Evanston RoundTable

Good morning, Evanston.

A staff proposal before the City Council would pull the plug on Evanston’s Board of Ethics, replacing it with a hearing officer who would be paid to decide ethics violations cases. Some residents have raised concerns, saying it would be a step backward from the system now in place. At an April 12 meeting, members of the City Council’s Rules Committee voted in favor of moving the issue to the City Council, which could take up the matter at its next meeting on April 26.

Meanwhile, the City’s Human Services Committee and the Alternatives to 911 Subcommittee presented a report to City Council recommending that an alternative-to-emergency-response team operate Citywide with both mobile and street outreach. The team would include mental/behavioral health, substance abuse, and other non-emergency medical trained staff. Aldermen accepted the report at their March 22 meeting, directing staff to draft and issue a request for proposals for an Alternative to Emergency Response team. 

And final results are still pending for the April 6 general election, with these races uncalled:  

Clare Kelly
Judy Fisk
  • Twenty-six votes divide Clare Kelly from incumbent Judy Fiske in the race for First Ward Alderman: 

    Clare Kelly: 51.13% 587
    Judy Fiske: 48.87% 561
Donna Wang Su
Marquise Weatherspoon
  • One hundred and thirty-two votes divide the fourth and fifth place finishers in the District 65 School Board election, where the top four finishers will win election:

    Donna Wang Su: 12.15% 6,093
    Marquise Weatherspoon: 11.88% 5,961

The Cook County Clerk’s website states that final result certificates will be available about three weeks after the election.

COVID-19 by the numbers: We are checking in with many sources to keep you updated on COVID-19 cases and vaccine information.

  • Six new cases were reported yesterday in Evanston; the seven-day average is nine.
  • Northwestern University reported 19 new cases for the seven days ending April 18, down from 44 reported the prior period ending April 11.
  • There were no fatalities reported yesterday. Evanston has lost 116 residents to the pandemic.
  • Our City’s positive test rate for the past seven days is 1.0%; in Illinois it is 4.0%. 
  • The number of cases per 100,000 population over the past seven days is 82 in Evanston and 173 in Illinois.
  • Illinois received 922,000 doses and used 876,000 doses of the vaccine in the past seven days and has about 900,000 doses, about one week of supply, in inventory. Illinois has used 82% of the 9.9 million doses received to date.
  • Some 3.4 million or 26.4% of total Illinois residents are fully vaccinated, including 474,800 in the past seven days.

Variants – The Illinois Department of Public Health now reports 1,434 cases of more infectious COVID-19 variants including 1,037 cases of variant B.1.1.7 (U.K.), 288 cases of P.1 (Brazil) and 92 cases of B.1.427/429 (California). 

Evanston Vax Facts: Some 59% of Evanston residents 16 and older have received at least one dose of the vaccine and 31% of residents 16 and older are fully vaccinated. The proportion of Evanston seniors vaccinated is higher: 94% of residents 65 and older have received at least one dose and 71% are fully vaccinated.  

Registration for City vaccination clinics is prioritized by age, from oldest to youngest, starting with those 45 years and older this week. More details are available on the City’s Vaccine Dashboard.

Vaccination has opened up in Illinois: Everyone 16 and older is eligible for vaccination in the State of Illinois. Given the limited supply of vaccines the City of Evanston is receiving, you may be able to schedule an appointment earlier at vaccination sites in suburban Cook County, the State of Illinois or Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) sites. The FEMA drive-through site in Gary, Indiana has appointments available all week. The site is located at Roosevelt Park, about a 70-minute drive from Evanston.

Elsewhere on the RoundTable Website

The April 18 protest drew hundreds of people who marched from Independence Park to the Northwestern University arch. (Photo by Heidi Randhava)

‘Stop Killing Us’ Protest and Rally Draws Hundreds, Issues Call to Action. More than 500 people joined Evanston Fight for Black Lives (EFBL) and Northwestern Community Not Cops (NUCNC) at Independence Park on April 18 to stand in solidarity for Daunte Wright and Adam Toledo and call for the reallocation of funding away from the Police Department to other locally funded agencies. Protesters of all ages, including many families, held signs with the words: “Black Lives Matter,” “Racism is a white problem,” “White Silence is Violence,” and “Defund the Police.”

Rembrandt Chamber Musicians

Rembrandt Chamber Musicians Updates Spring Concert to Online Only, Recording at Nichols Concert Hall. The next concert in Rembrandt Chamber Musicians’ 2020–2021 season will again be virtual, as Chicago’s premiere ensemble focusing on classical chamber music and adventurous new works presents “Celebrate Spring” at 3 p.m. on April 25 from the stage of Evanston’s Nichols Concert Hall. The concert marks RCM’s return to Nichols for the first time in more than a year, with a program that includes a varied, challenging, and delightful range of chamber pieces.

ETHS Senior Kalil Johnson Sets Hurdles Records in Track Debut. Kalil Johnson is convinced that the coronavirus pandemic cost him a State hurdles championship last spring. Saturday, he delivered a statement to the rest of the state of Illinois that it’s going to happen this year. The Evanston senior set two meet records, winning both the 110-meter and 300-meter hurdle races while leading the Wildkits to the team title at the Kankakee Kays Co-Ed Invitational meet. Johnson and teammate Tim Russell (shot put, discus throw) accounted for four first place finishes between them.

ETHS Girls Open with Three Relay Wins at Kankakee Invite. The temptation for most high school track coaches to push the pace when it comes to training this year, in the wake of the coronavirus that wiped out last year’s season, is strong. Making up for lost time, with no summer training and no indoor season being conducted, isn’t part of the agenda at Evanston. Veteran head coach Fenny Gunter will continue to nurture his runners, jumpers, and throwers with caution again this spring, just like he has for decades.

Downtown Farmers’ Market

Downtown Farmers’ Market Opens May 1. The Downtown Evanston Farmers’ Market will kick off its 46th season on May 1 with more than 60 vendors selling fruit, flowers, baked goods, and more. The Market will be open from 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. May 1 through Nov. 6 at University Place and Oak Avenue.

Masked Person of the Day: Jose Miranda

2nd Act Players Presents ‘Pandemic Stories: 7 Tales of Love, Life and Loss’. The Evanston 2nd Act Players spring 2021 production, “Pandemic Stories: 7 tales of Love, Life and Loss” will open online April 23 with shows running Friday, Saturday, and Sunday through May 2. The production features seven 10-minute plays, the winners of the 2nd Act Players spring 2021 new script competition, which examine the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on people’s lives. “Some of these are very poignant, serious looks at the impact the pandemic is having on people’s lives. Others find the humor and the hope for the future that people must find to survive difficult times.”

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