Fran Spielman, Chicago Sun-Times

Fran Spielman

Chicago Sun-Times

Highland Park, IL, United States

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  • Chicago Sun-Times

Recent articles by Fran:

City Council committee OKs bare-bones, $100M capital plan with promise of bigger bond issue later this year

Over the years, projects would make the capital plans list just because the mayor wanted them. But the Lightfoot administration hopes to work with aldermen to devise a new strategy for Chicago’s long-term capital plan. → Read More

City looks at fines against churches that defied stay-home order

"There were some churches that congregated in excess of the allowable number and we will be taking action as to those individuals and those churches," Mayor Lori Lightfoot said Monday. → Read More

Pandemic shutdown of Chicago economy to cost city ‘probably in excess of $500 million’ says top mayoral aide

Mayor Lori Lightfoot has repeatedly refused to project the size of Chicago’s budget shortfall, but under questioning at Monday’s Finance Committee meeting, Chief Financial Officer Jennie Huang Bennett did just that. → Read More

Lightfoot admits her people ‘should have done a better job’ telling Little Village residents about second demolition

But the mayor stood her ground on the need for the demolition, arguing the power plant’s turbine building is structurally unsound and in imminent danger of collapsing "due to its own weight and wind pressure." → Read More

Actor, humanitarian Sean Penn cautions Chicago to reopen slowly and safely

"When it comes to opening economies, slow is smooth. Smooth is fast. And blood is slippery. We don’t want to get our finger slipping on a hot trigger," Penn said after touring a testing site his relief group is opening in Belmont-Cragin. → Read More

Lightfoot hints at street closures to help restaurants serve diners, people get around

"People are itching to get outside. Businesses are looking at creative ways to serve customers. The key is how we do it," the mayor tweeted Friday. → Read More

Aviation Committee authorizes rent relief for O’Hare and Midway concessionaires

The relief package would waive rent and fees for two months for restaurants and stores. Beginning in June, those concessionaires would pay base rent only. → Read More

Lightfoot warns religious leaders she is prepared to enforce stay-at-home order

"I am urging you to stay the course. If there is a problem, I would rather be in conversation than in conflict," the mayor wrote in a letter to religious leaders. → Read More

Lightfoot’s ‘helluva’ first year culminates in pandemic that will define her tenure

‘Nobody comes into office thinking they’re gonna have to deal with a pandemic before they even hit their one-year anniversary,’ says Chicago’s first African American female and first openly gay mayor. → Read More

With the focus on the coronavirus, Lightfoot opts for bare-bones capital plan

The capital plan is on the agenda for Monday’s Finance Committee meeting. → Read More

Lightfoot administration authorizes yet another demolition on site of shuttered Little Village power plant

The Department of Buildings "has determined that, in the interest of public safety, the turbine structure" on the site of the former Crawford power plant is "unsound" and "needs to be removed immediately," officials said. → Read More

$2.25M settlement proposed for unarmed, developmentally disabled man shot by police

Ricardo Hayes was 18 when he was shot in August 2017 by Chicago Police Sgt. Khalil Muhammad in the 10900 block of South Hermosa Avenue on the Far South Side. → Read More

Lightfoot acknowledges differences with Pritzker during pandemic

"We haven’t always agreed on every issue. But we try to do that privately," the mayor said Wednesday. "...I hope that what we’ve done is strengthen each other." → Read More

Next phase of reopening Chicago will go slowly, keep lakefront closed, Lightfoot says

During a virtual speech to the Economic Club of Chicago, the mayor said, "Unfortunately at this point, we will not be ready to reopen our lakefront" because a "resurgence in cases is more than a risk." → Read More

Chicago’s summer jobs program to employ 30,000 teenagers, young adults virtually

One Summer Chicago was created to fill the void created by the federal government’s retreat from providing summer jobs to keep inner-city youth constructively occupied. → Read More

Chicago to resume residential street sweeping next week

Streets and Sanitation Commissioner John Tully said temporary no-parking signs will be posted, but residents’ cars will not be ticketed or towed. → Read More

Lightfoot exploring more ways to prevent mayor’s office from being infected by coronavirus

The safety of elected officials is front and center after staff close to the president, vice president and Gov. J.B. Pritzker have tested positive. → Read More

Lightfoot presides over another eerie graduation ceremony for 88 new firefighter EMTs

"COVID-19 has changed everything in our city, including the way we celebrate important days like graduation," the mayor said. → Read More

City to require restaurant delivery services to come clean about fees

"If a delivery service is taking what some have alleged is an inordinate amount of the fee ... the average consumer wants to know that," Mayor Lori Lightfoot said. → Read More

We won’t reopen teachers contract for Chicago Public Schools to start on time this fall, Lightfoot says

"First and foremost, we’ll be guided by what the public health data tells us. And hopefully, we’ll have a constructive conversation with CTU leadership," the mayor said. → Read More