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Casey Toner, Illinois Answers Project

Local Governments Get Slapped With Rat-Related Tickets

In the past four-and-a-half years, the City of Chicago has fined local agencies, including the CHA and the Cook County Land Bank Authority, more than $750,000.


Why Chicago Is Losing The War On Rats

New York has a Rat Czar. Other cities are trying new trapping methods. But the “rattiest city in America” can’t keep up with skyrocketing rodent complaints, data shows.


One Real Estate Empire, $15 Million In Unpaid Rat-Related Tickets

A group of real estate companies managed by a north suburban woman has racked up hundreds of rat-related tickets on properties — many on Chicago’s South and West sides.


CPS Faces Dwindling Enrollment, Empty Buildings, Soaring Deficits Decade After Mass Closure Of Schools

Top public officials are vowing improvements as the district marks the 10th anniversary of its decision to close 49 schools.


Big Talk, Slow Progress From Mayor Lightfoot On Anti-Violence Programs

City Hall touts its $410M plan to fight crime but has spent little money; some cash goes to street outreach groups with no experience or troubled leadership


City Plan To Ticket Drivers Who Block Bike Lanes Downtown Draws Mixed Reaction From Cycling Advocates

Even though it only applies to the Downtown area, some cycling advocates say the pilot program is a step in the right direction. Others say it's light on details and doesn't address pressing safety concerns.


Life And Death In Chicago’s Most Dangerous Bike Lane

In Chicago’s busiest bike lane along Milwaukee Avenue, there have been 50 reported crashes and three deaths since 2020 as cyclists navigate the city’s patchwork approach to safety.


Needle Exchange Programs Cutting Back During Coronavirus Crisis

Programs started in the 1980s to slow the spread of the HIV epidemic are now scaling back because of COVID-19, a move some experts say could create a new challenge in fighting the deadly outbreak.

Austin, Garfield Park, North Lawndale