In May, Mayor Rahm Emanuel raised $72,500 from a fundraising event he reportedly held last month at the Gold Coast home of developer Robert Wislow of CBRE. The mayor reported sixteen checks at an average amount of $4,500. All carried the date of May 24, 2015. The Astor Company, a recycling consulting firm, donated the largest amount to the Mayor: $10,000.
The Mayor reported seven checks with the maximum allowable contribution from an individual: $5,400. This includes checks from Kevin J. McKenna, the Executive Vice President of Clayco, a real estate, architecture, engineering, and construction firm that moved its headquarters from St. Louis to Chicago in 2013. Clayco reported $1.35 billion in revenue for 2015 and more than 1,645 employees across the country, according to its website. The firm worked on some big ticket projects across the city of Chicago: renovating an old sausage factory into a medical office for Mt. Sinai Hospital, upgrades at Harold Washington Library, and renovations for Thompson Coburn’s law offices. McKenna’s wife, Patricia, who is listed as a “homemaker”, also donated the maximum amount to the Mayor.
The McKennas are followed in maximum donations by restaurateur Richard Melman, the owner of Lettuce Entertain You; Alexander Tompsidis, President of AT Mechanical LLC, an HVAC contractor and mechanical service provider based out of Franklin Park, Illinois; and Erich Worple, a senior contract administrator for Ryan Inc. Central, a general contracting company based out of Janesville, Wisconsin.
One company, Adamson Plumbing Contractors, a commercial plumbing contractor that works closely with Walsh Construction, donated $5,400 to the mayor. Adamson helped work on numerous municipal contracts as a subcontractor for Walsh, including a $5 million contract at the 31st Street Harbor, a $1 million contract for the Wacker Drive Reconstruction project, a $3 million contract for improvements at CPS’ Westinghouse High School, and a $1 million contract for the Cook County Jail Dormitory, among a slate of other projects.
Mayor Emanuel received three checks for $5,000 from Chicago business leaders Shawn Clark (Vice President of GRC-Clayco), Robert Wislow (chairman of real estate firm CBRE Inc.), and Wislow’s wife, Susan.
CBRE brokered the 2015 sale of four city-owned River North parking lots, making a 3.75% commision on each. The parking sites were used by city employees who work at the Administrative Hearings building at 400 W. Superior St., which is where people go to contest or pay city owed debt related to red-light, speed camera, and other city violations. Due to the parking lots’ high property values and the increase in development in the area, the Inspector General’s Office recommended the city sell those lots to help fill the 2016 budget hole. The Mayor agreed and announced his intent to sell in early September. The city made approximately $12.4 million.
On the City Council side, Ald. Brian Hopkins (2) was the biggest fund raiser in May, reeling in about $82,000. Ald. Ed Burke (14) came in second place, collecting $67,000 in donations to his PAC, the Burnham Committee.
All the donations to Ald. Hopkins’ personal campaign fund, Hopkins for Chicago, were in the $1,000 to $5,400 range. Attorneys and developers made up a large chunk of the donations: JDL Development ($2,500); Jack George, a well known land-use attorney for Schuyler, Roche, & Crisham ($1,000); Dave Cocagne, CEO of Vermilion Development ($1,000); Sudler and Company, a property management firm ($5,400); and Structured Development ($2,500).
Oddly, at the June City Council meeting, Ald. Hopkins voted against a redevelopment agreement with JDL Development for nearly $16 million in TIF reimbursements for a luxury high-rise they plan to build at the former Cuneo Hospital/Maryville Academy site in Uptown.
Meanwhile, Burke’s Burnham Committee received donations from about 40 individuals and businesses, including: $5,000 from Brackenbox, Inc., a garbage collection service; $2,500 from Choice Benefits of America, a Massachusetts-based tax preparation agency; $2,500 from J.N. Pritzker; and $3,000 from Geoffrey Ryan, and executive at Exxonmobil.
New Non-Candidate D-1s
- A D-1 (Statement of Organization) was filed for a new 41st Ward Regular Democratic Organization. The Chair of the new PAC is Timothy Heneghan. John Delaney is listed as Treasurer. The organization hasn’t raised a cent, yet. Heneghan won a three-way race to succeed former 41st Ward Ald. Mary O’Connor as the new Democratic ward boss. O’Connor, who lost her seat on the council to former firefighter Ald. Anthony Napolitano (41), chose not to run for re-election and instead supported Heneghan, a veteran firefighter and member of a local school council, as her successor. Ald. Napolitano supported a different candidate.
- Another D-1 was filed on May 19th for the creation of a political action committee titled, “Citizens Against Rauner.” The stated purpose is simply to “Save Illinois.” No funds have been raised. Dillon C. Clark is listed as Chair and Treasurer.
Ald. Mike Zalewski (23), who rarely raises money to his personal campaign, brought in a sizable $44,500. Most of the donations to the Chairman of the Council’s Aviation Committee are in the $1k and $1.5k range. A few of the checks are from companies or individuals in the surrounding suburbs, such as Schiller Park, Dundee, Park Ridge, Hampshire, and Westmont. One $1.5k check came from Monte Kushida, the Owner of O’Hare Ventures, another $1.5k check came from Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises, which owns a handful of concession stands at O’Hare airport. Zalewski also received a $1.5k donation from a company called “Midway Restaurant Development/Subway”, which is owned by Hamid Hussein of Glenview.
Ald. Proco Joe Moreno (1) donated $18,750 to himself on May 3rd.
Ald. Scott Waguespack (32), Chairman of the Council’s Progressive Caucus, received $10k from AFSCME Council 31.
The Burnham Committee, a political action committee controlled by Ald. Ed Burke (14), received three separate $2.5k checks from Pete’s Fresh Market. Each donation is cited from a different store location, but all share the same address (4333 South Pulaski). A separate $1K check to the Burnham Committee from Peter Michael Realty, Inc. lists the same address.
The 13th Ward Democratic Organization, controlled by House Speaker Mike Madigan, collected a total of $50k in two separate checks from the Chicago Regional Council of Carpenters Political Action Committee.
Speaking of construction PACs, the Construction and General Laborer’s District Council of Chicago, a labor union representing about 20,000 construction workers in Chicago, donated $1k each to Ald. Rod Sawyer (6), Ald. Leslie Hairston (5), and the Chicago Progressive Caucus.
New 2nd Ward Democratic Committeeman Tim Egan donated $1.5k to Ald. Burke’s Burnham Committee and $2.5k to Ald. Hopkins’ personal campaign fund. Egan successfully won the committeeman seat following Ald. Hopkins’ decision not to run. Egan is the CEO of Roseland Hospitals and a two-time 43rd Ward aldermanic candidate.
A West Humboldt Park day care center, All Things Are Possible for Kids, Inc., gave $1k to the New 37th Ward Democratic Organization, which, interestingly, isn’t controlled by Democratic Ward Committeeman Emma Mitts, but rather her Ethics Officer, Mary Phillips, who is listed as the committee’s Chairperson.
After a failed bid for congress, Ald. Howard Brookins, Jr. (21) transferred $5,335.97 from his congressional campaign committee, Brookins for Congress, to his aldermanic campaign fund, Committee to Elect Howard B. Brookins, Jr.
Utility company ComEd gave $1.5k each to the Burnham Committee and City Treasurer Kurt Summers’ personal campaign fund.
David Gassman, the president of DLG Management, a property management firm that owns apartments in Lakeview, Uptown and Edgewater, donated $1.2k to Ald. Pat O’Connor (40) and $1.5k to Ald. Joe Moore (49).
The real estate developer behind the Montclare Senior Residences, MR Properties, LLC, donated $8k to the 8th Ward Democratic Organization, run by Ald. Michelle Harris (8).
The president of Riot Fest, an annual music festival held in Chicago, Michael Petryshyn, donated $3k to Ald. George Cardenas (12). In 2015, when Ald. Roberto Maldonado (26) blocked festival organizers from renting out Humbolt Park for a fourth year in a row after it got trashed the year before, Ald. Cardenas offered up Douglas Park.