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Chamber of Commerce
Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
9:02am
Mon Sep 19, 2016

Proposed Constitutional Amendment Seeks To Protect Illinois Transportation Funding

When Illinoisans hit the polls in November, they will see a proposed constitutional amendment on the ballot asking whether the state should put transportation funding in a "lockbox" so that it cannot be used for non-related spending.

If the amendment passes, the Illinois Constitution would be amended to ensure transportation funding is safeguarded from being spent on other purposes, like balancing the state budget.

Citizens to Protect Transportation Funding, a coalition of business, labor and construction groups, is leading the advocacy effort in support of the so-called "Safe Roads Amendment," which made it onto the November 8 ballot after strong bipartisan approval from the state legislature.

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
4:40pm
Wed Apr 13, 2016

Chicago City Council Roundup: Aldermen Confirm Top Cop, Push For Paid Sick Days

From police oversight to paid sick days, Progress Illinois rounds up highlights from Wednesday's Chicago City Council meeting.

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
4:26pm
Mon Apr 4, 2016

Internal Poll Shows Most Business Executives Back Minimum Wage Hike, Other Pro-Worker Measures

Most U.S. business executives support policies to boost the minimum wage and provide workers with paid sick time, predictive scheduling and increased maternity and paternity leave, an internal poll shows.

The poll findings, obtained by the progressive watchdog group Center for Media and Democracy, clash with the policy positions of business groups fighting against such proposals.

Luntz Global, operated by GOP pollster Frank Luntz, conducted the poll of 1,000 U.S. business executives on behalf of the Council of State Chambers. Among those surveyed, 63 percent belong to a chamber of commerce.

According to the findings, 80 percent of survey respondents backed an increase in their state's minimum wage, compared to 8 percent who opposed the idea.

Quick Hit
by Anthony Burke Boylan
5:51pm
Tue May 20, 2014

Chicago Neighborhoods, Businesses Look To Encourage Increased Bike Riding With Deals

Leaders in Chicago’s Lakeview neighborhood are hoping to encourage more bike traffic by having local businesses attract riders with discounts. Anyone interested in learning about the program or offering input can come to a workshop meeting this Tuesday evening.

The program is a continuation of the Lakeview Area Master Plan, a product of the Lakeview Chamber of Commerce and Special Service Area 27, a body that uses local property taxes for projects beneficial to the neighborhood. The plan, which was launched three years ago, aims to make Lakeview more appealing to shoppers, visitors and residents by making it greener, more bike- and pedestrian-friendly, and adding public art and green spaces.

A bike friendly business district will incorporate discounts at local businesses for riders and improved infrastructure from bike lanes and racks to stations where riders can make minor bike repairs, put air in their tires and fill up water bottles. Businesses that sign up for the program will get branded logo decals to place in their windows informing people of their eligibilty for discounts if they patronize the store and show their bike helmet.

“Biking is good for business,’’ said Heather Way-Kitzes, executive director of the Lakeview Chamber of Commerce. “People stay closer to home, they spend more time in the area, they move at slower speeds and have a greater awareness of the businesses around them.

“The faster they pass by, the less likely they are to end up at your cash register.’’