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Orland Park Mayor Keith Pekau said that mandates from Cook County are unlawful. (Photo by Jeff Vorva)

Pekau takes Rubin and Foxx to task over mandate punishments

By Jeff Vorva Orland Park has Cook’s County’s attention. The village’s decision to vote against enforcing Cook County COVID-19 mandates at a special meeting Dec. 28 has been a hot topic. The village’s position is that businesses need not require proof of vaccination for patrons to enter. Some businesses are taking the board up on…

Argo graduate Tom Diaz at junior college nationals in the final straightaway about 50 meters from the finish line. (Supplied photo)

Moraine Valley’s Tom Diaz earns All-Conference honors

By Carol McGowan Tom Diaz is a freshman at Moraine Valley Community College, and is making big strides with their cross country team. Diaz is also a 2021 graduate of Argo Community High School, and is the first Argonaut to earn All Region honors while pursuing his cross country career. MVCC’s Men’s an& Women’s Cross…

Summit native Flip White is a member of the Harlem Globetrotters. (supplied photo)

Summit native marks decade with the Harlem Globetrotters

By Carol McGowan Saul White Jr., better known as Flip White to basketball fans, has been with the famed Harlem Globetrotters for just over 10 years, and has no intention of stopping the entertainment he provides for his fans. White, who grew up in Summit, attended Wharton School and Graves Junior High (now Heritage) in…

Former Mother McAuley star Hannah Swiatek (right) smiles and walks off the court with Justene Charlesworth after a recent University of St. Francis victory over Cardinal Stritch. Photo by Jeff Vorva Former  Mother McAuley star Hannah Swiatek (right) smiles and walks off the court with Justene Charlesworth after a recent University of St. Francis victory over Cardinal Stritch. Photo by Jeff Vorva

College Report: McAuley grad Swiatek plays hero for St. Francis

By Jeff Vorva Staff Writer Hannah Swiatek comes off the bench for the University of St. Francis and is averaging 3.1 points per game. But when called on for the biggest shot of her college career, the 5-foot-8 junior guard from Oak Lawn delivered. Swiatek scored the winning basket in a wild 99-97 overtime road…

Mother McAuley’s Bella Finnegan launches a 3-point attempt over St. Laurence’s Lilliana Magana as Vikings coach George Shimko looks on in a game on Jan. 11. Finnegan scored her 1,000th career point in the game. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Stagg’s Laila Barakat and McAuley’s Bella Finnegan hit 1K career points; Richards’ Kortz gets 300th win

By Jeff Vorva Staff Writer Look what Laila Barakat started. The Stagg senior basketball star hit a milestone when she scored her 1,000th career point against Richards on Jan. 8. That was the first of three notable career accomplishments achieved the following week. It was followed by Mother McAuley senior Bella Finnegan scoring her 1,000th…

Rob Cruz

Cruz booted from SD 229 school board in Oak Lawn

By Dermot Connolly There is a vacancy on the Oak Lawn Community High School District 229 School Board, after members voted 6-1 last week to remove Robert Cruz for allegedly violating his oath of office, school board policy and state statutes. Cruz, a property developer, was elected to the District 229 board in April 2021.…

Shepard's Damari Reed takes on Minooka's Jake Hinders en route to the first of his four victories and the 152-pound championship at the Illini Classic. Photo by Jason Maholy

Marist wrestlers take Illini Classic crown; Shepard’s Damari Reed stays unbeaten

By Steve Millar Correspondent When Peter Marinopoulos was a freshman, he served as the Marist wrestling team’s manager when the RedHawks would travel to tournaments. Two years later, he is finishing tournaments on top of the podium. Marinopolous, ranked No. 2 in the state in Class 3A at 195 pounds by the Illinois Wrestling Coaches…

Crime scene tape lies on the sidewalk in front of the Crossing Bar and Grill in Worth where two men were shot and killed early Monday morning. (Photos by Linda Bogard) 

Warrant issued for suspected shooter in Worth double homicide

By Bob Bong  Worth police have an arrest warrant for a man suspected as the shooter in a double homicide January 10 at the Crossing Bar and Grill in Worth. Worth police are working with numerous law enforcement agencies to seek the man, who was not identified. Police said the suspect is not the same…

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Oak Lawn officials rip governor, legislators over crime 

By Joe Boyle  Two Oak Lawn officials are calling for Gov. J.B. Pritzker and local legislators to re-evaluate a police reform law that they say has resulted in a rise in crime. Trustee Alex Olejniczak (2nd) served as mayor pro-tem during the Oak Lawn Village Board meeting Tuesday night in place of Mayor Terry Vorderer, who could…

Hog Wild is scheduled to open Monday in Oak Lawn, a week after it was originally set to open. (Photos by Kelly White)

Hog Wild to open Monday in Oak Lawn

By Kelly White   Dining choices will get a boost in Oak Lawn with the arrival of Hog Wild. The restaurant is  scheduled to open Monday, January 17, at 4040 W. 111th St. That’s a week later than originally scheduled. “We are very fortunate here in Oak Lawn to have attracted Hog Wild,” Oak Lawn Mayor…

Orland Park Trustee Sean Kampas said voluntary camera registration will help the police solve crimes quicker. (Photo by Jeff Vorva)

Home security cameras could be big help to Orland cops

By Jeff Vorva  Residents of Orland Park could have a hand in solving crime in the village. The board of trustees unanimously approved to move forward with a voluntary security camera registration program at its Jan. 4 meeting. It’s expected to start on Feb. 1. This program gives citizens and businesses a chance to assist…

Circle K in Bridgeview sold a $1 million Lucky Day Lotto winning ticket. (Supplied photo)

$1 million Lucky Day Lotto jackpot won in Bridgeview

From staff reports If you bought a Lucky Day Lotto ticket in Bridgeview for Thursday night’s drawing, you may want to check it right away – that’s because you might be a newly-minted millionaire! Circle K gas station, located at 7050 S. Harlem Ave. in Bridgeview, sold a $1 million winning Lucky Day Lotto ticket…

Marist’s Elisa Ward (right), and Mother McAuley’s Bella Finnegan and their teams will be a part of the Coach Kipp Hoopsfeast Saturday and Monday. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Local Sports Notebook: Four area girls teams headed to Hoopsfest

By Jeff Vorva Staff Writer Four area girls basketball teams will participate in the 32nd running of the Coach Kipp Hoopsfest. This year’s tournament, sponsored by Dick’s Sporting Goods, takes place Saturday at Montini High School and Monday at Benet Academy. Sandburg is scheduled to play Downers Grove North in the 12:30 p.m. game on…

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2 killed in Worth bar shooting

By Bob Bong Worth Mayor Mary Werner confirmed Monday afternoon that two people were shot and killed and a third wounded in a shooting early this morning at the Crossing Bar and Grill, 6959 W. 111th St. in Worth. Werner said the South Suburban Major Crimes Task Force was assisting Worth police with the investigation.…

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Palos 118 hosting Community Feedback Forums Monday, Tuesday

Palos School District 118 will host a series of community forums for the public on Monday and Tuesday, January 10 and 11, as part of its first phase of strategic planning. The Palos 118 school board is engaging the entire school community in discussions that will lead to identifying the attributes and skills all Palos…

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Communities, commission push Pritzker admin for more prison plan details

Communities, commission push Pritzker admin for more prison plan details

By DILPREET RAJU Capitol News Illinois news@capitolnewsillinois.com Jimmy Soto spent more than 42 years wrongfully imprisoned in Illinois Department of Corrections facilities. In 2020, he was moved to the “F-House” at Stateville Correctional Center in Joliet, a condemned unit, not because he was being punished, but because it was where the facility was housing individuals…

Elections board urged to dismiss complaint that Bailey illegally coordinated in 2022 campaign

Elections board urged to dismiss complaint that Bailey illegally coordinated in 2022 campaign

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com A hearing officer is recommending the Illinois State Board of Elections dismiss a complaint that alleged conservative radio host and political operative Dan Proft illegally coordinated with former Republican state Sen. Darren Bailey during his 2022 campaign for governor. Proft, a one-time gubernatorial candidate himself, is behind an…

State highway shootings decline as critics sue over ‘dragnet surveillance’

State highway shootings decline as critics sue over ‘dragnet surveillance’

By JERRY NOWICKI Capitol News Illinois jnowicki@capitolnewsillinois.com Illinois State Police say an automated license plate reader program has helped the agency identify witnesses or suspects in 82 percent of highway shooting cases this year, including all eight that resulted in a death.  But as the state looks to further expand its network of more than…

Just weeks before Republican National Convention, Illinois GOP chair announces resignation

Just weeks before Republican National Convention, Illinois GOP chair announces resignation

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com Halfway through the 2024 election cycle and just a few weeks away from the Republican National Convention in Milwaukee, Illinois GOP Chair Don Tracy on Wednesday announced his resignation as head of the state Republican Party. Tracy, who’d held the job since February 2021, explained his resignation in…

As Illinois session ends, lawmakers’ attempt to reinstate wetland protections fails

As Illinois session ends, lawmakers’ attempt to reinstate wetland protections fails

by JENNIFER BAMBERG Investigate Midwest jennifer.bamberg@investigatemidwest.org In 2006, 19-year-old Jessica Whinston inherited 20 acres of land that her grandparents once farmed in Quincy, Illinois. The land had sat dormant since the 1980s and was overgrown, but Whinston and her husband Bradley worked to turn it into a productive farm. The couple were eventually able to…

Elections board dismisses illegal campaign coordination complaint, declines to clarify law

Elections board dismisses illegal campaign coordination complaint, declines to clarify law

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com CHICAGO – State elections officials on Tuesday indicated they were unlikely to step in to clarify what constitutes illegal campaign coordination after voting to dismiss a complaint alleging such coordination in the 2022 campaign for governor. At their monthly meeting in Chicago, Illinois State Board of Elections members…

Illinois’ ban on ‘bump stocks’ remains in place despite U.S. Supreme Court decision

Illinois’ ban on ‘bump stocks’ remains in place despite U.S. Supreme Court decision

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois phancock@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – An Illinois law banning the sale and use of “bump stocks” and other devices that increase the firing power of semiautomatic weapons remains in place, at least for now, despite a U.S. Supreme Court decision Friday striking down a federal ban on such items. “Illinois law…

Lawmakers pass on oversight vote for Pritzker’s prison closure, rebuild plan

Lawmakers pass on oversight vote for Pritzker’s prison closure, rebuild plan

By HANNAH MEISEL & DILPREET RAJU Capitol News Illinois news@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – For the last two decades, each time a governor has moved to close a large state-run facility like a prison or mental health center, a legislative oversight panel has voted on the plan. That changed on Friday – at least for now –…

‘We don’t really know what we’re voting on,’ top Dem says of Pritzker’s prison plan

‘We don’t really know what we’re voting on,’ top Dem says of Pritzker’s prison plan

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com LINCOLN – On the eve of a scheduled vote to advise Gov. JB Pritzker’s administration on plans to close and rebuild a pair of dilapidated state prisons, hundreds filed into a junior high school gymnasium Thursday evening clad in matching green T-shirts. Printed on the shirts was a…

Illinois child tax credit: who gets it, how much is it?

Illinois child tax credit: who gets it, how much is it?

By ANDREW ADAMS Capitol News Illinois aadams@capitolnewsillinois.com In the final hours of their spring legislative session, Illinois lawmakers approved a tax credit of up to about $300 for families with young children.  The credit is available to Illinoisans with children under age 12 who qualify for the federal Earned Income Tax Credit, or EITC. Although…