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Wall Street Accountability

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Across the country, big wall street banks and financial institutions are making billions off of our cities, states and school districts through predatory (and potentially law-breaking) lending deals. In Illinois, big banks have taken more than $2.4 billion out of our state funds. These funds could have fixed the 2016 CPS budget crisis, provided domestic violence services for 31 years or funded child care for 102,000 Illinois families.

Rahm and Rauner have given the banks a free pass and looked the other way. Neighborhood leaders, parents, seniors, students, and teachers are standing up and demanding an end to this giveaway of our public money. Join us in an exciting campaign to win back hundreds of millions of dollars – we’re taking our money back and putting it into the communities we deserve!

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Who Broke the Economy

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Grassroots Collaborative conducts workshops on the economy, equity, and budgets for community members and organizations in Illinois. Working and middle-class communities face constant budget cuts, school closings, and threats of reducing wages and benefits, while the wealthy, corporations and big banks continue to reap record profits. Our interactive training provides vital information on who rigged […]

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Illinois People’s Agenda

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Counter to the narrative coming out of the Governor’s office, the People’s Agenda points out that the state of Illinois is not spending too much, but rather is spending too little. Illinois has the 5th largest economy in the country and is the 13th wealthiest state, yet ranks 47th in spending on K-12 education, higher […]

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Downtown Prosperity, Neighborhood Neglect

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Grassroots Collaborative’s report, Downtown Prosperity, Neighborhood Neglect: Chicago’s Black and Latino Workers Left Behind looks at the racial inequality created by city priorities through exploration of US Census data. The report lays out a sharp racial disparity in downtown job gains and losses.  From 2002 to 2011, Black majority city zip codes suffered a median loss of […]

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Take Back Chicago

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For too long Chicago city policy has been dedicated by corporate interests and downtown developers. Grassroots Collaborative, as well as our sister organization, Grassroots Illinois Action, are working to put control of our city back in the hands of our neighborhoods and communities. Working together with a wide set of organizations we are building a […]

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Turned Around

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A report by the ReFund America project on how the swaps that were supposed to save Illinois millions turned toxic. Illinois is in the throes of a major budget crisis. Even though residents have had to bear draconian cuts as critical services have been defunded, Wall Street has gotten a free pass in the state’s […]

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Illinois People’s Agenda

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In 2015 Grassroots Collaborative launched the Illinois People’s Agenda: a vision of reinvestment in the people of Illinois. The People’s Agenda provides a new path forward that creates jobs, grows the Illinois economy meets the challenges facing our state in a way that is fair and equitable to all residents and helps Illinois families prosper. […]

Illinois faces further credit dings and interest rate swap crisis

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Adding yet another blow to the moribund finances of Illinois, two major credit rating bureaus, Moody’s and Standard and Poor’s, last week gave the midwestern state another financial downturn; this time to just two levels above junk status, in view of the continued lack of a budget and the growing gulf between Republican Gov. Bruce […]

Monday Marks Second Hearing On Illinois’ Controversial Interest Rate Swaps

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An Illinois House committee will hold a second subject matter hearing Monday morning in Chicago on the issue of interest rate swaps. City of Chicago Treasurer Kurt Summers is among those expected to testify before the House Revenue and Finance Committee. Last month, Summers urged three Chicago employee pension funds to consider joining class action lawsuits against banks in an effort […]

Experts Sound Alarm: Wall Street Banks Set to Shakedown Illinois for $870 Million Unless Springfield Acts Fast

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Mayor Emanuel Paid Out Hundreds of Millions to Wall Street Banks on Swap Deals that Torpedoed Chicago and CPS budgets, Governor Rauner Urged to Not Repeat Mistake with State Swaps CHICAGO, IL – On Monday, the Illinois House Revenue and Finance Committee held a second subject matter hearing on interest rate swap deals that have […]