Chicago vs. Small Businesses & Entrepreneurs [VIDEO]

from the Illinois Policy Institute

Sara Travis loves Chicago.

She’s lived here her whole life. When Sara decided to start her own business, there was no question that she would set up shop in her hometown.

Sara founded The Brew Hub, a mobile coffee-vending business that sells iced coffees and teas, in June 2013.

But she encountered endless obstacles to becoming a legitimate business.

For more than a year, Sara petitioned the city of Chicago to give her a permit so she could legally operate her already-popular business throughout the city’s neighborhoods.

But Chicago bureaucrats just took her in circles. Sara wanted to work with the city – she was persistent in reaching out to officials to figure out what she needed to do to accomplish her goal. But the city wasn’t willing to work with her.

Without a permit, Sara and her colleagues worked every day in fear of fines and harassment.

Eventually, Sara had to make a tough decision: continue operating illegally without hope of legitimately growing her business – or move.

In 2014, she and her business shipped off to Austin.

“In Austin, I was sitting in a little room filling out paperwork – we filled it all out, turned it in, gave them some money and we had a permit,” she said.

“We can always come home to Chicago, and that’s something we want to pursue, but Texas is ready for us.”
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East Dundee Trustee Goes Racing To Help Pets Find Homes (Update 1x)

Updated – Here’s video from the Chasing the Dragon Hill Climb:

East Dundee, IL

Allen Skillicorn, East Dundee Village Trustee, and Rescue Pet Motorsports are teaming up to raise awareness for the thousands of pets that are waiting to be adopted from local pet shelters across the country. Rescue Pet Motorsports uses racing to spread the word of Petfinder.com and all the pet rescue and shelter organizations. The next race on the “Never Shop, Always Adopt” program will be the Sports Car Club of America’s Chasing the Dragon Hillclimb in the picturesque Smoky Mountains of Western North Carolina, September 12-14th.

Hillclimbs are one of the oldest forms of motorsports. Brave drivers challenge physics and race up winding mountain roads without safety barriers or runoff areas like traditional race tracks. The Chasing the Dragon Hillclimb is the showcase event for the Southeast Division of the SCCA. The fastest cars will be exceeding 125mph only inches away from cliffs and rock faces.

Trustee Allen Skillicorn, a veteran experienced racer and 2 time National Auto Sport Association (www.nasaproracing.com) National Champion will be piloting a highly modified 2004 LeGrand Decker DSR-1 Prototype racer capable of speeds over 150mph.

Why Capitalism Works

from Prager University

Cultural depictions of capitalism are almost all negative. There’s the Monopoly guy with the top hat and cigar. There’s Gordon Gekko saying, “Greed is good.” And, most recently, there’s the hedonism of the “Wolf of Wall Street”. The message is clear: capitalism is selfish. Socialism, or something like it, is selfless. In fact, the opposite is true. Renown social critic George Gilder offers this startling insight: capitalism, at it’s core, is first an expression of altruism; that is, of giving. An entrepreneur can only succeed by satisfying a customer’s need. This is why capitalism, and only capitalism, can create the prosperity that all societies crave and why all other economic prescriptions are doomed to failure.

BGA Busts Chicago Transit Officials: Taking Trips to Hawaii, Vegas on Pension Fund

Andy Shaw’s government watchdog group – the Better Government Association (BGA) – released the following on Sunday:

The CTA’s retirement plan and health care trust spent close to $60,000 since 2010 to travel to places such as Honolulu, New Orleans, San Diego and Las Vegas for pension-related conferences.

That’s according to public documents the CTA plan turned over only after we sued the agency earlier this year for allegedly violating the Illinois Freedom of Information Act, the state law that guarantees public access to certain government records.

We had asked for expense reimbursements, among other documents, which the CTA plan refused to provide until the Better Government Association filed suit. (This litigation is in the process of being settled.)

The newly released records show the agency’s expenses include more than $20,000 on a six-night trip to Hawaii for five people in 2010, $4,400 on a three-night trip to New Orleans for two people in 2011, $7,500 on a four-night, four-person trip to San Diego in 2012 and about $12,000 on a four-night trip to Las Vegas for six people in 2013.

The fund’s executive director, John Kallianis, was among those who went to Las Vegas and San Diego. He defended the trips, saying the conferences were “rigorous” and “very well worth the expense.” …