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Chicago aldermen decide on liquor moratorium lift for Devon Avenue in Roger’s Park Chicago aldermen decide on liquor moratorium lift for Devon Avenue in Roger’s Park(0)

August 6, 2015

By: FeliciaD

In an statement on Thursday, August 6 Alderman Joe Moore (49th) announced that he, Ald. Osterman (48th), and Ald. O’Connor (40th) will support the proposal to lift the liquor moratorium on Devon Avenue. Ald. Moore also stated that Ald. Osterman will also support the zoning change in order for the brew pub to be able to open. The Chicago City Council will review the proposal for final decision on September 24.

“This small brew pub will contribute greatly to the commercial revitalization that Devon is currently enjoying,” Ald. Moore said in the statement.


On Tuesday, July 28, Ald. Patrick O’Connor (40th), Ald. Harry Osterman (48th), and Ald. Joe Moore (49th) held a cfrom Broadway to Ravenswood should be lifted to make way for D and G Brewing Company– a prospective brewpub– at 1221-27 W. Devon Ave.

The brewpub would be located in Ald. Osterman’s district, so he will have the final say on the necessary zoning change for the liquor moratorium lift. But the future of the “dry” area of South Devon and the issuance of future liquor licenses will require Moore and O’Connor’s support in front of the City Council.

If an ordinance to lift the alcohol ban is approved and adopted by the City Council, a new ban cannot be reinforced for one year. If agreed upon, the moratorium on liquor consumption and the selling of alcohol, called “packaged goods,” would be lifted for a year while business owners get approved for the necessary licenses and open their doors for business, and then the moratorium would be re-instated in two block increments. Because of the redrawing of the ward boundaries, all three alderman oversee sections of Devon Avenue, so any ordinance enforcement of the area is supervised by them collectively.

The owners of the proposed brewpub, Loyola grads Alex Drayer and Brittany Groot, and the owner of the property it would open on, Scott Whelan, were also in attendance at the meeting to answer questions and pitch the benefits of having the brewpub to the community.

“We were looking for places in Chicago that we thought would kind of be more open to a smaller joint where we could just exist on the local community support,” Groot explained to the community members. “And within this region, you have about 150,000 people who live here and right now you’re served by two breweries, neither of whom brew in this area.”

Osterman has been taking initiative to develop the 48th ward by working closely with small business restaurants and cafes. He has also begun projects to beautify the neighborhood, such as the streetscape project currently under construction on Argyle Street. Many see the neighborhood as a good place for a small business to succeed.

“With the development on Morse, some of the development in Andersonville, and some of the development on Broadway, we saw a lot more independent businesses and kind of one-off businesses instead of the larger chains,” Groot said.

The brewpub would be a small-scale, direct-to-customer brewery that would only serve beer made on the premises. There would be no kitchen, and no food would be served, although Groot and Drayer do plan to allow for customers to bring their own food.

Some concerns brought up by community residents included potential parking shortages and a possible increase in noise and crime near the brewpub. But Groot and Drayer, who both have backgrounds in criminal justice, assured the community that they would be working with police to prevent crime and minimize noisiness.

The owners only intend to distribute their beer to a few handpicked local bars.

“We have to go somewhere on our day off,” Groot joked.

Adoption of the ordinance is just the first step for Groot and Drayer, as the lifted moratorium would not guarantee the issuance of a liquor license. The pair must still apply for a license and be approved by the city of Chicago’s Local Liquor Control Commission. However, the Commission may consider the opinion of the aldermen and the community in his decision.

During an alderman-led vote, six of the residents present did not support  the brewpub, while over 45 residents were in favor of it.

“I think this is extremely exciting. I’m very optimistic of this development,” said 48th ward resident Matt Swentkafske. “My wife and I moved into this neighborhood five years ago because of the opportunity. Obviously there are going to be some challenges, but I see a lot of benefits economically and it’ll help our property values go up. There’s going to be a lot of benefit to revitalize the area between Broadway and Clark.”


Immigrants Attend Congressman Luis Gutierrez First Community Orientation On Immigration Executive Action in Chicago Immigrants Attend Congressman Luis Gutierrez First Community Orientation On Immigration Executive Action in Chicago(0)

Humboldt Park, Chicago, IL (60654)

By: BreakingVoices

On Saturday, December 13, 2014, at Iglesia Rebano in Humboldt Park, Congressman Luis V. Gutierrez held the first organized community engagement outreach effort to educate immigrant communities on how prepare and determine their eligibility for the Executive Action on Immigration that President Obama announced on November 20.

Congressman Luis V. Gutierrez Orientation Event in Humboldt Park on December 13, 2014
Congressman Luis V. Gutierrez Community Event on Immigration Executive Action
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The event called “Orientation On Immigration Executive Actions” or “Orientacion Sobre Las Acciones Ejecutivas De Inmigracion” took place at Iglesia Rebano Church, located at 2435 W. Division in Humboldt Park. The event was held from 9:30am-2:00pm.
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emmanuel was also in attendance and spoke to the audience. Prior to the event, Congressman

Gutierrez’s office dispersed flyers written in both Spanish and English.

Luis V. Gutierrez Community Flyer on Immigration Executive Action

More than 500 families had pre-registered for the orientation.
Those who pre-registered received informational packets that described the Immigration Executive Action and also got the opportunity to meet one-on-one with “Family Defenders,” trained professionals who shared how to prepare for the application period, which begins approximately 180 days following the November 20 announcement.

Luis Gutierrez Community Event in Humboldt Park on Immigration Executive Action

Congressman Gutierrez encouraged all people who may qualify for the executive actions to apply for the program so that they can avoid deportation and help keep their families together.

Laura, a U.S. citizen, discusses why she came to support the Luis Gutierrez event on Immigration Executive Action

Approximately 5 million immigrant individuals and families could be prevented from deportation according to the Executive Action on Immigration. Chicago was among the major cities that held orientation sessions in community centers and churches. Also on Saturday in Los Angeles, more than 5,000 people lined up to attend a immigration information session to find out if they qualified for the executive actions on immigration that President Obama ordered.

Facts about Immigration Accountability Executive Action to defer deportations, keep families together and streamline immigration process.
Undocumented parents who have U.S. born children or lawful permanent resident children and who have lived consistently for 5 or more years in the U.S. will be eligible to apply for a 3-year temporary relief from deportation and work permits. The program is called Deferred Action for Parental Accountability (DAPA)

Anyone undocumented who was brought to U.S. as a child before their 16th birthday, also known as Dreamers, will be eligible to apply for 3-year deportation relief and work permits and will be eligible to apply for the program called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)

For foreign students studying science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) at U.S. universities, the Department of Homeland Security will propose changes to expand and extend the use of the existing Optional Practical Training (OPT) program and require stronger ties between OPT students and their colleges and universities following graduation.

High-skilled workers waiting on green cards along with their spouses will be given H-1B spouses work permits

Department of Homeland Security will clarify guidance so that individuals with pending applications for lawful permanent resident (LPR “green cards”) or temporary status will have opportunity to travel abroad with advanced permission.
For more facts about immigration executive action visit the White House website.

2ND Ward Update: Business License Reform Passes City Council with Alderman Fioretti’s Support 2ND Ward Update: Business License Reform Passes City Council with Alderman Fioretti’s Support(0)

By : BV Staff

 At last weeks meeting on May 9, With Ald. Fioretti’s support, City Council passed an ordinance streamlining Chicago’s business licensing system, reducing the number of license types by 60 percent and cutting the number of license categories from 117 to 49. The measure aims to cut red tape for small business start-ups, spurring job growth and economic development.

At the current moment, many start-ups are being established here in Chicago in the consumer web technology space with most starting with little-to-no capital to launch their “amazing” ideas that may create the next With such reforms, this will send a signal to most Founders of these newly established ventures that the city of Chicago is doing everything that it can do to help them survive as well as thrive here in Chicago. In 3 years, has hire over 3,500 employees at the companies Chicago headquarters located at 600 W. Chicago Avenue.

Just last year, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn on stage at the First Chicago Techweek conference signed Senate Bill 107 and House Bill 1876 establishing the second iteration of the TDA (Technology Development Account Program). With the addition of this new reform , Alderman Fioretti is signaling to all Alderman that his 2nd Ward is welcoming to founders of start-up here in Chicago as they establish job opportunities for the citizens of Chicago. .

Additionally, the ordinance will help aid enforcement efforts, by allowing inspectors to focus on businesses posing a risk to public safety, rather than on code violations that pose little risk to residents.

IL Rep. Bobby Rush removed for wearing a hoodie during a Housespeech about Trayvon Martin. IL Rep. Bobby Rush removed for wearing a hoodie during a Housespeech about Trayvon Martin.(0)

On March 28, 2012, Rush addressed the House while wearing a hoodie in honor of Trayvon Martin, a teenager who was shot in Florida under a Stand-your-ground law. As the House forbids its members from wearing hats, Rush was called out of order and escorted from the chamber. Rep. Bobby Rush, D-Illinois, told House members, “racial profiling has to stop.”

Rush said he applauded “the young people all across the land who are making a statement about hoodies, about the real hoodlums in this nation, particularly those who tread on our laws wearing official or quasi-official clothes.”Then Congressman Rush states “Just because someone wears a hoodie,” he said as he pulled the hood over his head, “does not make them a hoodlum.”

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