State News

State news stories and features from Illinois Public Radio.

The Fraternal Order of Police is urging legislators to override Governor Bruce Rauner's veto that could have major ramifications on state employees' next contract.  

A central Illinois woman accused of killing her boyfriend's pit bull puppy in a hot oven has agreed to a jury of six people instead of 12.

A judge has taken a preliminary step toward allowing a professor suing the University of Illinois over the loss of a job offer to pursue a claim that the university destroyed evidence.

Supporters of an Illinois doctor say a disciplinary case could have a chilling effect on other doctors' participation in the state's medical marijuana program. 

John Picken Photographer

Testing by the Cook County agency handling sewage and storm water shows high levels of bacteria from human waste at more than a dozen spots along the Chicago River.

Illinois has asked a federal judge not to hold it in contempt for failing to meet a court-ordered deadline to pay social services providers, arguing compliance should "not mean doing the impossible."

Relatives and civil rights activists gathered at the grave site of Emmett Till to remember the black Chicago teenager 60 years after he was killed for whistling at a white woman in Mississippi.

A health official says the number of confirmed cases of Legionnaires' disease at the Illinois Veterans' Home in Quincy has nearly tripled to 23.

Big-time Illinois Lottery winners aren't getting the payout they're owed.

U of I Coach Beckman fired

6 hours ago
(AP Photo/Paul Beaty)

Tim Beckman has been dismissed as the University of Illinois’ head football coach, in connection with allegations involving the football program.

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Gov. Bruce Rauner has signed a bill that will allow a southern Illinois township board to vote to dissolve the unit of government to save taxpayer funds. The legislation signed Thursday by Rauner permits the dissolution of Belleville Township without a vote of residents. The township shares a name and boundaries with the southern Illinois city.

 DES PLAINES, Ill. (AP) - Authorities worked into the night after a hazardous materials incident at a suburban Chicago town house left two men dead and a woman critically injured. Officials have not revealed the nature of the hazardous material involved. Emergency crews went to the home in unincorporated Des Plaines on Thursday afternoon after a call for help that there were people in distress in the garage of the house.  The Cook County Sheriff's Department says four officers at the scene had trouble breathing and were hospitalized for evaluation. They were later released.


The mumps outbreak at the University of Illinois stands at over 100 cases after the first week of classes. Those who have contact with the U of I are now being encouraged to get an extra dose of the mumps vaccine. Most who’ve come down with the disease had already been vaccinated. Champaign-Urbana Public Health Department administrator Julie Pryde says the outbreak is a "public health crisis", an exasperating one.


A marijuana advocacy group is urging Illinois lawmakers to accept Governor Bruce Rauner's changes to a marijuana decriminalization plan. 

danxoneil / Flickr/Creative Commons

A judge has called off Friday’s hearing on former congressman Aaron Schock's cooperation with a federal investigation after he turned over 10,000 financial records.

U.S. District Judge Sue Myerscough ordered the Peoria Republican to provide her with documents in a probe of his office and campaign spending. Schock believes the government doesn't have a right to see them.

  BELLEVILLE, Ill. (AP) - Three southern Illinois judges plan to retire in name only to avoid retention elections that require 60 percent approval rather than a simple majority of votes. John Baricevic, Robert Haida and Robert LeChien have filed paperwork to retire in December 2016 but also seek to keep their jobs in the previous month's general election. Baricevic said that a general election campaign allows him to speak more freely on political issues that sitting judges can't discuss under the state's judicial ethics' code.

  CHICAGO (AP) - Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker will visit the Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation Institute on Friday in Chicago.  The institute is a UI Labs collaboration and a key part of the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation. President Barack Obama created the national network to strengthen America's competitiveness worldwide in manufacturing and the workforce. The innovation institute is focused on digital manufacturing and design. That's the ability to connect different parts of the manufacturing system through data.

CHICAGO (AP) - The city of Chicago is continuing its legal battle with five drug makers it accuses of deceptively marketing a class of prescription painkillers that can be highly addictive. Attorneys for the city filed a revised complaint Wednesday in federal court in Chicago. In May, U.S. District Judge Jorge Alonso dismissed the city's claims against four of the drug companies while allowing the city's consumer fraud claims against Purdue Pharma to continue.

Peoria Public Radio

  SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Two candidates seeking to serve the remainder of former U.S. Rep. Aaron Schock's term offered up different views on how to improve the economy of the 18th Congressional District during a debate. Republican Illinois State Sen. Darin LaHood said Wednesday that the best way to spur economic growth is tax reform, regulation reform and reducing labor costs.

CHICAGO (AP) - Four firefighters and one other person have been injured in a fire in a building that houses the offices of Chicago's famed Second City theater company. Wednesday's fire did not reach the theater in Chicago's Old Town neighborhood that launched the careers of scores of comedians and actors, including John   Belushi, Tina Fey and Bill Murray. 

A potential strike by workers at U.S. Steel is another development in what has been a roller-coaster year for the company's Granite City operation. The contract between the company and its unionized employees expires on Tuesday.

Decisions affecting more than 2,000 area workers are being made well-beyond the Metro East, including Washington, D.C. That is where lawmakers debated legislation designed to fast-track the international trade deal known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

A last-minute appointment former Governor Pat Quinn made after losing last year's election has spurred a new law.  

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan is hailing a new state law that will prevent hospitals from billing survivors of sexual assault for medical forensic exams.

Attorneys for a professor who's suing the University of Illinois over a lost job offer have asked a federal judge to restore claims that evidence in the case was destroyed.

The Chicago Police Department is investigating an incident in which a white officer tells a man shooting a video that Michael Brown "deserved" to be shot last year in Ferguson, Missouri.

Two firefighters and one other person have been injured in a fire in a building that houses the offices of Chicago's famed Second City theater company. 

Former U.S. Rep. Aaron Schock has surrendered more than 10,000 financial records to the U.S. government to comply with a subpoena.

The sponsor of legislation intended to curb heroin abuse says he'll try to override Governor Bruce Rauner's partial veto.

A federal judge is ordering Illinois’ comptroller to cut checks for some services for people with developmental disabilities.  

Judge Sharon Coleman told the State of Illinois that even without a spending plan - it must pay for services for Medicaid-eligible people with developmental disabilities.

She instructed Comptroller Leslie Munger - who writes the checks - to pay by last Friday, a deadline that Munger did not meet.

Today - Judge Coleman again ordered Munger to cover the costs, which attorneys for her office agreed to do.

EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. (AP) - The owner of a St. Louis area business and six employees have been indicted on federal fraud charges related to what authorities call a scheme to submit phony income tax returns.  Tax King owner Eyob Tilahun is accused of instructing tax return preparers at his East St.