Community Alert
Lincoln Yards TIF Revelations
General Iron Consent Decree
Dear Neighbors,

A community alert has been issued by the 18th District Area Central detectives unit involving a recent sexual assault / attempted kidnapping on the 2300 block of North Orchard Ave. In this incident a 13-year old girl was walking north on Orchard St. from Lincoln Avenue at approximately 5 p.m. when an unknown offender on a bicycle approached her from behind, smacked her on the buttocks and exclaimed "You're coming with me precious!" The victim was able to flee to safety.

About the Offender :

The offender is described as a male black, approximately 5’07” – 5’10” tall, slim build, black curly hair, dark complexion, wearing a plain, unmarked orange t-shirt and cargo shorts, light in color, possibly tan.

The offender was riding a blue bicycle with thin tires and a straight handle bar. No name
or markings observed on the bicycle.

What You Can Do
  • Stay aware of surroundings and advise minor children to do the same. If possible
avoid walking alone.
  • Be aware of individuals getting too close when it’s unnecessary. Adults on bicycles should not be riding on sidewalks.

Area Central Detectives are asking for your help in solving this crime. If you see or have seen the individual described above, please contact the Bureau of Detectives – Area Central at 312-747-8380. Case # JC-420247
Lincoln Yards TIF Revelations

A recent analysis by the Chicago Tribune showed that Lincoln Yards would not have been eligible for TIF funding had the approval timeline lasted one more month. Essentially, the value of the Lincoln Yards properties rose so quickly from 2016 to 2018 that the area could no longer be qualified as “blighted.” However, the 2018 assessed valuations were not available until May 2018, one month after City Council approval. Read the story here.
The Lincoln Yards TIF package was pushed through the Finance Committee of City Council on April 8, 2019. Several aldermen, including Aldermen Reilly, Waguespack and me, and many members of the public, sought to defer the decision. I said at the hearing, “I do not think we should rush into this. It seems as though the rush, in fact, bolsters the argument that TIF expenditures are less needed here than in other parts of the City.”
Today we know the true reason for the rush. In response to these findings, my colleagues and I are considering several potential actions. We will announce our proposed course of action soon.
General Iron Consent Decree

On August 22, 2019, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and General Iron agreed to a Consent Decree settling violations of the Clean Air Act. The EPA's investigation began in 2017, with EPA issuing a Finding of Violation in June 2018 that General Iron’s emissions of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) violate federal emission standards. The EPA also found that General Iron met standards for particulate and metals emissions. 

VOCs include a variety of organic chemicals, some of which may have harmful health effects. As part of the Consent Decree, General Iron installed a Regenerative Thermal Oxidizer (RTO), which destroys VOCs by heating the shredder’s exhaust gases at extremely high temperatures and breaking them down into carbon dioxide and water. When the RTO is operating, visible steam should be seen exiting the exhaust stack.

The company is also installing a "wet scrubber" and new emission stack. The decree requires General Iron to reduce VOC emissions from its shredder by at least 98% .

General Iron's compliance is not yet complete. Within the next 90 days, the company must conduct a test of the RTO, then submit its results to the US and Illinois EPA and apply for a new operating permit. General Iron faces penalties of up to $99,000 a day for violations.
General Iron will be required to operate the RTO when the company moves its facility in 2020.

You can read all the documents and review a history of the EPA investigation at the EPA's website here .

The EPA credited citizen complaints with helping to drive its investigation. Many thanks to neighbors and the federal EPA for bringing this company into compliance.
Community Meetings on Rezoning
961 W. Montana and 946 W. Wrightwood Ave.
Tuesday, September 10
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Belmont Village
700 W. Fullerton Ave.

Please join my office and the Wrightwood Neighbors Association (WNA) for two community meetings to discuss proposed zoning changes for 961 W. Montana St., and 946 W. Wrightwood Ave . Both sites are next to the L tracks.

On Montana, the applicant proposes to build a 4 story eight-unit building, including some accessble units. On Wrightwood, the developer seeks to re-use the existing building to establish a car wash. Representatives of the each developer will be present to provide an overview of their project, as well as to answer questions from the audience regarding the zoning approval process they would be required to go through.

Each presentation will be 45 minutes including a Q&A session. 961 W. Montana will be from 6:00 to 6:45 and 946 W. Wrightwood from 6:45 to 7:30 p.m.
Council and Committee Meetings Now Live-Streamed

Last March, Alderman Reilly (42) and I pushed through an ordinance requiring all City Council meetings to be live-streamed. Backed by Mayor Lightfoot, aldermen recently approved funding.

The Committee on Ethics and Government Oversight, which I chair, will have its first live-streamed meeting next Wednesday, Sept. 11 at 1 p.m. You can watch this and any other meeting by using this link to the City Clerk's website.

For a convenient list at all upcoming City Council Committees, click here.
Community Events
Movies at Trebes Park: The Lego Movie 2
Friday, September 6
Trebes Park
Racine and Webster Ave.
7:15 p.m.

Join the Sheffield Neighborhood Association for its final outdoor movie in Trebes Park. A big thank you to the Lincoln Park Baseball Academy and the Chicago Park District for co-sponsoring this community event under the stars. Bring a picnic, blanket, friends and family and come out to Trebes Park for this wonderful evening.
All-Age Olympics in Bauler Park
Saturday, September 7
Bauler Playlot Park
Wisconsin and Cleveland Streets

Join the Bauler Park Advisory Committee for its first-ever All-Age Olympics. Age-appropriate events for crawlers, toddlers, kids, and adults include an obstacle course, vehicle race, limbo, water balloon toss, and tug of war.

An Awards Ceremony will close the games. Spectators welcome. This event has been honored by the Chicago Parks Foundation for connecting community.

For more information click  Register there or come early to the park to sign in. All competitors must register. 

Wrightwood Neighbors Meeting & CAPS Meeting with
19th District Commander Papaiannou

Monday, September 9, 2019
New Life Community Church
6:00 – 8:00 p.m.

Join Wrightwood Neighbors for their monthly general meeting and community policing meeting, and meet the new 19th District Police Commander, Chris Papaioannou. State Representative Ann Williams will also be in attendance. 

Meeting starts at 6:30PM.

Small bites will be provided by soon-to-open Takito Street Lincoln Park, located at 2423 N Lincoln Ave.
A Conversation on Clean Energy
Tuesday, September 10
6:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Center on Halsted
3656 N. Halsted Ave.

Join our State Representatives Ann Williams and Sara Feigenholtz and our State Senator John Cullerton, plus clean energy experts to discuss the Clean Energy Jobs Act and strategies for tackling climate change.

or 217-544-5954.
An Evening in the Garden
September 15
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Fire Station Park
Larrabee and Armitage Ave.

Lincoln Central Association will host its sixth annual Evening in the Garden on Thursday evening, September 12.

An Evening in the Garden is a free neighborhood event held in beautiful Fire Station Park featuring entertainment, hors d'oeuvres and beverages. Bring a dish!
Afternoon Tea at Belmont Village
Wednesday, September 18
2:00 p.m.
Belmont Village
700 W. Fullerton Ave.

Join the Belmont Village Senior Living Facility for high tea at two o'clock p.m. Mix and mingle with friends and family. Enjoy tea from TeaGschwender, and sandwiches and treats prepared by their very own chefs.

Space is limited and onsite parking is available. RSVP to 773-327-2200, or [email protected] .
Lincoln Park Chamber of Commerce Weekend Guide
September 5 - 8

Check out the LP Chamber of Commerce Weekend Guide for events going on this weekend in our neighborhood.
Mobile City Hall
Thursday, September 19
DePaul Student Center
2250 N. Sheffield Ave.

The City Clerk will be bringing city services to you as part of the City's new Mobile City Hall. Residents will be able to purchase City Stickers, Residential Parking Permits, pay for Parking Tickets, Dog Licenses, and get CityKey IDs. The Clerk will be partnering with sister agencies and City departments to bring even more of our City's services to where you live and work.

All locations and partners are subject to change, please check the website or call 312-742-5375 for the current list of regional mobile sites.
43rd Ward Shredding Event
Sunday, September 22
DePaul University Welcome Center
2400 N. Sheffield Ave.

Our office will be hosting our annual Shredding Event in coordination with Midway Moving and NewTech E-Scrap Recycling. We encourage anyone who wants to join to bring materials to be shredded and personal electronics which include old phones, printers, fax machines, and things of that nature. If you have any questions, please contact my office.
See you in the neighborhood,

Michele Smith
43rd Ward Alderman
August 29, 2019
43rd Ward Office Hours: M 9 AM - 7 PM, T - F 9 AM - 6 PM 
  2523 N Halsted  |  773-348-9500 [email protected]