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EPA cleaning lead-contaminated site in Chicago

Finance committee reviews measure to hike littering penalty

Aldermen on Monday discussed, but did not vote on, an ordinance to increase the fines for littering in Chicago.

The measure, put forth by Ald. Howard Brookins (21st), would raise the minimum penalty for littering from $50 to $150.  Under the proposal, the maximum penalty would increase from $200 to $1,500.

New Fermilab director named

Water Reclamation District targets Chicago school asphalt

The Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago is pursuing a $2 million pilot program with Chicago Public Schools to replace asphalt on school campuses that is linked to contamination in the city sewer systems.

Aldermanic menu money provisionally approved for urban farm

Aldermen and the Chicago Department of Law admitted confusion on Wednesday about how City Council members may use funds from the aldermanic menu program.

Officials identify silvery substance at Indiana beaches

Forest Preserve hopes to use 100th anniversary as publicity springboard

Arnold Randall, superintendent of the Cook County Forest Preserve District, basked in the afterglow on Tuesday of the district’s 100th anniversary celebration, which took place at the Chicago Cultural Center last week. Some members of the Cook County Board of Commissioners, though, questioned whether Randall has maximized publicity for the Forest Preserve.

Council committee holds hearing on proposed plastic bag ban

Supporters and opponents of a proposal to ban city retailers from providing plastic bags offered extensive testimony measure during a Council Committee on Health and Environmental Protection meeting Tuesday, but there will likely be some changes to the ordinance before the committee votes on the measure.

Park District promises more neighborhood offerings this summer

Chicago Park District officials gave details at a Wednesday board meeting of their summer ‘Night Out in the Parks’ initiative, which is part of Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s plan to provide more cultural offerings outside of downtown.

Adam Schwerner, director of natural resources at the Park District, promised that the summer initiative would deliver 750 citywide cultural and arts activities in 230 different parks. Those activities will include 200 total movies in neighborhood parks and six classical musical concerts in parks located throughout the city.

Council committee considers ban on potentially toxic driveway sealer

The Chicago City Council Committee on Finance held a hearing on Friday pertaining to an ordinance to ban coal tar sealants, which are used on parking lots and driveways. According to a recent series of studies, the sealants contain high levels of known carcinogens.

The committee adjourned without calling a vote on the ordinance sponsored by Ald. Edward Burke (14th), the finance committee chairman, and Ald. Will Burns (4th). Burns said that the committee will be “having a couple of substantive hearings” before taking a vote on the measure.