Last Friday, Chicago Tonight's "Week In Review" show kicked off with a discussion of the ongoing Wal-Mart debate at City Hall. Watch it:
Unfortunately this discussion missed an important new component of the debate: the ordinance championed by the Good Jobs Chicago coalition and introduced Wednesday by Ald. Freddrenna Lyle (6th Ward). Unlike previous attempts to address Wal-Mart's race-to-the-bottom wages, this measure doesn't direcly target the mega-retailer or big-box stores in general. Rather, it's living wage requirements apply to companies with a payroll exceeding 50 people that "receive financial assistance" from the city -- such as tax increment financing (TIF) subsidies. The ordinance represents an opportunity to have a broader discussion about what the city's residents are willing to demand in return for all the tax dollars we send back to local companies. But that conversation can't happen if outlets like WTTW ignore it.