Daisy Contreras/NPR Illinois

Controversial Abortion Legislation Is On Its Way To Gov. Rauner's Desk

A measure that would allow taxpayer funding for abortions will be on its way to Gov. Bruce Rauner's desk today, and supporters want him to declare his support publicly before taking any further steps. The General Assembly approved HB40 in May and, under normal circumstances, it would have been sent to the governor immediately . But State Sen. Don Harmon, D-Oak Park, placed a motion to reconsider on the bill, allowing the measure to be held in response to Rauner's remarks in April, when he...

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Public Comment Ends Soon On New DeKalb Transit Plan

Sep 22, 2017
Northern Illinois University

Residents can give input on the new DeKalb transit plan until Tuesday. It includes more frequent service overall, a line going to Cortland and more trips to the Elburn Metra train station throughout the week.

DeKalb Public Works director Tim Holdeman says the new plan suggests merging the Northern Illinois University bus line and the TransVAC lines, which currently serve Kishwaukee College students, DeKalb and Sycamore.

“There’s an inefficiency in having two bus systems serve generally the same population,” Holdeman said.

Jessie Schlacks / WNIJ

More than 100 campus community members gathered in Northern Illinois University's MLK commons for the annual three-block march.

Speakers emphasized the need for unity amid changes to immigration law and recent hate crimes nationwide.

David Becker is with “Welcoming Western Counties.” The coalition promotes solidarity and sanctuary in northern Illinois.

Becker said more people need to get involved in the discussion of promoting unity.

Sessions from Studio A - The Full Monte Project

Sep 21, 2017
Carl Nelson / WNIJ


The Full Monte project performs "Slick" in WNIJ's Studio A.
Find The Full Monte Project on Bandcamp.

Jessie Schlacks / WNIJ

The Winnebago County Coroner says there have been 23 documented deaths by suicide so far this year. It's among the top 10 leading causes of death in the nation.  

Groups like the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) of northern Illinois are not staying silent on the issue during Suicide Awareness Prevention Month. The coalition recently organized an event at Stepping Stones in Rockford. The diverse group included community activists, veterans, and students.

Illinois Department of Insurance

Illinois residents shopping for health insurance through the Affordable Care Act marketplace for next year could see rate increases as high as 40 percent, under rate plans submitted through the Illinois Department of Insurance.

Illinois premium increases are, on average, lower in 2018 than 2017 for all levels, the department said in a news release.

Mosquitos which tested positive for West Nile Virus were found recently near the Whiteside County Fairgrounds in Morrison.

The virus was first detected in the county in July, and it’s also been found in Carroll and Ogle Counties.  Whiteside County Health Department Public Health Administrator Beth Fiorini said the last cases usually show up in late August, making this a highly unusual case.

“It’s been a really, really dry season," she said. "I don’t know if that’s why. We haven’t had rain in Whiteside County for weeks.”

One promise heard repeatedly during debate over the state's new school funding plan was that no schools would get less funding than before. But lawmakers siphoned $300 million from a fund that schools and local governments rely upon.

It was part of a separate action implementing the state budget. Vic Zimmerman is superintendent of Monticello schools. He says that fund represents 40% of his budget. 

"We certainly now have huge red numbers because of the divergence to CPPRT and the estimate for this year compared to last year," Zimmerman said.

"Syringe and Vaccine" by Flickr User NIAID / (CC X 2.0)

The Illinois Department of Public Health says it isn’t too early for residents to get their flu shot.

Flu season typically runs from October through March, and it takes about two weeks for the vaccine to take effect. That’s why Public Health Chief Medical Officer Dr. Jennifer Layden says it’s a good time to get immunized. 

"There's several options," she said. "There's multiple flu vaccines. The main message is we do not recommend, nor does the CDC, that individuals get the nasal spray."

Mark Schultz/Illinois Public Media

Students at Parkland Community College in Champaign rallied in support of a student arrested earlier this month. They said police and administrators are “persecuting” black students and teachers.

Members of the Parkland Social Justice club organized the rally Wednesday to protest Parkland Police arresting student Toby Mordi September 7.

The Champaign News-Gazette reported that police wanted to question Mordi about an earlier incident on campus. Mordi allegedly struck a police officer and led them on a foot chase before being arrested.

Northern Illinois University

Pay raises may be on the way for some Northern Illinois University employees.

In her State of the University address Wednesday, Acting NIU President Lisa Freeman touched on subjects like the delayed presidential search, the school’s fiscal future and university building projects.

Freeman also mentioned this in her speech:

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News From NPR

Chancellor Angela Merkel may have won Germany's national election on Sunday, but her Christian Democratic Union/Christian Social Union faction only won a third of the vote, its poorest showing since 1949.

In another blow to the incumbent leader, German voters also are sending right-wing nationalists to the parliament or Bundestag for the first time in 60 years.

Exit polls suggest that decision was more of a protest vote than a German shift to the right.

A federal judge has sentenced disgraced former U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner to 21 months in prison for sending obscene messages to a 15-year-old girl last year.

The sexting case played a role in the 2016 presidential election. Weiner's wife, Huma Abedin, who has filed for divorce, was a top aide to Hillary Clinton.

This piece originally ran in September, 2016, when Colin Kaepernick was still with the San Francisco 49ers.

Daddy would not have liked Colin Kaepernick. Had the San Francisco quarterback refused to stand for the national anthem in my father's presence, Daddy would have fixed him in a stare that could freeze the blood in your veins. Then, to no one in particular — but to everyone within earshot — he'd give the young man a two-sentence lesson in patriotic etiquette.

Even when things aren't going your way, there's chocolate: a universal balm if ever there was one. While cacao beans –– the precursor of a chocolate bar –– grow in many places, one country where you can find superb specimens is Venezuela.

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