Inside these posts: City of Chicago

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Chicago’s AA credit rating slipping away

From Bloomberg News | With a 2011 budget deficit projected at more than $650 million, the City of Chicago’s credit rating is in danger of sinking further. In fact, it already paid a premium in an August bond offering for schools.

“They’re a AA rated borrower that is trading as if it was rated A,” said Richard Saperstein, managing director at Hightower Advisors Treasury Partners in Chicago told Bloomberg. “This means they’re in line for a downgrade. The market is telling you something.” Get the full story >>

Daley weighs privatizing Taste of Chicago, recycling

Mayor Daley announced today that the city will look into privatizing the city’s recycling program and lakefront festivals — potentially including Taste of Chicago — to close a $655 million budget hole.

Chicago gains in global cities ranking

Chicago moved up two slots, to No. 6, in an updated ranking of global cities, coming in behind New York, London, Tokyo, Paris and Hong Kong.

The ranking aims to show how much influence a city has beyond its own borders. It was conducted by Foreign Policy magazine, management consulting firm A.T. Kearney and the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, and comes two years after the inaugural ranking by these same parties.

The top four cities retained their hold over the two-year period, though the ranking also showed growing momentum in Asia and the Pacific, with five of the 10 cities deemed most global. In addition to Tokyo and Hong Kong, those cities included Singapore, Sydney and Seoul. Get the full story »

Nordic Energy wins natural gas contract from Chicago

Nordic Energy Services LLC said Friday that it had been awarded a contract to manage the natural gas deliveries and storage inventories for the City of Chicago’s Department of General Services, which manages the maintenance and operation of city properties.
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Chicago leads largest cities in sales tax

It’s another dubious honor for Chicago.

Just as Illinois touts its first sales-tax holiday, a new report highlights Chicago as having among the highest retail sales tax rates of the nation’s largest cities. At 9.75 percent once county, mass transit and city taxes are added to the statewide 6.25 percent sales tax, Chicago’s tax rate  is equal to that of Los Angeles. Get the full story »

David Mosena named chairman of McPier

David Mosena, a former chief of staff to Mayor Richard Daley who currently is president and CEO of the Museum of Science and Industry, was elected Wednesday as the new chairman of the agency that runs McCormick Place and Navy Pier.

Mosena’s was selected unanimously by the newly appointed interim board of the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority, the state-city agency known as McPier that owns and operates the convention complex and the pier.

Prior to joining the museum in 1997, Mosena served as president of the Chicago Transit Authority. He also has served as the city’s aviation commissioner and its planning commissioner. Get the full story »

Shady contractors to be barred from city business

A measure to permanently bar contractors convicted of fraud or other felonies against City Hall is headed for a City Council vote.

The Budget Committee today recommended approval of the measure, which also would prevent firms charged with such crimes from doing business with the city and related agencies.

“What we’re saying is that if you’ve been charged with these crimes against the city, we’re not interested in doing business with you — until you prove that you’re innocent,” said Mara Georges, City Hall’s top lawyer.

Vote scheduled on second Chicago Wal-Mart

Discount shoppers could know soon if Chicago will get its second Walmart. The Chicago City Council’s zoning committee is scheduled to vote Thursday on whether a Walmart will be built on the far South Side.

Daley applauds Wal-Mart wage moves

Mayor Richard Daley Tuesday applauded Wal-Mart’s offer to pay workers at Chicago stores at least $8.75 an hour, saying the retailer is showing it is willing to go beyond what it pays elsewhere in order to bring much-needed jobs and healthy food options into the city.

The pro-Wal-Mart stance by Daley comes ahead of Thursday’s key City Council Zoning Committee vote on whether to allow the giant retailer to open a second store within city limits following years of stalled expansion efforts. The $8.75 an hour figure is 50 cents more than minimum wage but 50 cents less than labor unions are seeking.

United-Continental would make Chicago home

United-Con-2-Web.jpgA United Airlines check-in area and a Continental Airlines kiosk at O’Hare International Airport. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

By Julie Johnsson | United Airlines’ merger talks with Continental Airlines are progressing
rapidly, and many of the key issues involved with melding the carriers have been resolved, said a person close to the talks.

Telephone calls are flying between carriers’ management teams and their directors, and a deal could be completed as soon as next week.

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Chicago credit repair firms charged with fraud

By Mike Hughlett
With complaints rising nationwide against credit repair companies, the
City of Chicago said Friday that it has filed consumer fraud and
deceptive practice charges against nine such firms locally.

The city’s Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection
charged four companies with falsely promising they could erase
consumers’ debt from their credit reports. Those companies are: Mark
Anthony & Associates of Skokie; Allstates Credit Repair in Chicago;
Credit Rx in Glenview; and Nationwide Credit Clearing in Chicago.

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