Daley to Sidestep Springfield

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The mayor's 2009 budget is precariously balanced with 635 layoffs, $52.5 million in taxes, fines and fees and $150 million generated by privatizing Chicago parking meters.

    With Gov. Blagojevich facing impeachment, Mayor Daley is trying to engineer a political end-run around Springfield when it comes to Chicago's share of the $800 billion economic stimulus plan being crafted by President-elect Barack Obama.

    "Mayors are going directly to the federal government. They have to. We can't wait. You can't allow Springfield to take your money, hold the interest, then eventually give it to you in the middle of winter. You'll never get the job done in the middle of winter," Daley told reporters.

    "You just go straight to the federal government and say, 'We have all the construction ready to go. We have matching funds. Let's go with it.' You cannot layer from the federal government to the state government. By the time it gets back to local government, it's after the construction season. We can't allow that."

    Fran Spielman has all the details in the Chicago Sun-Times.