News

voting booths
flickr/ Mortimer62

In a tight election, sometimes something as minor as where a name falls on the ballot can make a difference. The order for presidential candidates in Illinois has been determined as long as they all actually remain on the ballot.

Legacypointe.net

On this week's WUIS/State Journal-Register Business Report, we discuss Legacy Pointe development, or lack of it.  

III Tomassos Italian Bistro closed earlier this month and that has people talking again.  Many wondering, where is the outlet mall that was proposed?

In Springfield's downtown, one building will stay and another will go. 

We also talk about then Deer Run Mine in Hillsboro, which has closed following a fire.  Will it reopen?

Office of Rep. Andre Thapedi

Chicago State University won’t have funds to operate by March 1 if  state money is not released, officials there have said.

Killeen: U of I Is "Fiscally Prudent"

Jan 18, 2016
University of Illinois

University of Illinois President Timothy Killeen says he agrees with some of the concerns about excessive spending at public universities raised by an aide to Governor Bruce Rauner.

Jeff Bossert/Illinois Public Media

The Illinois Democrat says that with the Iowa Caucuses two weeks away… he believes even most Republicans couldn’t yet answer that question.

Durbin says in his experience… voters need to wait until early March, after a few primaries and caucuses… to get a true sense of who’s leading.

Woodstock Illinois web site

“It’s always Feb. 2nd and there’s nothing I can do about it,” complains Phil Connors, the character Bill Murray plays in the 1993 comedy Groundhog Day. Trapped in a time warp, Connors desperately tries to escape his fate day after day until he reexamines his life and discovers what really makes him happy.  

The time is ripe for the sharing economy in farm country.

  Governor Bruce Rauner has been in office one year this week and gave a series of short interviews in Springfield this week.  And with more than 100 people shot in Chicago in the just the first two weeks of 2016, the governor says the solution to the violence is passing his pro-business, anti-union agenda.
Gatehouse Media's Doug Finke joins the panel.

afscme31.org

The rift between Gov. Bruce Rauner and the state's public employee union has escalated. Friday morning Rauner announced he's asking the state labor board to decide if negotiations with AFSCME have reached an impasse.

A few days ago in an interview with Illinois Public Radio, Rauner -- a Republican -- said his bargaining team is spinning its wheels.

After roughly one year, and after 67 sessions, he claimed "AFSCME has refused to compromise off of their starting position, which was status quo with major increases in compensation, and other issues."

Rachel Otwell/WUIS

This week we are joined by Allison Lacher. She is a local curator and artist and she helped found and now run the DEMO Project gallery on the campus of the Springfield Art Association. She tells us about the efforts of the contemporary art scene in Springfield which she helps spearhead. We also spilled some out for David Bowie (not literally because it would have wrecked the lovely one-of-a-kind carpets at Edwards Place.

Jacksonville Area Convention and Visitors Bureau

A longtime festival in Jacksonville has come to an end.

Claudia Quigg headshot
mattpenning.com / NPR | Illinois Public Radio

The sun was setting and the snow was falling as we scampered to our car.   Jane’s wide eyes took in the flurry of snowflakes framed by the pink late afternoon sky.  Head back, mouth open—she giggled as she caught flakes on her tongue.  A sense of wonder took my breath away as I tucked away another memory.

There was nothing extraordinary about the event.  It was just another day as we scurried from one place to the next.  But for once, I had my wits about me enough to realize this was a moment I wanted to remember.  

Bruce Rauner
Brian Mackey / WUIS

Gov. Bruce Rauner endorsed the work of his criminal justice commission Thursday. He also made an unusual statement on prisons.

Commissioners are still working to reach Rauner’s goal of reducing Illinois' inmate population by 12,000 men and women over the next decade. They have delivered their first set of recommendations, and Rauner told commissioners he was excited about the report, calling it "excellent."

"What I can guarantee you: I will work tirelessly to make sure this isn't just something that just gathers dust," he said. "I’m going to implement this."

Bill Wheelhouse is retiring after over 20 years at NPR Illinois. 

press conference
Dusty Rhodes / NPR | Illinois Public Radio

Legislation filed Wednesday asks the state to provide $168 million owed to low-income college students who were promised MAP grants last fall.

Flickr user: Dean Hochman

Lawmakers return to Springfield with some new ideas, but the unfinished business of 2015 will likely overshadow other topics in the second year of the legislative session. 


Chicago's million-dollar blocks
chicagosmilliondollarblocks.com

State of the State Podcast:
A New Way To Think About 'High-Crime' Neighborhoods

Several Democratic lawmakers want to make it simpler for more than 2 million Illinois residents to sign up to vote.


A Chicago-area lawmaker has been pushing for a measure that would allow the city's mayor to be recalled. Now come efforts to take it a step further.

Illinois allows recall of elected officials -- or one of them anyway. It's a cumbersome process that only applies to the governor. Voters approved that in 2010 after the Rod Blagojevich scandal.

New proposals include one that would only apply to Chicago's mayor. A lawmaker introduced it following an uproar over Mayor Rahm Emanuel's handling of the delayed video release of a black teen repeatedly shot by a police officer.

wuis

 Gov. Bruce Rauner says his team is trying to assess its options after an apparent breakdown in talks with AFSCME last week. The union is bargaining on behalf of 36 thousand state workers for a new contract.

There's an impasse over whether there's an impasse. In this case, that's not just a synonym for "not going well." It's a high-stakes legal term, that basically signals the gulf that divides the two sides is so wide it can't be bridged, so there's no point to negotiating further.

Rauner says after a year and 67 bargaining sessions, he's seen no progress with AFSCME.

Springfield Wants State To Pay Utility Bill

Jan 12, 2016

The city of Springfield is pushing for the state of Illinois to pay its electric bill.

wikipedia

Gov. Bruce Rauner says passage of his pro-business Turnaround Agenda would help to curb violence in Chicago. Rauner recently said he's "disappointed" in how the Mayor Rahm Emanuel has handled the outcry over video of a police officer killing Laquan McDonald, a black teenager.

Your driver's license will suffice to get through airport security for another couple of years, even though Illinois doesn't meet federal guidelines under the REAL ID Act. Here's what Illinois needs to change if it's to comply.

Sarah Mueller

Tuesday, Jan. 12 marks Bruce Rauner's first anniversary holding the title "Illinois Governor."

The U.S. may be on the verge of a boom in new fertilizer plants, which could be good news for farmers, but not the environment.

I am not unique in that I am a huge David Bowie fan. So while I could probably muster up a remembrance about how he spoke to me as someone who saw herself as a weird kid - I will spare you. There are plenty of those to read. What I can't seem to get my mind around however, is that now - more than I ever noticed in his life - people are saying Bowie had a "problematic" past.

mrlib.org

Tim and Bill chat about the recent spate of business closings downtown & elsewhere.

Illinois Student Assistance Commission

When a police officer, firefighter or prison guard is killed or disabled in the line of duty, the state promises to provide their dependents with a college education. But the budget impasse has put that promise on hold, says Eric Zarnikow, director of the Illinois Student Assistance Commission.

afscme31.org

Some 36,000 state employees are members of AFSCME, Illinois' largest public employee union. Friday afternoon, the union announced that Gov. Bruce Rauner made a push to walk away from contract talks.


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