Associated Press

The Associated Press is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering, supplying a steady stream of news to its members, international subscribers and commercial customers. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, it's a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members.

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Illinois state lawmakers are considering a proposal that could make Illinois the first state in the Midwest and the ninth nationally to legalize recreational pot.

Gov. Bruce Rauner has vetoed legislation to overhaul a Chicago public employee pension program.  He says it creates a fiscal cliff that will boost taxes beginning in 2023. 

Flickr Creative Commons/Ren Rebadomia

A Chicago father and his twin sons have been sentenced for running a sex trafficking business with underage girls.  Nathan Nicholson is sentenced to 16 and a half years in prison, and his sons, Tyrelle and Myrelle Lockett, are sentenced to 17 and a half years in prison each. 

Flickr Creative Commons/Eric Allix Rogers

A smartphone manufacture wants to make the phones at the Motorola campus in the Harvard plant that's been vacant for more than a decade. Motorola built the $100 million campus in 1997, but shut down operations five years later.

The governor's office says about 1.4 million Illinois job seekers are affected after one of the state's employment security agency vendors was hacked.  Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner's office says the Illinois Department of Employment Security notified the Illinois General Assembly about the hack. 

A study of the Chicago Police Department's stop-and-frisk procedures reveals a dramatic decrease in the number of stops.  The drop is since the American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois found officers were targeting blacks and other racial minorities in hundreds of thousands of the stops.

LeBlanc Construction Photos 2012 / Wikimedia Commons

CHICAGO (AP) - The Illinois Department of Employment Security says the state's unemployment rate fell below six percent in February. 

A hospital system's study of Chicago neighborhoods finds wide health disparities, including with post-traumatic stress disorder.  The Sinai Urban Health Institute released a survey drawing upon responses from roughly 2,000 residents in nine Chicago neighborhoods.  

A grand jury added 16 counts of aggravated battery with a firearm to the first-degree murder charges against a white Chicago police officer accused in the fatal shooting of a black 17-year-old.  Former Officer Jason Van Dyke shot 17-year-old Laquan McDonald 16 times in October 2014. 

Flickr Creative Commons/Mark Goebel

State officials are offering training to people who want to volunteer at the Lincoln Log Cabin State Historic Site. The site is looking for people who want to participate in living history, serve as tour guides, work in the visitor center or gift shop, and contribute behind the scenes. 

TonyTheTiger / Wikimedia Commons

CHICAGO (AP) - Newly released Census Bureau estimates show the Chicago-area's population has declined two years in a row.

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner wants to replace guards in prison watchtowers with security cameras. It's an effort to cut down on overtime costs for the cash-strapped state.

Department of Corrections spokeswoman Nicole Wilson says officials expect to save $4 million annually. She says no security officers will be laid off.

Rauner spokeswoman Eleni Demertzis says savings will come from reduced overtime and "more efficient management."

AP Photo / Richard Sitler

CARBONDALE, Ill. (AP) - A southern Illinois native who flew planes in Southeast Asia more than 75 years ago has been buried alongside his parents in Carbondale.

The Department of Justice has taken the rare step of trying to strip a convicted terrorist of U.S. citizenship in what some critics say could mark a new, tougher line under President Donald Trump.  

Chicago Police are searching for five or six men or boys suspected of sexually assaulting a 15-year-old girl on Facebook Live.  Department spokesman Anthony Guglielmi says detectives found the girl and reunited her with her family. She went missing on Sunday. 

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner has unveiled a broad-based cybersecurity plan. He says cybersecurity is one of the most pressing issues facing the nation and Illinois. The plan outlines goals to protect state information systems. 

Two state workers who joined Illinois Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner's lawsuit arguing labor unions shouldn't be allowed to collect fees from non-members say they're appealing to the U.S. Supreme Court.  The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a lower-court ruling that allowed unions to collect the "fair share" fees from workers covered by collective bargaining agreements. 

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner's administration says it plans to lay off state prison nurses to streamline medical services and coordinate them with the current health care vendor.  Rauner's office informed the Illinois Nurses Association that in June it will lay off 124 nurses at 12 prisons. Their jobs would be privatized. 

Federal prosecutors are asking that a woman who stole nearly $1 million from Chicago's Field Museum of Natural History should spend four years in prison.  Caryn Benson pleaded guilty to embezzlement in January 2016 for stealing money prosecutors say she used to buy expensive clothing, watches, handbags and luxury cars.

Blogtrepreneur / Flickr/Creative Commons

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner has unveiled a broad-based cybersecurity plan that would cost $1 billion to implement.

Airport officials say an agreement allowing a central Illinois youth soccer league to use airport-owned fields is likely a short-term deal due to concerns about safety and federal guidelines.  The Central Illinois Regional Airport has a lease with Prairie Cities Soccer League that runs through the end of the year. 

A feud between Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner and Comptroller Susana Mendoza is escalating over spending priorities during the state's unprecedented budget standoff.  Mendoza is a Democrat in charge of paying Illinois' bills. In a speech she accused Rauner of being a terrible governor and paying consultants from a health care fund, among other things.   

The Illinois Supreme Court won't immediately consider Attorney General Lisa Madigan's appeal of a circuit court ruling that state workers must be paid during the state budget impasse.  Justices denied Madigan's request to bypass the appellate court and take the matter directly to the Supreme Court.

pixabay/Creative Commons

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - An anti-abortion physician and two pregnancy help centers have filed a lawsuit alleging an Illinois law requiring them to discuss abortion with patients is unconstitutional. 

Steven Vance / Flickr/Creative Commons

CHICAGO (AP) - A newspaper report says all of Chicago's leading 10 areas for police-issued bike tickets are predominantly African American or Latino. 

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CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) - Roger Ebert's film festival this year will include 2016 psychological thriller "Elle" and a film delving into the life of TV icon Norman Lear.

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

Caterpillar has retained special outside counsel to help in dealing with matters related to the criminal search conducted by a trio of federal agencies earlier this month. 

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - The University of Illinois says it will promise to reserve 85 percent of financial aid for Illinois residents if pending state funding legislation is approved.  

University President Tim Killeen called the "Invest in Illinois" measure an effort to keep Illinois high school graduates in state for college and stem a growing loss of students to out-of-state schools. The measure was introduced as an amendment to the funding legislation on Thursday.

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Illinois state lawmakers are planning to assess how Medicaid cuts proposed by President Donald Trump's administration could impact vulnerable residents.

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - A legislative panel in Illinois has failed to block a new overtime rule for home care workers that is expected to be in place by late summer.

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