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Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner's office has filed paperwork to ensure a new deputy governor isn't paid from an insurance fund that is $4 billion behind on medical payments.  The state comptroller received a letter from Rauner's fiscal officer. It requests that a portion of Leslie Munger's $138,000 salary come from a professional services fund. 

Final arguments have been given in the retrial of a former Illinois prosecutor charged with murder in the 2006 death of his first wife.  Special prosecutor David Robinson summarized the evidence against former Adams County Assistant State's Attorney Curtis Lovelace, who is accused in the death of Cory Lovelace. 

Rookie doctors can work up to 24 hours straight under new work limits taking effect this summer. Supporters say the move will enhance training but foes maintain it will do just the opposite. 

A Singapore teenager awaiting a Chicago immigration judge's ruling on his asylum request says he's fearful of returning home after scathing blog posts criticizing his government landed him in a Singapore jail.  Amos Yee says he fears the Singapore government will target him if his asylum application is denied. However, the 18-year-old says he'll keep speaking out whether or not he's allowed to stay in the U.S.

Chicago's top law enforcement officer says an Illinois Senate proposal to increase prison sentences for repeat gun offenders would help stanch the city's rampant gun violence.  The proposal would direct courts to toughen penalties for repeat gun offenders within existing sentencing limits of current law. Judges could still hand out lighter sentences. But they'd be required to explain the factors behind their decisions.

A lawyer for a sexual abuse victim of Dennis Hastert says she'll depose the former U.S. House speaker after he's released from federal custody.  Kristi Browne represents a former Yorkville High School athlete who is suing Hastert for breach of contract in the hush-money pact that led to the Illinois Republican's downfall.  Browne says no settlement has been discussed.

Gov. Bruce Rauner's office arranged to pay half of the salary for the political ally he hired last month from an employee health care account that is $4 billion-dollars behind on paying bills.  Republican Leslie Munger is one of Rauner's deputy governors. Half her $138,000 salary is set to come from health insurance premiums paid by state employees.

A Wall Street rating agency says Chicago isn't alone in grappling with underfunded city employee pensions, but that it's in the worst shape among the nation's 15 largest cities.  The city registered the highest annual debt, pension post-employment benefits costs as a percentage of governmental expenditures, and the highest debt and pension liability per capita.

Climate scientists say a freakishly warm February broke more than 11,700 local daily records for warmth in the United States. But it didn't quite beat 1954 for the nation's warmest February on record.  The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reports that the average temperature last month was 41.2 degrees. That's 7.3 degrees warmer than normal but three-tenths a degree behind the record.

A memo says Illinois prison officials wanted Drew Peterson transferred to a federal prison because the former suburban police officer convicted of killing his third wife and plotting to kill the prosecutor, posed a danger to the prison.

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - The first woman to be promoted to brigadier general in the Illinois National Guard is retiring. 

National Cancer Institute / Wikimedia Commons

Health officials have declared a mumps outbreak at a suburban Chicago high school after confirming a third case among its students.

The Lake County Health Department says it has nearly 20 suspected mumps cases at Barrington High School, along with an adult from Lake Zurich and a Libertyville High School student.

Those cases come as the U.S. is in the midst of one of the largest mumps surges in decades, with schools and college campuses in many states contending with outbreaks.

A judge has ruled that the Illinois state comptroller may direct which accounts should be used to pay state employees.  

Democratic Comptroller Susana Mendoza reported yesterday that St. Clair County Circuit Judge Robert LeChien ruled against Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner. She may decide how to pay 600 employees.

Rauner wanted the Department of Central Management Services workers paid from general revenue. But there's a two-year budget stalemate and no appropriations for that fund.

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.

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.

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

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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.

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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.

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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. 

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

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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.

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.

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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.

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