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Thursday, November 20, 2014

Tribune: Aldermen turn up heat on CPS' bond deals

Ald. Thomas by Chris Walker / Chicago Tribune
I was amazed to see that Ald. Latasha Thomas of ward 17 is leading this charge. I'm wondering if her leaving the city council at the end of her term has anything to do with this:
The Chicago City Council’s Education and Child Development Committee will hold a hearing to examine Chicago Public Schools’ borrowing practices, committee chair Ald. Latasha Thomas said Wednesday.

Eight aldermen signed a resolution calling for the hearing in the wake of a Chicago Tribune analysis of the school district’s foray into auction-rate debt. Leading the effort is 2nd Ward Ald. Bob Fioretti, who plans to run against Mayor Rahm Emanuel in the Feb. 24 mayoral election.

The Tribune found that CPS' 2003-07 issuance of $1 billion in auction-rate bonds, paired with interest-rate swaps, could cost the district $100 million more than traditional fixed-rate bonds would have.

"They were gambling with our children’s future," Fioretti said Wednesday in an interview with the Tribune.
...
Thomas said she had yet to see the resolution but was willing to explore the issue at committee level. Thomas, unlike Fioretti, typically sides with the mayor on major issues.

No hearing date has been set.

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