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Late Night: Chicago Dog Registration Zooms after Chicago Clerk Susana Mendoza Crackdown… and More

Mayor Rahm Emanuel visited a construction site on the Northwest Side on Friday where the Chicago Department of Water Management is replacing decades-old sewer pipes, some of which are more than a century old.

(Chicago, IL) – March 31, 2012. After a string of high-profile, vicious attacks in Chicago by unlicensed pit bulls, Chicago City Clerk Susana Mendoza launched a crackdown on dog registration in January, an effort which has boosted dog licenses 99.4% in the first three months of 2012.

Since the launch of the crackdown in January, Chicagoans have registered 9,110 dogs compared to 4,543 at this same time last year, according to Mendoza. In addition, dog registration revenue is up 118%, generating $91,419 through March 19.

“In the first week of January alone there were two high-profile, horrific dog attacks in Chicago and none of the dogs involved in the attacks were licensed by the city,” said Mendoza.

The City has a total of 38,017 dogs currently registered.

Mendoza ramped up Chicago dog registration after 62-year-old Joseph Finley of Chicago was attacked by two pit bull terriers while jogging on the city’s lakefront path in the south Loop on January 2.

In 2011, Chicago Animal Care and Control reported nearly 2,000 dog bites, and Chicago ranks 13th in the nation on dog attacks against postal service workers.

Fines for not registering a dog range from $30 to $200.

Mayor in the Sewer – Mayor Rahm Emanuel yesterday visited a construction site on the Northwest Side where the Chicago Department of Water Management is replacing sewer pipes, some of which are more than a century old. Emanuel was at Monticello and Belle Plaine Avenues in the Old Irving Park neighborhood where he chatted with crews who are replacing 660 feet of existing 12″ diameter sewer pipe with 30″ reinforced concrete pipe. The original pipe was installed in 1906.

Emanuel Political Operation Re-branded – While Emanuel was visiting the sewer site on Friday, Lynn Lockwood, a Chicago Library Board member and chair of the mayor’s political operation, “New Chicago Committee”, which pipes in the mayor’s political money from top donors such as Fred Eychaner, James Crown, Craig Duchossois among many others, was changing the group’s name with the Illinois Board of Elections to: “The Chicago Committee”. There ya go.

The Fat Lady is Ready to Sing – According to the Cook County Clerk David Orr‘s office, in the only undecided Illinois House primary contest, Democratic hopeful Emanuel “Chris” Welch of Hillside still leads Rory Hoskins of Forest Park by 66 votes, 4,669 to 4,633 in the 7th district contest. And Welch’s Campaign Chair, Linda Tyson, says after the Clerk’s office accounts for all mail-in ballots, Welch plans officially to declare victory on April 3rd.

Money Well Spent – On election day, March 20, Welch donated $2,559.50 to his own campaign. That extra dough may have just helped put him over the top.

Victory Has Its Own Rewards – Since beating Chicago Democrat Kenny Johnson for an open House seat, Christian Mitchell, who was backed by Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle, has reported additional campaign contributions totaling $25,361, including $5,000 from Lester Crown.

Survival Skills – On Thursday, Preckwinkle delivered the keynote address at the 5th Annual African-American & Latino Social Work Symposium, “How to Survive and Thrive in a Deepening Recession.” Preckwinkle, who has been struggling to keep the County’s budget balanced since December 2010, is an expert.

Don’t Quote MeRumor and gossip that’s not quite fit to print, but, what the heck, we’re including it anyway as a public service because we’re sure you’ll find it as titillating as we do… Score One for Quinn – With the Friday deadline to pass substantive legislation in Springfield looming, Governor Pat Quinn’s staff worked furiously on Thursday to block the passage of a senate plan, Senate Bill 3564, that would tie the governor’s hands in any effort to close a state-owned facility, like a prison, without the legislature’s approval. The bi-partisan-backed bill is sponsored is by a fellow Democrat, State Senator Gary Forby of Benton. Forby opposes Quinn’s plan to close the Jacksonville Development Center, an important local employer and an key campaign issue for the perennially endangered Democratic senator. The legislation was not called for a vote by Friday’s deadline. Quinn checked Forby’s effort–for now.

What Were They Thinking?… Fifty-five percent of Americans worry a great deal or a fair amount about global warming, up from 51% in 2011, but still significantly lower than the previous high of 72% in 2000, according to a new Gallup poll.

What’s a Weekend?… Nothing Doin’ – For both Governor Quinn and Mayor Emanuel, they have no public events scheduled… Singing the Blues – For President Preckwinkle, she’s preparing for a press conference with Illinois Blue Cross Blue Shield officials at the County Building on Monday at 12:30 p.m.

Send comments to David Ormsby at davidormsby@illinoisobserver.net

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