HERE WE GO: Back at it again, fighting the good fight for a better Illinois. Thanks for joining us! Tell your pals to come on along for the ride, won't you?
IMAGINE ILLINOIS IMPROVED: Every big challenge needs a little inspiration and
motivation, right? That's why we're hosting our "Why is Illinois
Great" photo contest. Let's inspire each other. Send us your image of a
person, people, place, thing or things that illustrates what you love about
Illinois and get your family and friends to vote for it! You could win a $500, $250 or $100
gift card! You'll find all the details about the contest here.
METRA'S MEMOGATE: Memogate continues to keep us all talking. We have several stories
and columns today in the Daily Tip Off as Gov. Pat Quinn joins the chorus of
those offering ideas for fixing the transit bureaucracy in Illinois. Every
citizen should keep on top of this one because we all fund these agencies with
our tax dollars. And there's another reason for all of us to keep paying
attention and applying the pressure. It's working! I offer up a look by the numbers and
talk about the good news in the Metra mess in a blog post today.
2014: PAINTING 1,000 WORDS, EASILY: Rabbits, fair queens and governor candidate Bill Daley in button-down shirt, and, wait, are those really shorts?! Oh, c'mon. You know you love it. If we can talk incessantly about Hillary's hair and Michelle's bangs, then why not Bill's knees? Here's our favorite from the Bill Daley McHenry County Fair Facebook photo album. We have more from fun photos from the candidates here. More reasons why Illinois is great!
A TAXING DILEMMA: Heading to political days at the state fair next week? Then come to our debate too. We'll be exploring the possibilities for Illinois' income tax post-2015 at our tax forum in Springfield on Aug. 15. Join us and the Citizens Club of Springfield as progressive tax advocate Ralph Martire of the Center for Tax and Budget Accountability and opponent Ted Dabrowski of the Illinois Policy Institute discuss the ups and downs and all arounds of instituting a progressive, sliding-scale income tax system in Illinois. Find out what this might mean to your wallet here.
NICE PAY, IF YOU CAN GET IT: The intra-party war
over politicians' pay heads to court today for a hearing. So, it's a good time
to take another look at our original infographic on lawmakers' salaries. They
missed a check last Thursday, but they'll get their pay eventually. How does our politicians' pay
compare to our neighbors? Get all the details here!
END INCUMBENT PROTECTION: So if you're tired of
the same old politicians playing the same old games with pay, patronage and
passing out plum jobs, how about you do something about it? Join us! We're
rebooting remapping with the Yes For Independent Maps coalition that's working
to collect voters' signatures for a more impartial mapping process. As it is
now, politicians pick their voters, not the other way around. They guarantee their job security
and breed corruption when they draw maps to protect their jobs. It's got to
stop and we need your help. Sign up here.
2014: RAOUL FOR GOVERNOR.
WHY NOT? Capitol Fax Publisher Rich
Miller explores the pathway to a Raoul-for-governor campaign. He finds it's not
so outside the realm of real possibility for the Chicago Democrat who's playing
a key role on the pension conference committee. Check it out here.
THE GALESBURG WAY: Mike Lawrence, a Galesburg native and retired director of the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute, writes about educational efforts in his hometown and elsewhere to lift poor youth out of poverty. He says the efforts in Galesburg and East St. Louis can be a role model replicated elsewhere. Read his view here.
5 CAN'T-MISS NEWS AND VIEWS Here's our one-stop shop to the best news and views on reform topics from around the state. You'll find links to and summaries of these and many more in the Daily Tip-Off section of our website.
- 5. Opinion: The Metra board
needs major changes, but let's give this some thought. (Daily Herald)
4. Even with all the budget cuts, more Chicago Public Schools kindergartners will have a full school day. (Chicago Sun-Times)
3. Pension problems plague the nation and Illinois leads in this negative category. (NBC News)
2. A pension crisis looms on the horizon for Chicago and it’s drawing nearer. (The New York Times)
1. Attorney General Lisa Madigan says there is no conflict in her office representing Gov. Pat Quinn and Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka in the lawsuit her father, Michael Madigan, and John Cullerton filed to get their salaries back. (Chicago Sun-Times)