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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.

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
11:10am
Fri Aug 26, 2016

Millennials & Their Children Face Massive Economic Hit If Climate Change Goes Unchecked

Millennials and future generations will face staggering economic losses over their lifetimes due to climate change if current trends continue, according to a new report.

Demos and NextGen Climate sought to quantify the economic costs of climate change on millennials and their children.

Without significant climate change action, a 21-year-old college graduate from the class of 2015 with median earnings could lose more than $126,000 in lifetime income and $187,000 in wealth as a result of environmental problems, the report found. A 21-year-old with median earnings but no college degree stands to lose $100,000 in income and $142,000 in wealth over a lifetime.

For the entire millennial generation, the total loss of lifetime income due to climate change could hit nearly $8.8 trillion, the study showed.

"Climate change may very well be the biggest threat ever faced over the lifetime of a single generation, impacting the incomes, wealth and livelihoods of millions of millennials," NextGen Climate President Tom Steyer said in a statement. "We have a moral responsibility to act so that our children are not crushed by the costs of climate change."

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
2:11pm
Fri Aug 5, 2016

Chicago's West Siders Seek Ballot Referendum For Community-Funded Mental Health Center

Chicagoans who are organizing a ballot initiative to create a community-funded mental health center on the West Side submitted double the required petition signatures to the election board Friday. 

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
3:13pm
Wed May 11, 2016

Education Activists Pressure Senate President To Advance Chicago Elected School Board Bill (VIDEO)

Parents and education activists protested Wednesday morning outside Illinois Senate President John Cullerton's office, urging him to advance pending legislation for an elected Chicago school board. 

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
4:31pm
Fri Apr 15, 2016

SCOTUS To Hear Oral Arguments Monday In Major Immigration Case

The U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments Monday in a major case challenging the Obama administration's executive actions on immigration. Ahead of oral arguments, Democratic congressmen and advocates are detailing what the case's potential outcomes could mean for the immigrant community.

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
5:53pm
Tue Mar 8, 2016

New Americans Hit The Polls In Chicago As Immigrant Advocates Gear Up For Anti-Trump Protest

A few dozen newly naturalized American citizens living in Chicago voted Tuesday afternoon for the first time in a U.S. election, casting ballots during the early voting period for the March 15 Illinois primary.

Representatives from the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights (ICIRR) assisted the new Americans of Polish, Irish and Mexican descent in the naturalization and voter registration process.

ICIRR representatives led the group on a march in downtown Chicago that started at the Dirksen Federal Building, where the long-term immigrants were naturalized as new American citizens. Afterward, the group headed to the Chicago Board of Elections. There, the new Americans registered to vote and voted early.

"Fortunately, we have early voting and grace period registration to facilitate people who are just getting naturalized now a few days before the primary to be able to still have the opportunity to vote," said ICIRR's Fred Tsao. "It used to be that if you missed the voter registration deadline four weeks before the election, you were out of luck."

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