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The [Wednesday] Papers

"Just past the heightened scrutiny over security and school consolidations brought on by the first day of school, Chicago school officials will vote today on a $5.58 billion budget that promises teacher and program cuts and has generated additional criticism," the Tribune reports.

"The district's budget has been panned by The Civic Federation, a watchdog group; the bipartisan Center for Tax and Budget Accountability; and Access Living, a disability rights group."

I've got enough material about the CPS budget gleaned from the last few months of reporting to write a book. Unfortunately, I've got enough material about the CPS budget gleaned from the last few months of reporting to write a book. So more on the way, just not today, although I'll be providing the usual commentary about today's Board of Ed doings on Twitter where and when I can.


You Can't Eat Press Releases
"Mayor Rahm Emanuel has rushed to declare 'great progress' in the war on food deserts, but the Tribune has found that many of his announcements about making healthy foods more readily available to Chicagoans have fallen short," Bill Ruthhart reports for the Tribune.

"Among the findings:

  • Two years ago, Emanuel proclaimed that Walgreen Co. would be selling fresh fruits and vegetables at 39 food desert stores by this June. City Hall counts nine that are open, but three of those are not in food deserts.
  • The mayor also announced that 17 new grocery stores would open in food deserts. Nearly two years later, just four of those are open and one is being built, with at least two of them approved before Emanuel took office.
  • Emanuel called on grocery CEOs at a 'food desert summit' to build stores on 11 parcels primed for development. All 11 lots remain vacant.

"After the Tribune contacted several supermarket and drugstore companies this month about the gap between what Emanuel pledged and what has been delivered, the mayor's press office put out a news release claiming its success in eliminating food deserts."

How Rahmellian.


Go read the whole thing.

"The Missouri Attorney General's office is suing Walgreen Co. for allegedly overcharging customers and using false advertising," Samantha Bomkamp reports for the Tribune.

"The lawsuit filed Tuesday stems from a two month investigation by the office of Attorney General Chris Koster, which the office said found a 'pattern of advertising lower prices on display tags, but charging higher prices at the checkout.'

"Representatives from AG's office made undercover visits to eight random Walgreens stores in five cities across Missouri in June and July, where investigators purchased various items, the AG said in a statement. Investigators said they discovered nearly every store sold products where the price rang higher at the checkout than the displayed cost."

I've tried several punch lines here and none of them really work. This strikes me as kind of a big deal, though, given the ramifications if true across the country. The odds of this occurring at just eight random Walgreens are astonishingly slim, no?

March On Wall Street
"Merrill Lynch, one of the biggest brokerage firms on Wall Street, has agreed to pay $160 million to settle a racial bias lawsuit that wound through the federal courts for eight years, including two appeals to the United States Supreme Court," the New York Times reports.

"The payout in the suit, which was filed on behalf of 700 black brokers who worked for Merrill, would be the largest sum ever distributed to plaintiffs in a racial discrimination suit against an American employer. Merrill, which was acquired by Bank of America after the suit was filed, also agreed to take advice from black employees on how to improve their chances of succeeding as brokers.

"A spokesman for Merrill Lynch refused to confirm the terms of a preliminary settlement, which were provided by Linda D. Friedman, a Chicago lawyer who represents the brokers."



"Stowell & Friedman, Ltd. is a boutique law firm dedicated to defending employees' civil rights."


From Friedman's bio:

"Ms. Friedman also has been counsel in other high-profile significant class and multiple plaintiff verdicts. In Biondo v. City of Chicago, four jury trials in a class-action race discrimination suit led to the recovery of full back pay, pension losses and promotions. In Dornbos v. County of Cook, a collective jury trial for violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act led to the recovery of wages for the county's bomb squad. In Roche v. City of Chicago, a collective action successfully challenged the City of Chicago's mandatory age requirement policy for approximately 50 plaintiffs who recovered lost wages. Finally, Martens v. Smith Barney, a national sexual harassment class action, recovered in excess of $100 million, including a diversity fund of $15 million."


But you know what's weird about Friedman's bio? It includes a testimonial from a sitting federal judge, James F. Holderman. Is that allowed?

County Cook
"U.S.-based gangsters are cashing in on Mayo's run to the All-Ireland football championship final, GAA officials have warned," the Dublin Herald reports.

"Irish criminals in Chicago, Boston and New York have been cold-calling GAA fans seeking donations to the Mayo team."

Chicagoetry: Frontier Day Off
Hit Submarine Tender and the USA Beverage Store.

Tight Ends & Sleepers
In the final installment of Dan O'Shea's Fantasy Fix Football Draft Guide.


The Beachwood Tip Line: Antedeluvian.


Posted on August 28, 2013

MUSIC - Millions Of New Guitar Players.
TV - "One America News" is AT&T.
POLITICS - When Wall Street Came To My Mobile Home Park.
SPORTS - Tonyball, Bears On The Run, Eyes On The Sky & More!

BOOKS - China Holding Swedish Publisher.


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