illinois the Economic Engine it once was! 


Embers Tap House

933 S State St, Lockport, IL 60441


WHEN:  NOVEMBER 29, 2017

6:00p.m –  8:00p.m




A BIG Thank You for your support!


SPONSORSHIP AVAILABLE   –  $250, $500 and $1000


Please make checks payable to:  Citizens for Lisa Bickus

Donations will be accepted at the door, if you are unable to attend please mail checks to Attention: Gregg Bickus 2000 East Street, Lockport, IL 60441


Paid for by Citizens to Elect Lisa Bickus. A copy of our reports filed with the State Board of Elections is (or will be) available from the board’s official website (www.elections.il.gov) or for purchase from the State Board of Elections, Springfield, IL

​Thank you!
Lisa Bickus
Candidate for State Representative ​

Source: Will County News

A bipartisan group of civil liberty supporters in the Senate  is working to defund civil asset forfeiture schemes.

Senators prepare a check on Sessions’ government theft


A bipartisan group of civil liberty supporters in the Senate  is working to defund Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ civil asset forfeiture schemes.

Sens. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), Mike Lee (R-Utah), Angus King (I-Vt.), Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), and Tom Udall (D-N.M.) are working to include an amendment to the appropriations bill which would block funding for federal asset forfeiture programs.

In a letter to Sen. Richard Shelby, a ranking member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, the liberty concerned lawmakers wrote:

Adoptive forfeiture and equitable sharing are particularly egregious elements of civil asset forfeiture because they not only violate due process but also attack principles of federalism. DOJ’s reinstated policy allows state law enforcement officers to circumvent state limitations on civil forfeiture by turning seized property over to federal officials for forfeiture in exchange for up to 80 percent of the proceeds of the property. This perversely incentivizes local law enforcement to confiscate suspect property even where state laws forbid the practice.

Over the past few years, several state legislatures have taken steps to limit or eliminate local law enforcement civil asset forfeiture programs. But Sessions, in a directive earlier this year, provided a loophole for the departments by getting federal agencies involved.

Sessions’ dual assault on state rights and civil liberty allows local police to run civil property seizures through federal court. Property stolen from owners by the federal government is then divided among participating agencies via “equitable sharing.”

Source: Will County News