Peoples Gas discovers 4 new Prehistoric creatures

If I did not get my "Paperbillasaurus" in the mail this weekend, I would never have been educated on the four new Prehistoric creatures discovered by Peoples Gas. I have to admit that I have been paying bills online for some time, avoiding such creatures like the Stampadactyl, Checkosourus Rex and the Envelopatops. OK, since the Paperbillasaurus came with the Envelopatops, I did encounter the Envelaptaops, but not have to deal with another Envelapatops to put the Checkosouras Rex in, which also would have me deal with the Stampadactyl.
Seriously, most banks have electronic payment, where you put in all the bills you normally pay, Peoples Gas, The Chicago Tribune, ComEd, AT&T etc., most payments are electronically paid overnight without you having to give out your bank account number. With so many companies having breech of security, through hackers, why put your bank account number out there with so many sites? Maybe Peoples Gas should also encourage people to learn how to use their banks online payment as well?
Yes, AT & T emails you a bill, so do others. But with Peoples Gas sending new discoveries in the Paperbillasaurus, why miss out on this new discovery only privy to Peoples Gas Customers? cough,cough

Nice voter buttons to wear

The Chicago Tribune has some nice voter buttons. These are good reminders of who goes along with Todd Stroger. I am on the fence about whether Moreno needs to be voted out, but certainly agree the rest of the group pictured does.

Business along the Cook County border have signs in their windows or on Marquees. "NO Cook County Taxes" It is not hard to figure out when you have left Cook County by all these signs. I have done shopping many times just outside the Cook County Border myself, and when I am in the parking lot I see so many Chicago vehicle stickers, almost half. I know a few years back Cook County was loosing money on the car sales tax, but that was taken care of with a new law that requires the car dealers to collect taxes where the buyer is from, not where they are buying.

I have heard Commissioner Bill Beavers, talk of retirement. I am sure he will do things the County way, get in, then anoint daughter Darcel to his post, just like he did his Alderman's post to her when he was anointed the Cook County Commissioner post. Commissioner Butler appears to be half asleep at most County Board meetings, I am wondering if retirement isn't so far off for him either.

Commissioners Sims and Murphy, need to be voted out for so many reasons, from joining together to get their workers Shakmann decree exempt, to other things their constituents should be concerned about, should be voted out. Commissioner Sims has had calls on Burr Oak Cemetery before things blew up, and well things blew up, but not on her, Dan Hynes got most of the backlash. Commissioner John Daley has little to no competition, some unknown GOP is running against him. John Daley has the 13th ward in his district, one of the highest populous to come out and vote, whether their Alderman, Olivio who is usually unopposed or not. The 13th Ward is a solid Daley vote always, whichever Daley is running.

Todd Stroger's allies, Sims and Murphy

It has been said there are only two things certain in life: death and taxes.

What did not surprise me at all was that Commissioners, Sims and Murphy voted together, and voted with Todd. Todd Stroger is already bellyaching this will affect health care. Sims is worried about Oak Forest Hospital in her district. Murphy is in the next district to Sims, but seems to go along with Todd, Sims on most votes.
Commissioner Peraica is always ready to speak out first, especially in a victory against Todd. Peraica's neighbor, or at least a few blocks away is Judy Baar Topinka, in North Riverside.

On Tuesday, Cook County Board President Todd Stroger equated the two in arguing that cutting the county's sales tax increase, imposed 17 months ago, would jeopardize people's lives because less money would be available for health care for the poor and uninsured.

"Some people will die needlessly for lack of access to the health care our system provides," Stroger said, in the heat of his losing battle to prevent a rollback of the tax hike.

In a 12-to-5 vote, county commissioners on Tuesday overrode Stroger's veto of their similar Nov. 17 vote to trim in half the penny-on-the-dollar increase. The lower tax takes effect July 1, exactly two years after the increase was effective. The county's share of the sales tax will drop from 1.75 percent to 1.25 percent.

Most commissioners dismissed Stroger's warnings, saying county government can be run more efficiently and consumers and businesses should be spared an onerous tax during the worst economic downturn of our time.

"This is a $195 million rebate to the people of this county," Commissioner Timothy Schneider (R-Streamwood) said.

Commissioner Forrest Claypool (D-Chicago) called the rollback the culmination of a "full-fledged voter revolt. What people see ... is a county government that is too often a friends-and-family plan, a jobs machine for the politically connected."

"If we don't do something to break the cycle we will never force this government to come into the 21st century to (take) the necessary steps to streamline and modernize" and show that taxpayer dollars are being used responsibly, Claypool said.

Commissioner Jerry "Iceman" Butler (D-Chicago) said Stroger's damaged credibility' with commissioners likely hurt his push to keep the higher sales tax in place.

"No matter how much truth you tell them or how many facts you put on the board, they do not want to hear it because your credibility has been damaged," Butler told Stroger. "Even though you've fired all your cousins, you've still been damaged."

Butler apparently referred to Stroger's cousin Donna Dunnings, whom Stroger fired last spring as the county's chief financial officer amid a controversy over another employee's salary and job duties.

Commissioner Larry Suffredin (D-Evanston), a pivotal vote last year in approving the tax increase, said he changed his position because "in February 2008, we felt we needed to do something to stabilize this government. We had a $283 million deficit, and we did what was necessary to make this government go forward. But there's been change since (then), there's been change in the economy."

Stroger previously had vetoed three separate measures to roll back the sales tax hike, with commissioners unable to summon the 14 votes then required to kill the veto.

But with the issue taking center stage in the 2010 county election, the Legislature recently approved lowering the board majority required to override a veto from four-fifths to three-fifths - meaning 11 votes would be needed by the 17-member board instead of 14.


The Cook County Board voted Tuesday to override board President Todd Stroger's veto of a measure to roll back the county's sales tax from 1.75 percent to 1.25 percent as of July 1.

Voting "yes" to override: Democrats Forrest Claypool, Earlean Collins, John Daley, Bridget Gainer, Edwin Reyes, Robert Steele and Larry Suffredin. Republicans Elizabeth Gorman, Gregg Goslin, Tony Peraica, Timothy Schneider and Peter Silvestri

Voting "no": Democrats William Beavers, Jerry "Iceman" Butler, Joseph Mario Moreno, Joan Murphy and Deborah Sims

Going home after the holidays

I am so glad I did not have to go home via one of our airports. Our local news people have been reporting at the airports live all through the Thanksgiving Holiday. I am sure they are glad to have a change of scenery.
I saw many travelers on the CTA orange line these past few days, with all their luggage. It's a smart way to get to the airport. We are fortunate that the blue line goes right into O'Hare, and the Orange line goes right to Midway.

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