News

State Sen. Kwame Raoul
WUIS/Illinois Issues

Democrats in the Illinois Senate on Friday made another attempt to meet the demands of Gov. Bruce Rauner’s economic agenda.

The Republican governor has said the expense of workers compensation insurance has driven businesses out of the state.

State Week logo
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Senate Democrats go it alone on a tax hike — will their House counterparts follow suit? And what happens if legislators don't pass a budget by the scheduled end of session on May 31?

Daisy Contreras / NPR Illinois

Public schools would have to provide free feminine hygiene products in girls' bathrooms under legislation approved in the Illinois General Assembly.

Dusty Rhodes / NPR Illinois

As budget negotiations continue, one big piece of the puzzle is school funding. We check in with our Education Desk reporter to see which bills are on the table, what they would do, why some “news” outlets say districts would lose money, and whether there’s any chance a bill will pass.

 

The Scene Says 'So Long!'

May 25, 2017
NPR Illinois / Daisy Contreras

Rachel here. Just want to say it has been an absolute BLAST working with Scott over the past couple years, putting together segments solely devoted to arts & culture in central Illinois. 

Justin Wright

Some reformers say Illinois' minimum age for juvenile detention needs to go up.

Matthew Wilson (IG: @matchupee)

Lavender Country is the name of a band and an album that came out in 1973. It rattled some conservative cages, and then for a long while it seemed to be erased from the history books. Patrick Haggerty is the singer/songwriter, he had help with production from the Gay Community Social Services of Seattle. "At the time that we made Lavender Country we knew very well what it was. We also knew that the audience that was going to hear it was going to be out (of the closet), or coming out, and that the rest of the world was going to reject gay country music," says Haggerty.

Davis chatting with advocates
Dusty Rhodes / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

Lawmakers of both parties, and even Gov. Bruce Rauner, agree that Illinois doesn't fund schools in an equitable manner. But with the legislative session scheduled to end on May 31, they still can't agree on exactly how to fix it.

 

One plan earned bipartisan approval in a House committee today, clearing a procedural hurdle that positions it for possible speedy passage.

 

Thom Whalen, Chatham

Title: 4 Legs are Better-Keystone

Medium: Oil

Narrative: “4 Legs are Better-Keystone” reiterates the Animal Farm story by George Orwell. The trial of tears launched by Andrew Jackson relocated native Americans to the region of Oklahoma in 1839. Stereotypes of Indians are masqueraded in various memes throughout the work. Forced into a life not known to the native people they struggle in a white man’s world with casinos, salmon farms and their connection with nature left mutated by the Keystone pipeline.

Parenting is a task focused on the future. The very nature of raising children is to launch their future lives.  Parents want their babies to learn so they can succeed in preschool and get into Harvard so they can live happily ever after.

Even in the short term, conscientious parents focus on the future.  In the spring, parents plan for their children’s fall school enrollment.  In February, they decide about summer plans for their kids—camp, child care, activities, and maybe a family vacation.

WUIS

 

 

The Illinois Senate passed a budget package Tuesday after a similar plan failed last week. The difference was several new “yes” votes from liberal Democrats. No Republicans supported either plan.

Davis and Pritchard
Dusty Rhodes / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

It can be tough to find a bipartisan effort on any substantive issue at the capitol. But State Representatives Will Davis (a Democrat) and Bob Pritchard (a Republican) are still co-sponsoring House Bill 2808, designed to make school funding more equitable. These two lawmakers were both members of Governor Bruce Rauner's School Funding Reform Commission. That was a bipartisan, bicameral group that spent six months studying Illinois school funding issues and creating a framework for how to fix it. ​​​Last night, they sat down for an impromptu chat about their legislation, and why it keeps changing, with our education desk reporter, Dusty Rhodes.

 

 

Credit Carter Staley

NPR Illinois and WDCB hosted an Illinois Issues Forum on the state budget and how it has impacted DuPage County on May 23. 

SJ-R.com

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

NPRIllinois

As state lawmakers again consider expanding the number of casinos in the state, Springfield could wind up in the mix. 

We spoke with two artists to find out more about their works. The two are a couple who live in Springfield.

Dick Durbin
file / Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Illinois U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin says talk of impeaching President Donald Trump is premature.

That's at odds with positions taken last week by at least three of the Democrats running for governor in Illinois.

Marajuana plant leaves
Thomas de Aquino / flickr

The rate of positive test results for workplace drug testing is on the rise, both in Illinois and nationally.  But drill down a bit and you’ll notice regional differences in which drugs are more likely to show up.

Democratic State Sen. Andy Manar, of Bunker Hill, is accusing Gov. Bruce Rauner of trying to kill his school funding legislation. He says the administration fed erroneous information to a Republican operative's website.

The story in question appears in the Kankakee Times, one of a dozen community news organs created by Dan Proft. Proft runs a political action committee supported by Rauner.

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Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Senate Democrats hold another set of votes on what was once referred to as the "grand bargain," but Republicans say the deal isn't there yet. Can anyone in Springfield trust anyone else long enough to make something happen?

Meanwhile, Democratic gubernatorial candidate J.B. Pritzker is under attack by Republicans over his property taxes.

ilga.gov

Two school funding plans progressed in the Illinois legislature Wednesday. A plan sponsored by Sen. Andy Manar was approved in the Senate, while in the House, a very similar plan sponsored by Rep. Will Davis made it through committee. Does that mean lawmakers may have finally found a way to cure the state's infamously unfair school funding structure?

Carter Staley

Listen to a wide-ranging discussion of the art of the guitar, recently held in the WUIS Suggs' Performing Arts Studio.  UIS Professor of Ethnomusicology Yona Stamatis talked with guitarists Paul Galbraith and Jason Vieaux, conductor Andrew Sewell, and UIS Adjunct Professor of Guitar Derick Cordoba.

facebook.com/Club-Station-House

This year will be the seventh one to see a PrideFest in Springfield, celebrating the local LGBTQ+ community through food, entertainment and fun. This year there's the new addition of a parade to kick off the event, and its Grand Marshal is Angelica Sanchez - the drag queen who was the lead performer at Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida.

The Scene Previews PrideFest In Springfield

May 18, 2017
courtesy

This week Rachel and Scott talk PrideFest, which happens this weekend in Springfield. This year, for the first time there will also be a parade. Read Scott's story about it here. Also this weekend, the Springfield Old Capitol Art Fair ... and much more. 

Illinois Issues: State Marches Toward Clean Energy

May 18, 2017
Dylan Blake

Even as a landmark clean energy plan unravels in D.C., Illinois is on track to meet the coal emissions reduction goals it set.

Jason Barickman and other members of the Illinois Senate Republican cuacus.
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Illinois Senate Democrats on Wednesday passed part of a budget plan for state government.

If it also passes the House and is signed into law, it would be the first real budget Illinois has had since 20-15. But that’s a big “if.”

Dina Anderson

NPR Illinois hosted a forum on the state budget in Champaign on May 17. 

Community members attended to tell how they have been impacted by the state budget impasse.

Panelists included Governor Jim Edgar, U of I President Tim Killeen, director of the U of I Institute of Government and Public Affairs Chris Mooney, and AARP Illinois President Rosanna Márquez. The forum was moderated by WILL Morning Edition host Brian Moline. 

An old friend visited me recently.  She’s raising a lovely 18-year-old son who I’ve known since he was an active toddler.  

During our conversation she shared enthusiastically about her son’s serious commitment which has led to his becoming a violin virtuoso, participating in an outstanding youth symphony with many performance opportunities.  He’s currently auditioning for several universities and hopes to attain a scholarship to pursue his musical studies.

Gov Candidate Bob Daiber Talks Downstate

May 17, 2017
BobDaiber.com

A crowded field of Democratic candidates has emerged with 10 months still to go before the Illinois primary for governor. Five men have announced plans to run for the party's nomination to unseat Republican Governor Bruce Rauner, who will seek a second term in the state's highest office. 

Delinda Chapman, Springfield

Title: “Follow Me”

Medium: Acrylic/Mixed on Paper on Board

Narrative: This painting grew from working with the word immigration. The end result, stemming from my feelings about immigration, is this painting - the first in my series on immigration.

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