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Kristofer Husted/Harvest Public Media

Liz Graznak runs an organic farm in Jamestown, Missouri, which she calls Happy Hollow Farm. She sells her vegetables to local restaurants, in CSA boxes and at the farmer’s market.  But eight years ago, after falling in love with the idea of growing her own local produce, the farm she runs today looked like a near-impossible dream.

This I Believe: Ripping The Band-Aid Off

41 minutes ago
Carter Staley / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

I believe in ripping the band-aid off. The band-aid of racial stereotypes that is.

Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

City governments across Illinois are asking to have their state funding passed along automatically. It’s the latest consequence of Illinois’ 20-month budget stalemate.

Manipulation of the truth has long been a tool commonly used by political leaders throughout the Western world, says Peter Fritzsche, a history professor at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

flickr/DennyArmstrong

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

This I Believe: That Kid

21 hours ago
Carter Staley / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

Everyone is unique in his or her own way, and more often than not they try to hide their distinctive qualities because of the fear that they will be viewed as weird or even as a pariah. Yet I have never found a reason to fear the opinions of others, or a circumstance not to be myself.

SPRINGFIELD – Blue vs. red, bear vs. bird, north vs. south – the competition between the Chicago Cubs and St. Louis Cardinals has divided Illinois for generations. Now the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum will offer an exciting new look at this piece of baseball history in “Cubs vs. Cardinals: The Rivalry.”

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Dan Stroud / Flickr.com/dstroud (cc-by-nc)

A group of Illinois legislators are pushing an agenda intended to help farmers who sell at local markets.

This I Believe: Insane Sanity

Feb 20, 2017
Carter Staley / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

Since the beginning of my life, my mother has been a bit of an odd duck. She isn’t crazy, but I wouldn’t say she is your normal fifty-year-old. She is a high school teacher and is always finding ways to brighten students’ days whether by giving them a piece of candy, a kind compliment, or literally sprinkling them with sparkles.

Bruce Rauner
Rich Saal / The State Journal-Register/Pool

The Illinois House is set to return to Springfield this week. Meanwhile, policymakers are still puzzling through last week's budget proposal by Gov, Bruce Rauner, partly because his administration made a significant break with tradition in rolling it out.

The immediate reaction to the governor’s proposal included confusion. Typically, the top budget aides to the governor meet with their counterparts in the legislature before the big speech. But not the Rauner administration.

State Rep. Greg Harris, a Democrat from Chicago, says this is “unprecedented territory.”

Bruce Rauner
Rich Saal / The State Journal-Register (pool)

Gov. Bruce Rauner issued his third budget proposal to the General Assembly this week (potential deficit: $7.2 billion). Meanwhile, a St. Clair County judge declined to rescind his order paying state employees even without the legislative authorization required in the Illinois Constitution (cost so far: $3 billion). That, a remembrance of the late Peoria Congressman Bob Michel, and more.

I was born and raised in and near Springfield. However it wasn't until I was a freshman in college over in Ohio that I was taught the NAACP was founded as a result of the 1908 Springfield Race Riot

thirdcoastpercussion.com

This year at the Grammys - Chicago native Chance The Rapper took home multiple awards, including one for Best New Artist. But another Chicago based group took home its first win, though the category it took the Grammy for goes a little more under the radar.

Bob Michel
Bill Hardin / Collection of the U.S. House of Representatives

Longtime Peoria Congressman Bob Michel has died. He led the House Republican caucus during a more congenial era in American politics.

Michel was House Minority Leader from 1981 to ’95.

Back then, Democrats ran the House. But rather than attacking or obstructing, Michel preferred to advance conservative causes through “gentle persuasion.”

In his farewell speech in November 1994, Michel reflected on his good working relationship with his Democratic counterpart.

Carter Staley / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

Low-income college students have a glimmer of hope now that Governor Bruce Rauner has included money for Monetary Award Program, or MAP grants, in his budget plan. But students already in school may not enjoy the benefit.

This I Believe: The Milky Way Theory

Feb 17, 2017
Carter Staley / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

My great grandma always loved Milky Way bars. She also loved assuming everyone else liked them, too. I remember her taking them out of her freezer and giving them to me, saying “Here, eat this,” to which I would reply, “No Grandma, I don’t like Milky Ways.”

St. Clair County Building
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

BELLEVILLE — St. Clair County Circuit Judge Robert LeChien has rejected a budget move by Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan. She’d asked the judge to terminate his order to pay state employees — even without a budget.

Amanda Vinicky / NPR Illinois

Gov. Bruce Rauner prides himself on robust funding for elementary and secondary education, and in yesterday's budget address, he promised a $213 million increase for k-12 schools. But State Sen. Andy Manar says only a fraction of that money will reach Illinois’ poorest school districts.

Illinois Student Assistance Commission

Eric Zarnikow is in charge of Illinois’ program to help low-income students pay college tuition, known as MAP grants. He cheered yesterday when Gov. Bruce Rauner proposed increasing MAP funding by 10 percent, saying it could accommodate 12,000 more students, or increase the size of the grants.

But one thing the proposal does not do is pay for MAP students in school today.

 

This I Believe: Superheroes Are Real

Feb 16, 2017
Carter Staley / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

We all need a hero. A hero is someone that we hold in high esteem, whether it be because they have superhuman strength or make us feel like superhumans with their kind words.

Facebook/Clinton Auto Auction

Disparate entities say laws in this area need to change at the state and national levels.

Bruce Rauner
Rich Saal / The State Journal-Register (pool)

Gov. Bruce Rauner delivered his third annual budget address to the General Assembly on Wednesday. Public broadcasting reporters across Illinois have annotated his speech.

nprillinois

Governor Bruce Rauner delivered his 2017 Budget Address to a joint session of the Illinois General Assembly Wednesday.  

 


Ed Wollet/Arlin Peebles

Private companies are not regulated when it comes to putting partisan or controversial content in public places. But that’s not to say they are protected from criticism when they or their employees decide to do so. One area trash company found that to be true after a photo of a bulletin board in one of its locations was shared on social media around 200 times (and counting), starting over the weekend.

“Brave is the new pretty.”  I saw these words on a plaque for a girl’s bedroom recently, and it heartened me.  I’m grateful to think that parents value the courage their children (male and female) will need to bring to our culture.

Pretty early on, kids figure out that this world is often a cruel one.  They experience a bite from another child at play group. Soon they watch as one child taunts another, and when they go to school they see real bullying in action.

Gov. Bruce Rauner
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Democrats say no. Rauner says yes. Brian Mackey tries to figure out who's right.

This I Believe: Trans-cendent

Feb 15, 2017
Carter Staley / NPR Illinois | 91.9

This I believe: I am who I am.

On October 6th, 1998, two men attacked Matthew Shepard, a gay college student. They beat him, tied him to a remote fence post outside of Laramie, Wyoming, and left. Shepard died on October 11th. His story brought national attention to homophobic violence for the first time.

I was born twelve days after Matt died.

ice.gov

Social media has proven an effective tool when it comes to organizing for advocates and activists. But it's also been proven effective at spreading misinformation, which now includes false warnings about immigration stings.

Digging a hole. A really deep hole.
David Stillman / Flickr.com/stilldavid (CC-BY-NC)

Gov. Bruce Rauner will make his annual budget address to the Illinois General Assembly this Wednesday. It comes as state government has gone more than 19 months without a real budget.

That’s led the financial experts at credit rating agencies to issue a series of downgrades and dire assessments. The latest is called "For Illinois, Having a Plan Beats No Plan." It comes from S&P Global Ratings, where Gabriel Petek analyzes state governments.

flyspi.com

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

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