October 15th, 2021
40th Forward Issue #113

Dear Neighbors,

What a few weeks it's been for local government! Our annual departmental budget hearings wrapped up, followed by a special City Council session and public hearing on the budget held this Thursday, Oct. 14th. We saw some parliamentary drama, some legislative action, and a lot of public comment, and I wanted to highlight a couple moments from City Council for you this week:

Alderman Vasquez Passes Small Business Support Ordinance!

I am extremely proud to have worked with Ald. Matt Martin (47th Ward), the Department of Planning and Development, the Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection, and the Department of Law to craft new language allowing licensed taverns and hotels to access the city's Small Business Improvement Fund grants. 

These businesses were previously excluded as "vice" businesses, despite the contributions many locally-owned taverns and accommodations make to our communities. The SBIF program already has robust regulatory language allowing the city to prevent bad actors or businesses with outstanding legal or administrative complaints from accessing grant funds, and it was past time for small businesses in the hospitality sector to be included in the city's grant application process. Special thanks to 40th Ward neighbor Anne Emerson for her work as part of the Committee on Finance in helping us get this passed!

"Save Your Ash" Resolution Introduced with Supermajority!

Preserving the city's adult tree canopy is a simple, smart, cost-effective program that I've been advocating for this budget season. By spending less in the short-term on simple, effective inoculations, we can save tens of millions of dollars in the long run by preventing early loss of adult trees. 

This week I circulated a resolution urging the Mayor's administration to fully fund our Bureau of Forestry, including funds for ash tree inoculation. I'm grateful to 41 of my colleagues for signing on, giving us a supermajority in our budget ask. Many thanks to the Save the Ash Coalition, the North River Commission, Lincoln Square North NeighborsGreater Rockwell Organization, Heart of Lincoln Square, and other neighbors who were instrumental in raising this issue up!

We will take that momentum into the final weeks of budget negotiation!

Alderman Vasquez Moves to Stall Rushed Gang Database Appeal Ordinance 

I was also joined at this week's City Council by Alds. Sawyer, Lopez, Taylor, Sigcho-Lopez, Rodriguez-Sanchez, Ramirez-Rosa, and Hadden in moving to defer and publish an ordinance that was passed out of the Public Safety Committee over strong objections from a number of Alders. 

The ordinance would authorize the Police Board to hear appeals from individuals on the Chicago Police Department's new "criminal information system." This is the rebranded gang database that the Inspector General's office called "deeply flawed" and found to be both a discriminatory and an ineffective crime-fighting tool. 

Trying to obtain City Council approval for an appeals process before we've even seen the supposed new system for which these appeals will be made is "putting the cart before the horse, and we haven't even seen the horse." I am grateful to my colleagues who joined me in insisting on a full and detailed description of CPD's new plan for tracking "criminal enterprises" before any part of it is signed off on by City Council. 
Yours in Service and Solidarity,

Alder Andre Vasquez, 40th Ward 

To make sure you catch everything in the newsletter, just click on the "view entire message" link at the bottom of this email. Don't forget to follow the 40th Ward on FacebookTwitter and Instagram for important updates.

Ward Resources & Updates

Zoning Updates: Details on all zoning proposals and decisions, and a link to the feedback form for any requests open for comment, can be found at:

DONATE OLD FANS AND SPACE HEATERS AT THE 40th WARD OFFICE! We are happy to make used box fans and space heaters available to neighbors in need whose homes are not climate controlled. Drop off any time between 10am-5pm, Monday-Friday. If you are in need of a heater or fan, please call us at (773) 654-1867 for availability information. 

One of the bright spots amidst the COVID pandemic has been the growth of the 40th Ward's volunteer program. The Neighbor Network has done amazing work for the ward - from making reusable masks, to delivering PPE and groceries, to making thousands of wellness calls, and helping callers with service requests - we are so grateful for their help. As our office re-opens 6/28/21, we need your help more than ever! If you would like to be part of the Neighbor Network, you can join us at

With the federal eviction moratorium officially ending, the Department of Housing wants renters to make sure they know their rights and access City resources to help them stay housed:
  • Don't self-evict. A notice of eviction from your landlord does not mean you need to leave your home right away. Only the Sheriff can legally remove you from your home.
  • Get legal help. Free legal assistance is available to Chicago renters. Go to, which is provided by the Lawyers Committee for Better Housing, a DOH delegate agency.
  • Get financial help. DOH maintains a current list of places residents can apply for emergency rental assistance at


Free online English language classes from Heartland Alliance! For more information, scan the QR codes in the images or call 872-315-5383 or email

Air B&B Operators: Help host Afghan refugees through Air B&B's subsidized stay program. Funding from nonprofit partners allows Air B&B to offer hosts payment for temporarily housing refugees. For more information, visit:

Domestic Violence Awareness Month Donation Drive - in support of Connections for Abused Women and their Children. Drop off donations of personal care items, diapers, laundry, new clothing, and household items in the lobby of the 20th District CAPS office, 5400 N Lincoln Ave. 

Blood Drive Monday Nov. 1st, 1-5:30pm, at St. Philip Lutheran Church & School, 2498 W Bryn Mawr.

To schedule your donation, visit Click "Donate Now" and search for sponsor code CN11. You also may call 800-280-4102.

Appointments required to ensure appropriate social distancing. Photo ID Required.

Business Highlight: XL Manufacturing
We love our local businesses! Each week we highlight a 40th Ward business in our newsletter. If you'd like your business to be featured, submit online at Today's highlighted business is: XL Manufacturing
2717 W Lawrence Ave
(773) 271-8900

If you've eaten gyros or shawarma in Chicago, you can proably thank XL Manufacturing! Vertical boilers (the upright, rotating skewers used to cook many Greek and Middle Eastern dishes) are made right here in the 40th Ward by this locally-owned business. Hristos Lalopoulos works directly with clients to provide the product they need, from some of the largest food companies in the world to locally owned, family-run businesses. Stop on by to see one of the Ward's truly unique manufacturers! 

40th Ward Events

On Mondays Alderman Vasquez hosts Virtual 40th Ward Night. Residents are welcome to join the open forum for city and ward updates; it is also an opportunity to bring up topics that matter to you and ask Ald. Vasquez questions. Register at



Saturday, October 16th, 8am-1pm, Queen of Angels Elementary School: Children's resale shop in the Lower Church, 2330 W. Sunnyside Ave. Bring your shopping bags and stock up on tons of new or gently used children's clothing, shoes, accessories, furniture, toys, games, puzzles, baby equipment, books, play equipment and ride-ons, sports equipment, DVD's and CD's, Halloween costumes, and much more! Covid safety protocols will be in place. For more info, visit This event benefits the amazing staff and teachers of Queen of Angels. See you there!

Saturday October 16th, 10am-2pm, 1542 W Devon: Hamdard Health Alliance is excited to announce our Boo the Flu Fest!  In addition to providing flu shots, this family event will include a pumpkin patch, crafts, a fall photo booth, and costume contest (with a prize winner!). 

Saturday, October 16, 10am-3pm, West Ridge Nature Preserve (5801 N Western Ave): Fall Work & Play Day, including seed collecting and stewardship, clay bird decorating, nature crafts, fishing clinic, obstacle course, and more!
Saturday October 16th, 2pm: Pour yourself a cup of hot apple cider and settle in for a cozy autumn afternoon of stories and poems as the Budlong Writers read from their newly published anthology, Love, Death, and Everything in Between. This event takes place on Zoom. Please register on the CPL website ( or use a smart phone to link to the event with the QR code in the image (click to enlarge).

Martes 19 de Octubre, 6pm: "Hablemos" - Foro de líderes religiosos con Departmento de Polícia de Chicago Superindentendte David Brown. Harry S. Truman City College cafeteria, 1145 W Wilson Ave. 

Wednesday October 20th, 2pm, 24th District police station at 6464 N. Clark Street: The 24th District presents: "Shall We Dance" film screening with post-film presenter, Bonnie Moore. With an extensive background in Ballroom and Latin dance, Bonnie is an independent dance teacher, competitor, performer and dance costume designer. Bonnie will lead us through the discussion and commentary on the film. Free Parking is available on Schreiber Avenue south of the station. Parking restrictions will be temporarily lifted during the event. 

Seating is limited due to COVID-19 restrictions. Please e-mail PO Hank Kline in the 24th District Community Policing Office to RSVP at: 

Wednesday October 20th, 5pm: Wednesday Night Live, Halloween Edition! 

The offices of 40th Ward Alderman Andre Vasquez and 47th Ward Alderman Matt Martin are joining forces to bring some ghoulish fun to Wednesday Night Live!  The evening will start off with pumpkin decorating at 5pm thanks to the generosity of HarvesTime Foods (while supplies last).  The costume contest will kick-off at 5:30pm, with winners announced prior to the start of the movie.  Prizes will be awarded for the following categories:

  • Best Overall Costume:  Children and Adults
  • Scariest Costume:  Children
  • Most Creative Costume:  Children
  • Best Group Costume:  Children and/or Adults
Join us at the Ainslie Arts Plaza at Ainslie and Lincoln Ave (4836 N Lincoln Ave). 

Wednesday October 20th, 7pm: Grab your magnifying glasses and join Jenn Fisher, Nancy Drew consultant and author, in conversation with crime novelist Alexia Gordon as they sleuth through Nancy's mysterious history behind the scenes. Discover why Nancy Drew has remained so popular and inspired generations of loyal readers. As a bonus, Jenn will unlock secrets to some Nancy Drew collectibles. It
would be a crime to miss this! This presentation will use the Zoom platform. Please register on the Friends of the Edgewater Library website or the library’s website or at the Edgewater Branch Reference Desk.

Friday, October 22, 2021, 12pm: Taking Retirement Distributions from Retirement Plans, Presented by Karen Chan, Certified Financial Planner

The rules for distributions from retirement plans changed dramatically over the past two years, both for account owners and for beneficiaries. Some changes are permanent, others have already expired. Learn the rules for 2021, what’s changed, what hasn’t, and what changes you should consider making as a result. This event takes place on Zoom. Please register for this event at the event listing page on the Chicago Public Library website:, or use a smart phone to link to the event listing with the QR code in the image (click to enlarge).

Friday, October 22, 5:30pm: 20th District Walk to End Domestic Violence, Immanuel Evangelical Church, 5210 N Washtenaw. 

Saturday, October 23rd, 3pm: Community Conversation with the 24th District police focused on the experiences and needs of the immigrant community. Ismali Jamatkhana Center, 1124 W Rosemont. 

Monday October 25th, 6-8pm: Since 2018, the Chicago Police Department has been hosting a 2-part Community Conversation series per District in order to formulate the District's Strategic Plan for the following year. The 1st part is held in October and the follow-up conversation is held in November. The first Community Conversation for the 19th District will be held Monday October 25th from 6-8pm online at the following link:

Monday October 25th, 6-8pm: Since 2018, the Chicago Police Department has been hosting a 2-part Community Conversation series per District in order to formulate the District's Strategic Plan for the following year. The 1st part is held in October and the follow-up conversation is held in November. The first Community Conversation for the 20th District will be held Monday October 25th from 6-8pm online at the following link:

Wednesday, October 27, 6:30pm: Advanced Care Planning with Five Wishes, Presented on Zoom by Maureen Burns, Community Health Worker, JourneyCare. This event takes place on Zoom. Please register for this event at the event listing page on the Chicago Public Library website:, or use a smart phone to link to the event listing with the QR code in the image (click to enlarge).

Saturday, October 30, 2021, 11am: Hospice 101: Understanding Hospice Care & Its Benefits, Presented on Zoom by Maureen Burns, Community Health Worker, JourneyCare. This event takes place on Zoom. Please register for this event at the event listing page on the Chicago Public Library website:, or use a smart phone to link to the event listing with the QR code in the image (click to enlarge).

Saturday, October 30, 5-6pm: Bring the kids to Ghostly Garden, a non-scary Halloween event for small children, held at the West Andersonville Community Garden starting at Ravenswood & Berwyn. Games, treats, and prizes -- come in costume! Sponsored by West Andersonville Neighbors Together (WANT)

Wednesday, November 3, 5:30pm: CASINO UPTOWN, Byline Bank Aragon Ballroom, 1106 W. Lawrence Avenue

Uptown’s biggest party returns on November 3rd!  CASINO UPTOWN features games, food, and drinks at the historic Byline Bank ARAGON BALLROOM along with a special performance by the roaring 20-piece big band sound of the Lakeside Pride Jazz Orchestra!

Play it UP! Play poker, blackjack, roulette, or craps to win incredible prizes! Enjoy great food from Uptown restaurants, libations, and live jazz.  Step on the floor and show us your best moves as we dance the night away! 

Please note that proof of a full COVID vaccination will be required to attend this year’s event.

Details and tickets:

COVID-19 Update and Health Information

The Chicago Department of Public Health has issued a new mask mandate, based on an increase in COVID-19 case rates. Masks are required in all indoor public settings, including bars and restaurants, gyms, common areas of condos and multi-residential buildings, and private clubs. Similar to previous mask mandates, masks can be removed at restaurants, bars and other eating/drinking establishments by patrons when they are actively eating and drinking. Masks can also be removed for certain activities that require their removal, such as beard shaves or facials. Additionally, masks can be removed by employees in settings that are not open to the public, if employees are static and maintaining at least six feet from all other individuals (office cubicles, for example).

Masks also remain mandatory on public transportation, in healthcare settings, schools, and correctional and congregate settings. The new public health order does not include capacity limits at public places, and masking remains optional in outdoor settings, where the risk of COVID-19 transmission is lower. Masks are recommended for unvaccinated individuals in crowded outdoor settings.

Because more than 70% of Chicago adults have received at least one dose of the vaccine, Chicago’s rates of COVID hospitalization and death are much lower than they were in 2020 at the same case rate. The single most important thing you can do to help combat COVID-19 is get vaccinated! Vaccinations are available at home for any resident of Chicago over the age of 12 -- call (312) 746-4835 to make an appointment, or you can register online for an at-home vaccination timeslot.

Please continue masking in public to help our unvaccinated and immunocompromised neighbors. 

At-home vaccinations are now available for all Chicago residents age 12 and up! Get vaccinated for your health, and for a $100 gift card: call (312) 746-4835 or register online for an at-home vaccination timeslot.

Public Safety Information

We did not receive any new public safety updates from our police districts this week. 

Small Business and Employment Resources

Small Business Expo, 10/21/21: The City of Chicago Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection (BACP), along with sponsors Fifth Third Bank and Western Union, announce that the free remote BACP Small Business Expo will be held on Thursday, October 21st from 9:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m. 

The interactive expo will provide business owners and entrepreneurs a forum to get expert advice, connect with industry experts and government agencies, learn new business strategies, meet other business owners and attend an inspiring keynote address. The expo is part of the City’s effort to support neighborhood businesses and economic development by leveraging local business support resources.
The expo will provide a full day of programming for current business owners and future entrepreneurs and will showcase a series of educational webinars on best practices to pivot and recover in a post-pandemic economy. The expo will also feature over 30 exhibitors offering one-on-one business guidance, thought-provoking conversations, and a platform for idea exchange. The expo gives participants the ability to attend webinars that are timely and relevant to their business needs.  
The keynote speaker will be Christopher LeMark, Founder of Coffee, Hip-Hop, and Mental Health. LeMark has been a voice for art, community, and mental wellbeing in his hometown of Chicago since 2000, creating music that features a unique and relatable sound that ignites conversation. LeMark’s mental health journey began when, after a mental and physical breakdown in a coffeeshop, he pursued therapy to address his mental wellbeing. This inflection point inspired him to launch Coffee, Hip-Hop, and Mental Health (CHHAMH), a non-profit organization that normalizes therapy and encourages people to address their mental wellbeing. CHHAMH’s goal is to educate and fund mental health services while combating food insecurity, serving hip-hop inspired cups of brew to fund free therapy sessions. LeMark is passionately building a vehicle of hope in Chicago and has been featured on NBC TODAY, WGN Daytime Chicago,, and Chicago Tonight Black Voices.

Sponsored by Fifth Third Bank and Western Union, the BACP Remote Small Business Expo provides free, expert advice to entrepreneurs on every stage of their journey on topics including licensing, marketing, financing and business planning. The expo spotlights the renewal of the small business economy fueled by entrepreneurs and community partners.

Now in the 13th year, BACP’s Small Business Expo Series has historically brought business support resources to communities throughout Chicago. During the COVID-19 pandemic, BACP pivoted to provide remote, online business education outreach programming.

To register visit

WORK LOCAL! Visit the websites of our neighboring Chambers of Commerce site for their listings of current job offerings:


Chicago Police Department is hiring! Visit for more information.

CTA is hiring! View job postings and apply on line at

For Students and Families

The Chicago Industrial Arts and Design Center (CIADC) is a Rogers Park non-profit organization providing creative industrial arts education to Chicagoland Youth and Adults. CIADC offers FREE afterschool classes to Chicago Public School students in grades 6-12, giving more accessibility to hands-on applications relating to STEM, Trade, and Art/Design career pathways. 

More information on our Youth Pathways Program can be found at

Latinx Heritage Month at the Field Museum: From September 15 through October 15, we’re celebrating Latinx Heritage Month at the Field. Hear from Latinx staff members and learn about the Field’s work, from Chicago to the Amazon rainforest. Explore events, exhibitions, and stories throughout the month:

For CHA Residents: CHA Scattered Site Housing has a social and support group for young girls to have open discussion without judgement. We meet every third Thursday of the month until January.

For Seniors
The Chicago Department of Family and Support Services (DFSS) Senior Services Division offers a variety of citywide programs designed to address the diverse needs and interests of older Chicagoans and their caregivers. In general, all Chicagoans aged 60 and older are eligible for services. Some programs have lower ages of eligibility, call us!

Call Information and Assistance at 312-744-4016, or call 311 Monday – Friday, 8:30 am to 4:30 pm, or email

Small Accessibility Repairs for Seniors (SARFS) - The SARFS program provides safety, security, and accessibility improvements and repairs that may include grab bars, lever faucets, door repairs, floor repairs, bathroom repairs, kitchen repairs, and carbon monoxide detectors. Contact Violet Espinoza (773-338-7722 ext. 21 or Northside Community Resources, for more information.


More Community Events and Resources


On January 1st, Legal Aid Chicago officially began operating its federally funded Low Income Taxpayer Clinic (LITC). The LITC represents low-income clients in disputes with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and educates individuals about their rights and responsibilities as taxpayers through community outreach programs. We also strive to assist low-income taxpayers whose primary language is not English.

We provide free tax advice and representation to individuals and families in Cook County whose income is at or below 250% of the federal poverty level (currently $32,200 for a household of 1, $43,550 for a household of 2, etc.) with active disputes with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) regarding their federal income taxes, including:
  • IRS audits, including audits based on the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) & Child or Dependent Credit
  • IRS debt collection attempts, including federal tax liens
  • Employee/Independent Contractor Misclassifications and 1099 income reporting issues
  • Tax return preparer fraud
  • Innocent and injured spouse relief
  • Tax-related identity theft
  • Representation before the U.S Tax Court
Our LITC creates presentations, workshops, and seminars on a variety of different income tax topics that impact low income taxpayers. Additionally, We work with our community partners to tailor the informational workshops so that they meet the greatest needs of their taxpayer audience, including taxpayers who speak English as a second language.

Taxpayers needing assistance can call us at (312)341-1070 or apply on-line at

Utility Billing Relief (UBR) provides low-income City of Chicago residents with a reduced rate on their water, sewer, and water-sewer tax as well as debt relief for those who demonstrate they can manage the reduced rate bills for one year. Benefits for UBR participants include:

  • A reduced rate on water, sewer, and water-sewer tax
  • No late payment penalties or debt collection activity including water shut-off
  • Debt forgiveness after successfully completing one year with no past due balance

Operating in partnership with the Community and Economic Development Association of Cook County (CEDA), who operates the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), the UBR program will utilize their expertise and extensive network of partner organizations to conduct outreach and enroll homeowners.


40th Ward Office Staff

Jessica Peters, Chief of Staff:
Geoffrey Cubbage, Director of Development & Legislation:
Pooja Ravindran, Director of Constituent Services & Community Building:
Jose Manuel Almanza, Constituent Services Manager:
Bill Hohenadel, Ward Superintendent:
Communications & Press

Official Website Of  The 40th Ward
Copyright © 2021 40th Ward Alderman, All rights reserved.

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