Emanuel compromises with aldermen on plan for property tax rebate money

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CHICAGO -- Before Wednesday's Chicago City Council meeting, there was a lot of action behind the scenes.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel revised his plan for the $15 million in leftover property tax rebate money.

A number of aldermen spoke out against Emanuel's plan to spend half a million dollars of the unused money to plant trees.

One alderman slammed the plan calling it "tone death."

A large bloc of aldermen demanded that the money be used to fight violence particularly the surge in shootings on the South and West Sides.

The mayor changed the plan and now has that cash slated for crime-fighting technology.

This compromise easily passed the council by a vote of 35 to 10.

Ald. Roderick Sawyer, 6th Ward, praised the mayor's decision.

"I'm happy that they got off the tree portion," Sawyer said. "I would've liked that we would've gotten more money for anti-violence initiatives. The mayor did make a separate commitment for another $1 million for anti-violence efforts, but again, it doesn't go far enough.

Also on Wednesday, the aldermen approved the mayor's nomination for corporation counsel, Edward Siskel.

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