News

Pages

Arts and Culture
12:30 pm
Wed November 26, 2014

Another Year Of "Messiah" For Springfield Choral Society

Credit Courtesy of the Springfield Choral Society

You can hear The Springfield Choral Society perform Handel's Messiah on Saturday, November 29th at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception (524 E. Lawrence Ave) at 7:30 pm.

 Choral Director Marion van der Loo joined us for this interview about it: 

Read more
History
11:33 am
Wed November 26, 2014

New Exhibit On Lincoln's "Undying Words"

Credit ALPLM

Visitors to the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum will have a rare opportunity to see some important historical documents and others items pertaining to the 16th president. 

"Undying Words - Lincoln 1858-1865" is a new exhibit that showcases the Emancipation Proclamation, the 13th Amendment, the Gettysburg Address and more. 

"We wanted to focus on what was critical in Lincoln's life and in the nation's life.  And that comes down to his last 7 years," said James Cornelius, Curator of the Lincoln Collection.

Read more
Ferguson
9:27 am
Wed November 26, 2014

Locals Organize For Vigil In Response To Ferguson

Reggie Dale & Sr. Mary Jean Traeger
Credit Rachel Otwell/WUIS

 

Dozens of people gathered last night at the Union Baptist Church on the east side of Springfield for a prayer vigil. It was held in response to recent news out of Ferguson, Missouri.  

 

Read more
Regional
7:27 am
Wed November 26, 2014

Illinois Hunters Kill 52,000 Deer Over The Weekend

Credit Illinois Trophy Bow Hunters

Illinois hunters have killed nearly 52,000 deer during the first weekend of the state's firearm hunting season.  
 The state Department of Natural Resources said Tuesday the preliminary total is 51,830 deer for the Nov. 21-23 weekend.

That's down from nearly 56,000 during the first weekend of the 2013 firearm season. Jackson County had the largest harvest last weekend with about 1,500 deer.  

The second segment of the 2014 season is Dec. 4-7.  

Read more
Harvest Desk
8:50 pm
Tue November 25, 2014

High Turkey Prices Unlikely To Impact Consumers

Credit flickr/Calgary Reviews

Wholesale turkey prices are at an all-time high this Thanksgiving, but you may not see that at the grocery store.

Farmers raised fewer turkeys this year than they have in the past three decades - about 235 million gobblers, according to the US Department of Agriculture.

Ann Knowles raised seventy on her small farm in western Illinois. She coops up the plump birds at night to guard against predators, but lets them roam freely during the day.

KNOWLES  "They get to strut. And they chase in bugs. So I think they’re little dinky brains are probably pretty happy."

Read more
Pensions
5:42 pm
Tue November 25, 2014

Pension Ruling "Credit Negative," But No Ratings Change

The final Illinois House vote on the 2014 pension overhaul.
Credit Amanda Vinicky

Credit ratings agencies have taken notice of the court ruling on Friday that tossed out Illinois’ law reducing workers’ pensions. But they’re not worried enough to lower the state’s rating.

Illinois’ credit rating remains unaffected by last week’s court ruling, which found a landmark pension law to be unconstitutional. But agencies are watching.

Credit ratings are important as, the lower the rating, the more it costs the state to borrow.

It’s also an important indicator of a state’s relative fiscal health.

Read more
Business
3:13 pm
Tue November 25, 2014

Tim Landis: Foreclosure Sales, CIPS Icehouse and Heritage River Trail

Credit Jeff Turner/flickr

WUIS' Sean Crawford talks with Tim Landis, Business Editor for the State Journal-Register, on our weekly business report. 

This week, we hear about foreclosure sales returning to normal levels in the Springfield area.  We also discuss a study of the Heritage River Trail from Petersburg to Decatur and what improvements could be made to help tourism and recreation. 

Also, a court-ordered deadline is fast approaching to clean up the former CIPS Icehouse at 918 E. Edwards St.

Read more
Ferguson
11:36 am
Tue November 25, 2014

Notes From Ferguson: Q & A With St. Louis Public Radio's Rachel Lippmann

Tear gas was used in Ferguson
Credit Willis Ryder Arnold | St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis Public Radio's Rachel Lippmann has been covering the situation in Ferguson, MO since it started back in August. She was at the announcement made by Prosecutor Bob McCulloch on Monday night that a grand jury chose not to indict police officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of Michael Brown.

In this interview, Lippmann tells us about the reactions from Brown's family, protests and riots, and more:

Read more
Statehouse
7:12 am
Tue November 25, 2014

Madigan Says Court Could Rule On Pensions In January

Credit Marsy's Law for Illinois

Attorney General Lisa  Madigan says if the state supreme court agrees to an expedited hearing...  a ruling on the state's pension law could come by January,.

Read more
Illinois Issues - Leadership
4:53 pm
Mon November 24, 2014

Who Will Work In A Rauner Administration?

Credit WUIS

Republican Bruce Rauner campaigned on his ability to spur job creation in Illinois. He'll get a head start -- of sorts -- choosing hundreds of new state employees.

To the victor go the spoils, and in state government, that means jobs. 

While a governor is boss of all state employees, he doesn't get to choose most of them (the majority of workers stay on no matter who is in charge; politics are supposed to stay out of hiring). 

Read more
Illinois Issues - The Scene
12:33 pm
Mon November 24, 2014

Plans For First Night Springfield Revealed

Courtesy of Springfield Area Arts Council

It's the 28th year for the family-friendly New Year's Eve event. The Springfield Area Arts Council is hosting a 5K run the Sunday before December 31st.  An optional buffet dinner is also back for a second year. And First Night's Laura Vaught highlighted a new participant: 

Read more
Illinois Issues - Economy
6:40 am
Mon November 24, 2014

Part Timers & Manufacturing In Illinois Feeling A Slow Economic Recovery

Mark Selvaggio, President of Selvaggio Steel in Springfield says workers compensation cost and unpredictable tax environment are slowing manufacturing.

For fans of baseball,  teams have already announced the late winter dates for pitchers and catchers to report for spring training.

When evaluating Illinois’ recovery from the recession, economist James Glassman uses a baseball analogy.  The head economist for commercial banking with JP Morgan Chase says Illinois has only reached the fifth inning in the recovery. 

“We are only half way out of the hole we are in.  It has taken five years to get where we are.  Most recoveries take seven years,” says Glassman.

Read more
Regional
3:51 am
Mon November 24, 2014

Midwest Travel: Starved Rock In The Winter

LaSalle Canyon in Starved Rock State Park
Credit flickr/Curtis Albert

If you are in the mood to travel, you might think about far away distances.  But there are plenty of things to see right here in Illinois and the midwest.  That's the focus of a new segment on Illinois Edition on WUIS. 

Mary Bohlen and Mary Galligan write travel articles for the Illinois Times.  Their trips are within a day's drive.  They look for affordable, family friendly destinations.  From state parks to small towns to big city amenities.

.

Read more
Pensions
1:17 am
Mon November 24, 2014

Ears Turn To Supreme Court For Next Pensions Cue

Gov. Pat Quinn is surrounded by legislative leaders and lawmakers who helped write the pension plan, as he signs it into law.
Credit Harvey Tillis / Illinois Information Service

Although one court has tossed out Illinois’ mega pension overhaul, state leaders are likely to wait on another legal opinion before deciding what to do next.

There’s no question -- the Sangamon County Circuit Court judge’s ruling is meaningful. But Attorney General Lisa Madigan’s office is appealing to the state Supreme Court.

Madigan has said it makes sense for lawmakers to wait to hear from those justices.

Read more
State Week
6:27 pm
Fri November 21, 2014

Listen to State Week - November 21, 2014

Credit Dan LoGrasso / WUIS

The Sangamon County Circuit Court rules last year’s pension legislation unconstitutional.  Bruce Rauner is busy making preparations to move into the Governor’s Mansion.  And Frerichs beats Cross in a very close Treasurer’s race.

Read more
Statehouse
5:39 pm
Fri November 21, 2014

State To Refund Retiree Health Care Money

Credit Brian Mackey/WUIS

The state will refund money to about 75,000 state retirees who've been paying a portion of their pensions for health insurance over the last year and a half after a court hearing in Sangamon County.
 
Judge Steven Nardulli on Friday scheduled a Dec. 18 hearing to establish how to
distribute more than $60 million to the retirees. Attorneys estimate the money
will be returned by spring.                                                     
 
Retirees began paying a percentage of their annuity under a 2012 law.
 

Read more
Nation/World
1:25 pm
Fri November 21, 2014

Champaign Theatre Cancels Bill Cosby Shows

Credit Wikipedia/Public Domain

Bill Cosby's two shows next April at a theater in Champaign have been canceled in the wake of allegations the famed comedian sexually assaulted women.  

The (Champaign) News-Gazette reports Friday (http://bit.ly/1uKI0sp ) that Champaign Park District Executive Director Joe DeLuce said canceling the shows at the Virginia Theatre was a difficult decision. DeLuce says the district made the decision because the Cosby scandal ``keeps on growing.'' Ticket holders will receive full refunds.  Other venues also have canceled Cosby shows in recent days.  

Read more
Illinois Syphony Orchestra
1:10 pm
Fri November 21, 2014

Illinois Symphony Orchestra Joins The Circus For Holiday Pops

Credit http://www.ilsymphony.org/

From the Illinois Symphony Orchestra Site: “Enter the fanciful world of Circus Flora at our Holiday Pops in the Heartland concert. Set among the High Tatras Mountains in the ancient and beautiful Kingdom of Spiish, A Winter Fable is a classic fairy tale with an edge of romance and deceit. Fabulous family fun where symphony and the circus arts is only the beginning of this spectacular evening!”

Read more
Illinois Issues - Education Desk
10:48 am
Fri November 21, 2014

School Funding Testimony Taken At Capitol

State Senator Andy Manar speaks to supporters of his school funding bill at a rally in the capitol prior to the committee hearing.
Credit Dusty Rhodes

The House Committee on Elementary and Secondary Education held a lengthy hearing this week on a bill that would drastically change the way Illinois distributes state education funds. Senate Bill 16, sponsored by Senator Andy Manar of Macoupin County, would send more money to schools where property values are low, while decreasing the amount sent to schools in wealthier Chicago suburbs. 

Read more
This Old House
8:56 pm
Thu November 20, 2014

To Restore Executive Mansion, Rauner Plans Private Funds

Gov.-elect Bruce Rauner took questions from reporters Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014, in his first Statehouse news conference.
Credit Brian Mackey/WUIS

Gov.-elect Bruce Rauner visited the Executive Mansion during his trip to Springfield Thursday.

Read more
Statehouse
5:42 pm
Thu November 20, 2014

Cullerton: State Income Tax Hike Won't Be Extended Before New Governor Takes Over

Sen. President John Cullerton
Credit Illinois Senate

Illinois Senate President John Cullerton says lawmakers are heeding Gov.-elect Bruce Rauner's  advice and won't extend the state's temporary income tax increase.
 
Rauner advised lawmakers not to take up any substantive issues before he's
sworn in.
 
Cullerton, a Chicago Democrat, says the Republican Rauner has ``a little honeymoon period'' during his first weeks in office and the Legislature is ``giving him his first victory.''
 

Read more
Breaking
5:24 pm
Thu November 20, 2014

Judge Finds Reductions In Pension Benefits Unconstitutional

Several legal challenges to the pension law were consolidated in Sangamon County. The county's courthouse is in downtown Springfield.
Credit Amanda Vinicky

An Illinois judge has ruled that a law intended to fix the nation's worst-funded state employee pensions violates the state Constitution. Sangamon County Circuit Judge John Belz ruled Friday in favor of state employees and retirees who sued to block the state's landmark pension overhaul.

At issue was whether lawmakers defied the Illinois Constitution by passing a law that reduces state workers', public school teachers' and university employees' retirement benefits.

Read more
Health Desk
2:12 pm
Thu November 20, 2014

New Efforts To Track Antibiotic Resistance

Credit Courtesy of SIU School of Medicine

This week is "Get Smart about Antibiotics Week." It's meant to address the fact that a large amount of antibiotics are used inappropriately, which can lead to what are known as "super bugs".

Read more
Let's Talk Kids
1:25 pm
Thu November 20, 2014

Let's Talk Kids - "Love Is Love"

Credit mattpenning.com 2010 / WUIS/Illinois Issues

The most significant change in family functioning I have seen in my nearly thirty years of working with families is the changing role of dads.  By some estimates, over the last twenty years, the amount of time fathers spend with their children has doubled.  And most of that increase is spent in real caregiving tasks, like feeding, bathing, and the other daily tasks of raising children—even when they require an adjusted work schedule. In some families, dads are staying at home to raise kids.

Read more
In With The New
12:48 pm
Thu November 20, 2014

RAW TAPE: Bruce Rauner's First Statehouse News Conference

Gov.-elect Bruce Rauner speaks with reporters in the Statehouse on Nov. 20, 2014.
Credit Brian Mackey/WUIS

Gov.-elect Bruce Rauner visited Springfield on Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014. He met with legislative leaders and other elected officials, and held his first Statehouse news conference. Listen to the full audio:

Read more
Illinois Issues - Leadership
12:38 pm
Thu November 20, 2014

Rauner To Quinn: Freeze Hiring. Now.

Gov.-elect Bruce Rauner holds his first press conference at the state capitol; it was right outside the Comptroller's office ... and the offices of Gov. Pat Quinn's senior staff.
Credit Brian Mackey/WUIS

Illinois' incoming governor has asked the outgoing one to put state hiring on hold for the remainder of his term.

Even as he was being impeached, former Gov. Rod Blagojevich kept making key appointments. A new Dept. of Natural Resources chief; Barack Obama's open U.S. Senate seat.

Gov. Pat Quinn is by no means under that sort of dark cloud.

And Gov.-elect Bruce Rauner says he has no reason to believe Quinn's doing anything inappropriate.

Read more
Education Desk
11:52 am
Thu November 20, 2014

Incoming U of I President Speaks To Springfield Audience

Timothy Killeen
Credit WUIS/Bill Wheelhouse

Timothy Killeen, who has been selected as the next president of the University of Illinois travelled to the university's three campuses. Killeen who will be the 20th U of I President has been the vice chancellor for research at the State University of New York.   A researcher in geophysics and space sciences, he will start his new job in July.  He spoke about his goals and what he sees for the University's Springfield campus.

Read more
Illinois Issues - The Scene
9:57 am
Thu November 20, 2014

Fumée Gypsy Project Plays At WUIS

Christy Bennett is a Springfield native who now lives in Chicago where she heads the band Fumée Gypsy Project. Bennett sings and plays accordian. The music they play is called “gypsy-jazz”, made popular by artists like Django Reinhardt. Bennett stopped by the Suggs Studio at WUIS with band mates Casey Nielsen (guitar) and Nate Baker (mandolin).

Read more
Minimum Wage
2:43 pm
Wed November 19, 2014

Latest Minimum Wage Hike Goes To Eleven

Gloria Davis says she won't give the temp agency she works for the satisfaction of publicly stating its name. She says her $8.25 wage isn't enough for her to afford housing in Chicago. She's calling for legislators to raise Illinois' minimum wage.
Credit Amanda Vinicky

The sponsor of a minimum wage hike says she'll push to get it passed during the legislature's veto session, which began today, Tues. Nov. 19.

Sen. Kim Lightford, a Democrat from Maywood, pointed to the results of a non-binding referendum. Sixty-seven percent of Illinois voters said “yes," Illinois should raise its minimum wage to $10 an hour by Jan. 1, 2015. The current rate is $8.25.

Results showed support for an increase in much of the state, including traditionally Republican areas, like the Chicago suburbs and downstate.

Read more
Election 2014
1:51 pm
Wed November 19, 2014

Frerichs Declares Victory In Illinois Treasurer's Race

Mike Frerichs
Credit WUIS

Democratic state Senator Mike Frerichs appears to have won the race to be the next state treasurer.

If the current totals hold, this will go down in history as one of Illinois' narrowest general election victories.

According to the independent Illinois Election Data website, Frerichs won by fewer than 10,000 votes — a fraction of a percent of the 3.5 million votes cast.

No matter, a win is a win, and Republican state Rep. Tom Cross conceded the race.

Read more

Pages