Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Wednesday mounted his latest push for state lawmakers to approve a casino within Chicago's city limits by promising that 100 percent of the revenue from such a facility would go to CPS students.
In a video released Wednesday via the Mayor's Office's YouTube channel, Emanuel said Chicago casino money would go "toward modernizing Chicago's neighborhood schools, as part of the city's efforts to build a school district that gives the city's students a high-quality education in every neighborhood and the best possible chance to realize their potential."
Legislation that would pave the way for five new casinos in Illinois -- including one in Chicago -- is currently pending in Springfield. According to the Chicago Sun-Times, Senate President John Cullerton said the casino bill "will definitely pass the Senate" and that he is hopeful Gov. Pat Quinn, who previously vetoed similar legislation, will approve it this time around.
Quinn has hinted that he'd consider signing a casino bill that came with stronger regulations on ethics, such as a ban on state lawmakers accepting campaign contributions from industry interests. Lawmakers have adopted such a ban with the hopes of gaining the governor's support, the Associated Press notes.
CPS is currently embroiled a battle with parents and community groups over its plan to shutter 54 of the district's community schools. Last week, six busloads of CPS high school students boycotted a state-required test to protest the closings outside the district's downtown headquarters.