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In the News

Vote Early or Vote by Mail for Mayor of Chicago!

March 25, 2015

 

Dear Neighbor:

 

The polls for the April 7th Mayoral Election are officially open! And the polls will remain open for two weeks. There is a lot at stake in the upcoming Mayoral Election and it is important that every Chicagoan exercise his or her right to vote!

 

The April 7th Election is scheduled during Spring Break for many families - so it's important to vote in advance. Here are a couple easy ways to vote early:

  1. Visit any of the 51 early voting locations, which can be found here. They are open 9am-5pm Monday through Saturday, and 9am-3pm next Sunday.
  2. Don't want to venture out into Chicago's snowy spring? Fill out this online application from home and a ballot will arrive at your doorstep.

Judging from the abysmal 34% voter turnout in the February 24th City Election, nearly 2 out of 3 Chicago voters did not even bother to vote. As you know, city elections have a direct impact on our daily lives, especially when it comes to major policy decisions that impact our quality-of-life and local tax burden.

 

Don't let someone else pick your next Mayor for you - take 5 minutes to cast your ballot for Chicago Mayor. This race is simply too important to ignore.

 

Vote early, vote-by-mail, or vote in-person on April 7th.

 

But no matter what - don't forget to exercise your right to vote!

 

Sincerely,

 

 

Brendan Reilly

Alderman, 42nd Ward

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Alderman Reilly - In the News! 

December 9, 2014

 

After the Special City Council meeting last Tuesday, December 2nd, Alderman Reilly stopped by the Bob Sirott and Marianne Murciano radio show on WGN for a recap on the Minimum Wage Ordinance.

 

 

To listen to the interview, click here.

 

Alderman Reilly was also a guest on the Bruce Wolf and Dan Proft Show on WLS this past Wednesday, December 3rd to talk about the minimum wage increase in Chicago.

To listen to the interview, click here.

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Alderman Reilly Joins CIM Group for Block Thirty Seven Apartment Tower Groundbreaking

November 18, 2014

 

 

Last month, Alderman Reilly joined Mayor Emanuel and executives from CIM Group for a commemorative groundbreaking to celebrate the start of construction on CIM's 34-story, 690-unit apartment tower at Block Thirty Seven, located on State Street between Randolph and Dearborn Streets.

 

Set on the northern end of the block atop the five-story, 275,000-square-foot Block Thirty Seven retail center, the residential tower is the final phase of the development, creating a mixed-use property at this high profile State Street location. The sleek, glass-clad tower's recreation and relaxation areas are designed to take advantage of the sweeping city views with a fifth floor amenity deck with an outdoor pool and spa and a rooftop spa and fitness center.

 

Since acquiring Block Thirty Seven at 108 N. State Street in the heart of Chicago's retail corridor, CIM Group has been implementing its plan to reposition and enhance the center as an attractive destination for the community.   The company recently announced it is bringing an 11-screen AMC Dine-In Theatre to the fourth floor. The new theatres join the previously announced 22,000-square-foot sophisticated casual multi-concept dining hall to be created by Richard Sandoval Restaurants on the third floor and a signature new restaurant from the Lawless family on the ground floor at the corner of Randolph and Dearborn Streets.

 

To learn more, click here to read the full press release.

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Alderman Reilly's Council Recap on WGN Radio with Dean Richards

September 12, 2014

 

 

After City Council on Wednesday, September 10th, Alderman Reilly stopped by the WGN Bob Sirott & Marianne Murciano Show, guest hosted by Dean Richards for a recap of the Council meeting.  The Alderman discussed hot topics including Filming and Arts in Chicago, Speed and Red Light Cameras, as well as addressing City service requests.  

 

To listen to the interview, click here. Please Note: Alderman Reilly's segment begins at 1:04:08.

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Alderman Reilly Welcomes New Bennett Day School to the West Loop!

August 22, 2014

 

(Ald. Walter Burnett, Jr.; Kate Cicchelli, Co-Founder / Head of School; Cameron Smith, CEO / Co-Founder; Ald. Brendan Reilly)

 

Earlier this week Alderman Reilly joined 27th Ward Alderman Walter Burnett Jr., at the Grand Opening and Community Open House Celebration for Bennett Day School, located at 657 W. Fulton Street.

 

 

(Ribbon Cutting for Bennett Day School)

 

Bennett Day School is a new Chicago two-year old through eighth grade school that is passionate about serving families a progressive education based on the Reggio Emilia collaborative approach of self-directed learning.

  

The school's innovative West Loop location provides opportunities for students to interact with the local community and be a part of Chicago's thriving downtown culture.   

  

For more information about Bennett Day School please visit: www.bennettday.org.

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Alderman Reilly Votes Against Weakening Legislative Inspector General

August 1, 2014

 

This week, Alderman Reilly voted against a proposal that would strip the Legislative Inspector General of his authority to investigate aldermen for allegations of campaign finance violations. The ordinance would shift those investigative duties to the Board of Ethics - the agency that is responsible for adjudicating these cases.

 

The Board of Ethics has acknowledged that investigating allegations of campaign violations would pose a conflict of interest, given the agency must ultimately determine the outcome of these cases.  Further, the Board does not have the resources or capabilities to conduct these investigations in a thorough manner.

 

On Wednesday, the City Council voted 42-6 to approve stripping the Legislative Inspector General of this investigative authority.  Alderman Reilly was one of the 6 aldermen who voted "no."  Alderman Reilly was joined by Aldermen Hairston (5th), Waguespack (32nd), Arena (45th), Fioretti (2nd) and Sposato (36th) in opposing the legislation.

 

Chicago Aldermen Cast a Brazen Vote for Self-protection 

Chicago Tribune Editorial - August 1, 2014

 

Just how dumb does the Chicago City Council believe its constituents to be?

 

Really, really dumb.

 

Aldermen on Wednesday approved an ordinance that weakens their own inspector general. They hope Chicago voters will believe the baloney that the City Council was merely "closing a loophole." That's quite a chunk of Oscar Mayer to choke down.

 

To review: The aldermen hired Inspector General Faisal Khan in 2011 to be their watchdog on ethics matters. When he arrived they gave him no investigative staff, insisted he get sworn statements from all whistleblowers (a surefire chilling effect), and told him he couldn't launch investigations without approval from the Chicago Board of Ethics.

 

That board, appointed by the mayor, has not issued a finding against an alderman in more than 25 years. During that time, more than 20 aldermen have been convicted of felonies.

 

And now, more of the same council self-protection as the aldermen further insulate themselves from Khan.

 

Until Wednesday, Khan had been doing the job of investigating complaints about aldermanic conduct. He has wanted the authority to initiate investigations, just like other inspectors general, rather than have to wait for signed, sworn complaints. Instead, the council gave that power to the do-little ethics board - which doesn't even want the responsibility.

 

Led by Ald. Patrick O'Connor, 40th - who, the Tribune reported Thursday, faces allegations that he violated the city's ethics rules - the council speedily passed an ordinance that limits how soon and how far Khan can go with his inquiries. And the ethics board now has the awkward roles of initiating investigations and also adjudicating them.

 

Was O'Connor, who knew there was an ongoing ethics probe into his fundraising, deliberately trying to thwart Khan? O'Connor denies that he was. O'Connor told the Tribune his ordinance strengthening the ethics board, a seven-member panel, had nothing to do with his case. O'Connor insisted he engaged in no wrongdoing.

 

"Unequivocally, no, there will not be any finding against me," he said.

 

Whatever the motivation here, why would council members make themselves look foolish by reducing Khan's authority to look at them?

 

Oh, yes. We remember: Chicago aldermen place top priority on protecting their collective behinds. They might occasionally battle it out on policy or budget issues, but there's one thing you can count on them to do in lock step: thwart transparency.

 

Khan says the council's vote now jeopardizes dozens of investigations he had been pursuing. Which is exactly what aldermen evidently wanted.

 

Since the day Khan arrived, the City Council has been largely uncooperative. Aldermen and staff members often don't turn over documents. They don't return messages. Sometimes, they don't even show up for scheduled interviews. Mayor Rahm Emanuel in the past has brushed off Khan's reports, at one point saying he had neither the "time or interest" to read them.

 

Some council members would love for Khan to resign out of frustration. In the meantime, they've voted to undercut him.

 

O'Connor's ordinance passed 42-6.

 

The aldermen who voted no: Bob Fioretti, 2nd; Leslie Hairston, 5th; Scott Waguespack, 32nd; Brendan Reilly, 42nd; Nicholas Sposato, 36th, and John Arena, 45th.

 

Ald. Natashia Holmes, 7th, was absent and Ald. Michele Smith, 43rd, did not vote.

 

If you live in Chicago and your alderman went along with this, he or she voted against better government and hoped you were too dumb to notice.

 

That vote might be the most revealing roll call of 2014. Remember it when your alderman's name appears on the February primary election ballot.

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Alderman Reilly Commends the Polk Family on their Legacy Gift to Navy Pier

July 18, 2014

 

 

(From L to R: Howard Polk, Sandra Polk Guthman, Bruce Bachmann from Polk Bros. Foundation Board of Directors; Marilynn Gardner, Navy Pier; Mayor Emanuel; Bill Brodsky, Navy Pier; and Alderman Reilly. Credit - Greg Keith Porter Imagery)

 

Alderman Reilly was honored to participate in the announcement made earlier this week for Navy Pier's $20 million Legacy Gift from Chicago's legendary Polk Family.

 

This donation will contribute to the dramatic transformation of the Pier, and marks marks the single largest private gift ever made to Navy Pier in its nearly 100-year history.

The Polk family gift will support the redevelopment of Navy Pier's 13 acre entrance - Gateway Park - and its new fountain, promenade and exciting performance lawns. The Polk family's generosity will be recognized by naming various elements in the new Polk Bros Park, which will serve as Navy Pier's green front door, inviting the public into a revitalized Pier.


As part of Polk Bros Park, the main promenade connecting the city with Navy Pier will be widened and enhanced with a Welcome Pavilion, which will house Park amenities, such as bicycle and skate rental. The new Polk Bros Park also will include two magnificent new performance spaces at its southern end to host live arts and culture events against the backdrop of the lake and spectacular Chicago skyline.

 

To read the full press release, see renderings and learn more about the Polk Family's commitment to Chicago, click here.

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Alderman Reilly Welcomes New Streeterville Whole Foods Market!

February 3, 2015

 

 

(From L - R: Alderman Reilly, Tom Marciniak, Edwin Morales, Laura Bucher, Matt Mell, David Schwartz, and Michael Bashaw)

 

Alderman Reilly participated in the official "Bread-Breaking Ceremony" last week to celebrate the opening of the new Streeterville Whole Foods Market at 255 E. Grand Avenue. To learn more about the store's unique offerings, click here to read the official press release.

 

The Streetervillle location is the first of seven new Chicagoland Whole Foods Markets planned to open in 2015. Another 42nd Ward store is scheduled to open Wednesday, March 25 in the West Loop at 1 N. Halsted Street.

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443 North Wabash Elevated Walkway Now Open!

December 23, 2014

 

Almost one year ago, Alderman Reilly was presented with a demolition permit for the former Lake Shore Athletic Club (LSAC) including the attached elevated walkway, located at 443 N. Wabash.  As many residents can attest, that walkway which connects Michigan Avenue to Wabash Avenue is heavily trafficked year round.   

 

Understanding that demolition would be more costly and take additional time, the Alderman negotiated the retention and necessary reconstruction of the walkway for continued public use.  Additional support beams and columns were installed and a new handrail was added on the north side where the walkway was previously connected to the LSAC building.

  

The walkway has been closed since February for public safety reasons but just re-opened last week----several weeks ahead of schedule!

 

Alderman Reilly would like to sincerely thank Zeller Realty Group for restoring access to this important public amenity and remaining a strong corporate leader downtown.



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Alderman Reilly Celebrates Opening of Chicago Blackhawks Flagship Retail Store on Magnificent Mile!

October 14, 2014

 



(From L to R: John McDonough, Alderman Reilly, Jonathan Toews, Rocky Wirtz)

Last week, Alderman Reilly was on hand to welcome the new Chicago Blackhawks flagship retail store at 333 North Michigan Avenue with Blackhawks Chairman Rocky Wirtz, President & CEO John McDonough, VP & General Manager Stan Bowman and team Captain Johnathan Toews.

 

The project, developed by Wirtz Realty, transformed the landmark location into a 5,000 square-foot, two-story retail location at one of the most highly-trafficked locations in Chicago at the intersection of Wacker Drive and Michigan Avenue.

  

The new flagship store is equipped to host live radio and television broadcasts and features over 20 video screens with up-to-the-minute Blackhawks content, including live games. Three interactive touchscreens are located on the second floor of the Blackhawks Store and allow fans to play Blackhawks trivia and view franchise history and current player information.

 

Additionally, a green screen utilizing augmented reality technology provides fans with an opportunity to take photos with their favorite players - virtually at four United Center locations, including at center ice and in the Blackhawks locker room, and share them via social media.

 

Fans will have access to exclusive merchandise and custom-made jerseys at the Blackhawks Store. Over 30 new brands will be available, along with expanded women's and children's retail lines. Historical Blackhawks memorabilia will be on display throughout, and fans can purchase photographs and game-used items.

 

Click here to view the official press release.

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Alderman Reilly Honored with the Chicago Loop Alliance Foundation's Illumination Award!

September 26, 2014

 

Alderman Reilly was the honored guest at Chicago Loop Alliance Foundation's (CLAF) Illumination 2014: 10th Annual Gala this past Friday, September 19th, at the historic Palmer House Hilton.   

CLAF presented Alderman Reilly with their most prestigious Leadership award, the Illumination Award, which is awarded to "selfless Civic and Community Leaders who through their ideas, leadership and counsel have increased the experience and well being for the Loop businesses, residents and visitors." 

 

 (Alderman Reilly accepting CLAF Illumination Award - photo credit: Steven Gross)

 

Marty Stern, Chairman of the Board of Directors for Chicago Loop Alliance, acknowledged the Alderman for his work in making the Loop more accessible for commerce and tourism; sensitivity to the needs of businesses along its busy corridors; open communication with the community; and support of CLA and CLAF programs, such as alley activation and placemaking initiatives, which provide a unique urban experience for residents, businesses and tourists. 

 

 

(Alderman Reilly: Pam Capitanini, Italian Village; Dean Lane, Palmer House Hilton - photo credit: Steven Gross)

 

The evening's events were hosted by Pamella Capitanini of Italian Village Restaurants and Dean Lane of the Palmer House, and included over 500 business leaders in attendance in an elegant setting. 

 

The mission of the Chicago Loop Alliance Foundation (CLAF), a 501 (c) (3) corporation, is to develop, support and promote artistic, cultural, and public events that benefit businesses, individuals and stakeholders within the area served by the Chicago Loop Alliance (CLA).  

 

Alderman Reilly is proud to work with the Chicago Loop Alliance to enhance the character of the Chicago Loop, and to promote economic development and tourism in the area.

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Alderman Reilly Celebrates River North Dog Park Opening with Neighbors, Community Leaders and their Pets!

September 20, 2014

 

Last Saturday, Alderman Reilly was joined by Chicago City Clerk Susana Mendoza, Cook County Commissioner John Fritchey, State Representative Esther Golar, community leaders from the River North Residents Association (RNRA) and River North Business Association (RNBA), and neighbors to celebrate the official opening of the new dog park at A. Montgomery Ward Park.

 

(From L to R: Art Bryan, RNBA Planning and Advocacy Chair; Skip Weiss, RNBA Chairman; Commissioner John Fritchey; Alderman Brendan Reilly; Clerk Susana Mendoza; Karen Jones, RNRA Administrative Services Manager; Brett Bunke, RNRA Pet Owner's Committee Chairman)

 

 

 

 

(Kristin Reilly with Buster, Alderman Reilly with Max)

   

 

 

(From L to R: Cook County Commissioner John Fritchey, 12th District; Chicago City Clerk Susana Mendoza; Representative Esther Golar, 6th District; Alderman Brendan Reilly, 42nd Ward)

 

 

 

A. Montgomery Ward Park now has one of the best dog parks in the entire city. Alderman Reilly and Alderdogs Max and Buster look forward to enjoying the dog park with neighbors for years to come!

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