What are they thinking?
I can't help but wonder who the geniuses are who designed and then approved the construction staging on I-355, the Veterans Memorial Tollway. After milling off the surface on the shoulder and two driving lanes almost three weeks ago, no further roadway work has been done. To add insult to injury, motorists are forced to drive on a lane where the surface has been removed and the asphalt grindings haven't been thoroughly cleaned. As a result three of the cars in my household now have rock chips in their windshields. I guess timely and quality work is too much to expect. Oh, and don't get me started about the tremendous impact felt when you slam into every elevated bridge deck approach on this highway. Just another example of quality work.
Elk Grove Village
More concern for robbers than victims
The media coverage that blames the Chicago Police for the city's homicide and violence woes is dishonest and replete with disinformation.
For decades, violent and murderous criminal gangs have been terrorizing law-abiding citizens and residents on the South and West sides of the city. In recent years, these gangs have also viciously robbed and assaulted many innocent residents on the North side and all areas of the city. Public transportation is no longer safe because of these menaces to society.
To make matters worse, Cook County leaders who control the criminal justice system care more about the rights of violent criminals than their victims. How can a county that is nationally notorious for its savage violence improve if its leaders have more sympathy for carjacking perpetrators than the helpless and innocent people who they emotionally traumatize and physically harm.
Caring more about violent reprobates than nonviolent residents is appalling.
Parade marred by politics
The Memorial Day parade in Lake Villa is one of the highlights in our small village. The opportunity to honor our veterans for their service results in a large turnout for this parade. However, this year I witnessed a very unacceptable occurrence.
Members of a parade unit named "Indivisible Lindenhurst" were harassing veterans who wore portions of their own uniforms while walking in the parade. This event is intended to honor those who served our country, not belittle them about their clothing. Several Democrat candidates walked with this group. Personally, I find this kind of campaigning to be reprehensible.
All gave some; some gave all
It has always irritated me how people interchange Memorial Day and Veterans Day. By doing so, I believe it diminishes both holidays for those that served and those that lost someone who served.
Memorial Day is the time we set aside to honor those who have lost their lives serving this country and protecting our freedom. Yes, it is good and right to honor our veterans and should be done every day. However, Veterans Day in November is the time we especially salute those that are living and have served our country.
So I was so sad (OK a little angry too) to see the front of my Daily Herald with a cover page headlined "Salute to veterans." Why not remember those that gave their all? A flag flies at my house every day to honor our country and servicemen and women. On Memorial Day, a special flag flies on a pole in the middle of my yard. There is a black ribbon that flies from the top of the flag until noon. That is to honor our war dead. Then at noon the ribbon comes off to honor the living veterans the rest of the day. (That is the proper flag etiquette).
So technically, I guess you have it half right, but the real reason we observe Memorial Day is for the dead, not the living. I wish the Herald would have done a better job honoring those that gave it all. Only two people ever died for you. One was Jesus and the other was the U.S. soldier. One died for your soul. The other died for your freedom.
A critical first step toward safer water
I am writing to thank state Sens. Iris Martinez, Chris Nybo, Sam McCann and Laura Murphy for co-sponsoring legislation to get the lead out of drinking water in communities across the state. Lead is a neurotoxin that impairs child development and behavior. Lead contamination in water is a serious public health issue. As lead service lines are the largest source of water contamination, this initiative is a critical first step in ensuring lead-free water.
That's why it's so important that these senators co-sponsored SB3080, a bill that would require communities to come up with plans for removing all lead service lines within 10 years. We urge their colleagues to send this bill to the governor's desk this session. Our children's health cannot wait.
Reinforcing work on clean energy
I was thrilled to read Mick Zawislak's profile of Bob Ward in his May 27 article "With incentives, solar energy's good for environment, business in Lake County." Ward's success using solar power for his business proves that we don't need to use dirty coal to power Illinois.
I love that the article reinforces the fact that new sources of clean energy -- like solar and wind -- make more financial sense for most businesses in the long run, plus they're better for the planet.
One of the aspects that really stuck out to me was the importance of using the federal tax credit to offset the cost. Our local and federal governments should absolutely be leading the charge when it comes to clean energy, which is why I'm so excited about the concept of carbon fee and dividend legislation. Placing a steadily rising fee on carbon that returns all of the money to American households will greatly improve the quality of life for Illinoisans; we'd experience less pollution, fewer deaths, greater job opportunities, and more economic growth.
Thankfully, our politicians are already tackling CFD legislation at the local level. Alderman Joe Moore of the 49th ward is sponsoring a Chicago Resolution supporting CFD and five of Illinois' House Reps. Rodney Davis, Daniel Lipinski, Randy Hultgren, Peter Roskam and Jan Schakowsky are members of the Climate Solutions Caucus. I can only hope our communities keep looking toward a cleaner, healthier future.
Toward better banking
On behalf of all Illinois bankers, I'd like to thank those Illinois' members of Congress who supported SB 2155, especially U.S. Reps. Randy Hultgren and Bill Foster, who sit on the Financial Services Committee, for their leadership and support in passing financial regulatory reforms that were signed into law by President Trump on May 24. These reforms will allow banks, particularly smaller institutions, to focus more of their time and resources on serving their customers and communities.
For example, it will help streamline the mortgage process and free up credit to help banks get deserving borrowers into new homes with the right mortgage. It will help small business owners get loans to expand and hire more employees. And it will help bankers devote more time to serving their customers, rather than working to comply with regulations intended for far bigger, more complex banks. Importantly, regulators agree these changes can occur while still preserving safety and soundness.
We look forward to building on the solid bipartisanship that achieved this important victory.
Daniel G. Watts, Chairman, Illinois Bankers Association
President and CEO, Forest Park National Bank and Trust Company