Brian Mackey

Brian Mackey covers state government and politics for WUIS and a dozen other public radio stations across Illinois. He was previously A&E editor at The State Journal-Register and Statehouse bureau chief for the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin. He can be reached at (217) 206-6412.

Subscribe to Brian Mackey's State of the State podcast on WUIS' podcast page, or by copying this URL into iTunes or any other podcast app.

AARON SCHOCK / INSTAGRAM

Former U.S. Rep. Aaron Schock is due to be arraigned in a Springfield courtroom this afternoon.  

The 35-year-old Republican is charged with scheming to defraud the government, campaign donors, and constituents. Federal prosecutors say it adds up to thousands upon thousands of dollars for everything from cars and cameras to vacations and Super Bowl tickets.

Shock resigned last year. He’s said any mistakes made in Congress were administrative errors.

A group of Democratic state lawmakers are suing to get their paychecks more quickly. They've gone without compensation since May 31.

After nearly a year-and-a-half without a full budget, Illinois is taking months and months to pay its bills.

Earlier this year, Comptroller Leslie Munger said she was putting legislative pay at the back of the line with every other state IOU.

Democrats, like Rep. Emanuel Chris Welch, from Hillside, say that's just a way to help push Gov. Bruce Rauner's controversial agenda. And that, he says, is unconstitutional.

Flickr user 401(K) 2012 / "Money" (CC v. 2.0)

Illinois’ top politicians are divided on how to end their feud over passing a full budget. 

Republicans are holding out for Governor Bruce Rauner’s agenda.  It includes changes to workers compensation and imposes term limits on lawmakers.

House Minority Leader Jim Durkin says Republicans will be happy to talk about balancing the budget if these measures are implemented. 

Exelon Generation

Illinois lawmakers are considering whether to approve an energy deal on behalf of Exelon. Without it, the power company says it will close nuclear plants in Clinton and the Quad Cities.

Exelon says there are about 1,500 workers between the two plants, plus thousands of other local jobs that would be affected. Vice President David Fine says the average ComEd residential customer would see her bill go up by less than 25 cents a month over the 10 years of the deal. "And in the first couple years," Fine says, "we anticipate there'll actually be a savings — a rate decrease."

"Satsop Nuclear Power Plant" by Flickr User Tony Webster / (CC BY 2.0)

Illinois legislators are considering whether to approve an energy deal on behalf of power company Exelon.

Without it, the corporation says it will close its nuclear plants in Clinton and the Quad Cities.

Exelon says there are about 1,500 workers between the two plants, plus thousands of other local jobs that would be affected.

Exelon vice president David Fine says the average ComEd residential customer would see her bill go up by less than 25 cents a month over the 10 years of the deal.

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