Stories by Paris Schutz

Madigan Flexes Muscle in General Assembly Primaries

Gov. Bruce Rauner is coming up empty in his bid to influence several General Assembly primary races, despite he and allies spending millions of dollars. If tonight’s races are indicative of a wider proxy war with House Speaker Mike Madigan, Madigan appears to be the runaway winner. 

Video of Chicago Activist Rushing Trump Stage Goes Viral

Paris Schutz interviews Jedidiah Brown.

Outspoken Chicago activist Jedidiah Brown says he's received death threats and has been put on temporary leave from his job following Donald Trump's canceled rally at UIC Pavilion on Friday night, an event Brown says was racially charged and dangerous.

Rogue Representative Dunkin Fights for Political Life

It's a simple state legislative primary, but observers view it as ground zero in the standoff between Gov. Bruce Rauner and House Speaker Michael Madigan. Paris Schutz has more on a race that has the money and mud flying. 

Elected CPS Board Gains Traction

The Chicago Public Schools system is one step closer to having an elected school board instead of one in which members are appointed by the mayor.

Lovie Smith Named University of Illinois Football Coach

A familiar face comes back to Illinois to coach the Fighting Illini. We have reaction from former Bears Coach Lovie Smith on his new gig.

CPS, CTU Back Off Threats

The Chicago Public Schools and the Chicago Teachers Union seem to be engaged in a game of “chicken,” where the both sides continue to decelerate before collision.

Early Voting Soars in Madigan vs Gonzales Race

Early voting numbers in the March 15 primary are up this year. But in one ward, the numbers are towering over all of the rest.

Interim CPD Superintendent Escalante: Police Morale ‘Improving’

John Escalante

A startling rise in homicides to start the year has public officials searching for answers. Chicago's interim Police Superintendent on Tuesday sought to explain the spike in crime and how he plans to address it.

Gov. Rauner: Speaker Madigan Holding Higher Education Hostage

Gov. Bruce Rauner

Gov. Bruce Rauner says there are bills he supports that would fund higher education institutions in Illinois, but he says powerful House Speaker Mike Madigan is making sure they do not go anywhere. Paris Schutz has the latest.

Ald. Ed Burke’s Workers’ Compensation Program Under Increased Scrutiny

Should powerful Ald. Ed Burke (14th Ward) be able to run the city's $100 million workers' compensation program? A pair of whistle-blowers say no and want an investigation into alleged patronage abuses. Paris Schutz has the story.

Budget Impasse Leaves Homeless Programs Out in the Cold

A coalition of homeless service providers who pleaded with Gov. Bruce Rauner on Friday to unlock $310 million worth of state funding say they will likely only get a small part of their wish.

Gov. Rauner Threatens to Choke CPS Borrowing

Bruce Rauner

Gov. Bruce Rauner makes another move to take over Chicago Public Schools. This one, he says, could happen without legislative approval.

Rauner to Consider Unlocking $310M for Homeless Programs

A persistent group of nonprofit organizations that provide services to the homeless met with Gov. Bruce Rauner on Friday to push for his support of a bill that would unlock $310 million in state aid to fund homeless programs.

Lawmakers Want to Limit Police Use of Stingray Cellphone Trackers

Harris Stingray

Law enforcement agencies like the Chicago Police Department are increasingly using cellphone tracking devices, or Stingrays, to gather data on people. Why some Illinois legislators are trying to tone it down.

University of Chicago Reflects on Justice Antonin Scalia's Death

A close former associate of Justice Antonin Scalia from the University of Chicago reflects on their deep ideological divide and unlikely friendship. Paris Schutz has the story.

Civic Federation: Illinois Needs $9.4 Billion in New Taxes by 2019 to Survive

New taxes – and lots of them. That's what Illinois will need to dig out of its current fiscal mess, according to a new report from the Civic Federation.

City Council Passes Watered-Down Version of Inspector General Ordinance

City Council today proved that it is ready for reform – just not very much reform. It was a tense debate over which reform measure to support: one that would give Inspector General Joe Ferguson broad, sweeping powers to investigate and audit aldermen, or a more hands-off approach favored by powerful Ald. Ed Burke (14th Ward). Paris Schutz has the story.

State Owes Catholic Charities $25 Million and Growing Due to Budget Impasse

Social Service Agency ‘In Crisis Mode,' says CEO

Catholic Charities Chicago (U.S. Department of Agriculture)

The head of the state's largest social service organization says the state's ongoing budget impasse has now reached a crisis level that could impact the lives of hundreds of thousands vulnerable citizens. Paris Schutz has the exclusive story.

Aldermen Reject Mayor Emanuel’s Tobacco Tax

(Raul Lieberwirth / Flickr)

In a surprising setback, City Council aldermen came out against the mayor’s proposed ordinance for a $6 million tax on tobacco products. Why did City Council go against him?

Should City Government Set a Minimum Tobacco Price?

Tucked into a new ordinance that would tax smokeless and other non-cigarette tobacco products is a provision that would set a minimum price on cigarettes, cigars and chew tobacco.

Gov. Rauner Doubles Down on CPS Takeover, Bankruptcy

Gov. Bruce Rauner says he believes the General Assembly will pass his proposed legislation to have a state takeover of Chicago Public Schools and to enable them to declare bankruptcy. This, as CPS finally completes its delayed $875 million borrowing deal. Paris Schutz has more.

Comptroller: Taxes Would Have to Double to Cover State Debt

The cost of Illinois’ budget impasse? The income tax would have to go up 100 percent if the state’s debt is to be paid off through revenue alone, according to state Comptroller Leslie Munger. How much longer can the state teeter along without a budget? Paris Schutz has more.

Gov. Rauner Strikes Conciliatory Tone in State of the State Speech

In a roughly 30-minute speech on Wednesday, Gov. Bruce Rauner lightly mentioned the ongoing budget impasse and did not say the phrase “Turnaround agenda" once. Instead, the governor struck tones of reconciliation on issues such as pension reform and education funding.

2016 Health Care Enrollment Deadline Nears

State, local and federal officials are urging those without health coverage to sign up for the Affordable Care Act before next week's open enrollment deadline. Paris Schutz explains why it could affect your health care premiums. 

Cullerton Strikes Deal with Rauner

The top Democrat in the Illinois Senate says he's willing to make a deal with Gov. Bruce Rauner on pension reform and other items in the governor's so-called Turnaround agenda. Is the budget impasse finally thawing out?