Stories by Alexandra Silets

Noise Complaints at O'Hare Skyrocket

| Sean Keenehan

Complaints about jet noise at O’Hare International Airport topped more than 400,000 in May. On Thursday, Gov. Bruce Rauner signed legislation that will increase the number of runways allowed at O’Hare in an effort to mitigate jet noise affecting some Chicago neighborhoods and suburbs.

Consumers to Pay Higher Gas, Electric Bills

Crain’s Chicago Business senior reporter Steve Daniels takes a closer look at the soaring cost of Peoples Gas' massive gas main replacement program and higher charges coming to Commonwealth Edison customers.

What's Next for Chicago's Pension Problems?

A Cook County judge ruled Friday that Chicago's plan to change city workers’ pensions was unconstitutional. The city vows to appeal the decision. We look at the ruling, whether any pension reform can be constitutional, what the consequences are to the city's plummeting bond rating, and whether the city will have to raise taxes to cover the pension liability. 

Crain’s Roundup: Aon Center Sold, Cat Prowling Cuba and Breakfast All Day at McDonald’s

We talk with Crain's Chicago Business Deputy Managing Editor Ann Dwyer about some of the biggest business stories this week, from Aon Center being sold to Caterpillar looking to Cuba to boost sluggish sales. Also, find out when McDonald’s will begin serving breakfast all day. 

State Budget Stalemate: Week Three

Illinois State Capitol

This is week three of the partial state government shutdown. Carol Marin talks with four lawmakers about whether a compromise is in the foreseeable future.

Andrea Zopp Makes Bid for U.S. Senate

| Steffie Drucker
Andrea Zopp

Andrea Zopp talks about her candidacy to become the democratic nominee in the primary race for U.S. Senate against Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth. The winner will face incumbent Senator Mark Kirk.

Emergency Budget Proposal Returns to IL Senate for Vote

Illinois Senate

Lawmakers from both sides of the aisle and from both chambers talk about the emergency one-month budget the Senate will vote on this week, and whether there will be any negotiations or attempts to pass a full budget for the coming fiscal year when the House returns to Springfied on Wednesday.

IL House Members Approve Emergency Budget

Lawmakers in the Illinois House on Thursday approved an emergency one-month budget which passed on July 1 in the Senate with no Republican support. But a pass in the House may not resolve the budget impasse, as Gov. Bruce Rauner has vowed to veto the temporary spending plan.

Chicago Housing Market Heats Up, Condos Consider Smoking Bans

Can Chicago condo buildings ban smoking in owners’ units? Some buildings are making the change. We talk with Crain’s Chicago Business real estate reporter Dennis Rodkin about that, the new disclosure rules coming, and the latest trends in the housing market.

Shutdown Showdown

Lawmakers left Springfield for the Fourth of July weekend without a budget deal in place triggering a partial government shutdown. We talk with legislators from both sides of the aisle about what to expect if the impasse continues and what's on the session's agenda this week to resolve the fiscal crisis.

Summer Music in Chicago

| Steffie Drucker

Chicago music fans have a lot to look forward to this summer with the Grateful Dead and Lollapalooza making headlines here. But Humboldt Park neighbors rejected the return of Riot Fest. Rock critics Greg Kot and Jim DeRogatis join us to talk about the headliners and the headlines.

Former Supreme Court Clerks on Gay Marriage Ruling

| Kristen Thometz

With the Supreme Court's ruling on gay marriage, the last 14 states now must recognize and grant marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Three former Supreme Court clerks weigh in on the historic 5-4 decision as well as the court’s rulings on the use of an execution drug, political mapping, and EPA limits.

SCOTUS Legalizes Same-Sex Marriage Nationwide

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Friday that states cannot ban same sex-marriage. In a landmark 5-4 ruling, Anthony Justice Kennedy wrote, “no union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice and family.”

Chicago Pride Parade’s Safety, Future

| Charles Jefferson

Chicago celebrates its 46th annual Pride Parade on Sunday. We talk with the man behind the parade and Ald. Tom Tunney about the history, security, and future of one of Chicago's largest parades.

Cullerton on Budget Showdown

| Steffie Drucker

Illinois Senate President John Cullerton joins Carol Marin to talk about the Springfield summer session's budget showdown.

Sister Rosemary on “Sewing Hope”

| Kristen Thometz
Credit: Jamie Moncrief

Named one of Time’s 100 most influential people last year, Sister Rosemary Nyirumbe, a Ugandan educator, joins us to talk about her advocacy for women and girls who have survived years of kidnappings and violence at the hands of the Lord’s Resistance Army warlord in Uganda.

Lawmakers Head Back to Work

Some have described the atmosphere in Springfield as toxic. Will lawmakers and Gov. Rauner move beyond the ugliness to get a deal done on the budget? Two lawmakers join us to talk about what's ahead.

A Closer Look at the Charges Against Dennis Hastert

| Charles Jefferson

The charges against former U.S. Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert include perjury and using a complicated series of financial maneuvers to hide a $3.5 million payoff to someone from Yorkville, where he taught high school decades ago. We take a closer look at the legal issues behind the indictment and the possible ramifications.

Hedy Weiss: Theater Reviews

| Kristen Thometz

Chicago Sun-Times Theater Critic Hedy Weiss reviews five shows being staged around Chicago.

Debating the Prevailing Wage Law

| Kristen Thometz

One way Gov. Bruce Rauner has proposed cutting spending is to repeal the so-called “prevailing wage” law. So what is the prevailing wage and why is it on the books? Our experts debate the pros and cons of eliminating the prevailing wage the state pays for public construction projects. 

Rabbi Rethinks Theology

Rabbi Herman Schaalman turned 99 years old this year. After a life spent studying religious texts and the Torah, he’s starting to doubt the existence of God. We'll talk with the rabbi about his own evolution.

The New University of Illinois President

The University of Illinois’ new president is a geophysicist who studies the earth’s atmosphere. But his focus now will be on moving the state’s huge university system forward. We’ll talk with him about possible budget cuts, tuition costs, and his vision for the future.

New Aldermen Sworn In

There are 13 new members joining City Council today. We talk to four of them about their priorities and the fiscal challenges that face Chicago in the next four years.

Amphibians Invade The Shedd Aquarium

| Kristen Thometz

A new special exhibit opens on Saturday with 40 species of amphibians. We talk with the Shedd Aquarium's Special Exhibits manager about the "ribbiting experience."

Obama Presidential Library Coming to Chicago

It's official. The Obama Presidential Library is coming to Chicago. What will it mean for the South Side? We'll hear more details about the city's triumph.