NBC Chicago and Ward Room bring you profiles on the 18 wards heading into a runoff election April 7. In this profile, learn all about the 45th Ward.
Issues at Stake in Runoff:
William “Brian” Wardman, vice president of the Jefferson Park Neighborhood Association, lists six issues of concern within the community:
- Community Input – This goes beyond participatory budget. Our elected official should strive for community input from the beginning on changes that will affect our neighborhoods; it should not be an after-thought.
- City Services – There is a need to have consistent city services. For example, trees were not trimmed until this year, an election year. Pot holes need to be fixed before the next winter sets in.
- Change in Density -- The side streets of the 45th Ward consist predominantly single family and two flat homes. We want to maintain that family friendly environment where we are a destination to raise families. Increasing the density to multi-unit buildings (which would require up-zoning) is not acceptable to the majority of the neighbors of the 45th Ward.
- Education – Schools within the 45th Ward have challenges of overcrowding. The Alderman has to work with the City Council and the Chicago Board of Education to help alleviate this situation.
- Business District Growth – In the last four years the 45th Ward has lost more businesses than it has gained. Alderman needs to have the foresight to attract businesses and make it possible for them to be successful. He should not allow developers to use their property illegally by parking vehicles on open lots; this discourages new businesses from moving in. Work with the City Council and Mayor to provide temporary tax breaks for new businesses.
- Rahm Emanuel: 48 percent
- Jesus “Chuy” Garcia: 34 percent
- Bob Fioretti: 12 percent
- Total population: 55,967
- White: 64.34 percent
- Black: 1.88 percent
- Hispanic: 24.54 percent
- Asian: 8.23 percent (Source: WBEZ)