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TexasTowelie

Profile Information

Gender: Male
Hometown: South Texas. most of my life I lived in Austin and Dallas
Home country: United States
Current location: Bryan, Texas
Member since: Sun Aug 14, 2011, 03:57 AM
Number of posts: 82,846

About Me

Middle-aged white guy who believes in justice and equality for all. Math and computer analyst with additional 21st century jack-of-all-trades skills. I'm a stud, not a dud!

Journal Archives

Chicago Seeks Developer to Open City's First Casino by 2025

CHICAGO (AP) — Chicago is laying its cards on the table and officially seeking bids to build the first casino in the nation's third-largest city.

City leaders want a “world-class” resort that'll draw locals and tourists while boosting Chicago's finances, but several steps remain.

Here's where things stand:

SLOTS IN THE SECOND CITY

Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced Thursday that Chicago is officially seeking proposals to operate a resort that includes a casino, a hotel of up to 500 rooms, restaurants and bars. Whoever gets the license will also get to run slot machines at both of Chicago's airports. Overall, the operator will be allowed up to 4,000 “gaming positions”, or seats where bets are placed.

Under Chicago's timeline, applicants will publicly present their plans in September, and the winner will be chosen in 2022. Final approval from the city and state gambling regulators is required.

Read more: https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/illinois/articles/2021-04-22/chicago-seeks-developer-to-open-citys-first-casino-by-2025

Indiana Man Hospitalized After Police Shootout, Long Pursuit

KENDALLVILLE, Ind. (AP) — A man who fled a traffic stop was hospitalized after exchanging gunfire with officers early Thursday following a police pursuit through several northern Indiana counties, state police said.

Justin Robert Weikel, 40, was taken into custody about 1:45 a.m. in Kendallville by SWAT team officers with Fort Wayne police and transported to a local hospital, Indiana State Police said.

The nature and extent of Weikel's injuries, including whether he was shot or suffered another type of injury, were not immediately known, state police spokesman Sgt. Brian Walker said. Weikel was reported in stable condition as of about 8 a.m., he said.

No officers or civilians were injured in the incident, which began about 11:30 p.m. Wednesday after Weikel, a resident of the unincorporated Noble County town of LaOtto, was stopped by Fort Wayne officers for reckless driving.

Read more: https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/indiana/articles/2021-04-22/indiana-man-hospitalized-after-police-shootout-long-pursuit

Gov. Holcomb signs pregnancy accommodation bill. Advocates say Indiana should do more.

Gov. Eric Holcomb signed a bill Tuesday that would protect women who request pregnancy accommodations — a measure pregnancy accommodation advocates say does not go far enough to make change.

Proponents of the bill, however, have indicated it's a good compromise between the interest of workers and businesses in Indiana.

Holcomb also made good on a promise to beef up the executive branch's own pregnancy accommodation policies, signing an executive order on Tuesday detailing what accommodations state agencies should be providing for pregnant workers, such as assistance with manual labor or more breaks.

But that won't help non government workers.

House Enrolled Act 1309 would require businesses to respond in writing in a timely fashion to pregnancy-accommodation requests made by women, but it does not require them to grant those requests.

Read more: https://www.thestarpress.com/story/news/politics/2021/04/21/gov-holcomb-signs-bill-making-pregnancy-accommodations-optional/7191109002/
(Muncie Star Press)

Some Illinois hospitals running out of beds due to COVID-19

CHICAGO (AP) — Several hospitals in northwest and central Illinois are running out of beds because of the coronavirus pandemic, officials say.

About a half dozen hospitals operated by OSF HealthCare had 90% of their beds or more filled Tuesday, chief operating officer Dr. Michael Cruz told the Chicago Tribune.

OSF's St. Francis Medical Center in Peoria was at 97% occupancy, its St. Anthony Medical Center in Rockford was at 96% and its St. Joseph Medical Center in Bloomington had no available intensive care unit beds, Cruz said.

OSF has been transferring patients to other hospitals and moving staff as needed, Cruz said. It’s also having some patients stay in emergency room beds until ICU spots become available.

Read more: https://www.nwitimes.com/news/state-and-regional/illinois/some-illinois-hospitals-running-out-of-beds-due-to-covid-19/article_ebb175b4-aa81-51ae-9d4d-78a73c6add90.html
(Northwest Indiana Times)

Suspect fires 30 rounds from AR-15 at cops; gun recovered, manhunt underway, Lake County police say

GARY — Police were searching late Wednesday for a suspect who allegedly fired 30 rounds from an AR-15 rifle at police, striking a Lake County squad car in Gary, the sheriff said.

The incident occurred about 10:45 p.m. Wednesday in the 5200 block of West 4th Avenue, Sheriff Oscar Martinez said.

That's where officers of the Lake County Sheriff's Department High Crime Unit had pursued a car that had fled an earlier traffic stop, the sheriff said.

Two suspects — a male driver and a male passenger — bailed from a vehicle at the end of the police pursuit in that area, the sheriff said.

Read more: https://www.nwitimes.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/update-suspect-fires-30-rounds-from-ar-15-at-cops-gun-recovered-manhunt-underway-lake/article_6db29854-8231-5e6b-8242-dc690eaa55d9.html
(Northwest Indiana Times)

The story is being updated as new information develops.

Indiana lawmakers reach deal on bill limiting local health department emergency powers

NDIANAPOLIS — Indiana legislative negotiators have reached an agreement on limiting the authority of county or city health departments by allowing local elected officials to overturn orders or enforcement actions issued during emergencies.

Republican supporters say the proposal is meant to provide a “check and balance” protecting the rights of business owners following complaints about COVID-19 orders closing or limiting businesses that have been imposed over the past year.

The agreement released Tuesday requires any local public health order that is more stringent than one issued by the governor to be approved by an elected county or city board. The deal also creates a procedure allowing the public to appeal enforcement actions such as citations, fines or an order to close a business.

In St. Joseph County, many local officials could not immediately be reached for comment on the bill.

Read more: https://www.southbendtribune.com/coronavirus/indiana-lawmakers-reach-deal-on-bill-limiting-local-health-department-emergency-powers/article_73b6213a-a213-11eb-bcd3-0f7ddeecc422.html

Indy 500 to allow about 135,000 fans this year

One year after the Indianapolis 500 was held with no fans for the first time, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway plans to host up to 135,000 people for the May 30 race, or 40% of the track's unofficial capacity, Penske Entertainment officials announced Wednesday.

The number of fans, as well as the track's health and safety plan, have been approved by the Marion County Public Health Department.

At that capacity limit, race day at IMS stands to be the highest-attended sporting event in the U.S., and potentially the largest enclosed gathering of people, since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic last year.

In recent weeks, IMS officials had said the track sold 170,000 tickets for the 105th running of the Greatest Spectacle in Racing. They sent an advisory last Thursday requesting that ticketholders confirm how many of their ticket allotments they planned to use.

Read more: https://www.southbendtribune.com/sports/professional/indy-500-to-allow-about-135-000-fans-this-year/article_ab14c068-a2d7-11eb-942b-33d7501c4cee.html

State budget seizes the day with massive investment in education

INDIANAPOLIS—Gov. Eric Holcomb and state legislative leaders on Tuesday announced a final version of the state budget for the next two years, which includes increased funding for teacher pay, broadband and mental health.

“I think we’re living in a rare time,” Holcomb said. “We’re going to seize the day.”

Last week after the General Assembly learned of the revenue forecast that brought in $2 billion more than expected, the budget proposal was adjusted to make use of that extra money.

Rep. Phil GiaQuinta, D-Fort Wayne, said he expected recovery after this past year in which the state had to use some of its financial reserves due to pandemic-related shortfalls in revenue.

“We are looking at a very different picture now than we were last year,” GiaQuinta said in a statement. “Indiana House Democrats expect this to be addressed in the budget with more support allotted to our local public schools, early childhood education, food banks, and public and mental health initiatives.”

Read more: http://thestatehousefile.com/44980/state-budget-seizes-the-day-with-massive-investment-in-education/

NAACP denounces Schor's treatment of employees, references discrimination lawsuits

LANSING – The Lansing chapter of the NAACP has "denounced Mayor Andy Schor's actions" related to his handling of former city employees and incidents involving people in Lansing police custody, according to a news release Tuesday from the civil rights organization.

Schor announced last month he is running for another four-year term. The date of the news release coincides with Tuesday's filing deadline for candidates seeking a spot on Lansing's 2021 ballot.

"We are in a dire moment in Lansing and we must begin to address critical concerns of the people," the news release said. "Numerous lives are being affected by Mayor Schor's actions and must be addressed immediately. ... We demand accountability now – not more reports and recommendations."

Schor hired a consultant last year to lead a diversity task force that is reviewing wide-ranging racial equity issues in the city. Among other issues, the task force is examining Lansing's climate for city employees. It also could recommend reforms to the police department's use of force policy.

Read more: https://www.lansingstatejournal.com/story/news/2021/04/20/naacp-denounces-schors-involvement-lawsuits-treatment-staff/7301513002/

Republicans get creative to make sure Democrats don't win any more elections

There’s an unfortunate stereotype that conservatives just aren’t very creative, probably because they’re always yammering that the National Endowment for the Arts is a boondoggle and museums would make lovely parking lots.

But you don’t have to gaze at the dogs-playing-poker-style paintings of that dude that portrays Donald Trump as a Greek god saving ungrateful humanity to know that right-wingers can be right-brained, too.

Just look at what Republican lawmakers have been up to this year. Following the violent Jan. 6 pro-Trump insurrection in which Vice President Mike Pence likely came close to being murdered and our democracy almost was disappeared like a reporter critical of Vladimir Putin, Michigan Republicans have been either spreading crackpot conspiracy theories about it or pretending the coup attempt never happened at all.

So do you believe that a majority of Republicans who control the Legislature accept that Democrat Joe Biden clearly won the presidency?

Read more: https://www.michiganadvance.com/2021/04/22/susan-j-demas-republicans-get-creative-to-make-sure-democrats-dont-win-any-more-elections/
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