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The mayor and top city officials are speaking to the public at this hour in the first of a series of town hall meetings on the city budget. That budget could be as much as $754 million out of whack thanks to escalating pension costs. Higher taxes and fees are almost certainly inevitable, the question is which? How are residents responding to the shortfall? Paris Schultz joins us live from Malcolm X College.

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The City of Chicago will have to wait two more weeks before a judge's ruling on whether pension legislation supported by Mayor Rahm Emanuel is constitutional. Lawyers representing city workers, as well as the city and the employee pension funds made their cases to Cook County Circuit Court Judge Rita Novak Thursday morning. Novak said she will issue a ruling on Friday, July 24.

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Inspector General Joe Ferguson joins us with the latest on government oversight in Chicago.

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The brutal winter has led to skyrocketing pothole claims in the city. What can residents do? And when will they be filled? Paris Schutz has the story. View the city's Pothole Tracker map to see where potholes have been patched in the last seven days.

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Today's record cold caused delays on the Metra and CTA. We tell you how the city is coping. Send us your severe weather photos here and we'll use them in our online slideshow.

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We talk with Chicago Tribune reporter Bill Ruthhart about his story detailing business ties between a top aide in Mayor Emanuel’s office and the indicted city comptroller. Read Ruthhart's full story.

Medical Marijuana & City Budget

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We share what you had about the to say about the legalization of medical marijuana in Illinois and the city's budget shortfall in tonight's viewer feedback.

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Digital, interactive billboards may soon be coming to dozens, if not hundreds of pieces of street furniture in some of the most pedestrian-heavy areas of the city.

City Council Passes Emanuel’s Budget 46-3

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Ald. Sandi Jackson is a no-show as the Chicago City Council passes Mayor Rahm Emanuel's budget by a 46-3 vote. Paris Schutz has the details.

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The teachers' strike is over, but the city must now negotiate contracts with police and fire unions. How will the city afford what's coming? Paris Schutz has the story.

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The mayor says he’s cut the city’s budget deficit in half. It’s the one piece of positive news in an otherwise ominous financial forecast. Are tax hikes and spending cuts inevitable? We take a look.

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Two innovative web developers and Chicago's Chief Technology Officer talk about new apps for Chicagoans with data from the city.

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We speak with two of Chicago's financial leaders -- the city budget director and comptroller -- about how they've overachieved their budget, and what's next for Chicago in 2012.

Taxpayers May Owe for Reconstruction

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U.S. Cellular Field

City taxpayers may not owe $1.1 million for Soldier Field and U.S Cellular Field reconstruction -- this year. But, Paris Schutz has more on why taxpayers may owe far more in the future.

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Mayor Rahm Emanuel © 2011 City of Chicago, photo by Brooke Collins

Mayor Rahm Emanuel unveils some surprising proposals to close Chicago's massive budget gap. So who'll feel the most pain? Carol Marin is joined by City Council members, and then we take a look at the specifics of the plan and whether it's the best way out of the city's $636 million shortfall.

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Chicago City Council

The Mayor has already shot down the idea of a toll booth on Lake Shore Drive. But will any of the other ideas from Chicago's Inspector General to close the city's huge budget hole ever see the light of day -- like taxing suburbanites? Carol Marin and her panel of aldermen take that up.