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Live blogging Emanuel's budget announcement

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Chicago Sun-Times reporter Lauren Fitzpatrick is reporting live from Rahm Emanuel's unveiling of the new city budget:


11:01 | Homicides may be up but overall, crime is down in the city overall by nearly 9 percent, the mayor said.

"But when homicides are up, even if overall crime is down significantly, our residents will not feel truly safe, and we must work even harder to stop the violence," he said.

Emanuel called for hiring police officers and promoting more police officers by holding the city's first sergeants exam in six years. And he cited his strict curfew and new longer school day in keeping
children safer.

In a departure from his prepared speech, Emanuel said when he meets mothers of slain children, "It is that look in the mother's eye that brings home the truth that her loss is our loss," he said.

No matter the neighborhood, children "live in our city. They are our responsibility."

10:56 | The 30-minute speech stuck to the mayor's usual themes -- job creation, longer school day, small businesses -- and contained few surprises.

10:51 | Mayor Rahm Emanuel promised no tax increases or new fees in his 2013 budget that must close a $298 million shortfall, but also will continue to fund after-school and health care programs for Chicago's youth.

"We will not raise property taxes, we will not raise sales taxes, we will not raise the fuel tax, we will not raise the amusement tax," the mayor told a packed City Council chambers Wednesday morning.

"We are going to invest in our children."

To pay for his initiatives, the mayor cited administrative cuts including another 275 in the new year, savings by putting many Chicago residential services on a grid system, and an increase of collections against people who already owe the city money.

10:44 | "We don't just make big plans in Chicago, we deliver on them," mayor says concluding #budget address.

10:43 | Rahm calls on Springfield to "step up, take their share of responsibility" on pensions.

10:42 | If we don't fix the pension system, Rahm says he'd have to ask for 150% increase in property taxes.

10:35 | Small businesses: "This is where many immigrants to our city first placed their foot on the ladder of success, and it is where many of our high tech companies got their first start."

10:28 | Rahm off speech again. Citing New York Times story about federal cuts to children's programs. "Balancing budgets on the backs of their children. We are going to invest in our children," Mayor says.

10:27 | Free eyeglasses and eye exams coming for more #CPS students, mayor says.

10:26 | Longer school day is safer for kids, Mayor says. 2 PM dismissal was "threat to our children's safety as well as to their education."

10:23 | Rahm goes off printed speech to talk about meeting mothers who lose children to violence: "It is that look in that mother's eye that brings home the truth that her loss is our loss."

10:15 | Rahm promises to cut 275 more administrative positions this year for estimated $20 million in savings.

10:12 | Rahm speaks. And here we go with the 2013 #budget address. 10:12 am by my count.

10:01 | Lines wrapped around the second floor of City Hall Wednesday morning as spectators attempted to snag coveted seats for Mayor Rahm Emanuel's budget address. City council chambers swelled in anticipation of the
mayor's 10 a.m. arrival.

Emanuel is expected to announce no new taxes or fees in his 2013 budget to help close a $298 million shortfall. Instead, he plans to keep trimming costs, chasing deadbeats and banking on rebounding
revenues.

The mayor also plans to hire 500 new Chicago Police Officers, add 911 dispatchers and refinance more old debt.

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