State News

State news stories and features from Illinois Public Radio.

Rauner Weighs In on McCann's Bid for Governor

Apr 26, 2018

Republican Governor Bruce Rauner made his first public comments Thursday about a third party conservative who wants to challenge him in November.

Illinois State Senator Sam McCann represents part of Springfield in the legislature. He announced last week he’s running for governor as a member of the Conservative Party.

Rauner accused McCann of playing into Democrats’ hands.

McCann is being used as a pawn by Pritzker and Madigan. We’re gonna win in November.

McCann denies being a pawn - and criticized Rauner for his - quote - “liberal agenda.”

Daisy Contreras / NPR Illinois

The Illinois General Assembly was unable to override Governor Bruce Rauner’s veto of a measure to license gun shops. The deadline to vote was Wednesday -- the same day hundreds of gun owners marched to the Statehouse to ask that legislators oppose the measure. 

State Sen. Don Harmon, an Oak Park Democrat, said in a statement he didn’t have the necessary votes in the House to call for the override. 

In response to the deadly Waffle House shooting in Nashville, one Illinois lawmaker wants to make sure firearms stay with those who can legally carry them.

The Illinois State Fairgrounds in Springfield and Du Quoin, which are frequented by hundreds of thousands of people annually, are included on Landmarks Illinois’ latest list of Most Endangered Historic Places.

Landmarks Illinois compiles the annual list as a way to call attention to threats of development, deterioration and more.  

Senate OKs Raising Smoking Age From 18 to 21

Apr 25, 2018

The Illinois Senate has voted to raise the smoking age from 18 to 21.

Convicted $54 million municipal embezzler Rita Crundwell has been transferred to a federal prison in her home state of Illinois.

Southern Illinois University Carbondale is seeking volunteers with graduate degrees to serve as adjunct faculty.

Criminal justice advocates say a measure that's cleared the Illinois legislature will keep innocent people from winding up in prison. Among other things, it would require criminal informants to be vetted before their testimony could be used at trial.


The Illinois General Assembly has only a few hours left to vote on a gun dealer licensing measure that would require gun shops to register with the state and pay a license fee. Gov. Bruce Rauner vetoed the proposal earlier this month, giving lawmakers only 15 calendar days to get enough support for an override. The deadline is today.

Western Illinois University and the union representing the university's faculty and staff released a joint statement Tuesday night regarding their ongoing contract talks. The two sides said they are close to a reaching a tentative agreement following Monday's mediation session.

FDA Cracks Down On Teen Vaping, ‘Juuling’

Apr 25, 2018
DAN KITWOOD / GETTY IMAGES

The Food and Drug Administration announced Tuesday they will take steps to crack down on the sale of e-cigarette products to children and teenagers. More than two million middle and high school students used e-cigarettes in 2016 and that number has continued to grow.

FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said the agency is conducting an undercover, nationwide blitz this month to try and stop the sale of e-cigarette products from companies like JUUL to minors.

Members of the Illinois House and Senate Veterans Affairs Committees are urging Gov. Bruce Rauner to deliver a plan by Friday for remedying a Legionnaires' disease crisis at the Quincy veterans home. 

Illinois public health officials say a central Illinois woman has died after using synthetic marijuana.

Peoria County Coroner Jamie Harwood says the most recent victim was in her 30s. He says she was a resident of Stark County, but died at a Peoria hospital. No additional details regarding the death have been released.

Prince's heirs are suing Walgreens and the Illinois hospital that treated him after he suffered a drug overdose just a week before he died.

People caught texting and driving on Illinois roadways could risk losing their licenses under a measure being considered by state lawmakers.  It’s part of a statewide effort against distracted driving. 

 

The proposed rule change would up the ante on anyone who breaks the state’s distracted driving law. Instead of just a ticket or warning, anyone who’s caught texting and driving would be hit with a moving violation. 

Those are the kind of tickets that count as strikes against your driving record; after three, your license gets suspended.

The CEO of SIU Carbondale says despite challenges on his campus, he believes calls to disband the SIU System are premature.


Illinois Treasurer Michael Frerichs / Facebook

Illinois residents still have few more days to submit designs for a souvenir coin to mark the state's 200th birthday. State Treasurer Michael Frerichs says May 1 is the deadline to submit designs for the

Bicentennial Coin Contest. He says designs should depict an aspect of Illinois or its history. Contestants may submit an entry online

In a move not surprising to many, Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan Monday was re-elected as the chairman of the Illinois Democratic Party.

A proposal could give more Illinois voters a chance to lower their property taxes.

Illinois public health officials say the state has received a major donation that will help those who have suffered severe bleeding as part of a deadly outbreak involving synthetic marijuana.

A Champaign area-based bus company faces a federal lawsuit accusing it of discriminating and harassing customers and their families.

During the Illinois budget crisis, private companies borrowed billions of dollars to pay government vendors on time with the promise that state repayment would come with late fees.

New state requirements and incentives are drawing renewable energy developers to Illinois.

Legislation to expand Illinois’ sales tax for online shopping recently passed the Senate. But it faces several more hurdles before it could become law.

Jason Rosenbaum / St. Louis Public Radio

The police captain in charge of security in Ferguson, Missouri, during the aftermath of Michael Brown's death recently spoke in Springfield. Ronald Johnson's message was one of building trust.

 

 

Illinois officials say they delivered personal data involving more than 4,000 people to incorrect addresses.

The northern Chicago suburb of Deerfield faces a second lawsuit after its village board voted unanimously to ban certain semi-automatic firearms.

Illinois State Police are urging Firearm Owners Identification card holders to apply early as many come up for renewal.

A measure is awaiting action from Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner that would end the state's participation in a controversial multi-state voter registration database.

Illinois' unemployment rate has hit its lowest level in more than a decade.

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