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The [Monday] Papers

"Gov. Bruce Rauner is offering to accelerate state grant payments to help cash-strapped Chicago Public Schools make a $634 million pension contribution, according to a summary of the proposal obtained by The Associated Press."

However, because the money would not be disbursed by a CPS ATM, the school district would have to pay an out-of-network service fee of one eased workman's comp rule, a clout pick to a school to be named later and a new $18 watch.


Just in: Rahm rejects Rauner proposal.

Choo Choo Choose Chicago
"Choose Chicago, the city's taxpayer-subsidized tourism bureau, secretly gave its chief marketing officer a six-figure payout when he left after just two and a half years on the job, newly released records show," the Sun-Times reports.

So, as the city's tourism bureau is taxpayer-subdsized, that means we paid for Draft Town, right? Just keeping track of the lies.


Has the city invoiced Choose Chicago yet?


"Warren R. Wilkinson abruptly left the organization in July 2013. That was less than two months after Mayor Rahm Emanuel appointed President Barack Obama's former White House social secretary Desiree Rogers as chairman of the Choose Chicago board, replacing Bruce Rauner, who stepped down to run for governor.

"Wilkinson's sudden departure caused a stir because he'd just crafted a new advertising and marketing campaign for the city.

"Choose Chicago officials won't disclose the amount of Wilkinson's severance. They say that as a private, not-for-profit organization, Choose Chicago doesn't have to explain how it spends its $32 million budget, even though 87 percent of its money comes from taxpayers."

So maybe Choose Chicago paid for Draft Town out of the other 13 percent, which totally isn't fungible.


Maybe Choose Chicago is required by law to disclose 87 percent of its funding? Paging Lisa Madigan!


"A severance package was provided to Warren consistent with industry standards and funded with private dollars," says Meghan Risch, Choose Chicago's vice president of communications, who won't say how much Wilkinson got in severance.

"But documents Choose Chicago filed last month with the Internal Revenue Service indicate Wilkinson was given more than $100,000 when he left.

"Wilkinson left the payroll July 31, 2013. During those final seven months, he made more money than he did the entire previous year, according to Choose Chicago's IRS filings.

"Including the payout he got when he left, Choose Chicago paid Wilkinson $253,608 in 2013 - an average of $36,230 for each of those seven months.

"In 2012, he made $237,485 - an average of $19,790 a month for 12 months.

"That extra $16,440 a month over his final seven months gave Wilkinson an extra $115,080."

Choose me, Chicago! Damn. Privatization works. For the private.


"Five months after he left the payroll, Wilkinson started work as an executive with a company called Mbuy, which had a $1 million contract to help Choose Chicago buy ads in key markets, city records show."

If I could have a penny each time the door revolves, I'd be richer than Rauner.


Here's the Mbuy leadership team. You're all awful.


"Wilkinson, who no longer works for Mbuy, did not respond to an e-mailed request for an interview."


Wilkinson now works for MS Companies, according to his LinkedIn profile. He's the chief marketing officer there, according to the firm's website.


"Like some other not-for-profit Chicago agencies funded by taxpayers, Choose Chicago won't divulge how it spends its money - a position that Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan has upheld."

Cancel that page!

Also, Lisa Madigan now part of the conspiracy.


"[Don] Welsh is Choose Chicago's highest-paid employee, paid $526,956 for 2013, with an additional $54,866 listed as deferred compensation, according to the IRS filing and Risch. Welsh's total compensation of $581,822 - up 18 percent from the year before - is more than double what Emanuel makes as mayor. When Welsh was hired four years ago, his yearly salary was $375,309."

Well, he had a better year than Rahm.


"Choose Chicago's government funding has soared under Emanuel, who shut down City Hall's tourism operation and gave its funding to the private agency. In all, Choose Chicago got $27.9 million from taxpayers last year, up 17 percent over the previous year . . .

"It says its efforts have increased the number of visitors to Chicago to more than 50 million last year, up 3.5 percent from 2013."

I wonder how much money those additional 3.5 percent visitors resulted in - assuming for now that they are real, which I doubt; Tourism numbers are the sloshiest around this side of economic development estimates - because we spent 17 percent more to get them.


Meanwhile . . .

"Choose Chicago pulled the plug Friday on the last two months of its 'Chicago Epic' tourism campaign amid a state budget stalemate that threatens the nonprofit agency's funding," the Tribune reports.

"Choose Chicago had budgeted $2.2 million toward the summer campaign."

Gee, if they hadn't spent so much money on Wilkinson and Welsh . . .


Plus, "Epic Chicago." Indeed.


From the Beachwood vault:

Top 10 Reasons Tourism Is Up.


Kathy, Linda & Ron
A love story as told by Studs Terkel.

The Cub Factor: Vote White Sox!
Our very own Marty Gangler explains.

Rainbows Of Flavor & Fun
They were on Chicago TV.

The White Sox Report: Failure To Communicate
Paging Anthony Bourdain.

Superheroes Meet Superkids
They are Cosplay.

Some Bloke's Chicago Town Pizza Review
Shout out to the boys at the factory.

The Weekend In Chicago Rock
Featuring: Good Graeff, Ximena Sarinana, Night Moves, Richard Vain, On An On, Bongripper, Am I Alive, From Autumn to Ashes, Dr. John, Kay Karma, Ty Segall, Jimmy Buffett, Christopher Owens, Kindred the Family Soul, Cory Hanson, and Third Eye Blind.


* Rizal Bust In Chicago Stolen.

* Fantasy Sports Now Worth Billions.

"Bob Vorwald, executive producer of WGN-TV in Chicago, is pushing his sports announcers to do more fantasy-oriented news.

* With Same-Sex Decision, Evangelical Churches In Chicago Area Address New Reality.

* 11-Year-Old Bowler With Perfect Game Coming To Chicago Area.

* Space X Rocket Blows Up With U Of C-Bound Student's Experiment Aboard.

* The NSA's Reaction To The Original Bush Warrantless Wiretapping Story.

* New Assistant Mel Tucker Explains Why Alabama Was A 'Great Fit.'

* Patrick Kane Wears Pobunlet To Jimmy Buffett Concert.

* CNN Mistakes Dildo-Covered Flag At Pride Parade For ISIS Flag.

* The Weight Of The Confederate Flag.

An outstanding piece by Evan F. Moore.


A sampling.





The Beachwood Tip Line: Choose Beachwood.


Posted on June 29, 2015

MUSIC - Chief Keef Changed The Industry.
TV - Vizio's Best Product Is You.
POLITICS - UIC: Soda Taxes Work.
SPORTS - More McCaskey Malpractice.

BOOKS - All About Poop.


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