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Construction sign at Broadway and Adams in Springfield
Sam Dunklau

For Illinois Roads, Needs Are Growing. Funding Isn't.

Experts say billions in a multi-year plan won't go far enough to address infrastructure repairs and upkeep. With help from the federal government, Illinois will put more than $2 billion toward infrastructure projects this year across the state's network of roads and bridges. But that network is underfunded by billions more, and what's the state has pledged is a far cry from fixing that. Just days before the budget passed in May, Gov. Bruce Rauner took a drive up to Peoria, stood across from a...

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Trending Stories

Burger King sign
Thomas Hawk / Flickr.com/thomashawk (CC BY-NC-2.0)

Illinois A.G. Investigating Fast Food Chains Over 'No-Poaching' Agreements

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan is investigating fast food restaurants over hiring practices. At issue are so-called no-poaching agreements . That’s where restaurant franchisees are prohibited from hiring people away from other franchise owners.

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Jennie Hodgers AKA Albert Cashier served in the Company G of the 95th Regiment, Illinois Volunteer Infantry, which fought at Vicksburg.
Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum

Little Soldier, Big Mystery

Education Desk

A version of this piece ran in February 2018.

Parents today struggle to set screen time guidelines.

One big reason is a lack of role models. Grandma doesn't have any tried-and-true sayings about iPad time. This stuff is just too new.

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Statehouse

Burger King sign
Thomas Hawk / Flickr.com/thomashawk (CC BY-NC-2.0)

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan is investigating fast food restaurants over hiring practices.

At issue are so-called no-poaching agreements. That’s where restaurant franchisees are prohibited from hiring people away from other franchise owners.

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Health+Harvest Desk

Farmers are entering their 5th year of low crop prices and now soybeans have reached a 10-year low, in part due to Chinese tariffs. Economists say this could be a pivotal year for farmers in Illinois and across the country. 

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Arts & Life

The Pharmacy / Jeff Williams

Nearly a century ago, a book was published by Vachel Lindsay called The Golden Book of Springfield. In it, he imagines a utopian version of the city, where by 2018 - its citizens have had religious and social awakenings. The ultimate message is one of unity.

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Equity

'Unsilence' Helps Communities Address Taboo Topics

Jul 9, 2018
Luke Adams

The separation of families at the US-Mexico border has caused many to voice outrage over what they see as an inhumane policy. Dozens of children separated from their parents have been placed in shelters in the Chicago area, part of a group of around 2,000 separated children placed across the country.

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Illinois Economy

Photo by Simon Abrams on Unsplash

Entrepreneurs and job-seekers in central Illinois can mark their calendars for December 3 and 4, 2018. Facebook is bringing a two-day workshop to Springfield.

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Flickr.com/thebuffafamily

Just over two weeks remain before the Illinois General Assembly is scheduled to adjourn for the summer, on May 31st. They still have a lot to deal with in that time — like pensions, concealed carry, same-sex marriage, and next year's budget. But an incident Wednesday in the Illinois House shows tempers are already starting to flare.

Amanda Vinicky

After several stumbles, an agreement  has been reached on how to regulate "fracking" in Illinois.  A House committee could vote on the package Thursday morning.  

  The oil and natural gas extraction technique known as hydraulic fracturing has been a boon for job creation in places like  North Dakota and Pennsylvania.

State legislators want the same in Illinois.

As do oil and gas drillers looking to make a handsome profit.

John Michael Presney is a Rochester native who’s spent the last couple years touring the country as part of a musical production that he played rockabilly star Carl Perkins in. But 25 year old Presney has crafted a music-style all his own. And he has a new EP called ‘The Nighttime and the Dawn’ to prove it.

  The third Springfield PrideFest is this Saturday. The all-day event celebrating gay pride includes food, drinks, and performances. The festival will be on Capitol Avenue between 4th and 6th streets downtown. WUIS’ Rachel Otwell recently spoke with Jonna Cooley about it, she’s the executive director of The Pheonix Center which puts on the event:

CLICK HERE for more info about the event on Saturday in downtown Springfield from noon to 9pm.

Rachel Otwell/WUIS

A local elementary school is teaching students about growing their own food with a hands-on project. Rachel Otwell recently visited the community garden across from McClernand Elementary School and spoke with instructors and students as they planted and tended to plots. She brings us this story:

Thinkprogress.org

Could Illinois be getting closer to legalizing the medical use of marijuana?  Dan Riffle is with the Marijuana Policy Project, which has lobbied state lawmakers to approve the law.  He was a guest on WUIS’ Illinois Edition with Sean Crawford. 

road construction
Gary Brown via Flickr (gsbrown99)

Less than half of the money in Illinois' Road Fund actually pays for highway construction and maintenance. That's the finding in a new audit (pdf) that also says the Road Fund overpaid for employee health insurance.

Calvin Christian

Members of the Springfield City Council are looking for a way to prevent further incidents like the one in April in which police records were apparently shredded or deleted after they were requested by a local reporter through the Freedom of Information Act.

Tuesday night aldermen passed out of committee an ordinance that would require all changes to union contracts be approved by the Council and signed by the Mayor.  Such contractual changes are known as memorandums of understanding, or MOUs. 

The Illinois House approved legislation Friday intended to crack down on so-called "flash mobs." It allows a longer prison sentence for anyone who uses social media to organize an attack.

 The Springfield school board decided last night it will begin interviewing search firms and may hire one to find a new superintendent for district 186. The district has an interim superintendent who took over for Walter Milton at the beginning of April. It’s been debated since then how to go about finding someone to permanently replace him.

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Community Voices

Community Voices: 'Legally Blonde' Brings a Story of Empowerment to the Springfield Muni

This Summer, the Springfield Muni celebrates what Legally Blonde star Zoey Zara calls the "Summer of women" sporting a lineup of shows all with female leads. "It's interesting, I was talking to the male cast members last night and one of them said 'You know, I don't sing as often as I thought I did." Said Apprentice Director Craig McFarland, "and I was like 'Because this isn't your show'." "Elle Woods was absolutely who I needed to have in my life at this point." Said Zara, "She's so positive...

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NPR Illinois Hiring - Sales AEs

NPR Illinois is hiring Sponsorship Account Executives . Seeking candidates with track records of success and the passion to innovate and sustain the public media mission. Sponsorship AEs will secure funding primarily from businesses, but also foundations and individuals to support the public journalism of NPR Illinois and the Illinois public radio network through sponsorships and acknowledgements in digital, broadcast and print media.

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Social Action - Thanks for Sharing!

Katie Davidson explains the mission of Innovate Springfield to podcamper Evan Klein
Katie Buck / NPR Illinois 91.9 UIS

PodCamp: One Local Woman Works to Innovate Springfield

Hello, I’m Evan Klein For the 2018 NPR Illinois PodCamp. Katie Davison, works for Innovate Springfield, a business incubator.

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Featured

Luke Adams

'Unsilence' Helps Communities Address Taboo Topics

The separation of families at the US-Mexico border has caused many to voice outrage over what they see as an inhumane policy. Dozens of children separated from their parents have been placed in shelters in the Chicago area, part of a group of around 2,000 separated children placed across the country. On July 21st, a Chicago non-profit group called Unsilence plans to hold a " human rights treasure hunt " in the city with a goal of provoking conversations about this and other issues that go...

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Illinois Issues

NPR Illinois 91.9 | UIS

Online Shopping Court Decision Brings Uncertainty To Illinois

The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision on online shopping left two things clear – consumers who buy online will have to pay sales tax on more items, and some states will see more money from those online purchases.

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Politics

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Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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The X from NPR Illinois | 91.9-3 HD

Folk Alley Presents: Kevin Gordon

Singer-songwriter Kevin Gordon stopped by Folk Alley recently for a session taping at Beehive Productions. Joined by Steph Graham on bass, Gordon performed material from his latest album, Long Gone Time . About this song, "Following A Sign," he told us: "This song is unusual for me, because I usually write about real people I've known. I heard the voice of the imagined woman telling her story in this song while reading a couple of different things around the same time: revisiting the Doris...

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NPR Illinois Classic | 91.9-2 HD

Classical Music Captures A Young Wife's Anxiety In 'On Chesil Beach'

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZR6DWDfMDlM The film On Chesil Beach opens with a cocksure Edward, played by Billy Howle, mansplaining the blues to his new wife, Florence, a classical violinist played by Saoirse Ronan . It's a snapshot of the young couple's relationship, which disintegrates throughout the course of the film due to mismatched expectations and fears of intimacy. Director Dominic Cooke, a veteran of theater making his feature film debut with this Ian McEwan novella adaption,...

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