Sexual harassment in the workplace is prohibited in Chicago. To further instill this message, in April 2022, Mayor Lightfoot and the Commission on Human Relations amended the sexual harassment laws (Human Rights Ordinance) to provide sharpened tools to employers and employees for preventing sexual harassment. These amendments strengthened the existing laws in strictly enforcing zero tolerance of violence and harassment in the workplace through written employment policies, posters, and training. Starting July 1, 2022, strict compliance with these amendments became the standard throughout Chicago.
Several big-name companies, corporations with recognizable names, headquartered in Illinois are exiting the state in mass numbers for a variety of reasons. This blog discusses the impacts and outlook for Illinois as this corporation exodus affects the state’s revenue streams. It also looks at how lawmakers, in-house lawyers, and internal compliance teams can keep companies in Illinois.
Earlier this summer, Ken Griffin, CEO of Chicago’s largest hedge fund, Citadel, announced that it is moving the firm’s headquarters to Miami. This news follows the departure of several other companies that were headquartered in Chicago like Boeing, Caterpillar, and grocery stores like Aldi.
In the almost sixty years since the passage of the Equal Pay Act in 1963, women and people of color are still deprived of wages equal to their male and white coworkers. Illinois has recently made strides to level the playing field by passing amendments to their Equal Pay Act requiring large companies to disclose demographic data on their employees and sign compliance statements regarding pay discrimination. Going forward, Chicago is considering requiring employers to post salary ranges on their job postings, while the Biden Administration has been fighting to pass the Paycheck Fairness Act. The future of equal wages in America depends on the results of these crucial legislative battles.
Starting May 1, 2021, Accessory Dwelling Units (“ADUs”) will be legalized in five pilot areas around the city of Chicago. Chicago faces a declining population, a slow homebuilding pace, and an affordable housing gap of approximately 116,000 units. These ADUs are intended to increase access to affordable housing, but the ordinance isn’t expected to make a large impact on Chicago’s affordable housing gap.
The latest COVID-19 relief package passed on March 11, 2021 by Congress provides a total of $1.9 trillion in mandatory funding, program changes, and tax policies designed to address the enduring economic damage caused by the pandemic. About 15% of the total package will be allocated to states and local governments to tackle budgetary issues associated with the pandemic with very few strings attached. The State of Illinois and the city of Chicago are in the process of assessing the relief package and formulating plans as to how they will allocate the funds.
The current franchise agreement between the City of Chicago and Commonwealth Edison (“ComEd”) was signed in 1992 by Mayor Daley and is set to expire at end of 2020. Since 1990, ComEd has generated approximately $60.7 billion in revenue in Chicago alone. In July 2020, Chicago officials announced the results of a feasibility study regarding a potential municipal takeover of ComEd’s electric utility infrastructure. In the same month, ComEd executives admitted to having orchestrated an eight-year bribery scheme where they made payments to Public Official A, later revealed as Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan, in return for political favors.
In the wake of mass protests across the country, many cities are grappling with how to hold their police accountable. In Chicago, the Committee on Public Safety has been debating two proposals, the Grassroots Alliance for Police Accountability (GAPA) and the Civilian Police Accountability Council (CPAC), for the past few months. Both ordinances would supersede the Civilian Office of Police Accountability (COPA) with a fully elected board of community members. The key difference between the two proposals is that CPAC would be independent of the mayor’s office and would have complete hiring and firing control of Chicago Police Department (CPD) officers and the police superintendent, while the GAPA ordinance would only give the board power to make recommendations to the mayor and the police superintendent. The Chicago City Council will debate and vote on these ordinances in the coming months.
Kimberly Seay Associate Editor Loyola University Chicago School of Law, J.D. 2018 On November 16, 2016, the City Council approved an ordinance amending Chicago Municipal Code § 4-6-010(c)(30), which will require the licensing of all pharmaceutical sales representatives in order to endorse pharmaceuticals within city limits and is set to take effect July 1, …