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State News
7:24 am
Fri May 31, 2013

Legislators have many issues to take up before they adjourn

Illinois has the worst funded pension system in the nation, and lawmakers have until today to do something about it. The General Assembly is scheduled to adjourn by midnight. After that, it requires extra votes to get legislation to the governor's desk.  Pensions are not the only thing left. As Illinois Public Radio’s Amanda Vinicky reports, plenty of other big-ticket policy issues are also unresolved.

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State News
7:17 am
Fri May 31, 2013

Senate votes down pension measure

It's the final day of the legislative session, and the foremost issue that has plagued lawmakers all year remains unresolved. There's a chance yesterday's actions may have deepened a divide between the House and Senate over what to do about the state's massive pension debt. IPR’S Amanda Vinicky explains. 

Gov. Pat Quinn is asking the state senate to reconsider its vote, after the chamber quashed a pension measure that would cut state employees' and teachers' retirement benefits. Quinn says the Senate's action lets down the people of Illinois, whom he says are paying $17 million every day the current pension system stays in place. 

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State News
7:08 am
Fri May 31, 2013

Fracking regulation bill advances out of the House

It's been three months since business and environmental groups announced an agreement to regulate hydraulic fracturing, the controversial oil and gas extraction process. As IPR’S Chris Slaby reports, the Illinois House finally voted to approve those regulations Thursday night.

Advocates pointed to a study by the Illinois Chamber of Commerce, which says the state could gain up to 45-thousand jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars in economic activity.

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State News
7:05 am
Fri May 31, 2013

Economic development bill approved

The Illinois House approved a massive economic development bill Thursday evening. The legislation makes way for projects across Illinois from a fertilizer plant in Tuscola to remodeling the convention center in Rosemont. It also has what Governor Pat Quinn calls a "breakthrough" meant to advance the proposed third Chicago airport near Peotone.

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Peoria Public Radio News
7:01 am
Fri May 31, 2013

Care and Treatment Board will not get state funding for early intervention program

A Peoria County board that helps people with disabilities will no longer receive state funding for an early childhood intervention program.  Peoria Public Radio's Alex Rusciano reports that affects 16 employees with the Care and Treatment Board:

That's nearly all of the employees at the Care and Treatment Board.  The state is instead awarding the $875,000 grant to Peoria Easter Seals.  County Administrator Lori Curtis Luther says that means the Care and Treatment Board will instead focus on different programs with other pass through funding it gets every year:

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Crime
6:45 pm
Thu May 30, 2013

ACLU joins state prison lawsuit

A lawsuit over health care in prisons in Illinois is getting a boost from the American Civil Liberties Union.  IPR’s Robert Wildeboer reports.

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Government
6:20 pm
Thu May 30, 2013

IL House advances pension plan

Colleges and universities would assume the cost of their employees' pensions under a proposal advancing in the Illinois House Thursday.

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State News
2:18 pm
Thu May 30, 2013

A hole in Il FOID law

State lawmakers now have less than two weeks to pass a law allowing Illinoisans to carry concealed guns. But some say Illinois’ existing system of licensing gun owners is badly broken. The state is SUPPOSED to take away Firearm Owners Identification Cards from criminals, the mentally ill and people who have restraining orders against them, like those who have been charged with domestic violence. But more than 67-hundred revoked cards are currently unaccounted for.

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State News
1:53 pm
Thu May 30, 2013

House approves drone regulation measure

A proposal that would regulate the use of drones by law enforcement agencies in Illinois has cleared the House. Drones are sophisticated, unmanned aircraft that authorities are considering for aerial surveillance.

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State News
7:12 am
Thu May 30, 2013

Pension talks to continue today

A solution for dealing with Illinois' 100 billion dollars of pension debt continues to elude legislators, even as the spring session rapidly approaches its end. The General Assembly is scheduled to adjourn Friday. IPR’S Amanda Vinicky reports.

Lawmakers have taken votes to deal with the pension debt. Problem is the House passed a plan that Speaker Mike Madigan says will save more money. And the Senate passed a different plan that his fellow Democrat, President John Cullerton, says is better because it's more likely to be upheld by the courts.

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