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February 2010 Blog posts

MPC's deepening commitment to Gary, Northwest Indiana highlighted in today's news

Two articles in today’s edition of The Times of Northwest Indiana highlight MPC’s deepening commitment – in partnership with The Times and community, business, institutional and state leaders in northwest Indiana – to strengthen this vital part of the region. In his State of the City Address yesterday, Gary Mayor Rudy Clay acknowledged the daunting challenges facing his city, but also cited several bright spots, including MPC’s ongoing efforts – as a key partner in The Times’ One Region: One Vision initiative – to design a clearer economic road map for Gary. Stabilizing Gary is essential to economic recovery in northwest Indiana and greater metropolitan Chicago. The city has weathered decades of disinvestment and population decline, but has…

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Breathe much? IEPA's particulate matter quiz gives you a chance to win an Energy Star appliance

If you have a few free minutes this afternoon or this weekend, you might consider taking the Ill. Environmental Protection Agency's online quiz on particulate matter and air pollution. The quiz is part of IEPA's Particulate Matters to Me campaign. You must be a resident of Cook, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry, or Will County to participate. All submissions must be received by April 30, when three winners will be selected to win an Energy Star appliance or product valued up to $600. Speaking of Energy Star, Illinois residents will have multiple opportunities in the coming months to get rebates or other incentives for purchases on energy-efficient appliances, including large items like water heaters. A recent Chicago Sun-Times article stated that "consumers have gotten more…

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Help shape CMAP's GOTO 2040 outreach

Sign up today to attend CMAP's Partnership program kick-off tomorrow, Friday, Feb. 26, from noon to 1:30 p.m., at the CMAP office in Willis Tower (DuPage County Room). By becoming a GO TO 2040 Partner, you can participate in Friday's event, as well as in future planning sessions to help educate and reach out to the public on GO TO 2040's various priorities. Tomorrow's discussion will focus on the Regional Water Supply. RSVP to Joey-Lin Silberhorn at 312-386-8814 or Can't make it tomorrow? Check out the GOTO 2040 blog for a schedule of upcoming bi-weekly brownbags, which will cover these topics and more over the next several months: Youth (March 12) Parks and Open Space: Continuing the Green Legacy Projects (March 26) Food (April…

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How would you balance the state's $13 billion budget gap, Gov. Quinn wants to know

Gov. Quinn wants to know how you would close the state's $13.5 billion fiscal year 2011 budget gap. Yesterday, the governor unveiled a new web site asking citizens for ideas on where to make budget cuts to close the deficit. He also outlined $2 billion in proposed fiscal year 2011 cuts, including $922 billion from K-12 education, $400 million from public universities and colleges, $400 million from social services, and $69 million from public safety. That still leaves an $11.5 billion general fund budget gap -- about half the total general fund budget. Now's your chance to weigh in on how lawmakers should fix the budget mess. Post your ideas here. Before you start, here are a few state fiscal year 2010 spending numbers to consider: K-12 education - $7 billion Health care…

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MPC in Springfield: Rainwater harvesting bill passes first hurdle

Broken City Lab

We're excited today at MPC because Ill. Senate Bill 2549: Rainwater Harvesting for Non-Potable Uses passed out of the Senate Environmental Committee this morning, its first hurdle toward ultimate passage. SB 2549 is one of those pieces of legislation that just makes sense — it won't cost much, it will put the market to work solving problems, and it will give individuals and communties more choice in how they manage their water supplies. Rain is the only water that is actually free. It just falls from the sky, some of it watering your lawn and recharging surface water supplies in the process. However, once rain hits roofs and pavement, and runs off into sewers only to mix with wastewater, it suddenly becomes stormwater, which is a costly nuisance. At the same time, every other…

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