Good Tuesday morning, Evanston.
Usually we spotlight a recent photo at the top of this newsletter, but the image above is from last year’s Walk for Warmth. We’re giving it a rare encore presentation because the event, set for Jan. 16, is one of several options highlighted in our list of local Martin Luther King Jr. Day observances.
Now, on to today’s news.
With just 342 participants – only 88 from the Fifth Ward – the city’s survey on the Fifth Ward Foster Campus project failed to draw much response, according to city staff and the mayor. So on Monday, staff urged city council to slow down the pace to gather more input. Capital Planning and Engineering Bureau Chief Lara Biggs also reported that the city needs to renegotiate its agreement with District 65. Council Member Bobby Burns, 5th Ward, urged the city to speed up the process.
The lease for the Harley Clarke Mansion, 2603 Sheridan Road, is going to a mediator. In October, the city council asked the Artists Book House and the Jens Jensen Gardens groups to draw up two leases, dividing up responsibilities for the lakefront building and its grounds, but continued disagreement has stalled progress.
Evanston police arrested a man at about 3 p.m. Monday at the main branch of the public library after what police called “a confrontation between security and a male subject.” After questioning from the RoundTable, police confirmed that “security personnel did present a firearm.” Charges are pending.
COVID-19 by the numbers: 21 new cases and no new deaths were reported Sunday, Jan. 8, the last day the city updated totals. The seven-day average is 13.9 cases per day.
More RoundTable reads
Numerous business leaders and owners on Monday asked the city council not to pass a proposed 15 cent tax on carry-out single use bags. And the council voted to reject the bag tax ordinance and sent it back to committee.
The city’s Sustainability and Resilience office is growing, with city council authorizing two additional employees to the one-person operation. Coordinator Cara Pratt sees a “renewed focus on climate action and resilience.” And yes, a plastic bag tax is a key item on the action agenda.
CORRECTION: Original newsletter had the wrong date but it is correct here. The League of Women Voters and the NAACP Evanston branch will moderate a discussion with Police Chief Schenita Stewart via Zoom at noon on Wednesday, Jan. 18.
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Around the web
Illinois State Senate passes assault weapons ban. The bill next goes back to the House, where it must pass before new lawmakers are sworn in Wednesday.
$16M settlement for families of 3 women who died in sweltering Rogers Park apartment building. The women died during a May heat wave after calls for help were ignored by building managers, according to attorneys for the families.
2 men sought in Northbrook and Evanston bank robberies: Chicago FBI. Two Fifth Third Bank locations, including one at 2440 Main St. in Evanston, were robbed within a few minutes Monday afternoon.
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