Credit: Jean Cunningham

Good Tuesday morning, Evanston.

You may try to put chilly winds out of your mind, but the changing leaves are a reminder impossible to ignore, because they are breathtaking – we have a few images in the RoundTable’s roundup of last week’s photos. But so far this week has already filled up with news: The District 65 board has a newly appointed member and the budget presented to the City Council faces opposition from the Mayor. So, let’s get to it.

Mayor Daniel Biss (above) said at the end of the special City Council meeting to outline the staff’s 2023 budget proposal that he could not support what was presented, explaining that not enough was done to balance saving and efficiency with spending and expansion. The 500-page document proposes a budget of $402,510,693 – a $42.1 million increase from 2022, with 39 new hires and a 4% boost to the property tax levy.

Credit: Duncan Agnew

The Evanston/Skokie District 65 school board unanimously appointed Mya Wilkins to the seat formerly held by Anya Tanyavutti during a special Monday afternoon meeting. Wilkins was one of 13 candidates who sought a position after Vice President Marquise Weatherspoon resigned in August. The board drew from the same pool to fill this most recent vacancy. At the same meeting, officials also discussed raising pay for bus aides to help alleviate a worker shortage.

Credit: Michael Benabib

For a democracy to thrive, it must nourish discourse. And for that, it needs information. But our news outlets are dying. In the last 18 years, more than 2,000 news organizations have shut down – a threat to journalism and democracy. Join the RoundTable for an online conversation with one of America’s leading news champions, Margaret Sullivan. The author of Newsroom Confidential: Lessons (and Worries) from an Ink-Stained Life will talk about the media’s role in a democracy and why local media is vital. (A good kickoff for the RoundTable’s fundraising campaign, no?)

COVID-19 by the numbers: 12 new cases and no new deaths were reported as of Sunday, Oct. 16, the last day the city updated totals. The seven-day average is 13 cases per day.

Elsewhere on the RoundTable website

Credit: Susy Schultz

Robin Rue Simmons: Black joy, healing and reparations. “The 2022 Chessmen gala Oct. 14 was a night of Black joy and healing. Being Black in America is a constant navigation of systemic harms and inherited and lived trauma and to seek and celebrate Black joy is a radical and healing act,” writes Rue Simmons (at center in photo above with Jessica Cooper Evan, left, and Gabrielle Walker Aguilar).

The Art of Making Art: Melanie Deal. Melanie Deal is a longtime Evanston collage and mixed-media artist. She works primarily with paper and her collages are very controlled in structure and very creative and playful in image. Deal has fun while creating her artwork and hopes the viewer smiles when viewing them.

Credit: Justin Barbin

For Coming Out Day, ‘Gays and Gospel’ celebrates LGBTQ+ influence on church music. National Coming Out Day Oct. 11 was marked at Northwestern University with a combined lecture and concert that paid tribute to the LGTBQ+ community’s contribution to gospel music and the Black church.

Credit: Mike Roche

Week in photos: Oct. 11-17. Here’s what your neighbors sent us: A busy downy woodpecker, beautiful fall color and more. But we would love to see your pictures. Send them to Please put “Week in photos” in the subject line and we’ll share them with the community. Thank you.

Letter to the editor: Election 2022, mark yes for ranked choice voting. Letter writers Galen Burghardt and Jack Cooksey weigh in on Evanston’s ranked choice voting referendum and explain why they think ranked choice voting is better for voters and democracy.

ETHS will host FAN Event with Temple Grandin this Thursday. “Visual Thinking: The Hidden Gifts of People Who Think in Pictures, Patterns, and Abstractions,” a conversation with Temple Grandin, will be held at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 20 in the ETHS auditorium, 1600 Dodge Ave. It will also be live-streamed. The event is free and open to the public, for ages 12 and up.

Pianist Matthew Hagle will perform ‘Brahms and his Contemporaries’ at Nichols Concert Hall Nov. 5. Music Institute of Chicago piano faculty member Matthew Hagle returns to Nichols Concert Hall, 1490 Chicago Ave., at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 5 for an evening of late 19th and early 20th century short piano works.

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

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Around the web

Radioactive material found at Missouri elementary school more than 22 times expected amount. An elementary school outside St. Louis was found to have “unacceptable” levels of radioactive contamination stemming from waste dating back to the creation of the first atomic bomb in the 1940s.

Michelle Obama surprises South Side high school students, telling them: ‘I was you.’ Obama spoke to an auditorium full of high school students Monday at Hyde Park Academy, a South Side Chicago public school across the street from the site of the Obama Presidential Center and not far from her childhood home.

Cook County’s basic income pilot: 155,000+ applicants, just 3,250 spots. The deadline to apply for the Cook County Promise Pilot Program, which will give selected residents $500 a month for two years with no strings attached, is Friday.

Evanston artist Indira Johnson advocates peace through collaborative Rangoli drawing. The large traditional Indian floor art piece at the Chicago Cultural Center was wiped away Saturday, a sign of fleeting beauty. Many people create rangoli as part of the celebration of Diwali, the festival of the lights.

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Susy Schultz

Susy Schultz is the editor of the Evanston Roundtable. She has been a journalist for more than 20 years, and is the former president of Public Narrative, a nonprofit dedicated to teaching journalists and...