Sarah Mueller

2016 PUBLIC AFFAIRS REPORTING PROGRAM GRADUATE INTERN - STATEHOUSE

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Flickr/SEIU1

Editor's note -  More than 40,000 undocumented Illinois residents, who came to the country as children, are protected from deportation and are able to work under an executive order put in place by President Barack Obama. But during his campaign, Donald Trump pledged to “immediately terminate” the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program — often referred to as DACA. 

Labor unions are attacking Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner for several vetoes issues late last week. The Republican governor rejected measures that would have raised wages for state contractors that take care of the elderly and disabled.

Sarah Mueller WUIS

A referendum that would have asked voters to change Illinois' redistricting process was rejected by an Illinois court Wednesday. However, members of the group Independent Maps said they will appeal to the state supreme court.

University of Illinois administrators are warning employees that the state could retroactively increase their health insurance premiums. The university system recently held informational meetings at its three campuses in Chicago, Champaign-Urbana and Springfield.

Amanda Vinicky

U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, D-IL, said recent racial killings underscore the need for conversations about race relations and law enforcement, but there are also systemic issues that need more specifically addressed.

A new law makes a drug that counteracts opioid overdose easier to get. But is that enough?

Northlake resident Steve Kamenicky is lucky to be alive.

He’s 58 years old and says he’s used heroin for 46 years, starting at age 12. He has overdosed several times and nearly died, but he survived because of the medication naloxone hydrochloride, also known by the brand name Narcan. 

  Water from the city of Mount Sterling is flowing to Western Illinois Correctional Center, but money to pay for that water isn't flowing back from the state. Illinois owes the city of 2,000 people more than $300,000.

Sarah Mueller WUIS

Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner used his veto pen Friday to reject a measure that would have provided about $3.9 billion for higher education, mental health treatment and other programs.

The Illinois Department of Transportation plans to spend about $2 billion on roads projects for the next fiscal year that starts July 1, if there's a budget. But, the lack of a deal could kill the construction season. 

 


Even as Illinois is without a budget, the Illinois House has canceled its one-day session.

caduceus medical symbol
Pixabay

The Illinois legislature has passed legislation amending the state law that decides when doctors can object to caring for a patient based on moral principle.

Mike Zalewski
MikeZalewski.com

A measure that would legalize fantasy sports in Illinois is dead for the remainder of the spring legislative session.

The plan passed the Senate, but stalled in the House after a legislator accused a fantasy sports lobbyist of offering charitable donations in exchange for votes.

State Rep. Michael Zalewski, D-Riverside, is the measure's sponsor. He said because of the controversy, he's not going to call the plan for a vote this month. It's too much of a distraction with lawmakers struggling to reach a budget deal, but he says he will probably try again this summer.

Gov. Bruce Rauner
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

The Illinois Senate passed legislation Monday that would let the state museum reopen. The measure allows the state to charge an admissions fee for the museum in Springfield and branch sites. The governor closed the museum last fall to save money.

NPRIllinois

A measure that would legalize fantasy sports in Illinois is dead for the remainder of the spring legislative session. 

Gov. Bruce Rauner
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

Illinois' top lawmakers say budget talks are on the verge of collapse with the deadline for next year's budget just four days away.

Rep. Will Guzzardi
Dusty Rhodes / NPR Illinois

The Illinois House passed a measure Thursday to removes sales tax on feminine hygiene products sold in the state.

Sarah Mueller WUIS

A measure legalizing fantasy sports in Illinois has stalled in committee. A House representative says she saw an email suggesting donations for votes.

afscme31.org

Members of Illinois' largest public employee union, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, said they're disappointed legislators Wednesday failed to override Gov. Bruce Rauner's veto of legislation that could have had big consequences for their next contract.

Just who can use what bathroom has garnered headlines across the country. Illinois senators are calling for a ban on unnecessary government travel to two states with bathroom laws targeting transgender individuals.

Sarah Mueller WUIS

The group that wants Illinois to change the way it draws legislative boundaries has met another milestone to get the issue on the November ballot.

Sarah Mueller WUIS

Illinois is banking more than $600 million in debt through a little known program that helps state vendors get paid faster. Most of that is health insurance costs, but some is for information technology upgrades. But, while some businesses are benefiting from this program, others are not.

Illinois Times

Illinois is racking up more debt than even its comptroller knows about. Hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of bills are awaiting payment. They're part of a little known program that has lawmakers asking questions.

Rep. Frank Mautino reviews a COGFA report.
WUIS/Illinois Issues

Illinois Auditor General Frank Mautino told lawmakers Tuesday he doesn't want people to question his integrity. But he declined to respond to questions about alleged misuse of campaign funds.

Illinois Republican lawmakers used a legislative audit hearing to continue pressuring Mautino on what his critics call excessive, and possibly unethical, spending listed in his campaign finance reports.

Mautino, who took office in January after years as a Democratic state representative, said he'll answer those questions on May 16 at a hearing with the State Board of Elections.

Illinois Municipal League

Illinois cities want legislation that would give broad legal protections to government employees like first responders. It's a response to an Illinois Supreme Court decision in January.

Sarah Mueller WUIS

An Illinois citizens group on Friday moved a step forward in its aim to change the way the state draws legislative boundaries. The constitutional amendment its pushing would take the task of creating new maps from the state legislature and give it to an independent commission. But the proposal still faces hurdles to get on November's ballot.

ilga.gov

The sponsor of a proposal to move Illinois to a graduated income tax says he is going forward with it Wednesday after working to shore up support.

WUIS

A group of Illinois legislators failed to endorse Gov. Bruce Rauner’s plan to close the youth prison in Kewanee. But Tuesday's vote will not necessarily keep the facility open.

flickr/eggrole

An advisory board voted Monday to make a number of additional health conditions eligible for Illinois' medical cannabis pilot program. But Gov. Bruce Rauner's administration has previously rejected the board's recommendations.

Illinois Supreme Court
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

A youthful mistake could be a burden for life, according to a study released Thursday by the Illinois Juvenile Justice Commission.

Illinois business leaders say the state could significantly grow jobs related to math and science if it can develop the workforce needed to do those jobs.

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