Sam Dunklau

Public Affairs Reporting Intern - Statehouse

Sam is a Public Affairs Reporting intern for spring 2018, working at the NPR Illinois Statehouse bureau. Since 2015, he's been floating around the radio airwaves as a reporter, disc jockey, and station manager.  A multimedia journalism degree from Augustana College now rests comfortably under his belt. 

Ways to Connect

An advocacy group says Illinois schools are in need of more diverse history lessons. Equality Illinois is behind a new statehouse proposal that would require the curriculum to include lessons on people who made history and were LGBTQ+.

 

Mike Ziri , the group’s Public Policy director, said many of the state’s school-aged children who don’t identify as heterosexual feel left out of history lessons.

Check cashing signage
Eden, Janine and Jim / Flickr/ https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

A group of Illinois state legislators want to lower check cashing rates at currency exchanges — while the industry is pushing to raise those rates.

 

Last summer, the industry told Illinois’ financial regulator it hadn’t been allowed to increase service fees since 2007, and the time had come for a raise. 

Illinois Campaign for Political Reform via press release

The polls have opened for Illinois’ primary election, as voters were allowed to start casting early ballots Thursday. But the state’s election technology needs to be overhauled, according to the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform.

 

Greg Harris speaking at a subcommittee meeting
Sam Dunklau / NPR Illinois 91.9 FM

Democrats in Springfield are pushing ahead with a plan hospitals say can’t come soon enough. It’s worth billions of dollars for treating some of the state’s most vulnerable people. 

Sam Dunklau / NPR Illinois 91.9 FM

Illinois families could use their college savings plans to send their younger kids to K-12 private schools under a new plan.


Flickr/michellehurwitz / https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Customers across Illinois could see lower utility bills as early as next month. The state’s regulatory body has ordered Illinois companies to slash their rates.

Sam Dunklau / NPR Illinois 91.9 FM

The same people who pushed the smoking ban through in Illinois a decade ago were back in Springfield Tuesday, and they want the state legislature to bump up the legal tobacco age from 18 to 21.

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Bill_Comstock / flickr - https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

As Democrats and Republicans try to make local property taxes into an election-year political issue — state lawmakers are looking to cut tax rates for senior citizens.

Sam Dunklau / NPR Illinois 91.9 UIS

 

Farmers and state officials in Illinois are worried about potential cuts to a federal land conservation program. It pays landowners to set aside land for things like wildlife habitat. 

  

Summary  

Sam Dunklau / NPR Illinois 91.9 FM

With primary season underway, AARP Illinois is ramping up efforts to educate voters before they head to the polls next month.

 

Originally published on January 18, 2018 3:34 pm

Hospitals in Illinois are warning of dire federal funding cuts without quick action from the state legislature.


CREDIT FLICKR USER / MICHAEL COGHLAN "PRISON BARS" (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Governor Bruce Rauner signed a bill Tuesday that's meant to help women in state prisons.