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McPier retains bond ratings ahead of $1.18B issue

The agency that owns and operates McCormick Place will approach its long-awaited financial restructuring next week with its debt ratings intact.

The three major rating services held the line on their respective ratings of Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority expansion project debt in reports issued Monday and today, ahead of an anticipated negotiated sale of $1.18 billion in bonds on Oct. 6. Get the full story »

Housewares show turns up heat on Quinn

Houseware-Web.jpgJames K. McCusker, Viante Home Products Company, demonstrates his company’s new coffee maker at The International Home and Housewares Show at McCormick Place in 2009. (Bradley Piper/Chicago Tribune)

By Kathy Bergen
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Top executives with the International Home + Housewares Show fired off an email to Gov. Pat Quinn today, saying they could not recommend Chicago as the show’s venue for 2012 and beyond when their board meets later this week unless the governor signs the McCormick Place overhaul legislation.

“The lack of signature to this bill will ultimately send us and other vitally important trade show business elsewhere,” the email stated. It was signed by Phil Brandl, president of the International Housewares Association, and Mia Rampersad, the group’s vice president/trade shows. The association’s show has been a cornerstone of the city’s convention business since 1939.

Quinn is expected to make a decision on the bill within days. Sources expect he will sign it, but will try to attach some changes as well.

Quinn to meet with trade shows on overhaul bill

By Kathy Bergen | Gov. Pat Quinn, who has been deliberating on whether to sign McCormick Place overhaul legislation, will meet with some of Chicago’s top trade show organizers Thursday afternoon, less than 48 hours before the start of the restaurant industry’s high-profile show, sources said Tuesday.

Whether Quinn will inform them that he intends to sign the legislation, which show managers are pushing for, or will just solicit their views was unclear. Quinn’s office¬†declined to¬†comment.

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