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The [Thursday] Papers

"The unrelenting winter is proving to be big business for auto repair businesses and insurers, who say they're seeing a sharp increase in claims," AP notes.

In other news, Rahm Emanuel will hold a press conference today touting the jobs he's created through his Chicago Snows program.

Beating Rahm
"By fall 2011, months after taking office, Mayor Rahm Emanuel said he had fulfilled a campaign pledge to move some 1,000 cops to beat patrols to beef up the Police Department's front lines in the fight on crime," the Tribune reports.

"But in the more than two years since then, those numbers have plunged by hundreds of cops, the city's own data show."

Rahm don't need no stinkin' data!

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"According to the data obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request, the department had 7,078 rank-and-file officers and supervisors assigned to work in its 22 patrol districts as of Dec. 8, a decline of 10 percent, or 779 beat officers, since fall 2011."

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Let's move right to the commentary - from Tribune overnight police reporter Peter Nickeas.

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I'm not a digitalPlus member, so I can't tell you what the Trib story says beyond the top, but this raises an important issue in my mind:

Close observers of the CPD have long suspected that Rahm has essentially done a backdoor beat realignment. Beat realignment is long overdue; if it's problematic to North and Northwest Side districts, so be it. Cops should be assigned more heavily to neighborhoods where the needs are the most dire.

Of course, one way to solve the political problem of beat realignment is to simply hire more officers so every district at least maintains its current force structure, while some districts get more officers. But the Tribune reports that hiring has not kept pace with retirements.

Finally, don't assume that more officers means less crime.

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The issue here, then, is more the continuing perversion of facts by City Hall than the policy itself, if only because we can't have an honest policy discussion if the facts are distorted or kept hidden. That's the real point of transparency.

Blank Checks, No Balance
"Chicago aldermen today gave Mayor Rahm Emanuel's administration its final okay to borrow up to $900 million dollars to pay for city equipment, capital projects, and legal settlements, and to refinance old debt," WBEZ reports.

"The City Council also approved another $1 billion in borrowing for Midway Airport, and agreed to double the city's short-term borrowing limit from the current $500 million to $1 billion.

"The borrowing plans all passed on a 43-4 vote, with no debate.

"Alderman John Arena (45th Ward) said he voted no because the Emanuel administration did not give specifics on exactly how the newly borrowed money would be spent.

"Unless we have a real debate on this, a real dialogue, and get real information from the administration in real time - and enough time to make an educated vote - then I'm gonna continue to vote no on these types of things," Arena said after the vote.

Forty-three aldermen felt differently.

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Smoke Bombs And Mirrors
Add the ridiculous NATO3 prosecution to Anita Alvarez's stellar resume - just after the Koschman entry.

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The Koschman Report
ICYMI: What Daley Knew.

More to come on this.

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Plow Tracker Finally Delivers!

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Dislike: Friday Night Tykes
Texas youth football players face injuries, foul language and hard hits - at age 8.

Sixty Years Of Alternative Leisure
At Phyllis' Musical Inn.

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The Beachwood Tip Line: Plow track us.



Permalink

Posted on February 6, 2014


MUSIC - The Weekend In Chicago Rock.
TV - Trump's Disastrous FCC Chair.
POLITICS - Filing: Walmart CEO Made $22.4 Million Last Year.
SPORTS - Teens Still Underreporting Concussions.

BOOKS - America, We Need To Talk.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - Beachwood Photo Booth: Wyoming, Michigan.


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