State News

State news stories and features from Illinois Public Radio.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel is dismissing the governor’s latest ideas for funding Chicago Public Schools.   The latest chapter of the battle between Governor Bruce Rauner and Emanuel centers around $215 million dollars for CPS that Rauner vetoed in December.   

Trump Spurs Gill's Decision to Run For Congress

Mar 7, 2017

David Gill says he’s running again for Congress next year, and President Trump is the reason why.  The Bloomington Democrat says his problems with Trump go beyond disagreements over policy, and concern the nation’s core values.

Illinois' Republican governor says he is very concerned that the state's residents might be left in the lurch under the health care plan proposed by congressional Republicans.  Gov. Bruce Rauner says he is talking with his fellow GOP governors and members of Congress on ideas for changing the proposal. He declined to discuss his specific recommendations.

Chance the Rapper is on a mission to better fund education in the state, particularly in Chicago. The musician, who grew up on the south side of the city, has won three Grammys at the young age of 23, making him well-known outside just the hip hop world. He's been using that fame to hold Gov. Bruce Rauner's feet to the fire when it comes to the education funding issue. 

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner says he's urged Republican state senators to keep negotiating for a budget compromise that's a good deal for taxpayers.  The Illinois Senate has been working for months to pass a so-called "grand bargain" that could resolve a nearly two-year state budget impasse. 

A judge is allowing former U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. of Illinois to end supervised release early.  Jackson, the son of civil rights leader the Rev. Jesse Jackson, was given a 2 1/2-year prison sentence for spending $750,000 in campaign money on personal items. 

If you're gorging on bacon or skimping on nuts, you might want to rethink your diet. That's according to new research that links 10 foods with deaths from heart disease, strokes and diabetes.  The study says overeating or not eating enough of those foods contributes to nearly half of U.S. deaths from the three causes.


CHICAGO (AP) - Authorities say students were evacuated from a Jewish grade school in Chicago after someone called in a bomb threat.

Daniel X. O'Neil / Flickr/Creative Commons

UNIVERSITY PARK, Ill. (AP) - Governors State University has announced it will eliminate 22 academic programs and hike tuition to cope with a lack of funding due to Illinois' budget stalemate.

Dr. Ronald Lynch runs a family dentistry in Jacksonville. He says approximately 20 percent of his patients are state workers. Because Illinois is still running with no budget, the state has not been paying its employees’ health bills on time — and the delays are growing.

Flickr Creative Commons/Ben Townsend

The top Capitol Hill Democrats from Illinois say they believe President Donald Trump's revised travel ban is unconstitutional and won't survive legal challenges.

Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner's administration has filed a lawsuit over the way Illinois' comptroller is handling employee pay. The lawsuit says Democratic Comptroller Suzanna Mendoza is violating a 2015 court order. It contends the paychecks of 587 Central Management Services employees could be disrupted if the matter is not resolved by Wednesday. 

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan says student borrowers dealing with mounting loan debt are making up a greater number of consumer complaints to her office.  Madigan released her annual top-ten list of such complaints. She says consumer debt and identity theft were the top two issues drawing complaints for the ninth straight year.

Flickr Creative Commons/Kheel Center

The federal Bureau of Labor Statistics has released figures that show union membership in Illinois matched a historic low in 2016.  Union membership in Illinois accounted for 14.5% of the wage and salary workers in the state last year. That is down from 15.2% from the previous year and ties the historic low set in 2007.

An Illinois man accused in a 2012 Chicago expressway killing and mistakenly released from state custody last month has been captured in Georgia.   Authorities found Garrett Glover in Atlanta's suburb of Lithonia late Friday. He was at the apartment of a relative's girlfriend.  

A significant expansion of casino gambling is back in play in the Illinois General Assembly.  A proposal to authorize six new casinos got Senate approval this past week. It was one of the few victories in a week dedicated to getting a compromised budget plan through the Senate. 

Dime Novels Are Finding A New Audience In The Digital Age

Mar 6, 2017

Dime novels are short works of fiction from the 19th century. While humble in name, these long-forgotten classics have brought in around a million dollars in funding for Northern Illinois University curators.


Significant grants to digitize these works have allowed Northern Illinois University to open a portal to the past. Lynne Thomas is the curator of Rare Books and Special Collections at NIU. She's been working on a project to digitize a large set of dime novels from the Beadle and Adams collection.

Travel Ban 2.0 - What The Trump Administration Revised in V2

Mar 6, 2017


Eiji Ezaki / Flickr/Creative Commons

CHICAGO (AP) - Chicago nearly went a full week without a fatal shooting.

A court order revealed late last week makes it much less likely state employees will go on strike anytime soon.

Max Pixel/Creative Commons

CARBONDALE, Ill. (AP) - Unseasonably high temperatures have allowed Illinois farmers to work in the fields, but many of them are wondering how the weather will affect their crops and orchards.

There are serious consequences under Gov, Bruce Rauner's tax proposal.

Facebook/Northeastern Illinois University

Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago announced that its employees will have to take five furlough days.  It will also have to kick hundreds of students out of their on-campus jobs.  For two months now - universities across Illinois haven’t received any money from the state government because there’s no budget.

Chance The Rapper Meets With Governor Rauner

Mar 3, 2017
Facebook/Chance the Rapper

Chicago musician Chance the Rapper met with Governor Bruce Rauner about funding for the city’s public schools.  After the meeting, Chance says he was flustered and frustrated.  He says the governor gave him vague answers about how to fix the CPS budget gap.

An Illinois appellate court has temporarily barred Gov. Bruce Rauner from imposing his contract terms on the state's largest public employee union.  The 4th District Court of Appeals sided with the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Council 31. The court issued an order prohibiting immediate action by the Republican governor.

Flickr Creative Commons/David Wilson

More than 8,000 Illinois students will get to visit state parks, museums and other sites to learn about nature and conservation thanks to a privately funded grant program.

The state's ongoing budget deadlock has spurred the University of Illinois to ask its departments to cut an average of about 2% from their budgets.  Interim Provost John Wilkin's office sent the budget guidelines this week to the school's academic units.

Flickr Creative Commons/prsa-ny

The founder of a suburban Chicago technology company has been sentenced to nine years in prison for a scheme that bilked investors out of $9 million.  Seventy-one-year-old Gregory Webb is founder and chief executive officer of Elk Grove Village-based InfrAegis Inc.  He was convicted last year of nine counts of mail and wire fraud.

Arizona health officials say four cases of E. coli infections involving children at Arizona child care centers appear to be linked to eating soynut butter produced by a Glenview, Illinois-based company that is conducting a voluntary recall.

Scott Anderson / NewsTribune via AP Photo

CROSSVILLE, Ill. (AP) - Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner visited the tornado damaged community of Crossville, noting the recovery process in the town of about 750 has begun.