Good morning, Chicago.
Gov. J.B. Pritzker begins his second term Jan. 9 emboldened by a decisive reelection victory, a slew of wins in November by Democratic candidates he helped fund and a series of legislative successes that formed the foundation of his bid for another four years in Springfield.
With his party achieving a historic 78-40 edge over Republicans in the Illinois House in the new term and a 40-19 advantage in the Senate, expectations will be high for the billionaire entrepreneur and Hyatt Hotels heir to continue racking up victories, though he laid out few specific plans during the campaign.
The contours of Pritzker’s second-term agenda should become more clear when he addresses the crowd at his inauguration and when he makes his budget proposal to lawmakers in mid-February. But while offering few specifics, the governor told the Tribune in an interview in late December that it all begins with continuing to stabilize the state’s long-shaky finances.
Read the full story from the Tribune’s Dan Petrella.
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The planned extension of the busy Red Line south to 130th Street in Altgeld Gardens has many residents excited about the possibility of development in nearby neighborhoods including Roseland, which has seen high unemployment and disinvestment. The project has the potential to help transform the area and the day-to-day lives of residents who commute to jobs or school, they said.
But it will take work from CTA and the city to make sure the communities benefit, observers said, and the project is not without concerns. It calls for acquiring dozens of homes, forcing residents to find new places to live. And it will be years before trains could be up and running.
Over the last several years, Chicago has championed growth in its tech industry. Tech jobs represent 8% of the city’s workforce, a recent Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce study found.
Here’s what to know about jobs in 2023.
“I have never made a New Year’s resolution, but I have spent many fruitful hours during the first days of a new year revisiting the past year. In doing so, I have been able to discover things I had missed, or others that I had simply forgotten,” writes Rick Kogan.
Sports remain our greatest escape, offering a few hours of downtime from the daily dose of madness that surrounds us from when we awaken to the moment we crash, writes Paul Sullivan.
So we look to our teams and favorite athletes to provide us with fade-resistant memories, the kind of unscripted drama that lingers like a daydream you never want to end.
“The end of each year, and the start of every new one, is a cliffhanger, unfolding in real-time,” writes Christopher Borrelli.
“We forget because we don’t have to wait too long to see what happens. Our narrative never stops. Season 2023 will begin playing soon, have patience. Its trailer was the past 12 months of 2022, and as always, by the end of that season, some details were resolved, but much — the story arc, the plot, the What happens next? to the characters — remained vague, until further notice. That knot in your stomach meant you were one of the characters. So pause to reflect, while you can.”