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Inspector General Joe Ferguson. | SUN-TIMES LIBRARY

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Updated: January 8, 2013 6:28AM

The police blotter . . .

Is trouble brewing in the cop shop?

To wit: Sneed is told that city Inspector General Joe Ferguson’s office, after investigating a complaint about possible mismanagement of funds for former Mayor Richard M. Daley’s pet project, the Chicago Alternative Policing Strategy, found it serious enough to dispatch the findings to the Chicago Police Internal Affairs Department for review.

Casino chat . . .

Ka-ching! Sneed hears legislation giving Chicago its first casino is in the proverbial bag — and if all goes ahead as planned — Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Gov. Pat Quinn and Senate President John Cullerton will all sport big, toothy grins next month.

The royal crumpet . . .

Bloke break: Woe is newly pregnant Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, who was finally released from a London hospital Thursday with her hubby, Prince William, by her side after suffering from severe morning sickness — only to face a new challenge.

◆ The challenge: Da Prince is soon to report for military duty, which will take him away from wife duty during the Christmas holidays.

The Ax man . . .

Mustache Mayhem: Clip. Snip. David Axelrod’s mustache is due to hit the chopping block this morning on the “Morning Joe” show. During a serious moment of mustache twitch Thursday about what he will use to cut his 40-year-old “mo” to make good on a bet.

◆ Axelrod told Sneed: “Not sure. We had a deal with Panasonic, but they pulled out. I just don’t want Joe [Scarborough] around my neck with a straight razor!”

Access Google!

Hmmmm: Is Google Chairman Eric Schmidt, a top Obama adviser, in line to fulfill one of President Barack Obama’s promises: Becoming the U.S. secretary of Business, a new Cabinet post Obama proposed to consolidate various government business agencies.

$$$ . . .

So how rich is legendary hoopster Michael Jordan? His new home in Jupiter, Fla., reportedly cost about $20 million smackeroolees; yet his Highland Park home — which was listed in February for a cool $29 million — has yet to sell 10 months later . . . and is still listed at the same price.

It’s not a good thing!

Yikes! Now comes word that merchandising maven Martha Stewart is not impervious from being thwacked in the kitchen: The home goddess caught salmonella from handling raw turkey during TV appearances over Thanksgiving. Poor baby.

The gov race . . .

Off and running!!!!!

On the heels of a poll reported in last Friday’s Chicago Sun-Times showing State Sen. Kirk Dillard to be the strongest GOP candidate against Gov. Pat Quinn (beating Quinn by 7 percentage points) and former U.S. Commerce Secretary William Daley (leading Daley by 2 percentage points), Sneed is told Dillard has been a busy boy.

◆ To wit: He has been meeting with African-American clergy; hosting a Young Republicans fund-raiser; attending a Latino Caucus lunch in Rosemont; shmoozing DuPage County business leaders, and visiting Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels in Indianapolis and Republican governor-types in Washington.

◆ A history note: Dillard lost his last gubernatorial bid by a mere 193 votes to State Sen. Bill Brady in the Republican primary last time.

This & that . . .

◆ Huh? Olympic figure skater Michelle Kwan is now senior adviser for public diplomacy and public affairs at the State Department.

◆ Work ’em: As Sneed tipped a month ago, U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk, who was felled by a severe stroke, is returning to the Senate on Jan. 3.

Sneedlings . . .

I spy: Comedian Steve Harvey and wife at RL Restaurant for dinner Wednesday night . . . Merry Gery: Former mayoral candidate/attorney Gery Chico was appointed Midwest president of the United States-Mexico Chamber of Commerce on Thursday. In his two-year term, Chico will facilitate business between the U.S. and Mexico for midwestern companies such as Kraft and Motorola Solutions . . . Friday’s birthdays: Ellen Burstyn, 80; Tom Waits, 63, Larry Bird, 56.

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