Saturday, July 4, 2015

Buyer's remorse on Rahm's financial recovery plan

Fran Spielman on Rahm/Rauner in Thursday's Sun-Times:
Emanuel and Rauner are friends, education reform allies and former business associates who made millions together. Their families have vacationed together and shared expensive bottles of wine. Given that history and Emanuel’s difficult relationship with former Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn, the mayor had good reason to believe that better days were ahead for needy Chicago when Rauner used his personal fortune to defeat Quinn. Instead, the mayor’s petty fights with Quinn while Chicago came out pretty much ahead are beginning to look like the good ol’ days.
Remember how voters were sold Rahm's 'smart' financial recovery plan for Chicago? Well, it hasn't taken long for buyer's remorse to set in.

More Spielman:
Instead of building, what he hopes will someday be a “firewall” between the city and CPS, Emanuel alone is wearing the jacket for $200 million in school budget cuts that are only the beginning.
She seems to buy the line that despite the loss of 1,400 teachers and staff, "schools will open on time and class size will not increase." The first part is questionable. Can teachers really be expected to work with no contract? The second -- ridiculous! Class size is already exploding and special ed is next on the cutting block.
And if the Chicago Teachers Pension Fund doesn’t agree to make a five-month, $500 million loan from next year’s pension payment, even more devastating cuts will be needed that could raise classes to 35 students, force more than 3,000 teacher layoffs and trigger system-wide furlough days.
She's right there. That's why the CTU has no other choice than to support the mayor's dubious don't-try-this-at home borrowing scheme.

I believe that most Chicagoans, including Rahm's big-money backers, would return the mayor, along with his financial plan, for a full refund if they could.

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