News

Amanda Vinicky

Iowa, Missouri and Wisconsin -- each collects private donations to help run their state fairs. But despite faulty infrastructure that will cost an estimated 180 million dollars to repair, Illinois does not.

It’s a windy day on the state fairgrounds in Springfield. Illinois' Director of Agriculture, Raymond Poe, laments a nearby building's crumbling roof.

"Agriculture represents about 25 percent of the economic value of the state of Illinois, all the way from farmers to exports. We need a place - and a high class place - to showcase our agriculture," he said.

During the season of Lent, many Catholics don’t eat meat on Fridays. Fish, though, is considered fair game, so the Friday night fish fry has become an annual tradition at churches across the country.

With the move to restore diplomatic relations with Cuba and President Obama's visit to the country, we remember a trip an Illinois governor took there nearly 17 years ago.

flickr/Mark Goebel

Sean Crawford talks with State Journal-Register Business Editor Tim Landis.

flickr/ GotCredit

The state will soon enter its 10th month without a budget, but spending continues and bills keep piling up. 

Trump and Rauner
Trump by Michael Vadon/Flickr / Rauner by Brian Mackey/WUIS

The Republican nominee for president will have Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner's support, no matter who he is.

Back when Rauner was running for governor, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie was often in Illinois, helping him campaign.

Rauner didn't return the favor when Christie tried to win the White House.

Despite having millions of dollars in his campaign fund, he has stayed out of the presidential primary. Rauner made no endorsements, and has generally skirted questions the race.

A mix of tourists and lobbyists milled about the rotunda of the Illinois Statehouse on Tuesday.
Brian Mackey / NPR | Illinois Public Radio

The Illinois primary election is over — so will lawmakers and Gov. Bruce Rauner finally pass a budget?

Some who watch state government closely say chances aren't so great. 

Rachel Otwell

In some schools around the state - fewer art classes are being taught. Meanwhile, art advocates say they help students creatively problem solve and art is crucial for a well-rounded curriculum.

The marketing executive who tried to lure businesses to Indiana by asking Illinois residents if they were ``Illinnoyed'' has crossed enemy lines, so to speak.  

Kelly Nicholl has been hired as the first marketing director for the Illinois Business and Development Corporation that Governor Bruce Rauner recently created.  

Crain's Chicago Business reports that until recently Nicholl was vice president for marketing with the Indiana Economic Development Corporation.  

Bee and aster, Isle Royale National Park
Robert Pahre / WUIS/Illinois Issues

Gardeners would lose a weapon against insects under a measure recently introduced in the Illinois legislature.

Brent Bohlen

When I was in seventh grade, my friends and I got our parents to drop us at the local small-town movie theater on Saturday nights. We would buy tickets at an enclosed booth, shell out a quarter at the concession stand for popcorn and settle into seats as close to our crushes as we could get without being too obvious.

Several of the races in this week's primary election were widely seen as a referendum on Gov. Bruce Rauner. In the two highest-profile races, the governor neither protected an ally nor vanquished a foe.

Grow Springfield

From novices to gardening veterans, you'll find plenty to keep you interested this weekend during the Homegrown Fest taking place at Lincoln Land Community College in Springfield.  The event is combined with the 13th annual Composting Symposium.

Sarah Mueller WUIS

Illinois senators voted along party lines Thursday on legislation that would spend $3.8 billion dollars to fund higher education and human services.

Illinois Symphony Orchestra

Celebrate in style with the Illinois Symphony Orchestra's Last Night of the Proms concert, a vibrant salute to British musical tradition. UIS ethnomusicologist Yona Stamatis speaks with Maestro Alastair Willis in a special sneak preview of the concert that offers rip-roaring fun for the entire family and a program of beloved orchestral works.

Sarah Mueller / NPR Illinois/Illinois Issues

Twenty years ago, Illinois adopted a school funding plan that relies heavily on local property taxes, leaving areas with low property values at the mercy of state aid. And for the past seven years, the state has failed to send those schools the full amount of aid promised under that plan.

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

The “Prayer of Serenity” asks for “the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can change, and the wisdom to know the difference.”

I thought of these words recently listening to an extroverted parent struggling over her introverted teen daughter.  This woman is a very gregarious person who comes to life when surrounded by friends.  On the other hand, her daughter likes spending time alone, listening to music, reading novels, and writing poetry.  

Wikimedia Commons

It's that time of the week to get our your planners and decide what do this weekend. Indie film preview sound nice? Perhaps some symphony? Listen in, and stick around for Culture Corner and our Song of the Week - we've got two vastly different tunes for you, plus we talk about the only instrument played without being touched...

http://www.op-cusd187-il.schoolloop.com/

The Illinois State Board of Education yesterday released a report showing that many school districts had improved their financial ratings, despite receiving less state funding. But the news wasn't all good. The board's annual review of financial data showed that most districts were operating more efficiently, but board members pointed out that these efficiencies came at a cost. Almost 60 percent of districts are in deficit spending, and many have been forced to cut fine arts and other electives. State school superintendent Tony Smith says it's not fair to students.

NWS

A stormy night in Springfield this week resulted in an EF-1 tornado touchdown on the city's  west side.

Board Approves Construction Of UIS Student Union

Mar 17, 2016
uis.edu

University of Illinois trustees have approved a plan to build the first student union at the school's Springfield campus. 

The Springfield Police Department issued the following on Wednesday.  The allegations stem from Groth's time as a school resource officer at Lanphier High School:           

Officer Rodney A. Groth, age 45, of the Springfield Police Department was indicted by a Sangamon County Grand Jury on the below listed charges:

Trump and Rauner
Trump by Michael Vadon/Flickr / Rauner by Brian Mackey/WUIS

With victories Tuesday in Illinois and elsewhere, Donald Trump is continuing his march toward the Republican presidential nomination. Those contemplating what a Trump presidency would look like might consider Illinois' ongoing case study in the promise and perils of the businessman-turned-politician.

Statehouse exit sign
Brian Mackey/WUIS

Illinois' primary may be over, but the friction between Governor Bruce Rauner and House Speaker Michael Madigan is not. Nor is their divide over the path forward.

Madigan's viewing the primary results as a sort of vindication, as though the contests were a referendum on Rauner's pro-business, anti-union agenda, and voters rejected it.

The Speaker points to two races as proof: his own, in which he fended off a candidate whom Madigan says was supported by "those aligned with the governor’s belief in how government should be run."

Illinois Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth, who is running for U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk's seat, sharpened her attacks against the Republican a day after winning the Democratic primary.

Two recently appointed state representatives held off primary challenges Tuesday night.

Springfield-area State Senator Sam McCann, R-Plainview, fended off a challenge Tuesday from fellow Republican Bryce Benton. McCann had been targeted for defeat after defying Gov. Bruce Rauner, also a Republican, on a key vote.

Hillary Clinton eked out a win in the state where she was born and raised, Donald Trump prevailed despite lackluster support from most of the state's GOP leaders, voters finalized who'll compete to represent Illinois in the U.S. Senate, and a couple dozen state legislative contests were decided Tuesday night in Illinois' primary election.

wikimedia

The stakes are high for candidates Tuesday in Illinois. Races are expected to be tight from the presidential nominations right down to state legislative contests. Even if you've moved or haven't yet registered to vote, there's still time.

Illinois politicians have themselves voted in recent years, to make it easier for Illinois residents to vote them in (or out) of office.

This is the first time voters statewide can take advantage of being able to register on election day.

flickr/Katherine Johnson

NPR Illinois' Sean Crawford talks with Tim Landis, Business Editor of the State Journal-Register.

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