Illinois
4:52 am
Wed June 25, 2014

TRS Lowers Return Expectations

The Illinois Teachers' Retirement System says it expects a lower return on its pension investments in the next year. That means the state will have to cover more of the cost of teacher pensions.

TRS says it's still a good assumed rate of investment return at 7.5 percent.  That falls in line with similar pension systems nationwide. But it's not as profitable as 8 percent, which TRS had been using for the previous few years.

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Arts
4:31 am
Wed June 25, 2014

Statue's Restoration Is Closer To Becoming A Reality

A warning fence surrounds the base of "The Eternal Indian" -- also known as Black Hawk -- to help protect visitors from falling debris.
Guy Stephens

American sculptor Lorado Taft called it “The Eternal Indian”, but it’s universally known as “Black Hawk.”

Taft constructed the statue out of concrete and colored cement on a bluff overlooking the Rock River near Oregon in 1911. Since then, the years, weather and repairs and restorations of varying quality have taken their toll. 

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Tourists, Wife Were Big Factors
5:47 pm
Tue June 24, 2014

George Lucas Chooses Chicago For Museum Of Narrative Art

Jim Henson and George Lucas on the set of "Labyrinth" in 1986.
Credit public domain

"Star Wars" creator George Lucas has picked Chicago over San Francisco as the future site of his museum of art and movie memorabilia.

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Illinois
6:49 am
Tue June 24, 2014

New Law Aims To Standardize Farmers Markets

Farmer David Woodruff with a customer at the Woodstock Farmers Market in 2013
Credit Chelsey Fulbright / WNIJ

The Farmers Market Taskforce will work with the Illinois Department of Public Health to come up with a single set of rules and regulations farmers can follow no matter where they sell their products in Illinois. 

Local health departments currently set the rules for buying and selling food at farmers markets. State Senator Dave Koehler sponsored the legislation. He says the statewide standard will help more farmers participate in more markets.

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Illinois
6:37 am
Tue June 24, 2014

Moth Interrupted: Treatment Scheduled To Disrupt Gypsy Moth Mating

Credit IL Dept. of Agriculture

The Illinois Department of Agriculture plans to treat nearly 38,000 acres in northern Illinois next week for the destructive gypsy moth.  

Infested sites will receive an application of pheromone, which disrupts the mating of the moth.  The pheromone will be aerially-applied beginning Monday, June 30.  Affected counties include Boone, Kane, LaSalle, Stephenson, and Winnebago.

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Transform Rockford
5:59 am
Tue June 24, 2014

Lessons For Rockford In Federal Reserve's 'Industrial Cities Initiative'

Credit Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago

Ten industrial cities in the Midwest share lessons in economic recovery in a new report from the Chicago Federal Reserve. 

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Illinois
5:58 am
Tue June 24, 2014

Panel Votes To Subpoena Key Figures In Quinn's Anti-Violence Program

Credit State of Illinois

Some of Illinois Governor Pat Quinn’s former advisers are being subpoenaed to publicly testify about a troubled anti-violence program. 

An audit earlier this year revealed a program meant to reduce violence around Chicago was grossly mismanaged in 2010. 

Now - a panel of lawmakers is calling seven people who used to work for Quinn to testify next month about why the program was so poorly run.

But Democratic State Senator John Mulroe says he doesn’t want the investigation to drag out - in the middle of a heated governor’s race.

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WNIJ Sponsors
10:53 am
Mon June 23, 2014

The Field Of Blues Festival

WNIJ and the Crossroads Blues Society invite you to the “Field of Blues Festival”, Saturday, June 28th!

From swing blues to stone-cold Chicago grooves you'll hear it all from a line-up including John Nemeth, Doug Deming and the Jewel Tones, The Jimmys, Liz Mandeville and The Alex Wilson Band.

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Politics
10:07 am
Mon June 23, 2014

Quinn Signs Minimum Wage Ballot Question

Credit League of Women Voters

Voters will get to weigh in on whether Illinois should raise its minimum wage for adults to $10 an hour. Governor Pat Quinn approved the ballot question Sunday. And he wasted no time campaigning on the issue.

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-Illinois
6:25 am
Mon June 23, 2014

4-C: Growing One Child At A Time

Credit 4-C

Community Coordinated Child Care began more than 40 years ago with a referral service for parents searching for child care in and around DeKalb. Since then, both the list of services offered by 4-C and the area it serves has grown tremendously.

On a day last spring at the Children's Learning Center in DeKalb, Curriculum Director Shannon Alamia offers a visitor a quick survey of the the facility.

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