State News

State news stories and features from Illinois Public Radio.

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Governor Bruce Rauner came to the University of Illinois’ Urbana campus today to sign a bill streamlining the procurement process for state institutions.

It’s a bill that state universities have long wanted to speed up the process of purchasing goods and equipment.

Rauner said the bill isn’t perfect, but it will make the procurement process easier for both vendors and state agencies like universities.

Local school districts would have to pay pension costs for all newly-hired teachers if the General Assembly upholds Governor Bruce Rauner's rewrite of the school funding plan known as Senate Bill One.

Ever since SB1 was approved on votes mainly cast by Democrats, Rauner has promised to rewrite portions that he deemed too generous to Chicago Public Schools. When he issued his amendatory veto last week, it turned out his changes went far beyond CPS.


During its two-year state budget crisis, Illinois racked up more than $3 billion in debt to providers who serve the state’s most vulnerable patients - and it could be months, even years, before it’s all paid off. As Christine Herman reports, some doctors in private practice are being pushed to the brink as they wait.



"<door knock> How are you doing? Good, how are you? Good."

The first Monarch blitz is over, and 300 people in the US participated by counting eggs, caterpillars, chrysalides, and butterflies. The citizen scientists then submitted their findings to the Monarch Lab at the University of Minnesota.


Another voice is urging Gov. Bruce Rauner to work with the budget that was passed over his objections.

A Republican state representative is urging Governor Bruce Rauner to issue bonds to start paying down the backlog of bills.

Representative David Harris, from Arlington Heights, is one of the Republicans who voted with Democrats to raise taxes and pass a budget. He says the state’s 14-billion dollars in unpaid bills was a big reason why.

Peoria Public Radio

Officials at the University of Illinois in Springfield say an outside consulting firm will review safety issues at the Sangamon Auditorium following the death of a concertgoer this year.
University spokesman Blake Wood says Grey and Associates of Champaign will conduct the study, which is expected to cost about $5,000. Wood says university officials expect the results by September, but he wouldn't say if they'll be made public.


SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Gov. Bruce Rauner has named a former Republican state lawmaker as his deputy chief of staff for legislative affairs. 

Alex Brandon / AP Photo

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - A Medal of Honor recipient will give the keynote speech at this year's Illinois State Fair Veterans and Gold Star Family Day.

Pete Souza / Wikimedia Commons

CHICAGO (AP) - The home state of former President Barack Obama will commemorate his birthday under a new law. 

For craft beer fans, it's a problem all too common: you go out with your friends after a hard day's work, drive all the way to that one bar that has your favorite draft — only to find the kegs have run dry.

Dan Bush wants to make sure that never happens at Armored Gardens, the barbecue restaurant and bar he'll open in downtown Davenport this fall.

Illinois Comptroller Susana Mendoza is urging Gov. Bruce Rauner to step up the pace in dealing with the state’s debt.

  Teacher unions are opposing a draft proposal that would divert tax revenue away from the state to pay tuition for sending students to private schools. They criticize it as a school voucher program.

Schools are set to receive payment from the state in just three days, but that can’t happen until the Illinois legislature approves a new “evidence-based” funding model.

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Roughly 67 percent of Illinois families could qualify to send their children to private schools using diverted taxpayer money under a proposal being considered by legislators. 

A federal judge has ruled an Illinois law requiring hospital and medical clinic professionals to tell pregnant women about all their available options, including abortion, can't be enforced.

Several breweries from across the state will compete during a new attraction at this year's Illinois State Fair. 

Two Republican legislators won't seek re-election next year. 

Experts say heavy rain and flooding affected northern Illinois in July while the central and southern parts of the state saw dry weather that caused crop damage.

Should journalists report everything the president or other public officials say, even if it's rude, crude or proves to be untrue? 

Gov. Bruce Rauner has vetoed parts of the Democratic education funding overhaul known as Senate Bill 1. He used his Constitutional power to make recommendations for changes in the legislation, saying he wanted to stop a "bailout" of Chicago schools. But Democrats accuse him of tacking right and waging an "assault" on public education.

AP Photo / Warner Bros. Pictures


A Democratic candidate for Illinois governor is comparing the leader of the his own party to a well-known fictional villain.

The Illinois State Fair opens in one week. Years of budget cuts and deferred maintenance have led to a series of problems at the fairgrounds. But officials say they’ll be ready.

The sponsor of a plan overhauling how Illinois funds schools says Gov. Bruce Rauner's proposed changes are an "all-out assault" on public education that would mean less state spending on schools over time.  

The Illinois Attorney General's Office is looking into the abrupt shutdown of the Korean War Veterans Museum & Library in Springfield.

Illinois Republicans are pushing for a new program similar to school vouchers as part of negotiations over the education funding formula.

Several Democrats running for governor of Illinois are proposing the state enact universal healthcare.

Illinois remains a battleground over women's rights.

Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of  sex. 

—   The proposed Equal Rights Amendment. It might sound simple. It’s not.

An arrest warrant has been issued for a Northwestern University professor in the stabbing death of a Chicago man.