An attempt to reach a deal on Governor Bruce Rauner's pro-business, anti-labor demands isn't working out for House Democrats who are set to go it alone on a new state budget.


That's the takeaway from a meeting between Rauner and the legislative leaders this morning.

Republicans, led by Rauner, say they won't increase taxes to balance the budget until they get fundamental economic changes.

To that end, bipartisan groups of legislators have been meeting in private on the governor's agenda.

House Speaker Michael Madigan says he told Rauner:

The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency resumed sending out vehicle emissions test notices last month. That puts an additional requirement on certain drivers who want to renew their license plates after June 1.

The Illinois Secretary of State’s office suspended the required emissions tests last December because the IEPA stopped sending out notices to motorists, due to the state budget impasse.

  Illinois senators are calling for a ban on unnecessary government travel to two states with bathroom laws targeting transgender individuals.

The resolution, which passed a state Senate committee Tuesday, caused spirited debate.


It urges North Carolina and Mississippi to repeal laws that requires people to use the bathroom of the gender they were assigned at birth, rather than their gender identity.   It also urges Governor Bruce Rauner to restrict travel to those states.


  The end of the month -- and a major deadline for getting a state budget passed -- is getting closer.

Gov. Bruce Rauner is standing firm. He says he'll agree to raising taxes, if Democrats agree with his pro-business, union-weakening agenda.

Lawmakers continue to negotiate those items in private.

Representative Dan Brady, a Republican from Bloomington, is part of the talks.

He says the issues are "tender."

Amanda Vinicky/Illinois Public Radio

  Last week, thousands of union members rallied in Springfield,  asking lawmakers to override a gubernatorial veto.  The bill would change how the state negotiates with labor.

Democratic Representative Emanuel Chris Welch now says he  plans to call the measure for a vote.

He says state employees made their voices heard.

"Both in the districts and down here. I think the rally in Springfield last week was very impressive. And people are hearing that. So we're going to put it on the board and see if the votes are there," he said.

Guy Stephens / WNIJ

Rock Valley College theater director Mike Webb is getting ready for the new summer season of Starlight Theatre. He also was thinking about another season of the college's Studio Theatre in the fall. But Rock Valley recently announced it was dropping Studio Theatre, along with staff layoffs that also affect Starlight. And that has Webb thinking it might be time for him to go as well.

A coalition wanting to change the state's redistricting process has cleared a big first hurdle. But it has another one ahead.

The State Board Of Elections says the group Independent Maps did collect enough signatures to put the issue on the ballot. Enough of them passed a sample test by the elections board.

Two years ago, a similar effort fell flat when the petitions failed to get that clearance. 

That doesn't mean the redistricting question is guaranteed a spot on the November ballot.


Nuclear energy workers were in Springfield Tuesday in a last-ditch effort to save two of Exelon's Illinois plants.

The energy behemoth says that, unless legislators pass a law by the end of this month, it will shut down the plants in Clinton and the Quad Cities.

Jeff Bartz, who's from Colona, says that would lead to a loss of thousands of jobs and wipe out a big part of the regional tax base. Bartz says nuclear power has advantages.

Authorities have identified a man found dead after two FBI agents were shot and wounded while trying to serve an arrest warrant at a suburban Chicago home.

A Cook County medical examiner's office spokeswoman says the dead man was 50-year-old Melvin Toran. She says a cause of death hasn't been determined because an autopsy is pending.

The Illinois Department of Corrections website says Toran was paroled from prison on Feb. 18, 2013. It does not indicate what he was convicted of.

MercyHealth Sitemap Approved

May 24, 2016
Mercy Rockford Health System

Rockford’s City Council Code and Regulation Committee has approved a sitemap for MercyHealth’s $485 million eastside medical campus. 

The Rockford Register-Star reports the map will be used to build roads, drainage ways, and other infrastructure at the site.  The facility will consist of a 188-bed hospital and medical office building.