Public Meetings Report. Illustration by Holley Appold/South Side Weekly
Public Meetings Report. Illustration by Holley Appold/South Side Weekly
  1. Public Meetings Report – March 18, 2021
  2. Public Meetings Report – April 1, 2021
  3. Public Meetings Report – April 15, 2021
  4. Public Meetings Report – April 29, 2021
  5. Public Meetings Report – May 13, 2021
  6. Public Meetings Report – May 27, 2021
  7. Public Meetings Report – June 10, 2021
  8. Public Meetings Report – June 24, 2021
  9. Public Meetings Report – July 08, 2021
  10. Public Meetings Report – July 22, 2021
  11. Public Meetings Report – August 05, 2021
  12. Public Meetings Report – August 19, 2021
  13. Public Meetings Report – September 30, 2021
  14. Public Meetings Report – October 14, 2021
  15. Public Meetings Report – October 28, 2021
  16. Public Meetings Report – November 11, 2021
  17. Public Meetings Report – November 25, 2021
  18. Public Meetings Report – December 9, 2021
  19. Public Meetings Report – January 13, 2022
  20. Public Meetings Report – January 27, 2022
  21. Public Meetings Report – February 10, 2022
  22. Public Meetings Report – February 24, 2022
  23. Public Meetings Report – March 10, 2022
  24. Public Meetings Report – March 24, 2022
  25. Public Meetings Report – April 7, 2022
  26. Public Meetings Report – April 21, 2022
  27. Public Meetings Report – May 5, 2022
  28. Public Meetings Report – May 19, 2022
  29. Public Meetings Report – June 2, 2022
  30. Public Meetings Report – June 22, 2022
  31. Public Meetings Report – June 30, 2022
  32. Public Meetings Report – July 14, 2022
  33. Public Meetings Report – July 28, 2022
  34. Public Meetings Report – August 11, 2022
  35. Public Meetings Report – August 25, 2022
  36. Public Meetings Report — October 20, 2022
  37. Public Meetings Report — November 17, 2022
  38. Public Meetings Report — December 1, 2022
  39. Public Meetings Report — January 12, 2023
  40. Public Meetings Report — January 26, 2023
  41. Public Meetings Report — February 9, 2023
  42. Public Meetings Report — February 23, 2023
  43. Public Meetings Report — March 9, 2023
  44. Public Meetings Report — March 23, 2023
  45. Public Meetings Report — April 20, 2023
  46. Public Meetings Report — May 4, 2023
  47. Public Meetings Report — May 18, 2023
  48. Public Meetings Report — June 1, 2023
  49. Public Meetings Report — June 15, 2023
  50. Public Meetings Report — June 29, 2023
  51. Public Meetings Report — July 13, 2023
  52. Public Meetings Report — July 27, 2023
  53. Public Meetings Report — August 10, 2023
  54. Public Meetings Report — August 24, 2023
  55. Public Meetings Report — September 7, 2023
  56. Public Meetings Report — September 21, 2023
  57. Public Meetings Report — December 7, 2023
  58. Public Meetings Report — February 1, 2024
  59. Public Meetings Report — February 15, 2024
  60. Public Meetings Report — April 11, 2024
  61. Public Meetings Report — May 9, 2024
  62. Public Meetings Report — May 23, 2024

July 28

A staffing shortage continues to create unsafe environments for patients and staff, nurses told the Cook County Health and Hospital Systems Board of Directors at its meeting. During the public comment period, nurses shared stories of overwork, sometimes requiring a nurse-patient ratio of 1:9. (California is the only state that mandates smaller nurse-patient ratios.) They asked the board to examine hiring practices and offer better pay and benefits to fill the staffing void. Previously, during a one-day strike in 2021, nurses called on Cook County Health’s management team to resolve the crisis. Board members said the nurses’ testimonies were compelling but that recruiting nurses has become increasingly difficult since the COVID-19 pandemic. At the time of the meeting, staff at Loretto Hospital in Austin were striking with similar complaints of low wages and overwork. The eleven-day strike ended when nurses achieved their goals, receiving an increase in the starting hourly wage to $19 from $17, an overall 14.5 percent average increase over three years, and two additional paid holidays.

August 1

The Illinois Commerce Commission Peoples Gas Public Forum meeting focused on hearing public comment about and explaining the utility’s proposed 9.9 percent rate increase, which would add about $12 to the monthly gas bill for an average household. Peoples Gas president Torrence Hinton cited the cost of replacing more than eighty percent of the iron pipes nearing the end of their useful life as a reason for the request. On average, the recommended replacement time for iron pipes is fifty years, but Hinton said that the company recently removed a pipe dating back to 1859. Commenters who spoke against the rate increase during the forum said that Peoples Gas is making enough of a profit as it is and that Illinois should instead be investing in cleaner and more affordable energy sources. Individuals supporting community groups opposed to the request were among the approximately eighty people attending. Two other utility representatives spoke about its contributions to communities and billing processes.

August 3

Over a property owner’s objections, the Commission on Chicago Landmarks and Permit Review Committee at its meeting unanimously approved a preliminary landmark recommendation for the 131-year-old Wolfson Building, formerly a maternal health center and homeless shelter in East Garfield Park. Discussion was triggered in May when the owner of the property, Guillermo Meza Ortega, applied for a demolition permit. At the meeting, Ortega said he respected the historical nature of the building but planned to develop the property in other ways. One public commenter who spoke in favor of landmark designation shared a statement from someone whose mother stayed at the center for four months during her pregnancy, and noted that the center served women of color in the city. A commissioner commented that landmark designations often go to properties of more importance to affluent communities rather than underserved communities.

August 8

At its meeting, the Chicago Community Development Commission authorized the CTA to advertise its planned purchase of thirty-six City-owned vacant lots in West Pullman, Roseland, Riverdale, and Morgan Park as part of its Red Line Extension (RLE) Project, affecting the 21st, 9th, and 10th wards. The project will extend the Red Line 5.6 miles south from its current end at 95th St. and will add new stations on 103rd, 111th, Michigan Ave., and 130th St. The goals of the extension, according to the CTA, are to improve the “transit experience” by reducing travel time and increasing access to more rail and bus routes; help “Far South Side residents reliably access jobs” outside their neighborhoods; generate “more than 25,000 jobs” over time, and “set the table for $1.7 billion in real estate development” beginning in 2029, when the extended rail line is scheduled to open. Before that can happen, the CTA will need to acquire additional land parcels, many from private owners. A tax increment financing (TIF) district approved by the City last December can generate $959 million to help fund the Red Line extension, estimated to cost $3.6 billion. The commissioners also approved the sale of property at 7524 S. Emerald Ave. in Englewood to be used as a play lot for daycare.

August 10

At its meeting, the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District (MWRD) Board of Commissioners heard complaints from Harvey residents about poor communication concerning a proposed water retention pond. The pond is part of stormwater management infrastructure designed to address severe flooding in the area. Residents support the program but say that the retention pond will displace some. Harvey City Council member Colby Chapman (2nd Ward) said she only learned of the project in early July. While she welcomes stormwater management infrastructure to remediate the severe flooding that has plagued the city, she called for more direct conversations with residents and local officials. MWRD staff has been communicating with Harvey’s mayor, Christopher Clark, according to board president Kari Steele, who said she was concerned that information has not been shared effectively. She said the board and staff will attempt to set up a community meeting about the implications of building the pond.

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This information was collected and curated by the Weekly in large part using reporting from City Bureau’s Documenters at documenters.org.

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