8 FOR AL­DER­MAN 44th Ward: North Side

Chicago Sun-Times - - OPINION - John Arena Michael Ne­gron Harry Oster­man Joe Moore De­bra L. Sil­ver­stein

To­day, we con­clude our en­dorse­ments in com­pet­i­tive al­der­manic races in Chicago. You can read all our en­dorse­ments, in­clud­ing our en­dorse­ment of Lori Light­foot for mayor, on­line by go­ing to: bit.ly/2D5SQEa.

43rd Ward: Lin­coln Park

Ald. Michele Smith de­serves praise for lead­ing an ef­fort to de­mand more pub­lic open space in one of the big­gest de­vel­op­ments Chicago has seen in years, Lin­coln Yards. That said, we see — or hope to see — a sea change in how busi­ness gets done at City Hall with the elec­tion of a brand new mayor and City Coun­cil. Most es­pe­cially,

Chicago needs a more in­de­pen­dent Coun­cil, led by al­der­men who have the pol­icy chops to hold their own. Our en­dorse­ment goes to Derek Lind­blom, who was Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s lead ne­go­tia­tor on get­ting lo­cal unions to buy in to pen­sion re­forms that the Illi­nois Supreme Court later struck down. Lind­blom knows the pros and cons of all the var­i­ous rev­enue pro­pos­als float­ing around, such as the spe­cious La Salle Street tax, which he says would fail in prac­tice be­cause of the ad­vanced tech­nol­ogy now used in trad­ing. And then there’s TIF re­form; Lind­blom has pro­posed spe­cific changes. Also run­ning are Steven McClel­lan, Ja­cob Ringer, Les­lie Fox and Re­becca Janowitz.

What matters most in this elec­tion is to pre­serve a po­lit­i­cal coun­ter­weight to the Rick­etts fam­ily, own­ers of the Chicago Cubs, as they con­tinue their ag­gres­sive re­de­vel­op­ment of Wrigley Field and nearby streets. The Rick­ettses, who would pre­fer a more com­pli­ant al­der­man, are work­ing hard against the in­cum­bent, Tom Tun­ney, which is pre­cisely why we’re en­dors­ing him. Tun­ney’s chal­lengers, for­mer state as­so­ciate bud­get di­rec­tor Austin Baidas and non­profit con­sul­tant El­iz­a­beth Shyd­lowski, would ap­pear to be people of in­tegrity. But it’s im­por­tant to un­der­stand, as re­ported by Crain’s Chicago Busi­ness, that the Rick­ettses — along with oth­ers be­lieved to be al­lied with the fam­ily — have flooded the ward with more than $100,000 in dark money cam­paign spend­ing. Baidas re­port­edly got into the race af­ter meet­ing with Laura Rick­etts and a poll­ster, although he says he is not supported by the Rick­etts fam­ily. Shyd­lowski ac­cepted a $10,000 donation from Cubs Chair­man Tom Rick­etts and $5,000 from Todd Rick­etts’ wife, Sylvie Legere. The Rick­ettses have been ter-

rific for the 44th Ward in sev­eral ways, as Tun­ney would read­ily agree. But their best in­ter­ests are not al­ways the ward’s best in­ter­ests. We’re with Tun­ney, who re­fuses to be overly im­pressed and cowed.

Ald. John

Arena is en­dorsed with en­thu­si­asm for a third term.

He is bring­ing de­vel­op­ment to this ward with thought­ful, for­ward­think­ing plan­ning. That’s not good enough for some in this ward, who don’t want af­ford­able hous­ing in Jef­fer­son Park. But we’re on Arena’s side, and we think the ma­jor­ity of res­i­dents are as well. Arena’s tak­ing into con­sid­er­a­tion the hous­ing needs of mid­dle class, work­ing class, the el­derly, dis­abled people and vet­er­ans. He’s work­ing to lo­cate de­vel­op­ment close to pub­lic tran­sit, some­thing needed across the city. He’s also added bike lanes in the ward and supported a $25 mil­lion ren­o­va­tion of the Jef­fer­son Park Tran­sit Cen­ter. Un­der Arena, a new In­de­pen­dence Branch li­brary opened in Irv­ing Park, with af­ford­able hous­ing units for se­niors above the li­brary. Also run­ning are fire­fighter James “Jim” Gar­diner, AT&T wireless tech­ni­cian Robert A. Bank and Chicago Park Dis­trict op­er­a­tions man­ager Mar­i­lyn Morales.

47th Ward: North Side

The field is crowded and the choices are good. Out­go­ing al­der­man Ameya Pawar has set the bar high for his suc­ces­sor in this solidly pro­gres­sive ward that in­cludes Lin­coln Square, North Cen­ter and parts of Lake View and An­der­son­ville. Our en­dorse­ment goes to Michael Ne­gron, a lawyer who most re­cently was Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s pol­icy di­rec­tor and worked in the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion prior to that. The City Coun­cil could use al­der­men with that kind of ex­pe­ri­ence — and we hear that Ne­gron didn’t hes­i­tate to stand up to Emanuel, his boss, when he felt push-back was nec­es­sary. Ne­gron worked on is­sues of im­por­tance to work­ing fam­i­lies, such as the city’s paid sick time and min­i­mum wage or­di­nances and ex­pand­ing af­ford­able hous­ing. Also run­ning are Eileen Dordek, a so­cial worker who has demon­strated a com­mit­ment to build­ing con­sen­sus among the city’s di­verse com­mu­ni­ties; Jeff Jenk­ins, founder of the non­profit Mid­night Cir­cus in the Parks; lawyer Matt Mar­tin; res­tau­rant owner Gus Kat­sa­faros; Heather Way Kitzes; fire­fighter Thomas Schwartzers; teacher An­gela Maloney; and physi­cian Kim­ball La­dien.

48th Ward: Far North Side

Two-term in­cum­bent Harry Oster­man, a life­long res­i­dent of Edge­wa­ter, is a thought­ful mem­ber of the City Coun­cil who sees pub­lic safety as the city’s big­gest chal­lenge. He sup­ports a hy­brid school board with some elected mem­bers and some ap­pointed by the mayor, so the mayor does not lose — and can­not duck — ac­count­abil­ity. He points to 1,100 units of hous­ing be­ing built now in this ward, with af­ford­able hous­ing on-site. He says ev­ery­thing but a prop­erty tax is on the ta­ble to bring in new rev­enue to get the city’s bud­get in or­der. Oster­man, whom we en­dorse, has earned another four years rep­re­sent­ing this ward, which in­cludes parts of Edge­wa­ter, An­der­son­ville and Up­town. Also run­ning is Navy vet­eran David Earl Wil­liams III, who ran last year as the Lib­er­tar­ian can­di­date for lieu­tenant gover­nor.

49th Ward: Far North Side

Ald. Joe Moore has con­sis­tently de­liv­ered re­sults for this di­verse ward, which in­cludes Rogers Park and West Ridge. He de­serves credit for bring­ing in more af­ford­able hous­ing, in­clud­ing a pub­lic-pri­vate de­vel­op­ment on Sheri­dan Road that in­cludes a new Tar­get store. He’s cham­pi­oned com­mu­nity polic­ing and more block clubs to help curb crime. And the Chicago

Po­lice Depart­ment’s 24th

Dis­trict head­quar­ters, which is in the ward, is get­ting a new Strate­gic De­ploy­ment Cen­ter with new sur­veil­lance cam­eras and other high-tech crime-fight­ing gear. Moore has been an out­spo­ken pro­gres­sive voice for poli­cies in sup­port of work­ing people, in­clud­ing a higher min­i­mum wage and paid sick leave. He has been knocked by crit­ics for grow­ing closer to Mayor Rahm Emanuel over the years, but he rightly says it was the mayor who did more of the mov­ing. “I haven’t changed,” Moore told us. “The po­lit­i­cal sit­u­a­tion in the city changed.” Moore’s chal­lenger in this race is Maria Had­den, a non­profit ex­ec­u­tive with a solid record of com­mu­nity ser­vice.

50th Ward: Far North Side

Two-term in­cum­bent De­bra L. Sil­ver­stein has done a cred­itable job of up­grad­ing con­stituent ser­vices and ameni­ties in this di­verse West Rogers Park ward. She can point to a $15 mil­lion streetscape up­grade along Devon Av­enue. She also helped se­cure fund­ing for a long-sought new North­town Li­brary. She worked with the po­lice af­ter a Sikh tem­ple was at­tacked in the ward and some res­i­dents grew too fear­ful of U.S. Im­mi­gra­tion and Cus­toms En­force­ment agents to leave their homes. Sil­ver­stein sup­ports the le­gal­iza­tion of recre­ational mar­i­juana and gam­bling ex­pan­sion, pro­vided there are safe­guards. She is en­dorsed. Also run­ning are re­tired teacher An­drew D. Rowlas and non­profit ex­ec­u­tive Zehra Quadri.

Tom Tun­ney

Derek Lind­blom

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