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Notice Anything Missing from the State of the City?

By Amy Hart in News on Feb 8, 2006 8:02PM


Mayor Daley gave his annual State of the City address yesterday, and judging from his words, everything is just hunky dory.

After throwing in a reference to the possibility of the Olympics coming to Chicago, the mayor took a jab at Washington by criticizing the federal government’s tax cuts for the wealthy and spending cuts for education, healthcare, and social programs. Daley said Chicago is providing the leadership in these areas. The remainder of his address focused on the funding and modernization of education, public safety, and help for the poor through efforts to end homelessness and offer affordable housing.

We agree with the mayor’s priorities, but there was one striking omission… the “C” word. Daley didn’t address the issue of corruption in city government except to say:

I am determined to make sure that all the reforms we've put in place to root out and prevent misconduct--especially in contracts and hiring--are working and protecting our taxpayers.

Because there will always be some who don't realize we're serious, I've instructed our new inspector general to take whatever steps he needs to ensure that we're maintaining the highest standards of performance, conduct and accountability from every employee.

It’s a little surprising that Daley would talk around the Hired Truck scandal, especially in light of the recent indictment and resignation of City Clerk James Laski, and the fact that he focused on it in last year’s address. Of course, he wasn’t looking at a fast approaching possible reelection bid a year ago.