News

flickr/DennisCarr

Residents who have experienced flooding are being warned to watch out for those trying to take advantage.

Rachel Otwell/WUIS

It's time to learn about what's the haps. This week, we get to know a local fixture in the Springfield scene. Scott Richardson heads the Legacy Theatre - a building that has had many incarnations and could have dilapidated into the ether if not for Scott. Now it's one of Springfield's most eclectic venues. He talks the 2016 season with Rachel and (other) Scott.

Events discussed this week include:

James Daniels

A local crew of actors has banded together to bring a decade back to life that has seen much popularity. The 1920s with its glitzy flappers, big band jazz and swing, and of course, the booze -- is not a decade hard to make glamorous. With shows like Downton Abbey, even the more mundane aspects of life, like working as a servant - have become something that draws people in.

BarackObama.com

President Barack Obama cited gun violence in his hometown Tuesday during a White House speech.

Obama says he's using his executive authority to put restrictions on firearms because too many innocent people, including children, have lost their lives to bullets.

"Every time I think about those kids, it makes me mad. And by the way, it happens on the streets of Chicago every day,” he said.

A supportive audience applauded the statement, as Obama used his index finger to wipe a tear from his cheek.

Bill Wheelhouse WUIS

A total of 23 Illinois counties are under state disaster status due to flooding. Gov. Bruce Rauner added 11 to that list Tuesday.

ArtsAlliance.org

The new year is bringing a big change for Ra Joy - who has been one of the state's leaders in art advocacy.He has spent the last seven years with Arts Alliance Illinois as its leader - but this month he switches roles and becomes the executive director for Change Illinois. It's another advocacy group - but one with broader goals for systemic change in government.  

Morguefile

You are what you eat. Those with the worst eating habits face the most negative health consequences. So doctors, especially those with low-income patients,  should be asking questions and offering information about good nutrition.

Blue Ice
RL Boston

Springfield would like to get its coal for CWLP at a lower price.  Bill and Tim talk about how that could affect an area coal mine.

Amanda Vinicky

A month ahead of the the Iowa caucuses, presidential contenders can officially file to run in neighboring Illinois. 

Five Republicans got their petitions in early Monday, with at least 3,000 signatures each.

The Illinois Republican Party's attorney John Fogarty says the popular vote for president is known here as the "beauty contest."

That's because who Illinois GOP primary voters pick as delegates -- who are listed on the ballot as supporters of a particular candidate -- is where the race is really won.

flickr/RubenHolthuljsen

Illinois' state climatologist says December weather that brought flooding to parts of the state also made it the second-wettest December in recorded state history. 

WILL

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner says he spent his nearly two-week holiday vacation in Spain and Morocco with his family.

Once you graduate from high school, you're ready for college. At least that's the theory. But the Illinois State Board of Education recently released data that shows for a significant number of students, that’s not the case. 

Record store
Todd Gehman (flickr.com/pugetive)

Gretchen Peters - Blackbirds      

This week, a look back at the past year in Illinois state government and politics.  WUIS News Director Sean Crawford and Illinois Issues Editor Jamey Dunn join the panel.

WUIS

The chances of Illinois state leaders approving a budget get better starting in January.

That’s because of a quirk in state law.

flickr/hjl

Some Republicans say Illinois could play a significant role in the GOP presidential nomination process - even though it’s late in the primary calendar.

Authorities were searching floodwaters for two 18-year-olds from the central Illinois community of Taylorville.  

Police say the two were last seen Monday and divers concentrated their search Wednesday near flooded areas of Sangchris Lake and Pawnee, where one of the teen's cellphone was tracked. 

Black legislators say Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner hasn’t done enough in the wake of the release of police shootings of LaQuan McDonald and other African Americans.

When asked by reporters, Gov. Rauner said he cried after watching the 2014 video of black Chicago teenager LaQuan McDonald getting shot 16 times by a city cop.

“That video — shocking, terrifying. I cried for the young man who was brutally shot," he said.

In recent days officers responding to a call killed two other black Chicagoans.

WUIS

The Illinois attorney general has ruled that Gov. Bruce Rauner's office has withheld too much information on his daily appointment calendars from taxpayers. 

John Cullerton, Bruce Rauner and Michael Madigan
Brian Mackey / WUIS

As we get ready to welcome 2016, we thought we’d take a few minutes to listen back to what’s been a difficult year in Illinois government and politics. There was an epic fight between Democrats and Republicans in Springfield, disgrace for two Illinois Congressmen, and a reckoning over violence in Chicago. Here now are some of the voices that made news in 2015.

Netflix

Happy (almost) new year! Scott and Rachel are here to tell you about a few things coming up this weekend, as well as tell you about some new developments in the scene.

Come Friday,  when the New Year begins, 237 new laws will be in effect in Illinois – about half of those that passed during Gov. Bruce Rauner’s first term. But the state is still without a budget as Rauner and lawmakers fight over a handful more.

Major rivers in flood-prone areas of Missouri and Illinois are creeping toward milestone or near-record crests.

Chamber
Flickr user: Matt Turner

More than 200 new laws will go into effect in Illinois on January 1.

PBS Great Lakes
US CPSC

When students return to class in January, their school buildings will be required to have carbon monoxide alarms.  A new law goes into effect Jan. 1.

This week, the panel reflects back on some memorable people and events in Illinois state politics and government over the past few decades, how things have changed, and how things have stayed the same.

flickr/michael chen

More people died from drug overdoses in the United States in 2014 than during any previous year on record. The numbers have doubled in just the past 15 years.   

flickr/meeshpants

Lawyers representing 11,000 mentally ill Illinois prisoners have reached a settlement with the state in a 2007 class-action lawsuit alleging that substandard treatment constituted ``cruel and unusual punishment.'' 

Attorney General Lisa Madigan says that daily fantasy sports betting is illegal gambling under Illinois law.

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