An Illinois government panel trying to help the state set spending priorities is already at work on next year's budget. But after two years, the group is still waiting for the chance to make its mark on spending.
The idea behind Budgeting for Results is to focus state spending on agencies and programs that meet a list of seven priorities, like education or public safety.
But although the Budgeting for Results Commission has been meeting, taking testimony, and publishing reports for about two years, its work has yet to affect the budget.
The arrival of concealed carry in Illinois will mean a big change not only for gun-owning citizens, but police officers as well.
As Brian Mackey reports, the state board that oversees police training is already preparing for the change.
Police in Illinois are already trained on how to approach someone with a gun. Since that person was likely breaking the law, safety and caution were the watchwords. But how does that calculus change when citizens are able to carry legally?
The state fair got its start Thursday night with the Twilight parade through the north end of the capital city. It's an annual tradition. But indications are that another tradition -- a Democratic party rally -- will not continue this year.
There were cheerleaders, bands, children scrambling for candy, and of course, a parade of politicians.
The Attorney General, Treasurer, Comptroller, Lieutenant Governor were all there.
Medical marijuana may be legal in his home state, but the number two Democrat in the U.S. Senate says that shouldn't be a national policy.
It'll be awhile before patients with certain diseases will actually be able to use pot to ease their symptoms - the Illinois law doesn't take effect until January, and state regulators have to put rules in place.
Even so, clinics - including one in Chicago - are already beginning to open.
Attorneys for Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan and Senate President John Cullerton will be in Cook County Circuit Court Tuesday to try and force Gov. Pat Quinn and Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka to issue legislators' paychecks.
Last month, Quinn cut $13.8 million for legislators' paychecks in the state budget. He'd threatened consequences if lawmakers failed to act on addressing the pension problem. When a bipartisan pension failed to meet a deadline, Quinn cut their salaries.
Illinois has a trio of new laws that officials say will make the roads safer. But the governor has yet to act on other measures that could have a significant impact on drivers.
Two of the new laws apply to people who've already had traffic troubles, like one named after 15-year-old Kelsey Little, who was seriously hurt in 2011 when she was hit by a teen just learning how to drive.
Governor Pat Quinn recently signed a measure that makes Illinois the 20th state in the nation to legalize medical marijuana. But how long until it actually goes into effect? And what sort of restrictions will there be for patients hopeful to gain a prescription to the drug? WUIS's statehouse reporter Brian Mackey recently discussed the news with us:
CHICAGO (AP)- Illinois has become the 20th state in the nation to legalize medical marijuana. Gov. Pat Quinn signed the bill into law today at a new University of Chicago medical facility.
Illinois' law takes effect Jan. 1, but it'll take several months before medical marijuana will be available for purchase. The measure outlines a four-year pilot program for patients suffering from more than 30 serious illnesses or diseases.
Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn will sign legislation making the state the 20th in the U.S. to legalize medical marijuana.
His remarks Thursday will focus on providing relief to the seriously ill, including veterans.
The Chicago Democrat will also tout the legislation's strict standards, which experts say are among the nation's toughest. That's according to a copy of details obtained Wednesday by The Associated Press.
Tuesday's declaration by Bill Daley that he was "officially" running for governor was one of the least surprising announcements of this political season. You could be forgiven for thinking he was already running in the Democratic primary. But Daley insists that until this week, he was just "exploring" a bid for governor.
A member of the Illinois legislature's special committee on pensions says the group is closing in on a compromise. But it remains to be seen whether the measure will have enough support in the full General Assembly.
The 10-members of the bipartisan conference committee have been meeting for more than a month. A good chunk of that time has been waiting for actuaries to analyze the various proposals — seeing how much of Illinois' nearly $100 billion in unfunded pension liabilities might be eliminated.
Former White House chief of staff Bill Daley is making his Illinois gubernatorial bid official.
He's set to remove his "exploratory committee'' label Tuesday by filing paperwork with the Illinois Board of Elections. So far, he's Gov. Pat Quinn's only 2014 Democratic primary challenger.
In a video on his campaign website, Daley says the fact that the state Legislature adjourned in May without finding a solution to the pension crisis or voting on same-sex marriage represents a "dysfunction.''
Illinois legislators were supposed to get their next monthly paycheck on Thursday, August 1st. But Governor Pat Quinn vetoed their salaries out of the budget. Amanda Vinicky reports on how lawmakers may be able to get by.
Many legislators won't feel the pinch too deeply.
Serving in the General Assembly is technically a part-time occupation ... and many own businesses, are partners at law firms, or have other government jobs.
But many don't, and are their family's sole breadwinner.
An influential group of business executives is declining to comment on the possibility it helped to lower Illinois' credit rating. But public employees’ unions are calling for an investigation.
The Civic Committee of the Commercial Club of Chicago — and one of its leaders, former Illinois Attorney General Ty Fahner — were early leaders of the charge to do something about the state's underfunded pensions.
Fahner's been one of the most vocal advocates of doing not just something, but something major, to bring down the state's pension costs.