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Joe Moreno: A day in the life

  • Ald. Joe Moreno calls a bingo game for seniors.
Ald. Joe Moreno calls a bingo game for seniors. (Lenny Gilmore/RedEye )
August 16, 2012|By Leonor Vivanco, RedEye

RedEye wanted to know what Ald.Proco "Joe" Moreno's day was like. So we followed him around Aug. 9.

7:10 a.m. Runs 4 miles in the ward. Along the route, he points out the new basketball hoops at Wicker Park and the new pedestrian crosswalk signs on Damen Avenue. He mentions the recently opened Emporium Arcade Bar on Milwaukee Avenue and how he got the zoning law changed to allow the arcade to open in the neighborhood as part of a tavern.

9:30 a.m. Checks in at the 2100 block of North Bingham Street where he pays a precinct captain $10 an hour from his own political fund to remove weeds and trees from a vacant lot. He says the expense allowance of $73,000 a year each alderman gets to run the ward isn't enough to get things done.

10:30 a.m. Takes a photo with his iPhone of a pothole-filled brick alley next to Estelle's that owner David Halpern asks to be repaved. (Estelle's has contributed $750 to Moreno since 2010.) He plans to get a cost estimate to fix the alley by fall of 2013 using money from the $1.3 million each alderman gets a year for ward infrastructure projects.

11:35 a.m. Calls out bingo numbers in English and Spanish for seniors at the Wicker Park Apartments and gives seven winners a $10 gift card to 7-Eleven.

12:30-2 p.m. Various meetings at ward office: Windy City Times interview, a chess organization that works with Chicago Public Schools and a local brewer who wants to be included at street fests.

2 p.m. Lunch at Belly Shack. He's been a vegetarian (who eats fish) for 19 years. Interview with RedEye.

3-4 p.m. More meetings at ward office: A developer who shows a preliminary proposal; A.N. Pritzker School principal who requests artificial turf.

lvivanco@tribune.com | @lvivanco

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