Evanston Alderman Brian Miller, 9th Ward, failed to win support from any other City Council members Monday in an effort to deny payment for a city ad campaign on Evanston Now over Miller's claim the site is racist.
Miller, who is white, will be leaving the council next month after finishing third in last month's five-way primary to become Evanston's next mayor.
During the campaign he told residents at a mayoral forum that he was being "crucified by the media."
The City Council did vote to hold a discussion at a Rules Committee meeting next month about its advertising policies, and, at the request of Alderman Ann Rainey, 8th Ward, to also consider its policies regarding what banks to use to hold city funds.
The top vote-getter in the mayoral primary, Steve Hagerty, is on the board of directors of Evanston-based First Bank & Trust, which now holds various city deposits.
Miller received support for his claims from three speakers at public comment. The speakers, all white women, claimed that Evanston Now publishes racist stories and permits residents to post racist comments.
Evanston Now publisher Bill Smith said the claims by Miller and the women are false and defamatory.
Evanston Now has explored a range of social issues in the community in its stories in a fact-based and carefully-researched manner, Smith said.
It welcomes the perspectives of people with a wide range of views in its comment section, he added, but it has clear guidelines banning racist remarks and other forms of speech that a reasonable person would consider offensive.
A review of city bills since the start of 2016 indicates that, including items approved Monday, the city has spent on advertising during that time $7,035 with the Evanston RoundTable, $2,378 with the Chicago Tribune and $2,365 with Evanston Now.
It's also spent nearly $18,000 with three local printing and mailing services.