Woodstock in the News
By Caitlin Emma
DIGGING INTO DIPLOMAS: The U.S. is on track for a 90 percent high school graduation rate by 2020 after hitting a record high 81 percent this year. That’s according to the GradNation campaign’s sixth annual report released by America’s Promise Alliance, the Alliance for Excellent Education and others. The 10 largest states, including California, Florida, Georgia and North Carolina, are driving progress, the report says. A quarter of the nation’s largest school districts also made significant improvements, largely signifying gains for low-income students and students of color. But declining or stagnating graduation rates in New York, Illinois, Washington and Arizona could threaten future progress, the report says. And while the gap in graduation rates between low-income students and their wealthier peers narrowed in 28 states, it widened in 18. North Dakota saw the largest increase of nearly 8 percentage points. More: http://bit.ly/1QD65vH.
By Cara Ball
James Woods is enjoying the renovations recently made to his Austin home.
The 45-year resident of Austin was one of dozens of West Siders whose homes got special attention April 25 from Rebuilding Together Metro Chicago, a volunteer organization that works to revitalize low-income housing and communities.
By John Sandman
NEW YORK (MainStreet) — In December, the Department of Education (ED) announced plans to establish a new web-based system for receiving complaints on student loan servicers. In March, President Obama directed ED to build a web-based portal for student loan borrowers to manage payments, view all of their loans and lodge complaints against servicers as part of his Student Aid Bill of Rights.
By Liz Farmer
Los Angeles restaurateur Jorge Rodriguez Assereto doesn’t need much sleep. He gets about five hours per night and the rest of his time is devoted to running Los Balcones, a successful Peruvian restaurant he opened in Hollywood in 2004 and recently shepherded through an expansion. The remodel was a major investment. Assereto spent more than $130,000 over two years just renting the vacant space next to him while he tried to find financing for his expansion. He even switched banks in an attempt to get a loan. It didn’t work.
By John Gamino
322 South Laflin is a brick, two-story apartment building with broken windows and an unlocked front door. It wouldn’t look inhabited save for a few bottles of shampoo visible in one of the windows of the upper floor. It completed foreclosure in June of last year, when, like most foreclosures, it was sold back to the mortgage lender, Selene Finance LP.
By Justin Lynch
On a fall morning in 2011, Daniel Biss, a State Senator in Illinois, was listening to a lobbyist give a self-aggrandizing presentation about his work in the State Capitol. But one “accomplishment” on this lobbyist’s list—killing an automatic IRA savings bill which would have automatically enrolled those without a retirement account—stood out.
By Teresa Puente
From an antique mall on the far North Side’s Edgewater to Mexican restaurants in the Lower West Side’s Pilsen and homes on the SouthSide’s Marquette Park, where the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. once marched for housing justice, there are “Chuy” signs.
By Fred O. Williams
The nation's consumer financial protection cop unveiled new restrictions for payday loans and other forms of short-term credit, in a move to stop emergency loans from turning into debt traps
[WASHINGTON, D.C.] – U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) led a group of 12 other Senators today in introducing a bill that will help address the student debt crisis by treating privately issued student loans in bankruptcy the same as other types of private unsecured debt.