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Education
5:00 am
Fri June 8, 2012

Rockford-area dental screenings improve smiles

capl.washjeff.edu

A successful dental screening program in several northern Illinois school districts will continue this summer,  and will even expand this fall.  

The screening program identifies students who may not regularly see a dentist for reasons including lack of insurance or transportation. During the past school year, more than 900 students in the Belvidere, Harlem, and Rockford School Districts received dental treatment.

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Government
7:39 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Research is the next step in pension reform quest

Illinois officials will gather financial information from the state’s more than 800 school districts over the next two weeks to understand how shifting pension costs away from the state would affect those districts.

“The more facts we could gather regarding what the impact would be on school districts,” Gov. Pat Quinn said, “it would be very important facts we should know.”

The governor initially supported shifting the cost of future pensions for downstate teachers and university workers to school districts and universities but backed away as the legislative session waned.

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Business
6:52 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Air cargo wars: RFD vs ORD

Chicago-Rockford International Airport

An aviation expert says Chicago's plan to bolster air cargo capacity at O'Hare International could have a negative effect on surrounding airports. He says Rockford's airport could be among those affected.

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Government
6:09 am
Wed June 6, 2012

An Illinois recall would come with many hurdles

The recall election which Wisconsin's Republican governor survived Tuesday is a rare occurrence in the United States. Not even half the states have such a process.

Illinois only recently approved procedures to recall a sitting governor, but observers say it wouldn't be easy to do. 

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Government
6:05 am
Wed June 6, 2012

Illinois tax revenue up 7.9% over last May

An increase was expected. But the revenue manager for the state's forecasting commission says income and sales taxes are exceeding expectations.

Jim Muschinske says it's too early to detect what's behind the 7.9 percent increase last month over May 2011 in revenues from personal income taxes.

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Government
6:47 am
Tue June 5, 2012

Lisa Madigan calls same-sex marriage ban unconstitutional

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan
lisamadigan.org

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan says the state's current prohibition against same-sex marriage is unconstitutional.

The Democrat is throwing her weight behind a pair of lawsuits in Cook County court that are challenging the state's marriage laws. She says she personally supports gay marriage.

I don't believe that the current law that prohibits gays and lesbians from being able to marry in the state of Illinois - uh, meets - uh, equal protection," she said.

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Politics
6:31 am
Tue June 5, 2012

Small margin, big turnout expected in Wisconsin vote

Both sides of the recall election targeting Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker are prepared for a razor-thin margin as the Republican tries to become the first U.S. governor to successfully fend off a recall effort.

Also targeted in today’s voting are Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch and majority control of the state Senate.

A record turnout -- estimated as high as 65 percent of registered voters – is expected. Polls opened at 7 a.m., and voting continues until 8 p.m.

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Government
9:55 am
Mon June 4, 2012

With no budget help, state Natural Resources will struggle

The failure of Illinois lawmakers to approve a plan to support state parks means the Department of Natural Resources will continue to struggle financially. The agency is still figuring out what that mean for its parks, trails, beaches and programs.

Attempts to institute an entrance fee to state parks were shoved asside in the Genereal Assembly, and supporters attempted to raise the price of a vehicle license plate by $2 and dedicate those funds for state parks.

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Business
5:00 am
Mon June 4, 2012

Construction slows traffic in Machesney Park

Road construction is becoming a familiar scene this time of year. For the month of June, construction is expected to continue around the revamped Machesney Town Center.  All businesses will remain open during the road improvements, but it may take longer to get around.

Construction continues this month for the inside lane of Highway 251 around the area formerly known as the Machesney Park Mall.  New turn lanes are being added on 251 between Copper Drive and Roosevelt Road.

Meanwhile, pavement will be moving east, framing the intersection of Illinois 173 and Illinois 251.

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Arts
1:27 pm
Fri June 1, 2012

Rock Icon Todd Rundgren joins 2012 All Starr Band

This summer rock icon Todd Rundgren will be joining The Beatles Ringo Starr and his All Starr Band.  It has been 13 years since Rundgren’s last stint as guitarist of the ever-changing line up of the All Starrs. 

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