Saturday, January 29, 2011

19th ward aldermanic candidate forum on 2/1

There will be an aldermanic candidate this Tuesday, February 1 at 7:30 p.m. It will be at the Beverly Arts Center, 2407 W. 111th St. It's my understanding that all the candidates have agreed to attend.

It's being presented by BAPA, Beverly Improvement Association, Vanderpoel Improvement Association, Mount Greenwood Civic Association, Southwest Beverly Improvement Association, Southwest Morgan Park Civic Association and League of Woman Voters of Chicago.

I hope that many residents from all areas of the ward will be able to attend.

For more information, call 773-233-3100 or e-mail Matt Walsh.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

1/11/11 aldermanic candidate forum

Have you read the Beverly Review write-up on last week's form? You can find it here.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

19th ward aldermanic candidates - Matt O'Shea

This is the final installment in a series on our 19th ward aldermanic candidates.

Matt O'Shea has gotten the most exposure of our aldermanic candidates. As a long-established member of Ginger Rugai's staff, he's had an unfair advantage over the other candidates. You can read more about where he's coming from on his official campaign web site.

Are you aware that O'Shea favors a Chicago casino as a source of revenue, and that he would consider additional privatization of city assets, such as Midway Airport?

You can't read his responses to IVI-IPO's candidate questionnaire, because he apparently didn't bother to respond.

Here's a 19th Ward blog posting, which includes a recent Beverly Review piece on O'Shea.

I have to question how well we will be represented by a candidate who can't be bothered to respond to questionnaires or attend candidate forums. I haven't spoken directly to him or anyone from his campaign to find out why he's been so non-responsive. The message these actions send, in the absence of words to explain them, is that he arrogantly expects 19th ward voters to be compliant sheep and vote for him simply because he's Ginger Rugai's heir apparent.

His campaign web site mostly talks about what he has done. We need to know more about what he will do to listen and respond to the needs of all 19th ward residents.

If Matt O'Shea or anyone from his campaign would like to provide more information, I hope that they will both share it in comments and attend future candidate forums in the ward.

19th ward aldermanic candidates - Phil Sherlock

This is the fifth installment in a series on our 19th ward aldermanic candidates.

The 19th Ward blog ran a piece on Phil Sherlock. He has not answered the IVI-IPO questionnaire, but he did respond to the Chicago Tribune's questions.

In his answers to the Tribune editorial board questionnaire, note that the candidate favors video gambling and one or more casinos in the city of Chicago as a source of revenue.

Here's his official campaign web site.

19th ward aldermanic candidates - George Newell

This is the fourth installment in a series on our 19th ward aldermanic candidates.

George Newell is a Chicago police officer in our community. There isn't much information available about him online, except for this 19th Ward blog piece, which includes a recent Beverly Review article. I have asked him for more information about his plans and will update this post when I receive a response.

To date, he has not answered the Chicago Tribune editorial board questionnaire or the IVI-IPO questionnaire, which would have been helpful to get a better sense of how he compares to other candidates on the issues.

Good luck to you, Officer Newell! Diving into a campaign like this is not for the faint of heart.

19th ward aldermanic candidates - Diane Phillips

This is the third installment in a series on 19th ward aldermanic candidates.

Diane Phillips was on the ballot until recently, but was apparently bumped due to a petition challenge on the legitimacy of signatures. This is a common tactic when other candidates (especially an incumbent) want to knock a rival off the ballot. She is still running as a write-in candidate.

Since she does not have a web site and hasn't gotten as much exposure, there is less information available about her qualifications and ideas compared to most of the other candidates. I have asked her for more information about her plans and will update this post when I receive a response.

Here's a link to a 19th Ward blog piece, which includes information from a recent Beverly Review article. She responded to the IVI-IPO questionnaire.

I wish Mrs. Phillips luck. Running as a write-in is a difficult route.

19th ward aldermanic candidates - Anne Schaible

This is the second installment in a series on our 19th ward aldermanic candidates.

I met Anne Schaible recently at a community meeting. We discussed her positions on environmental issues. She is a regular volunteer with Friends of the Forest Preserves at habitat restoration workdays. She strongly supports expansion of the city's recycling program and replacement of the city's fleet vehicles with hybrid or electric vehicles when old vehicles are due for replacement. She favors preservation of existing green spaces, creation of new green spaces on vacant blighted land, and better care for our city's trees. Addressing pollution issues to improve air quality is an important priority for her. She supports pedestrian safety measures to make the 19th ward a safer place to walk.

This information supplements what is available on her official campaign web site.

I also recommend reading her responses to the Tribune editorial board questionnaire. She has not responded to IVI-IPO's candidate questionnaire, so there is no additional information there. To date, only Ray Coronado and Diane Phillips have responded to the IVI-IPO questionnaire.

Chicago mayoral candidates - Miguel del Valle

Miguel del Valle brings his experience as a lifelong Chicagoan as well as his job experience into his candidacy for mayor. He has many years of experience in city government, but not in a position with the scope and intensity of the mayor's office.

So far he has been the only mayoral candidate to address many significant environmental issues, including sustainable transportation.

To get a sense of his ideas on specific issues, I recommend reading his answers to the Tribune Editorial Board's questionnaire and the IVI-IPO questionnaire.

Chicago Tonight has an election blog, which provides continually updated coverage of his campaign.

His official campaign web site adds more information.

All of these sources are worth reading to get a better sense of the candidate.

Monday, January 17, 2011

tonight's Chicago Tonight forum

Chicago Tonight did a superb job in hosting a fine mayoral candidate forum with Miguel del Valle, Gery Chico, Carol Moseley Braun and Rahm Emanuel. Carol Marin moderated as the candidates took questions from Chicago high school students.

Towards the end of the forum, one student asked a question about how candidates would deal with bullying of GLBT teens. She got some interesting answers. Miguel del Valle gave a thoughtful response, in which he told of his own experiences with bullying when he was in Chicago public schools, and talked about ways to promote a healthier, more accepting culture in schools.

Carol Marin asked the candidates how many of them were bullied when they were in school. Three of the four raised their hands - all except Chico. She then asked how many students in the audience had been bullied in school. Nearly half raised their hands.

Carol Moseley Braun struck the right tone with her answers about public transit, but on this and many other issues, she had few concrete plans on how to implement the ideas she discussed.

I thought that Rahm Emanuel gave better answers to these students than I've seen him give in some other settings.

All the candidates answered with varying degrees of responsiveness and concrete plans to questions about school safety and the quality of a CPS education. No one connected these particular dots in one way that seems rather obvious to me. They mentioned that much youth violence happens in the afternoons, when kids are the streets after school. They talked about how our kids are shortchanged in terms of the number of hours of classroom time they get in a school year, and how it affects the quality of their education.

Wouldn't it be logical to sell a plan for longer school days as both a boost to quality education AND a public safety measure, keeping kids in school longer so that they have more time to learn and less time to get into trouble?

If you missed the forum, you can watch it online here.

I will be curious to see how the candidates respond in Wednesday's forum on environmental issues.

a few thoughts to ponder

In these weeks leading up to the mayoral and aldermanic election, I ask you to consider these thoughts.

If a candidate can't be bothered to respond to questionnaires from respected organizations or attend candidate forums, will that candidate take the time to consider and respond to the needs of his or her constituents once elected?

All voters deserve to have full information about their candidates and their positions on important issues. If a candidate does not bother to share information we need to make an informed choice, is this really a candidate we should vote for?

Just my $0.02.... Your mileage may vary.

19th ward aldermanic candidates - Ray Coronado

This is the first installment in a series on our 19th ward aldermanic candidates.

Ray Coronado is a running a grassroots campaign, making face-to-face contact with voters. He is accepting no campaign contributions, because he does not want to be biased by them or have any personal obligations to donors if he is elected. If elected, he intends to make alderman his full-time job, and to hold regular town hall meetings to get input from constituents.

His answers to the IVI-IPO questionnaire provide more detail on his positions.

If you're interested in following his campaign or volunteering, here's a link to his Facebook page.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

last night's aldermanic candidate forum

I was not able to attend last night's forum, because I had a meeting in another part of the city. I heard that attendance was good - about 100 constituents.

Most of the candidates attended, and the audience appreciated being able to hear what they had to say. Matt O'Shea was the only candidate who did not attend. I have not heard any satisfactory explanation for his absence.

I know there are at least a couple more forums scheduled in the next few weeks. I will provide information as I get it.

Monday, January 10, 2011

quiet cars on Metra

Metra is beginning a test period for quiet cars on weekday rush hour trains on the Rock Island starting today. Loud conversations and music spilling out of headphones will not be allowed, and those who want to talk on cell phones will be asked to move to the vestibule or another car. I hope this experiment works. I know a lot of people who would be grateful to have peace and quiet on their ride. It would be even better if we could have this on off-peak trips.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

19th ward aldermanic candidate forum on 1/11

This morning's planned aldermanic candidate forum was derailed by a last-minute heavy-handed move against free speech. Vanderpoel Improvement Association (VIA) had invited all the candidates to address their meeting at the Beverly public library. Late yesterday afternoon, the candidates were notified by the library director that the event was cancelled. VIA found out through one of the candidates. They were told that "the library does not host political events," even though this was to be an open non-partisan informational forum so that residents could learn more about ALL the candidates, and that no candidate was endorsed through this forum.

I will update you with whatever information I'm able to get about why this forum was squelched.

With less than one day to go, VIA was not able to arrange for an alternate venue. They were able to join forces with a church in Mt. Greenwood for a forum this week, in which their key issues will be heard: ward redistricting, crime and safety, education, economic development, and accountability for services.

That forum will be held this Tuesday 1/11, hosted by Parkwood Baptist Church, 11355 S. Central Park, starting at 7 p.m. All 19th ward residents are welcome to attend.

Friday, January 7, 2011

where to recycle old holiday lights

Do you have old burned out or broken holiday light strings? You can drop them off for recycling at one of the following locations during their regular hours between now and Tuesday 1/18.

Chicago Center for Green Technology, 445 N. Sacramento
City Hall Lobby, 121 N. LaSalle St.
RecycleTech, 11235 S. Cottage Grove
Chicago Police Dept., 5101 S. Wentworth
Edgebrook Ace Hardware, 5423 W. Devon
Whole Foods South Loop, 1101 S. Canal
Wright College Campus Center, 4300 N. Narragansett
Logan Theater, 2646 N. Milwaukee
Southeast Senior Center, 1767 E. 79th St.
Wicker Park Bucktown Chamber of Commerce, 1414 N. Ashland
Southwest Senior Center, 6117 S. Kedzie
North Community Bank, 5235 N. Western

after Christmas

When your Christmas tree has dropped too many needles and it's time for it to go, please consider recycling it. The Chicago Park District will be accepting trees for chipping and mulching at several locations between now and Sunday January 17th.

In the Beverly area, trees will be accepted at Mt. Greenwood Park, 3721 W. 111th St., and Kennedy Park, 11320 S. Western. You can pick up free mulch beginning today.

non sequitur Friday

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Chicago mayoral candidates - Carol Moseley Braun

This is the first of four installments on our Chicago mayoral candidates.

After a lot of media coverage and discussion, the dust has settled, and Carol Moseley Braun has been declared the "black consensus candidate." This leaves me scratching my head. When Barack Obama launched his campaign here for the 2008 presidential election, wasn't he supposed to be a "post-racial" candidate? Wasn't the era of racially loaded campaigning supposed to be over? How many black voters still buy into the concept of a consensus candidate, and how many would rather vote for the most qualified candidate whose positions on the issues are the best match for their own ideas?

WTTW's campaign blog is being updated daily with all media coverage of mayoral campaigns.

Here's her official campaign web site.

What's your opinion?

Walk Bike Transit

Do sustainable transportation issues matter to you? Would you like to be part of a grassroots effort to make sure that walking, bicycling and public transit issues are on the agenda of all our candidates for mayor and alderman in Chicago? Contact the Walk Bike Transit political action committee to get involved today!

19th ward aldermanic candidate forum on Saturday 1/8

I just found out last night that there will be an aldermanic candidate forum this Saturday, January 8, at the Beverly Public Library, starting at 9:30 a.m. Want to know what the candidates have to say on issues that matter to you? Come to the library and bring your questions. The library is located at 1962 W. 95th St. (at Damen).