Chicago's City Council has voted to create a municipal ID card for people living in the U.S. illegally and other city residents.  Mayor Rahm Emanuel asserted the ID will help bring people out of the shadows and allow them to get on with their lives.

Denis Cyr is the declared winner of the 5th District Peoria City Council seat.

Tanya Koonce

Peoria area home sales were up slightly in the first quarter compared to last year. Jana Heffron is the president of the Peoria Area Association of Realtors. She says the mild winter weather likely helped push forward the closings on nearly one-thousand homes in the region in January, February and March.


“Consumer confidence is definitely improving in our area and we also have a motivation to purchase and lock in affordable prices and before rates move higher for those buyers out looking for those houses today.”

Tanya Koonce

About 750 people attended 18th District Republican Congressman Darin LaHood’s town hall meeting at Five Points Washington. LaHood greeted everyone at the door and took at least 35 questions from a heated room. ACA Reform, the release of President Trump’s taxes and climate change were some of the most heated and repeated topics of the town hall meeting. LaHood also stayed calm and steady though a sometime bombastic crowd response. He says it was a productive dialogue.


Caterpillar Moves HQ to Deerfield

Apr 19, 2017

  Caterpillar is moving its global  headquarters to a Northern Chicago suburb. A statement from the company says the new headquarters building in Deerfield is minutes away from Chicago's O'Hare International Airport, is centrally located near major interstates, and offers direct access to the Chicago Metra.

Exonerated Ex-Inmate Speaks Up for Heidelberg

Apr 19, 2017
Seth Perlman / AP Photo

A former inmate who was wrongfully convicted of murder says he believes his friend, Cleve Heidelberg, is innocent.

The campaign to restore the governor's mansion in Illinois is getting close to its $15 million goal less than two years after private fundraising began as an alternative to traditional appropriations for state construction.
Gov. Bruce Rauner says private donors have raised about $14 million for the Illinois Executive Mansion. He says he expects to reach another million "in the next couple of weeks."
The goal is to complete restoration of the 162-year-old mansion in time for the August 2018 bicentennial of Illinois statehood.

Advocates Oppose AT&T Proposal To Eliminate Land Lines

Apr 19, 2017

A coalition of consumer rights groups is urging Illinois lawmakers to vote against two bills that would allow AT&T to eliminate phone service on traditional landlines.

House and Senate members are considering proposals to let the telecommunications company convert to a modern Internet-based system.

Citizens Utility Board Director of Governmental Affairs Bryan McDaniel says the measures would leave many in the Metro East with cable television companies as the only option for a fixed-line phone.

The continuing lack of a state budget in Illinois is affecting upkeep and repairs at Illinois state parks.
Illinois Department of Natural Resources Director Wayne Rosenthal visited Olson Lake in Rock Cut State Park on Tuesday. The lake was closed last month due to reduced water quality. Rosenthal promised to dredge the lake near Rockford but offered no timetable and said his department has an $800 million backlog of deferred maintenance expenses. He said the source of the problem is the lack of a budget.

Peoria Public Radio

Federal prosecutors say former U.S. Rep. Aaron Schock shouldn't get more information about a confidential informant in his corruption case.
The prosecutors made the argument in a 60-page motion filed late Tuesday. They also say the Peoria Republican shouldn't receive any additional material from the grand jury that investigated him. Schock was indicted in 2016 after resigning from Congress.
In the filing, prosecutors accuse Schock of trying to avoid trial by engaging "in an increasingly aggressive search for some governmental misconduct claim."

An abortion-rights group says Gov. Bruce Rauner broke a campaign promise when he pledged last week to veto legislation to expand coverage for abortion and ensure the procedure remains legal in Illinois.
Personal PAC on Wednesday made public a questionnaire the Republican completed as a candidate for governor in 2014.
In it, Rauner said that if elected he would sign legislation to ensure access to abortion if federal law allowing it is overturned. Rauner also said Illinois should cover abortions for state employees and Medicaid recipients.

U-S Representatives Darin LaHood and Rodney Davis are out touring their districts together in Central Illinois. With a capricious president leading the party, the congressmen are part of a Republican majority looking for a path forward. Illinois Public Radio's Tom Lisi caught up with them at an event in Springfield.

LaHood and Davis are joining forces to make Route 66 a Historic National Trail. One problem? President Trump’s budget would gut the National Park Service. Republicans seem to be pulling in all directions these days. Here’s LaHood speaking on healthcare:

Minimum Wage Increase Proposal Still Alive

Apr 19, 2017
Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

A proposal to raise the state’s minimum wage to $15 an hour over the next five years is making its way through the state legislature.

Tony Ernst / Flickr/Creative Commons

CHICAGO (AP) - A bee has halted a multimillion-dollar road project in suburban Chicago that's designed to ease traffic congestion. 

Flickr Creative Commons/prsa-ny

A lawsuit alleges two former prosecutors conspired with a Chicago police sergeant and others to fabricate evidence that led to a wrongful murder conviction.  The lawsuit seeks $60 million in damages for Armando Serrano. He and co-defendant Jose Montanez were released last summer, after more than two decades in prison, when prosecutors dropped charges.

Actress Patricia Arquette is a keynote speaker during a week of science and technology events at Illinois State University.  University officials say the events at the campus in Normal this week will include a professional development dinner and a conference on women in leadership. 

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel says the dragging of a dentist off a United Airlines flight by airport security officers show they shouldn't be allowed to carry guns.  Cellphone video of the incident sparked widespread outrage.  Emanuel called what happened to Dr. David Dao totally, all-around unacceptable.

Jurors have awarded $350,000 in damages in a lawsuit brought by the mother of a black teen fatally shot by Chicago police.  The jury found the July 2013 shooting of 17-year-old Christian Green unjustified. 

An appeals court is considering whether Illinois' imprisoned former Gov. Rod Blagojevich should get a third sentencing hearing.  

Thousands of high school juniors in public schools across Illinois will also get to take the ACT college entrance exam courtesy of their districts in addition to the free SAT.  According to ACT Inc., New Trier Township High School, Lyons Township High School District 204, Adlai Stevenson and Warren Township are among about 30 public school districts and private schools giving the ACT to their students.

Moody's Investors Service says it will review most of Illinois' public universities for potential credit downgrades over the next three months.  The bond credit rating business also bumped Northeastern Illinois University's credit down two levels. 

Jim Meadows / Illinois Public Radio


J.B. Pritzker brought his campaign for governor to the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana Monday.  The billionaire venture capitalist is trying to establish himself as the progressive choice for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination.

The 42 year-old Peoria man killed in the fire at Glen Oak Towers Sunday evening died of smoke inhalation.

The Peoria Park District is looking to fill a Central District vacancy on the board of trustees. Kelly Cummings is resigning her seat effective May first. Her term expires in two years.

Tanya Koonce

Gov. Bruce Rauner toured Getz Fire Equipment Company in Peoria Monday where he praised the 60 year-old business. He also reiterated his standard remarks about growing Illinois’ economy and his pro-business agenda. 

CityLink is celebrating its 9th Annual Passenger Appreciation Day Thursday.  All passengers on fixed routes ride for free in honor of CityLink’s beloved General Manager Jerome Lilly.

Flickr Creative Commons/Ashley Van Haeften

Peoria area hospitals have lifted their request for people with flu symptoms to voluntarily limit hospital visits because of a decrease in flu cases. The request was in place to help limit flu exposure for the hospitals' patients and staff.  

A pair of Illinois State Senators are pushing to fight what they says is discrimination in car insurance pricing.  The effort follows an investigation by Consumer Reports and ProPublica that found people in minority neighborhoods pay up to 30% more than drivers in white areas, even when they have the same accident risk.

Illinois' department of revenue says more than 300 state employees, including two lawmakers, are delinquent in paying their taxes for the 2014 calendar year.  Department of Revenue officials say the 312 state workers are getting their salaries but still haven't filed returns for calendar year 2014, which were due two springs ago.

A rule change governing legal clients' funds made by the Illinois Supreme Court in 2015 has generated more than $1 million for legal help for the poor.  The court adjusted a rule dealing with unidentified funds in pooled client trust accounts handled by lawyers.