Wednesday, May 15, 2013
As part of our new Smart Spending series, Patch wants to uncover the true going rate for various goods and services in town, so you'll know exactly how much you should pay for what you need. Help us out by replying in the comments.
This week: How much do lawn services cost? How much do you pay for your lawn service? And what does that cover? Just mowing, or does it cover weeding, pruning, planting? Please share in the comments below — we promise we won't judge you! And if you've got a lawn service you love, tell us that too. Here's a sampling of a few lawn-care services companies in Cook County: This is the first of an ongoing series, "What's the Going Rate for..." where Patch seeks to uncover how much things cost so you never have to ask again. - - - - - - - - - - There are plenty of ways to keep up with the news:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013
On Wednesday at 9:30 a.m., 10 Cook County Jail detainees will go head-to-head against Russian counterparts in a historic first-ever international chess game.
America and Russia are classic rivals. The space race, the Cold War and the Miracle on Ice all stand testament to that. Now, thanks to a new Cook County program, we can add prison chess tournaments to the list. On Wednesday morning, 10 Cook County Jail detainees will compete in an online chess match against Russian Federal Prison Service inmates in a first-ever event of its kind. Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart and Cook County Jail chess program head Dr. Mikhail Korenman will hold a press conference at 9 a.m. Wednesday with Russian officials via Skype. The games will then begin promptly at 9:30 a.m., inside Division 11 of the Cook County Jail. Patch published a preview of this concept last year. Here’s what some south suburbanites thought of…
Wednesday, April 24, 2013
Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart releases a surveillance video that purports to show a corrections officer didn't slip and fall as he claimed in a workers compensation claim.
Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart wants you to know he's keeping an eye on the "duty injury king" — a corrections officer known among his peers for submitting false injury claims while on the job — and others like him. The sheriff's office released a video tape Wednesday that purports to show the time and location where a corrections officer claimed he slipped and fell, injuring his back on Nov. 20. The officer is now suspended without pay, and the sheriff wants to press criminal charges. The sheriff's office's claim about the video states: On November 20th of last year a Correctional Officer submitted a false injury report claiming that he sustained a back injury while returning from transporting a detainee. He reported to other staff the he …
Monday, April 15, 2013
Area voters reported little to no wait at polling places during Tuesday's local election.
Monday, April 15
On Tuesday, 18.8 percent of voters made it out to the polls in suburban Cook County to vote in this year's local election, according to the Cook County Clerk's website. While the turnout was higher than other area counties, it was an average turnout for a local election in Cook County. Since 2005, turnout in Cook County has ranged from as low as 16.7 percent of voters casting their ballot in 2011 to as high as 27 percent voting in 2005. Comparably speaking, during last fall's presidential election, 70.7 percent of registered voters made it to the polls in suburban Cook County. Evergreen Park, even with many uncontested local races, saw a turnout of 21.96 percent, according to vote totals. Cook County voters reported little to no wait …
Cell phones, laptops and tablets are banned from county courthouses, except for the Richard J. Daley Center.
If you’re going to court, leave your cell in the car. Beginning April 15, electronic communication devices will be banned from Cook County courthouses. This includes laptops, cell phones, tablet computers and all other recording or Internet device. The new order comes in response to reports of people misusing the technology to violate court rules. The county website cites such examples as photographing witnesses and broadcasting court proceedings. Only the Richard J. Daley Center is exempt from the electronics ban.
Thursday, April 11, 2013
Spring's arrival brings nicer weather but at a cost. The wind and warmer temperatures create the perfect conditions for wildfires. Find out the biggest cause of these blazes. Hint: It's not mice with matches, one fire chief says.
Baseball isn't the only season to accompany the arrival of spring. The warmer temperatures and windy days also herald the arrival of brush fire season. South suburban residents have probably seen the large, black plumes of smoke billowing up from some of the open, grassy fields where subdivisions and neighborhoods start to give way to rural areas. In the past couple weeks, there have been blazes in Tinley Park, Country Club Hills, Palos and Frankfort. READ: Smoke From Controlled Burn Closes Part of Central Avenue in Tinley Park "The reason is it's windy, and the sun is starting to dry [the dead leaves and brush] out now," said Larry Rauch, a Frankfort Fire Protection District assistant chief. Those conditions, which also are prevalent in …
Wednesday, April 10, 2013
A lawsuit supported in part by Chuck’s Gun Shop in south suburban Riverdale is not enough to get in the way of President Preckwinkle’s new $25 firearm sales tax.
As of April 1, a $25 tax will be added to the purchase of all firearms sold in Cook County. The news comes in spite of a lawsuit filed by several Chicago-area gun dealers, including Chuck’s Gun Shop in Riverdale. The new tax is part of a policy instated by Cook County President Toni Preckwinkle to help fund the Cook County Health and Hospitals System. At their flagship, Stroger Hospital, more than 30 percent of the trauma center patients are gunshot victims, each costing roughly $50,000 to treat, according to Preckinkle. The $600,000 expected annual revenue from the tax will ideally help offset those costs, reports Sun-Times Media. "This new policy will help us provide more resources to our vital public health system, which on a daily …
Monday, April 1, 2013
Cook County Clerk David Orr's lawyers filed a brief in defense of a lawsuit attempting to overthrow the state's ban on same-sex marriage.
Cook County Clerk David Orr’s office is taking a stance against opponents of same-sex marriage. On Monday, Clerk Orr's lawyers filed a brief in opposition to a motion to dismiss a lawsuit challenging Illinois' same-sex marriage ban. Orr was the original defendant in the suit to overturn the state’s ban on gay marriage: Darby v. Orr. However, the longtime equal rights advocate, along with Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez and Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan, refused to defend the state ban, the Chicago Phoenix reports. Instead, Orr sided with the 25 plaintiffs across the state—from Evanston to Rock Island, Hyde Park to Alto Pass—who were denied marriage licenses. As a result, downstate County Clerks Kerry Hirtzel and …
Thursday, March 28, 2013
The organization claims President Toni Preckwinkle's office refused to divulge information on dozens of her appointments to various county positions.
The Better Government Association (BGA) is suing President Toni Preckwinkle’s Cook County government for denying a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request in January, according to the BGA. The BGA’s denied FOIA request asked for names and addresses of dozens of Cook County board members and commissioners appointed by Preckwinkle. Her office refused to respond after filing for an extension because disclosure of the information “would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy,” according to the BGA. Preckwinkle’s office did not respond to multiple attempts seeking explanation for the refusal. “It’s clear this information doesn’t belong to the County Board president – it belongs to the public, and she should turn it over…
Monday, March 25, 2013
Sheriff Tom Dart says CHIProperties has been issuing "highly illegal" notices to a number of Cook County residents.
Cook County Sheriff Thomas J. Dart directed a Chicago-based property management company to immediately cease and desist from providing tenants in Cook County, who reside in properties that are the subject of foreclosure proceedings, with illegal notices that contain threats and misleading, inaccurate information. CHIProperties of Chicago has been posting notices telling rental residents they are considered trespassers and must call immediately to make arrangements to move out. The posting also says an eviction process has started—even if an eviction suit has not yet been filed in Circuit court. “This notice is illegal, highly deceptive, and amounts to a constructive eviction in apparent violation of various federal, state and local laws, …