Flickr Creative Commons/Ben Townsend

Municipalities nationwide including Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, and Skokie, Illinois, are urging a federal judge to continue blocking President Donald Trump's travel ban.  New York City's chief lawyer Zachary Carter filed papers in federal court in Brooklyn on behalf of nearly three dozen cities. 

This year at the Grammys - Chicago native Chance The Rapper took home multiple awards, including one for Best New Artist. But another Chicago based group took home its first win, though the category it took the Grammy for goes a little more under the radar.

Flickr Creative Commons/Mark Warner

The Chicago Board of Ethics has voted to fine a former aide to President Barack Obama $90,000 for illegally lobbying Chicago's mayor on behalf of Uber.  The board found David Plouffe violated city ethics rules when he failed to register as a lobbyist after contacting Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

Flickr Creative Commons/Tom Hilton

Hundreds of people in Chicago are rallying at a demonstration to mark "A Day Without Immigrants."  Similar demonstrations are planned nationwide. Numerous businesses in immigrant-heavy industries, like restaurants, are closing in solidarity.

Chicago's Civic Federation has laid out a map to lead Illinois out of the fiscal abyss.  The non-partisan government research organization says Illinois’ biggest problem is state government’s failure to pass a budget for going on two years.

Democratic lawmakers from Chicago have proposed bills to make former President Barack Obama's birthday a state holiday.  The three bills would all make Obama's birthday, Aug. 4, an official holiday.  Two House bills, proposed by Democratic Reps. Andre Thapedi and Sonya Harper would make Aug. 4 a "legal holiday," in which state government offices shut down, and schools and businesses have the option of closing.

A lawsuit has been filed against the city of Chicago that seeks to overturn an ordinance banning advertising inside the private cars used by ride-share company drivers.  The Minneapolis-based technology company Vugo contends the city's ban violates the company's constitutional rights to free speech and equal protection.

Willis Tower in Chicago is preparing for a $500 million face-lift under an ambitious plan Mayor Rahm Emanuel supports.  The renovations call for six levels of entertainment, restaurant and retail space, which could become an attraction for thousands of building employees and 1.7 million yearly visitors drawn to the observation deck on the 103rd floor.

Caterpillar News A Gut Blow to Peoria

Feb 1, 2017

 The news Caterpillar is moving its world headquarters to Chicago came as a surprise to most Tuesday. The announcement of the move follows the February, 2015 declaration the company would stay in Peoria. In fact, Caterpillar was planning to expand its world headquarters, taking up 31-acres downtown near the Peoria Riverfront.

Tanya Koonce

The director of Peoria airports says he doesn't think Caterpillar's decision to move its headquarters to the Chicago area will have much effect on travel.

A Chicago man has filed a federal lawsuit asking a judge to declare President Donald Trump's executive order on immigration unconstitutional.  The man traveled to his native Iran to care for his sick mother. He filed the lawsuit seeking class-action status. Trump's order temporarily bans refugees and nearly all citizens from seven Muslim-majority countries including Iran. 

Illinois transportation officials say $4 million in state and federal funds will be used to conduct bridge inspections in Chicago. The Illinois Department of Transportation announced it will be receiving $800,000 in state money and $3.2 million in federal funds.


Caterpillar is moving its global headquarters to Chicago. The company announced today it will locate a limited group of senior executives and support functions to the Chicago area later this year. Caterpillar also reaffirmed its ongoing commitment to Peoria and Central Illinois. The company will not build the previously announced headquarter complex in Peoria. 

Chicago's famous Frango chocolate brand is being sold to the city's most famous popcorn company.  Department store chain Macy's Inc. announced it's selling Frango mints to Chicago-based Garrett Brands.  Macy's will still sell Frango chocolates at its locations across the country.

WBEZ/Andrew Gill

President Donald Trump incorrectly claimed in a television interview that two people were shot and killed in Chicago during then-President Barack Obama's farewell speech.  Trump referenced Obama's speech in an interview. According to a transcript, he said "They weren't shot at the speech. But they were shot in the city of Chicago during his speech."

A federal jury has returned a not guilty verdict for a Chicago woman accused of supplying her teenage cousin with a gun authorities say the girl used to kill a 14-year-old rival after a Facebook feud over a boy.

Chicago Will Remain a Sanctuary City

Jan 25, 2017

  CHICAGO - Mayor Rahm Emanuel and its aldermen say Chicago will remain a sanctuary city despite President Donald Trump's executive order to cut off some federal funding from immigrant-protecting municipalities.


As news was breaking on Wednesday that Trump has signed the executive order, the City Council overwhelmingly voted in favor of a resolution to reaffirm Chicago's status as a sanctuary city. A few minutes later, the mayor told reporters that Chicago is "going to stay a sanctuary city."


The 34th annual Chicago Blues Festival is getting a new home this year in the city's lakefront Millennium Park after being held in Grant Park.  City organizers say headliners for this year's festival will be Billy Branch and the Sons of the Blues, Gary Clark Jr., William Bell and Ronnie Baker Brooks. A full schedule will be announced this spring.

An expanded background-checks policy has led the University of Illinois to withdraw 11 job offers across its three campuses over the past year.   From November 2015 to October 2016, the university conducted nearly 12,000 background checks.

Flickr Creative Commons/Chicago Architecture Today

Illinois Republicans are reviving plans to sell and redevelop the James R. Thompson Center, claiming their proposal for the 16-story Chicago building, housing state employees, could generate hundreds of millions of dollars.  Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner first announced plans to sell in 2015, calling the building inefficient.


Organizers say about 50,000 people are expected to attend a women's march in Chicago the day after Donald Trump's inauguration.  The Women's March on Chicago is scheduled to begin with a rally in Grant Park at 10 a.m. on Saturday. The march through downtown is set for 11:30 a.m.

Chicago officials are expressing disappointment in a federal court ruling that says city restrictions on publicly accessible gun ranges violated the Second Amendment.  The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that restricting shooting ranges to manufacturing areas and bans on minors at the ranges were unconstitutional provisions.


University of Illinois system trustees have endorsed a plan to increase enrollment at its three campuses by 15% over the next five years.  University of Illinois President Tim Killeen presented the plan to the Board of Trustees. The plan's goal would have more than 93,600 students enrolled at the school's campuses in Urbana-Champaign, Chicago and Springfield. 

Several Chicago aldermen want the federal government to follow its report on the city's police department with a review of City Hall lawyers.  The aldermen recently sent a letter to the Justice Department asking for a review of Chicago Law Department practices. Law department lawyers represent officers accused of wrongdoing in civil cases. 

Lauren Chooljian, WBEZ / Twitter

The annual Rainbow / PUSH Martin Luther King breakfast in Chicago is always full of current and hopeful future politicians. And this year, possible candidates for governor were looking to shake a few voters’ hands. Illinois Public Radio's Lauren Chooljian reports.

A credit ratings agency says for the Chicago Public Schools to work its way out of debt it must consider a property tax hike of more than $400 million annually.  Moody's Investors Service says the new tax revenue would be used to make debt payments now covered with state aid meant for the classroom. 

The Justice Department and the city of Chicago have signed a joint statement in which the nation's third largest city commits to police reforms under a court-enforced agreement, called a consent decree.  The document, along with the findings of a yearlong Justice Department civil rights investigation of the police force,was released Friday.

The National Veterans Art Museum in Chicago has acquired 31 screen prints by the American writer Kurt Vonnegut Jr.  An exhibit of Vonnegut artwork is on display at the museum through May 6.

Facebook/University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

The University of Illinois System is considering extending a freeze on its base tuition for in-state freshmen to a third consecutive year.  The proposed in-state tuition freeze for the system's universities in Chicago, Springfield and Urbana-Champaign was reviewed by the Board of Trustees' Audit, Budget, Finance and Facilities Committee. It will be considered by the full board on Jan. 19.

The Better Business Bureau is warning against buying tickets to President Barack Obama's farewell speech in Chicago on online marketplaces.  Tickets were handed out for free on Saturday morning in Chicago, prompting thousands of people to wait for hours in single-digit temperatures. Obama's speech is scheduled for Tuesday night at McCormick Place.