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Emails from Gov. Pat Quinn’s former top aides recount how Cook County Recorder of Deeds Karen Yarbrough, a Maywood Democrat who had been the suburb’s state representative, approached Quinn’s administration in January 2011 to oppose giving NRI funding to a longtime social service provider in Maywood. | File photo

Internal Quinn emails show mayoral politics shaped NRI spending

Hanan, a 7-year-old girl brought to Chicago for treatment by the Palestinian Children's Relief Fund.

Middle East battles maim, haunt kids like Hanan, 7, of Syria

Hanan is 7. She has a gap-toothed smile and loves Hello Kitty, the intensely cute Japanese cartoon character. A spangled Hello Kitty decorated her pink dress. Hanan is a Palestinian from Syria, and came to Chicago in April for medical treatment for her right leg, which was blown off below the knee by a bomb in the Syrian civil war which, in case you’ve lost track, has cost more than 100,000 lives over the past three years and displaced millions.

Frank Ozny, Claude Michaelis, Jeff Cunningham, Sam Filan, and Catrina Clark are homeless people living near Montrose Beach. | Alex Wroblewski / Sun-Times

Mixed signals on ‘homeless outreach’ a ‘little kink' or ‘lying’?

It was sometime after 1:30 a.m. Tuesday when Chicago police swept the homeless people out of the park along Lake Shore Drive in Uptown, ordering them to pack up and move along or face arrest. If you read Tuesday’s column, then you’re thinking to yourself: But Brown, you said they called off the homeless sweep after you started poking around. What happened? “What we told you yesterday is what happened, except there was a little kink in it,” a city official explained. Ah, a kink.



Three Ways ACA is affecting Business

More often than not, when healthcare reform is brought up, the impact and the interests of businesses are lumped together, as if each faces with the same challenges as the next.

Jack and Marty Higgins with Mayor Richard M. Daley in 2005. File Photo by Scott Stewart/Sun-Times

Daley pal gets lucrative development deal — despite unpaid taxes

Nine months ago, Jack Higgins — a longtime friend of former Mayor Richard M. Daley — had to walk away from his winning bid to develop nine-acres of government land on the West Side because he didn’t disclose his federal tax liens totaling nearly $2.8 million. On Tuesday, the Illinois Medical District Commission selected a new development team for the $300 million project — and Higgins is part of the team.

Disabilities-rights group blasts proposed CPS budget

On the eve of the approval of Chicago Public Schools’ $5.76 billion budget for 2015, a disabilities-rights group denounced the budget on Tuesday as unsustainable, even though the district wants to increasing its spending on special education.

Ald. Will Burns (4th) during a City Council meeting in April. | Brian Jackson/Sun-Times

CPS plans to move Kenwood Academy program into closed school

Despite promises made by the Chicago Public Schools chief not to put schools into buildings shuttered for being underused, CPS plans to move Kenwood Academy’s special academic program into the vacant Canter Middle school building.

Democrats to unveil $2.7 billion bill on alien children

WASHINGTON — Senate Democrats on Tuesday circulated legislation to significantly cut President Barack Obama's request for emergency funding to deal with an influx of Central American children streaming across the U.S. border with Mexico.

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The steep climb in racial disparity behind bars

Are black men in any better position now in the 50 years since the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964? No, and it's not even close, based on research from University of Chicago economists Derek Neal and Armin Rick.

Who is benefiting from the Lawndale Diabetes Project?

Gerry Allen, a resident of North Lawndale on Chicago’s West Side, suffered for years with unmanaged diabetes. But, thanks to an expanded community health initiative launched in April 2012 between a local hospital  and an insurance provider, he did something he thought he’d never do.

Ald. Carrie Austin (34th), chairman of the Chicago City Council's budget committee, is worried about people who end up on the do-not-hire list after they are accused, but who then find it hard to have their names removed if they are acquitted or charges are dropped. She says the removal process shouldn't take so long. | Sun-Times File Photo

Aldermen embrace do-not-hire list in post-Shakman era

Chicago aldermen have agreed to follow a "do-not-hire" list, as long recommended by a federal monitor. The list would show people who, because of past misconduct, are banned from city employment.