John Howell: Essential Cuts (05/26) – Baseball, Soccer, and Debt Ceilings… Oh My!

• ABC’s Justin Finch talks about the progress (or lack there of) in the Debt Ceiling talks ahead of the holiday weekend.

• Bret Gogoel, WLS Defacto Sports Director, joins John to chat baseball and both North Side & South Side Hendricks.

•Lori Lindsey, Match Analyst for MLS Season Pass, previews tomorrow night’s Chicago Fire FC match vs New England.

• Plus, John speaks with a listener about his most memorable road trip and about his time serving his country. 


Halle Bailey: A New Little Mermaid for the Next Generation

With The Little Mermaid hitting the silver screen this weekend, Ted Lasso, Succession & Barry are coming to an end. John Howell welcomes Jason Nathanson, ABC News Entertainment Correspondent, to present his Memorial Day Weekend Mega Entertainment Report. 


How Will Johnson’s Memorial Day Weekend Safety Plan Hold Up?

John Howell is joined by Greg Pratt, reporter from the Chicago Tribune who covers Mayor Brandon Johnson and City Hall. They discuss Mayor Johnson’s plan to combat violence and keep the city of Chicago safe this Memorial Day Weekend, how it differs from past plans, and if residents are optimistic. 


A Northwest side woman attacked and her dog stolen

A Portage Park woman says she was beaten and her French bulldog was stolen at gunpoint as she was taking it for a walk in her northwest side neighborhood.
Alicja Pierzchala, 64, told reporters that the attack occurred Wednesday evening along West Giddings near Menard.
“I just walk with my Peppa,” Pierzchala said. “She was sniffing, walking, all of a sudden behind of me I felt pressure.”
Pierzchala said she struggled with the gunman and was later treated at a hospital for cuts to her wrists, forehead and a concussion.
She adopted Peppa nearly two months ago.
No arrests have been made, police said.
In 2021, a dog walker for pop star Lady Gaga was shot and wounded and two of the singer’s French bulldogs were taken during an armed robbery in Hollywood.
The man was walking three of Lady Gaga’s dogs at the time but one escaped.
Authorities have said it was a coincidence that the dogs belonged to the singer and that the motive for the theft was the value of the French bulldogs, a breed that can run into the thousands of dollars.
The man who shot the dog walker and stole the dogs was later arrested and sentenced to 21 years in prison.


Cook County Tax Bills Likely Late

(CHICAGO) — The Cook County Treasurer is warning of late arriving property tax bills.

Maria Pappas says that like last year, the second Cook County property tax bill will likely be late.

“We are ready, willing and able to print. We could print these bills tomorrow,” Pappas told The Steve Cochran Show on WLS-AM 890. “My intelligence is telling me that I won’t get the numbers to print until on or around October, which means the due date will probably be December.”

Last year Cook County residents received their second installment bill four months late with bills coming due Dec. 30 instead of Aug. 1.

If you are behind on your taxes there is state assistance available through the Illinois Homeowner Assistance Fund.

Copyright 2023 WLS News


Film critic Nick Digilio reviews ‘The Little Mermaid’, ‘You Hurt My Feelings’ & ‘About My Father’

Film critic and podcast host Nick Digilio returns to the Steve Cochran Show to review the latest movies in theaters, including ‘The Little Mermaid’, ‘You Hurt My Feelings’, & ‘About My Father’. They also talk about the funniest sketch on SNL featuring Christopher Walken and which movie couple had the worst chemistry of all time.

How one suburban woman’s sewing machine became a carry-on crisis

When Joyce Rowland packed her bags to visit family in California, she didn’t expect her prized sewing machine to be in any danger. But after flight crew forced Joyce to check her carry-on at the gate, the machine wound up being irreparably damaged and American Airlines was providing little service.

Joyce joins Steve and Jane to share her story as a warning to summer travelers and as a tip on how to get your money back when airlines make mistakes.

Join Gen. John Borling in commemorating fallen soldiers this Memorial Day

Retired major Air Force General John Borling joins Steve and Jane to share details of his upcoming appearance at the memorial of Gen. John Logan this Memorial Day to commemorate all soldiers who have given their lives for the United States. He talks about the impact of Gen. Logan’s life and the importance of the day, as well as his own service and time as a POW in Vietnam.

John Howell: Essential Cuts (05/25) – Buckets Over Bullying and Who American’s Won’t Vote For 

• Rose & Rob Bronstein, founders of Buckets Over Bullying, join John to reflect on the tragic loss of their son to bullying and how proposed legislation could save other children. 

• Andy Field from ABC News Washington discusses a new poll showing that, so far, most Americans only know who they will NOT vote for. 

• Chicago Tribune food critic Nick Kindelsperger joins the show with the best pastrami finds in the city. 

• Plus, Kevin Burke joins John in-studio to chat about Big Nose Kate Whiskey and Dottie May’s Oatmilk Cream Liqueur.


Ron DeSantis Launches 2024 Presidential Campaign 

No Florida politician has ever been elected president. Can Ron DeSantis break the “Florida Man” political curse? John Howell is joined by Charles Mahtesian, Politico’s Senior Politics Editor, to discuss his announcement on Twitter & potential challenges he may face on the campaign trail.


Rebuild Illinois: So Far, So Good

John Howell welcomes Frank Manzo IV, M.P.P., Economist at the nonpartisan Illinois Economic Policy Institute, to discuss the fourth anniversary of the Rebuild Illinois law and how it’s been a success thus far by modernizing neglected infrastructure and providing jobs to the state.


A Chicago ballpark the first in the country to install stop the bleed kits

Wrigley Field now has more than 20 bleeding control kits along the walls of the ball park. The kits include a tourniquet, gauze and trauma shears to cut through clothing. Staff at Wrigley have been trained on how to stop the bleed. The American College of Surgeons says bleeding is the number on cause of death after injury. The city of Chicago has over 300 kits available across the city, just recently a security guard used the kits after two children were injured in a shooting outside a West Garfield park library.


Amazon scrapping plans to open two Chicagoland warehouses

The tech giant confirming to Crain’s Chicago that the warehouses planned for Bridgeport and Addison will be put on hold as part of a broader pullback on expansion.

Amazon leased and built the distribution centers that would have employed hundreds of people. But now, the company is looking to sublease the buildings.

Amazon said in a statement. “Our facilities in Addison and on South Halsted Street in Chicago are currently available for a flexible short-term sublease for a similar use — a common industry practice — and they may still factor into our future plans.”


Romeoville Officer Injured, Suspect in Custody

(Romeoville, IL) — A suspect has been arrested in the shooting of a police officer during a foot chase in Romeoville early Thursday, according to authorities.

The shooting happened around 12:15 a.m. as officers on patrol were investigating a car that had been reported stolen near Sierra Trail and Summerfield Drive, according to police. They approached the car and a man jumped out and ran off.

The officers chased him and one of them was struck by gunfire in the right shoulder. He was taken to Bolingbrook Hospital and transferred to Loyola University Medical Center, police said.

Romeoville Police Chief Ken Kroll said he was getting “good news” from the hospital about the officer, whom he described as “an outstanding young man” and “one of our best officers.”

The suspect, Samer Hernandez, 29, was found around 5:45 a.m. hiding in shrubs about a mile from the shooting, Kroll said. He was on parole at the time and “has a pretty good criminal history.”

Cook County court records show the suspect has a history of gun charges dating back to 2014. In 2021, he was charged with being an armed habitual criminal. His last recorded address was near where the shooting occurred.

© Copyright 2023 Sun-Times Media, LLC. All rights reserved.


John Howell: Essential Cuts (05/24) – Taking Care of Our Children & Travelling by Railroad

• Tania Haigh, founder of KIDS TOO, joins the show to discuss the troubling report on sexual abuse in the IL Catholic church and how her organization is working to protect kids.

• ABC’s Alex Stone says Walmart has promised to stop selling something pretty surprising.

• Todd Powell, co-founder of Vacations by Rail, talks about traveling by railroad this Memorial Day weekend and beyond.

• Plus, Charles Lipson shares his memories of the late Robert Zimmer, and John discusses the impact of traffic on the city.


Pritzker announces 2024 state budget deal

Governor Pritzker made the announcement on Wednesday afternoon, flanked by Senate President Don Harmon and House Speaker Chris Welch. Lawmakers returned to Springfield to complete the budget, after missing their self-imposed deadline of Friday, May 19th. The budget includes 250 million dollars for the new Smart Start Illinois program, and 50 million for early childhood capital improvements. Pritzker also said that agreement helps to eliminate childcare deserts in the state.


Field of Dreams, Schemes or Nightmares?

Northwestern University’s plan to replace Ryan Field with a sports and entertainment complex is causing quite a stir with Evanston residents. John Howell welcomes Bob Reed, Writer for Chicago Magazine, to discuss the pros and cons of having a venue that can seat more people than both the United Center & Allstate arena placed in the middle of a residential area.


Mike Emanuel on the Debt Ceiling, Donors, and DeSantis 

John Howell is joined by Mike Emanuel, Fox News Chief Washington Correspondent, to discuss the biggest national political stories of the week. They chat about the eminent approach to the debt ceiling deadline, public ethics concerns pertaining to Supreme Court Justices & Republican donors leaning towards a candidate. 


Retired Cop Grazed in Shootout

(CHICAGO) — A retired Chicago cop was grazed in a shootout with a carjacker early Wednesday in Austin, police said.

The 78-year-old former officer tried stopping a person from carjacking his neighbor about 1:45 a.m. in the 300 block of North Mayfield Avenue, exchanging gunfire with him, Chicago police said.

The retired cop was grazed in the left thumb and taken to a hospital in good condition, according to police. His neighbor, a 52-year-old man, wasn’t injured.

The carjacker drove away in the 52-year-old man’s Jeep and crashed it into a parked car in the 600 block of North Waller Avenue, police said.

A weapon was recovered at the scene, police said.

No arrests were reported.

© Copyright 2023 Sun-Times Media, LLC. All rights reserved.


A watchdog group says Com Ed’s requested rate hike is too high

The Citizens Utility Board says the 1.5 billion dollar rate increase that Com Ed is asking state regulators to approve should be slashed by over 60 percent. CUB is challenging the hike with the Illinois Commerce Commission. The four year proposal would increase the average bill for Chicago residents by $6.72 next year and raise it by a total of 17 dollars by 2027. The utility says the increase is to improve the electric grid, phase out carbon emissions and better equip its system for severe weather due to climate change.