Sign up for our newsletters Subscribe
Welcome to the Reader's weekday news briefing.
The Chicago Police Department arrested only 3,168 people for marijuana possession or other pot-related offenses in 2017, a historic low for the city, according to WBEZ. By comparison, Chicago police officers made 25,350 arrests for pot-related crimes in 2007. There were 11,417 narcotics arrests last year, which is also a historic low, down from 58,808 in 2000. [WBEZ]
Governor Bruce Rauner has slammed Holocaust denier and congressional candidate Arthur Jones. Jones, who is also a white supremacist and anti-Semite, is the only candidate running in the Republican primary for the Third Congressional District seat currently held by Democrat Dan Lipinski. "There is no room for Neo Nazis in American politics. I condemn this man in the strongest possible terms," the governor said in a statement. [Sun-Times]
It's so brutally cold in Chicago that the Navy Pier's climate-controlled Ferris wheel was closed Sunday and Monday. "For the safety of our guests and staff, the Centennial Wheel must occasionally close due to weather conditions, such as lightning, high winds and extreme cold," Navy Pier spokesperson Payal Patel said. "Today, the closure is due to the below-zero temperature near the lake. This measure is taken primarily for the well-being of our guests and staff who work outside in the extreme cold. [Sun-Times]
In Henry County, about 145 miles west of Chicago, President Donald Trump beat Hillary Clinton by 22 percent in November 2016. The Tribune ventured there to see how its residents feel about Trump after his first year in office and first State of the Union address. "It would have been a C-minus or D if it was given by Abraham Lincoln, but not too bad for Donald," retired history and economics professor and Trump supporter Steve Sams said. "Donald's never given a speech where you really had to go to a dictionary to look something up." Susan Hanford was among the Trump voters in 2016 who are disillusioned today. "I think he has the social maturity of a four-year-old," she told the Tribune. "He's a bigot. He doesn't have a clue as to what most Americans' lives are like." [Tribune]
The Kroll Bond Rating Agency has upgraded Chicago's bond rating by two notches, from BBB+ to A, citing Mayor Rahm Emanuel's work to end the city's pension crisis. Chicago has made "significant progress toward achieving structural balance through greater efficiencies and reduced reliance on nonrecurring revenue sources," and Emanuel has created a "roadmap to pension fund solvency" and found "permanent ramp-up revenue sources" to fund pensions, according to the agency. [Sun-Times]
Chicago's first halal festival is expected to attract about 20,000 guests to Navy Pier. Called the I Heart Halal Festival, the food extravaganza will run from April 13 through April 15 and feature halal food from 20 to 25 local businesses, according to Eater Chicago. [Eater Chicago]