Evanston RoundTable

Good Thursday morning, Evanston!

After starting with a pool of $43.1 million in federal COVID-19 recovery funds, Evanston now has about $10 million left in that pile, which City Council has allocated for various social service organizations, like the McGaw YMCA, and maintenance improvements thus far. At Monday’s Council meeting, members also approved two more allocations, including $2 million to replace the privately-owned portion of lead water-service lines and $500,000 to build a welcoming center for immigrant families and other new residents.

District 65 ‘Final Budget’ for FY’23 cuts 25 classroom teaching positions, adds 46.3 other positions. At the Sept. 14 meeting of School District 65’s Finance Committee, Kathy Zalewski, Business Manager, presented a final budget for the year ending June 30, 2023 (FY’23). The budget shows operating revenues of $157.2 million, operating expenses of $156.7 million, and a surplus of $574,886.

Metra cancels 6 Thursday night UP-North trains ahead of impending rail strike. Railroad union workers are still trying to reach an agreement with freight companies on a new employment contract, and a work stoppage could start as soon as Friday. If a strike does happen, four Metra lines will not operate beginning Friday, including the UP-North train that goes through Evanston.

COVID-19 by the numbers: Six cases and zero deaths were reported on Tuesday, Sept. 13, the last day the city updated case totals. The seven-day average is 6.9 cases per day.

The RoundTable needs your vote!

Credit: Joerg Metzner

What’s your favorite Evanston nonprofit? The RoundTable is asking you to pick us!! Please, pick us!! Please? Every year, Realtor Jackie Mack from Jameson Sotheby’s International Realty donates money to Evanston nonprofits. She makes the choice by seeing which nonprofits can get the most community support. The nonprofit with the most votes stands to win $5,000. The RoundTable would love that very generous donation! So, please go to the Commission Mission Voting Page that Mack has set up and vote for the Evanston RoundTable. Thank you.

Elsewhere on the RoundTable website

Gina Castro
Credit: Susy Schultz

Meet our newest reporter, Gina Castro, who will be covering reparations and racial justice through a one-year fellowship funded by Northwestern. “I learned the power of my pen while juggling classes at the University of West Florida and being a full-time reporter for a paper in Brewton, Alabama. I started out writing whatever assignments my editor told me to. I hadn’t thought much about what stories I wanted to pursue or even ones that hadn’t been told yet (or enough),” Gina writes in her introduction to the RoundTable family.

Evanston concrete company owners have cemented strong local ties. Next to Soul & Smoke, Double Clutch Brewing and Suds Car Wash is frame two-flat on Ashland Avenue with a backyard full of trucks, backhoes and metal rebars. That building houses the Kelvin Co. concrete business run by longtime Evanstonians Paul and Kimberly Boynton.


10 Evanston students named as National Merit semifinalists. There are nine semifinalists from Evanston Township High School: Frances Brady, Emmet J. Ebels Duggan, Caroline S. Klearman, Jason M. McDermott, Sofia J. Shewfelt, Max T. Smith, Rex E. Wallin, Jane O. Watson and Luca A. Zerega. And there is one semifinalist from Beacon Academy: Aditi Bharadwaj.

Join our team: The Evanston RoundTable is growing! Check out our jobs page for opportunities in editorial and development.

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Around the web

No, There Is No ‘Purge Law’ In Illinois. Here Are The Facts About Ending Cash Bail. Social media posts amplified by Republican gubernatorial candidate Darren Bailey have spread misinformation about the state’s Safe-T Act signed by Gov. JB Pritzker, portraying the new law as allowing violent criminals back on to the streets without any recourse. Instead, the law primarily ends the widespread use of cash bail, but judges will still be able to detain people deemed a threat to others.

The first abortion ban passed after Roe takes effect Thursday in Indiana. The nation’s first near-total ban on abortions enacted since the fall of Roe v. Wade in June is set to become law tomorrow in Indiana. The move by the Illinois neighbor is expected to cause an influx of patients seeking abortions here, possibly putting a strain on providers.

Social Security’s Cost-of-Living Increase Will Be Largest in Four Decades, an Estimate Says. More than 70 million Americans receive monthly Social Security checks either through retirement, disability or low-income benefits, and those people will soon learn about the hike in their payments for next year tied to inflation. A lobbyist group for seniors now estimates social security checks will increase by 8.7% in 2023.

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Duncan Agnew covers Evanston public schools, affordable housing, City Hall and more for the RoundTable. He also writes long-form investigations, features and the morning email newsletter three times a...