Michael Madigan http://wuis.org en Republican Attorney General Candidate: Pension Changes Unconstitutional http://wuis.org/post/republican-attorney-general-candidate-pension-changes-unconstitutional <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>The Republican candidate for Illinois Attorney General is criticizing incumbent Lisa Madigan for defending the state's pension overhaul law, which he thinks is unconstitutional.</p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">A clause in the state's constitution says that once earned, pension benefits shall not be diminished.</span></p> Tue, 22 Jul 2014 21:29:36 +0000 Hannah Meisel 29817 at http://wuis.org Republican Attorney General Candidate: Pension Changes Unconstitutional Listen to State Week - July 11, 2014 http://wuis.org/post/listen-state-week-july-11-2014 <p></p><p>More details are emerging on the Illinois Inspector General's probe into political hiring at Metra.&nbsp; Also, a call for further investigation into Governor Quinn's Neighborhood Recovery Initiative.</p><p></p><p></p> Fri, 11 Jul 2014 19:27:02 +0000 Bob Meyer 29088 at http://wuis.org Listen to State Week - July 11, 2014 Rauner's Discarded Term Limit Initiative Mirrors Quinn's 1994 Effort http://wuis.org/post/rauners-discarded-term-limit-initiative-mirrors-quinns-1994-effort <p>Governor Pat Quinn and his Republican challenger, Bruce Rauner, disagree about plenty -- everything from gun rights and restrictions, to what Illinois' income tax should be. But with Friday's ruling by a Cook County judge knocking a term limits initiative off the ballot, the candidates have something in common.</p><p></p><p>Though there has been a lot of turnover in the General Assembly in recent years, some politicians have been serving in Springfield for decades.</p><p>Chief among them House Speaker Michael Madigan, who has been a state representative since 1971.</p> Fri, 27 Jun 2014 22:27:04 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 28209 at http://wuis.org Rauner's Discarded Term Limit Initiative Mirrors Quinn's 1994 Effort General Assembly Adjourns With Much Undone http://wuis.org/post/general-assembly-adjourns-much-undone <p>The General Assembly finished its legislative session shortly after midnight Saturday, approving a billion-dollar road construction program.</p><p>Democrats started the session with an ambitious agenda: raise the minimum wage, boost college assistance for low-income students, maybe even change Illinois' flat tax into a graduated one. In the end, none of that happened.</p> Sat, 31 May 2014 07:45:51 +0000 Brian Mackey 26314 at http://wuis.org General Assembly Adjourns With Much Undone ALPLM Legislation Won't Be Called For Senate Vote This Spring http://wuis.org/post/alplm-legislation-wont-be-called-senate-vote-spring <p>Any change in oversight for the Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum will have to wait.&nbsp;&nbsp; Legislation that would have taken the facility away from the authority of the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency has stalled in the Illinois Senate. &nbsp;<br /><br />Rikeesha Phelon, a spokesperson for the Senate President, says the measure won't be called this spring.&nbsp; This decision comes after calls for more study.&nbsp; The plan could be revived in the fall session, following the election later this year.<br /> Fri, 30 May 2014 20:22:15 +0000 Sean Crawford 26291 at http://wuis.org ALPLM Legislation Won't Be Called For Senate Vote This Spring Cullerton, Madigan Come To Budget Agreement, Will Revisit Revenue After Election http://wuis.org/post/cullerton-madigan-come-budget-agreement-will-revisit-revenue-after-election <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>Illinois Senate President John Cullerton (D-Chicago) says he's come to an agreement on state spending with the speaker of the Illinois House. But Cullerton is leaving the door open for an income tax hike after the November election.</p><p></p> Thu, 29 May 2014 00:37:47 +0000 Hannah Meisel 26135 at http://wuis.org Cullerton, Madigan Come To Budget Agreement, Will Revisit Revenue After Election Illinois General Assembly Moving Forward With New Budget http://wuis.org/post/illinois-general-assembly-moving-forward-new-budget <p>The Illinois Legislature is moving forward with a scaled-back budget lawmakers say will lead to layoffs and further delays in paying the state's bills.<br />&nbsp;<br />The House is expected to vote Tuesday on the approximately $35 billion spending<br />plan.<br />Lawmakers drafted the plan after House Speaker Michael Madigan announced his<br />chamber had given up on extending a temporary income tax increase. That will<br />result in a roughly $1.8 billion revenue drop next year.<br />&nbsp;<br />Democratic Sen. Dan Kotowski says the new budget plan ensures education Tue, 27 May 2014 19:03:03 +0000 Associated Press 26004 at http://wuis.org Illinois General Assembly Moving Forward With New Budget Illinois House Democrats Regroup, Craft Budget Without Higher Tax http://wuis.org/post/illinois-house-democrats-regroup-craft-budget-without-higher-tax <p>Illinois House Democrats have given up on extending a temporary income tax increase and have begun working on a scaled-back state spending plan.<br />&nbsp;<br />Speaker Michael Madigan said Monday that House working groups would begin work<br />on a ``middle-of-the-road'' budget that's in line with a revenue estimate of about $34 billion.<br />&nbsp;<br />Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn wants to make permanent the income-tax increase that's set to roll back in January. It's costing the typical Illinois taxpayer about $1,100 more this year.<br />&nbsp; Tue, 27 May 2014 01:14:00 +0000 Associated Press 25952 at http://wuis.org Illinois House Democrats Regroup, Craft Budget Without Higher Tax "Doomsday" Budget Fails In House http://wuis.org/post/doomsday-budget-fails-house <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>The Illinois House overwhelmingly rejected a so-called "doomsday budget" Friday — one that does not rely on extending 2011's income tax hike. It would have imposed deep cuts across Illinois government.</p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">It was the budget that few legislators — Democrat or Republican — actually wanted to pass. It would have slashed education and other government services.</span></p> Fri, 23 May 2014 19:39:12 +0000 Hannah Meisel 25938 at http://wuis.org "Doomsday" Budget Fails In House Speaker Wants 'Millionaire Tax' Referendum http://wuis.org/post/speaker-wants-millionaire-tax-referendum <p>House Speaker Michael Madigan wants voters to weigh in on his so-called "millionaires' tax" at the November elections.</p><p><a href="http://ilga.gov/legislation/BillStatus.asp?DocTypeID=HB&amp;DocNum=3816&amp;GAID=12&amp;SessionID=85&amp;LegID=77727">The referendum</a> would ask if income greater than a million dollars should be taxed an additional three percent, with the money going to schools.</p><p>Earlier this year, Madigan tried to put this before voters as a constitutional amendment, but he says there wasn't enough support in the House.</p> Thu, 22 May 2014 20:25:09 +0000 Brian Mackey 25706 at http://wuis.org Budget Fight Moves From Taxes To Spending — For Now http://wuis.org/post/budget-fight-moves-taxes-spending-now <p>Democrats in the Illinois House on Wednesday handed a significant defeat to Governor Pat Quinn. Fewer than half are willing to go along with his push to extend a higher income tax rate. That could mean significant cuts in state spending. Brian Mackey reports on how Democrats backed themselves into this corner, and where they go from here.</p><p>Quinn has for two months been asking lawmakers to make 2011’s temporary income tax hike permanent.</p> Thu, 22 May 2014 06:46:31 +0000 Brian Mackey 25646 at http://wuis.org Budget Fight Moves From Taxes To Spending — For Now Governor's Tax Plan Fails Among House Democrats http://wuis.org/post/governors-tax-plan-fails-among-house-democrats <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Illinois lawmakers are going back to the drawing board on a state spending plan. Although </span>Gov<span style="line-height: 1.5;">. Pat Quinn and top Democrats have been pushing for an extension of a higher income tax rate, House Speaker Michael Madigan says there isn't enough support for that.</span></p> Wed, 21 May 2014 21:49:56 +0000 Brian Mackey 25640 at http://wuis.org Governor's Tax Plan Fails Among House Democrats Quinn Pitches Tax Plan To House Democrats http://wuis.org/post/quinn-pitches-tax-plan-house-democrats <p>Gov. Pat Quinn appealed directly to Democrats in the Illinois House Monday evening. He’s struggling to win support for his plan to extend Illinois’ higher income tax rate.</p><p>The governor appeared at a closed meeting of the Illinois House Democratic caucus.</p><p>Quinn is trying to win the support of the 60 Democrats required to make Illinois’ 5 percent income-tax rate permanent — instead of letting it decline by more than a percentage point as scheduled at the end of the year. Quinn warns without the higher tax rate, there will have to be drastic cuts in state services.</p> Tue, 20 May 2014 04:27:55 +0000 Brian Mackey 25483 at http://wuis.org Quinn Pitches Tax Plan To House Democrats Quinn To Meet With House Democrats On Budget, Taxes http://wuis.org/post/quinn-meet-house-democrats-budget-taxes <p>Illinois lawmakers return to Springfield Monday to begin the final two weeks of the spring legislative session. The big question remains whether Democratic leaders can convince enough rank-and-file lawmakers ... to make a higher income tax rate permanent.</p><p>Although Gov. Pat Quinn, Senate President John Cullerton, and House Speaker Michael Madigan all support making the temporary 5-percent income tax rate permanent — Madigan in particular has had a hard time getting fellow House Democrats to go along.</p> Mon, 19 May 2014 17:43:14 +0000 Brian Mackey 25446 at http://wuis.org Quinn To Meet With House Democrats On Budget, Taxes Speaker Wants Voters To Decide Minimum Wage http://wuis.org/post/speaker-wants-voters-decide-minimum-wage <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>Plans to raise the minimum wage in Illinois have struggled all spring. Instead of letting the proposal fail in the General Assembly, Democratic leaders want to put it to voters. The question on the November ballot would be non-binding.</p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">House Speaker Michael Madigan says he wants to ask voters a simple question: "Shall the minimum wage in Illinois for adults, over age 18, be raised to $10 an hour by January first, 2015?"</span></p> Fri, 16 May 2014 15:51:57 +0000 Hannah Meisel 25261 at http://wuis.org Speaker Wants Voters To Decide Minimum Wage House Democrats Pass Spending Plan (Barely) http://wuis.org/post/house-democrats-pass-spending-plan-barely <p>How much you'll pay in state taxes next year remains an open question, even as the Illinois House Thursday approved dozens of spending bills, that rely on a permanently higher tax rate. It sets the stage for a budget battle, just weeks before legislators are set to adjourn for the summer.</p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The Illinois House convened at 8 o’clock Thursday morning, and spent most of a very long day on the budget. Lawmakers began with a debate on funding Illinois' public education system, giving schools a slight increase over this year.</span></p> Fri, 16 May 2014 10:56:00 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 25235 at http://wuis.org House Democrats Pass Spending Plan (Barely) Business Groups Pan Madigan's EDGE Tax Credit Changes http://wuis.org/post/business-groups-pan-madigans-edge-tax-credit-changes <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>One of Illinois' main tools for attracting and retaining companies in the state would get a revamp under a plan unveiled yesterday by the Speaker of the Illinois House. It drew immediate criticism from business groups.</p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">More than 700 companies have what are known as EDGE tax credits, given in exchange for keeping, or creating new, jobs.</span></p> Thu, 15 May 2014 02:38:26 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 25138 at http://wuis.org Business Groups Pan Madigan's EDGE Tax Credit Changes Speaker Madigan's Budget Plan http://wuis.org/post/speaker-madigans-budget-plan <p>Members of the Illinois House are spending Wednesday afternoon in a series of budget hearings. The House Speaker says that's meant to lead the way to an income tax vote.</p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The hearings all focus on one thing: Illinois' next spending plan.</span></p><p>In particular, one that spends money as if Illinois' income tax rate is still 5-percent -- even though the rate is set to drop halfway through the next fiscal year.</p><p>Critics say it's illegal for the House to go forward spending at higher levels, without first voting to extend the higher tax.</p> Wed, 14 May 2014 18:04:57 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 25101 at http://wuis.org Speaker Madigan's Budget Plan Minority Groups Courted Before Redistricting Lawsuit http://wuis.org/post/minority-groups-courted-redistricting-lawsuit <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>A lawsuit seeking to keep two citizen's initiatives from ever coming before voters has been filed. Although the case makes no mention of how it will affect minority voters' rights, sources say organizers took pains to reach out to ethnic groups.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Two potential constitutional changes are at issue: one limiting how long legislators can be in office, the other stripping them of the power to draw their own districts.</span></p> Thu, 01 May 2014 10:11:00 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 24171 at http://wuis.org Minority Groups Courted Before Redistricting Lawsuit Committee Votes For $100 Million Toward Obama Library...Again http://wuis.org/post/committee-votes-100-million-toward-obama-libraryagain <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>A legislative committee Wednesday voted to authorize spending $100 million to lure Barack Obama's presidential library to Chicago ... for the second time.</p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Before he became President, Barack Obama served as an Illinois state senator and a U.S. senator. He worked as a community organizer in Chicago, and taught at the University of Chicago law school.</span></p><p>All reasons he might locate his presidential library and museum in Illinois.</p><p>But New York and Hawaii are also in the running.</p> Thu, 01 May 2014 00:11:40 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 24167 at http://wuis.org Committee Votes For $100 Million Toward Obama Library...Again You First ... No, You First: Tax Hike Timing http://wuis.org/post/you-first-no-you-first-tax-hike-timing <p>The Illinois House will take the lead on whether Illinois keeps its 5 percent income tax. It's scheduled to roll back at the end of this year unless legislators take action.</p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">It's happened in the past.&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The Illinois Senate will pass a controversial measure -- like a tax hike -- only for it to languish in the House.</span></p><p>Not this time.</p><p>Senate President John Cullerton says the Senate will vote on the tax question if and only if it first passes the House.</p> Mon, 28 Apr 2014 20:03:31 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 23990 at http://wuis.org You First ... No, You First: Tax Hike Timing Listen To State Week - April 25, 2014 http://wuis.org/post/listen-state-week-april-25-2014 <p></p><p>House Speaker Michael Madigan is elected to a 5th term as Chairman of the Illinois Democratic party and more allegations are being made that patronage plays a factor in hiring decisions at the Illinois Department of Transportation.</p><p></p> Fri, 25 Apr 2014 18:36:50 +0000 Bob Meyer 23805 at http://wuis.org Listen To State Week - April 25, 2014 Madigan: Vote Count Low For Graduated Tax http://wuis.org/post/madigan-vote-count-low-graduated-tax <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>Time is running out on a push for a graduated income tax income tax in Illinois and it remains to be seen whether a key legislative leader supports the plan.</p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Backers of the graduated tax say it's more fair than Illinois' current flat tax, because people who earn more can afford to pay more.</span></p><p>But enacting that requires changing the state constitution. Voters would have the final say at the ballot in November, but they won't even be asked if lawmakers don't approve it first.</p> Thu, 24 Apr 2014 16:58:57 +0000 Hannah Meisel 23961 at http://wuis.org Madigan: Vote Count Low For Graduated Tax House Holdup On Tax Hike, Minimum Wage http://wuis.org/post/house-holdup-tax-hike-minimum-wage <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;</span>Two major Democratic initiatives are still short the votes needed to pass, at least in the House, as the General Assembly heads into the final stretch of its spring session.</p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>&nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">How to deal with Illinois' income tax rate is arguably the biggest issue looming over Illinois politics.</span></p> Wed, 23 Apr 2014 18:34:08 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 23617 at http://wuis.org House Holdup On Tax Hike, Minimum Wage Initial Obama Library Vote A "Misunderstanding" http://wuis.org/post/initial-obama-library-vote-misunderstanding <p>Illinois legislators will vote a second time on a plan to spend $100 million to help lure Barack Obama's Presidential Library and Museum to Chicago, following a controversy.</p><p></p><p>A lesson in politics: Whichever party is in charge can often use the rules to its advantage. Like last week, when the Obama library proposal passed out of a Democratic-controlled House committee with nine votes ... even though only five representatives were there. Republicans had skipped the hearing, and many say they're opposed to spending the money given Illinois' financial situation.</p> Wed, 23 Apr 2014 01:05:35 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 23566 at http://wuis.org Initial Obama Library Vote A "Misunderstanding" Legislator Protests Madigan As Party Chair, Won't Say Why http://wuis.org/post/legislator-protests-madigan-party-chair-wont-say-why <p>The man who has led the Democratic Party of Illinois for the past sixteen years will hold onto that title, but he did face a rare display of opposition.</p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Party leaders met in Springfield today to re-elect House Speaker Michael Madigan as their chair.</span></p><p>There are those who view Speaker Madigan as an icon of all that's wrong with Illinois politics.</p><p>And then there are those who seem to see him as a Democratic demigod.</p> Tue, 22 Apr 2014 22:39:06 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 23563 at http://wuis.org Legislator Protests Madigan As Party Chair, Won't Say Why The Vanishing Millionaire Tax http://wuis.org/post/vanishing-millionaire-tax <p>House Speaker Michael Madigan pulled his plan for a so-called "millionaire tax" last week.&nbsp;&nbsp; The plan would have raised taxes on those earning $1 million or more a year, with the proceeds going to schools.&nbsp; It would have required a constitutional change.&nbsp;</p><p>Professor Brian Gaines has studied the idea.&nbsp; He's with the Institute of Government and Public Affairs at the University of Illinois.&nbsp; He called Madigan's change of heart a bit surprising:</p><p><strong>Brian Gaines' essay on the "millionaire tax"</strong> -</p> Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:04:43 +0000 Sean Crawford 23116 at http://wuis.org The Vanishing Millionaire Tax Madigan on Voting Rights: 'We Don't Know What The Future Holds' http://wuis.org/post/madigan-voting-rights-we-dont-know-what-future-holds <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The Illinois House has approved a proposal to add protections for voting rights to the Illinois Constitution.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The measure is sponsored by House Speaker Michael Madigan himself.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">In explaining why he thinks it's necessary, he recalled the federal Voting Rights Act, and the U.S. Supreme Court's recent decision to "modify" parts of that law.</span></p> Wed, 09 Apr 2014 14:10:53 +0000 Brian Mackey 22627 at http://wuis.org Madigan on Voting Rights: 'We Don't Know What The Future Holds' Madigan Throws Support Behind Raising Minimum Wage http://wuis.org/post/madigan-throws-support-behind-raising-minimum-wage <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>House Speaker Michael Madigan says there is "strong support" in the chamber for a hike in Illinois' minimum wage. That's one of the big issues in the governor's race.</p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Businesses don't like it, but a plan to raise Illinois' minimum wage from $8.25, to $10.65 an hour, is before the General Assembly.</span></p><p>Advocates continue to try to drum up the necessary votes.</p> Wed, 02 Apr 2014 17:27:53 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 22158 at http://wuis.org Madigan Throws Support Behind Raising Minimum Wage Madigan's Voting Rights Law Makes Strides http://wuis.org/post/madigans-voting-rights-law-makes-strides <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>As other states enact stricter voting restrictions, Illinois lawmakers are looking to protect against suppression. A House committee Tuesday advanced the constitutional change.</p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan was hard pressed when asked to give an example of a case in Illinois when an eligible voter was denied access to register or to take a ballot.</span></p><p>"I'm not in the position to cite examples ..."</p> Tue, 01 Apr 2014 17:00:46 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 22151 at http://wuis.org Madigan's Voting Rights Law Makes Strides