Sign up for our newsletters Subscribe
Welcome to the Reader's morning briefing for Tuesday, August 1, 2017.
Infamous Chicago Cubs fan Steve Bartman is getting a 2016 World Series championship ring, the team announced Monday. Many Cubs fans blamed Bartman for costing the Cubs a trip to the 2003 World Series after he interfered with a foul ball Cubs left fielder Moises Alou was trying to catch and the team melted down with five outs to go. "We hope this provides closure on an unfortunate chapter of the story that has perpetuated throughout our quest to win a long-awaited World Series," the team said in a statement. "While no gesture can fully lift the public burden he has endured for more than a decade, we felt it was important Steve knows he has been and continues to be fully embraced by this organization. After all he has sacrificed, we are proud to recognize Steve Bartman with this gift today." [Tribune]
Mayor Rahm Emanuel urged Governor Bruce Rauner to sign Senate Bill 1, which revamps the state's school funding and gives $220 million to Chicago Public Schools for teacher pensions. Rauner has promised to issue an amendatory veto against the bill's provision for what the governor calls a CPS "bailout." "This is a four-decade-long effort to finally do what people for years have been talking about doing," Emanuel said Monday. "I believe there will be Democratic and Republican support for this [school funding bill], as there was for passing it originally. I would ask the governor, 'Since you agree with 90 percent of it, sign what you agree with, let our children move forward and play the regional politics on another issue.'" [Sun-Times]
The city of Chicago needs $1.3 billion "in new revenue and spending reductions by 2023 to meet scheduled contributions to four pension funds and make rising debt payments," according to an analysis from the Kroll Bond Rating Agency. It doesn't end at the $1.3 billion: Kroll adds that Chicago Public Schools and "other local taxing bodies may need an additional $339 million to meet those costs," Chief Investment Officer reports. Nevertheless, Kroll's report is somewhat optimistic about the city's financial and economic future, giving Chicago a higher rating than Moody's and other ratings agencies of late. "While tax burdens on households and businesses in Chicago may grow, actual property tax rate increases will likely be much less than many analysts project and, in KBRA’s opinion, will not result in total tax burdens that are so high as to impact the city’s position as the Midwest regional capital of commerce, culture, business, and education," the agency said in a statement. [Chief Investment Officer]
Chicago will use about $20 million from the sale of its Fleet and Facilities Operations Center on Goose Island to pay for construction of its new police and fire training center, DNAinfo reports. The city's largest garage and maintenance center is moving to the former site of Kennedy-King College in Englewood, a process expected to take between 18 months and three years. The $20 million will be used to purchase property and start construction on the city's new training center for police and fire department recruits, which is slated for construction in Garfield Park at an estimated cost of $95 million. [DNAinfo Chicago]
Former Blackhawk Bryan Bickell has opened up about his battle with multiple sclerosis in a first-person piece for the Players' Tribune. Bickell, a two-time Stanley Cup champion with the Hawks, says he realized he didn't feel like himself during the 2015 Stanley Cup playoffs. "I was losing control over my own body, and it was really, really scary," he writes. "The only thing that was scarier was that I couldn't find anyone to tell me why it was happening. And I didn't get an answer until a year and a half later." [Players' Tribune] [h/t Tribune]
A video of New Jersey governor Chris Christie confronting a Chicago Cubs fan heckled him during Sunday's Cubs game at Miller Park in Milwaukee has gone viral. After the Cubs fan, Brad Joseph, yelled "You suck" at the governor and called him a "hypocrite," Christie, bearing a large bowl of nachos, got in Joseph's face and jokingly told him to "have another beer," calling him "a tough guy" and asking "What are you going to do now?" According to Joseph, a member of Christie's security team threatened him with being "locked up," but backed down "after it became clear that we hadn't been drinking and would not be intimidated." [Slate] [Sun-Times]