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House Republicans Unveil Details in Tax Reform Plan: Challenges Expected



House Republicans unveiled a tax plan Thursday, a bill the GOP has touted as the most far-reaching overhaul of the U.S. tax code in more than 31 years. House Republican leaders have also promised the plan would make sweeping changes in corporate and individual taxes, including deep tax cuts, limits to the mortgage interest deduction and bigger family tax credits.

The unveiling of the GOP tax overhaul plan was initially earmarked for Wednesday, but pushed back as Republicans put the finishing touches on an exceedingly complex piece of legislation.

The plan’s introduction marks the start of an ambitious legislative timetable: President Trump said Tuesday he wants the House to pass its bill by Thanksgiving and that he wants the legislation on his desk by Christmas.

“There’s never been anything like this in the history of our country,” Trump promised. “Its cuts and its relief and it’s also reform.”

The president’s deadline is contingent upon how lawmakers, industry lobbyists, and the public receive the details of a plan hashed out in secret, many of which will involve politically difficult tradeoffs designed to keep the cost of the GOP plan under $1.5 trillion.

If GOP tax plan results in 401(k) changes, will Americans save less? A few Republicans could derail the fragile tax reform effort over one key provision Republicans are unveiling their tax plan Thursday. Photo Credit: Omaha World Herald

What Republicans have publicized about their proposal to this point have been the benefits: a cut in the corporate tax rate to 20 percent from its current 35 percent, collapsing seven income tax brackets for individuals to three or four, doubling the standard deduction, and expanding the child-tax credit.

The sweeping tax overhaul plan includes provisions that are likely to stoke controversy and fierce lobbying, including limiting the deduction of mortgage interest for newly purchased homes up to $500,000, according to a summary.

This is not the first rodeo for the GOP when it comes to their desire to cut taxes—which according to House Speaker Paul Ryan (R- WI)—has not happened since 1986. The GOP tax overhaul is top priority moving into the 2018 elections—hence lawmakers are clinging onto the hopes of a victory after the Obamacare repeal failure.

Despite the president’s bravado—the big reveal on Thursday—packaged in fine print—is not written in stone. Republicans on Capitol Hill recognize the steepest climb remains ahead of them.

“Make no mistake, all hell’s going to break loose when that House bill becomes public,” Senator John Kennedy of Louisiana told CNN. “It’s taking a big ole piece of cheesecake and putting a bunch of spinach on top and saying, ‘You can’t eat the cheesecake ’til you eat the spinach.”

Kevin Brady says many aspects of the tax code are in play, days after President Trump tweeted that the retirement savings program would be unchanged. Photo Credit: Wall Street Journal

The House bill will have to survive a markup in the Ways and Means Committee next week, and Senate Republicans are working on their own proposal, though it’s expected to be broadly similar. Thursday’s announcement, however, will provide answers to several important questions that have vexed Republican legislators for months.

Who Will Pay More?

The president’s apparent preference for a clean tax cut faces hurdles because the House Republican proposal will be a broader and more complicated shift in who owes what to the government.

As GOP leaders have reluctantly acknowledged, some people will likely see their taxes go up. “Yes, some Americans probably will” pay more, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy conceded on Fox News. “Because you know what we do? We close the loopholes.”

The 429-page “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act” includes a broad set of proposed changes to the corporate and individual tax system, building off a nine-page framework the White House and congressional Republican leaders dropped in September.

House Ways and Means Committee Chair Kevin Brady, the author of the tax bill, has said the House should pass the plan by Thanksgiving.

House Speaker Paul Ryan, Brady and other House Republican leaders touted the bill in a press conference Thursday with promises the plan would save the “average” family of four [$1,182] annually on their taxes.

Despite the GOP promises to everyday Americans, various income groups would likely benefit in different ways from the plan. The plan remains ambiguous for many—on how the gains would be distributed among different income groups and localities.

Read more about the proposed GOP tax plan in the  “Business Insider”


By LeNora Millen                     11-02-17

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Davidson Hotels and Resorts expands Portfolio with Hotel Zachary in Chicago



Photo Courtesy of Hotel Zachary. Photo Credit: Dave Burk Photography (PRNewsfoto/Davidson Hotels & Resorts

Hotel Zachary has an exclusive blend, thoughtful amenities and artistic touches in every guestroom to locally-infused dining and signature cocktails from the City’s Top Chefs


Photo Courtesy of Hotel Zachary. Photo Credit: Dave Burk Photography (PRNewsfoto/Davidson Hotels & Resorts

This Week Davidson Hotel & Resorts – one of the nation’s leading hotel management companies for delivering hospitality and creating value – announced the addition of Zachary at Gallagher Way, a Tribute Portfolio Hotel, to its highly curated Portfolio.

It’s owned by Hickory Street Capital, this exciting new hotel will be managed by Pivot Hotels & Resorts – Davidson’s Lifestyle and Luxury Division.

Hotel Zachary at Gallagher Way is a distinctive boutique hotel that brings history and style together to deliver an authentic Chicago neighborhood experience.

It’s situated in the heart of Chicago’s renowned Lakeview neighborhood.

Hotel Zachary at Gallagher Way is inspired by it’s namesake, famed Chicago architect, Zachary Taylor Davis, who designed the esteemed Wrigley Field in 1914.

Located in the heart of the city’s Lakeview neighborhood and adjacent to historic Wrigley Field, the 173-room hotel celebrates world-renowned Wrigley Field architect and Chicagoan Zachary Taylor Davis.

Hotel Zachary at Gallagher Way delivers a memorable guest experience to baseball fans, the curious traveler and locals in-the-know.

“My family and I are truly honored to bring the Hotel Zachary to Lakeview and the City of Chicago, “said Tom Ricketts, who is Chairman of Hickory Street Capital. “Hotel Zachary will pay homage to the neighborhood’s rich history and to Chicago’s architecture and design legacy. We’re excited to offer new chef driven restaurants and unique, year-round experiences for neighbors, families, fans and visitors.”

Hotel Zachary is situated within 238,000-sq-ft mixed-use development that also features some of Chicago’s best-known chefs and restaurants, including West Town Bakery & Tap, Big Star, Smoke Daddy, and Matthias Merges ‘new eatery, Mordecai. Hotel Zachary will deliver authentic local experiences on Chicago’s North Side, as a new in-town hub for city explorers, business travelers, visiting families and baseball enthusiasts to find entertainment, great dining and a distinctively personalized lodging experience.

For more information, please visit or follow along on Facebook or Twitter

Source: Davidson Hotels & Resorts

Photo Courtesy of Hotel Zachary. Photo Credit: Dave Burk Photography (PRNewsfoto/Davidson Hotels & Resorts

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Messengers Among Us



This week I have been amazed at the world around me. I am continually working toward self-actualization.  On this quest, I seek to manifest clarity of my beliefs for my well-being.  My work is to constantly detach from the world around me to find truth among the noise and chaos that consumes our lives and time. 

Think about that for a moment – the noise and chaos consuming.  Like a heterotrophic bacterium, eating and absorbing dead matter, the noise and chaos consume our lives and time in that same manner.  Look at your life and examine how much time social media, the news, entertainment, gossip, work politics and the like consume your mind and time.  It is as if your mind is constantly being pulled to the left and the right, jerking itself to keep up with one distraction after another. 

In moving so fast, we are also distracted from the beauty and perfection that is the foundation of all that is.  We miss the important things in life and instead become conformed to what we are consuming, noise and chaos. Chaos is disorder and confusion.  In life, it shows up as confusion of who we are, where we are and how we are.  Constantly out of order.  Not only in our minds, but in relationship to the universe itself.

In my discovery this week, I realized that my rush to reach goals, achieve heights and make the most of my time here on earth has caused me to miss out on what makes the journey beautiful.  I was missing out on the hands that push me along the way, the voice that draws my attention forward and the lights that guide my feet.  The little things that assure my safe travel and help to lift me above life’s heavy pull to complete the voyage.  These impressions I neglected.  I let them drown in the noise. 

In my haste, these hands and voices appeared to be talking trees.  An oddity that became normal to ignore.  After a few interviews this week and conversations with some amazingly insightful and determined individuals, I realized I was not walking past talking trees.  In my day to day, I was walking past individual spirits in human form with messages for me.  Their niceties, their conversations, their encounters, I shrugged off as part of happenings of life.  I forsook their importance and my importance in these moments.  I disregarded the work of the universe to perfect these moments.  I overlooked how important I must be for the universe to send a message to me in such an orchestrated manner.  I discounted how valuable the messenger must be to hold such information and maintain a life appointment neither was aware. 

I imagine that from the beginning of time, their life was formed, and their path perfected to be a messenger for me and me for them.  We for others.  Our meetings converted to a special remembrance to renew our lives and minds and assist in opening the eyes of others to messages all around them.

This week I became clear and grateful to the universe and the messengers for helping me to see what I had made myself blind to see.  Taking for granted the souls that surround me on any given day.  I became grateful for why I am pushed to help and connect with others. For, in the end, they actually help and connect me to me.  I am giving to no one; everyone is giving to me.  When I am giving to others, I give to myself and they to themselves.  My hand to them is a key that unlocks the message they hold for me.

I have a few stories I am writing that will be published in the coming weeks.  I wanted to use other people’s stories and messages to continue to have readers question themselves and their beliefs.  Have readers find hope, purpose, and well-being through the eyes and lives of others.  I wanted to put a spotlight on unique journeys and stories.  In actuality, I received light and answers to my questions.  I was sent their way to be fed.  Though their stories will be told, my story, in turn, has been enriched by their passage through my life.

This week I interviewed a blind man who had greater vision and clarity than those with eyes.   A man who helped me to see that my eyes are not for seeing at all.  They are for realizing and becoming aware of what I have already created.  A man that could walk you into your destiny, guided by his foresight within.  He caused me to see where I was blind.

I interviewed a woman whose personal path was destined by her ancestral past.  It was so intense, that when she did not listen to its call, it pulled her into death to ignite the gift and shift her mind.  It called her to death to give her a message and clear the confusion she walked in.  She returned to life with a power and message that only she specifically could hold.  Her life, her heritage, her persona perfectly orchestrated to be the messenger of this message.  Her gift and light gave me life.

I met a group of activist advocating for assisted suicide.  Their stories were informing me of points of view and processes that drew levels of compassion and questions of my belief system that I would never have challenged without their meeting.  I met groups of advocates for children, politicians and school leaders sharing hopes, dreams, limitations, and struggles.   These individuals were destroying biases and shifting my views.  They helped me release limiting thoughts and walk boldly into uncharted territories.  I offered my help, support, and conversation, not knowing that, in turn, I would be lifted. 

Though all of these individuals have different stories apprised from their life perspectives, I found them all speaking to me.  Their lives, their stories, their pains, their joys and gifts all held messages for me.  Some were whispers of Spirit leading or directing me.  Some held confirmations.  Others held fingers of light directing me toward a future I was unaware possible.  Their messages released doubts, strengthened, encouraged, empowered, opened doors of my mind and destroyed biases.

I learned through this experience to slow down and hear those speaking.  Stop rushing past so fast, that the voices become talking trees in the forest of my life. I will listen from now on.  I will see and connect to the messengers around me.  I will be grateful for them.  Because of them, I know I am never alone, and a message is always waiting for me to question, to answer my questions, to direct or inform me of me.

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Exposure Magazine Exclusive with The Mother of Black Hollywood Jenifer Lewis On News Stands



Cedric Nettles-Exposure Magazine Entertainment Editor

Legendary actress and star of the hit sitcom Blackish sat down with Exposure Magazine to talk about her memoir The Mother of Black Hollywood. We had a VERY candid conversation about her bout with bi-polar disorder and sex addiction. When speaking with her you get one thing from her you expect…Strength and courage. We also talked about the life lessons that helped her cope with her condition. She had a very special message to former President Barack Obama and some rather hard hitting words for the current President. Get your copy  of her book

The Mother of Black Hollywood.






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