Daisy Contreras

Daisy reports on statehouse issues for our Illinois Issues project.  She's currently a Public Affairs Reporting graduate program student at the University of Illinois Springfield.  She graduated from the Illinois Institute of Technology with an associates degrees from Truman College.  Daisy is from Chicago where she attended Lane Tech High School.

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A recent report shows Illinois is facing a teacher shortage. But changes to teachers’ pensions — including cutbacks on the state’s share of contributions — spells uncertainty for anyone going into the profession.

  

When the Illinois General Assembly approved a budget last summer, they also agreed to cut back on about $500 million to the state's pension system. This might sound like a good idea if the money is allocated to pay for other needs in the immediate future. For teachers, however, it means the state might not be able to cover their pensions. 

With the final week of veto session underway, the Illinois General Assembly took action meant to address sexual harassment at the state Capitol. 

Warehouse Workers For Justice

Gov. Bruce Rauner signed legislation meant to increase workplace protections for temporary workers.

Temp agencies will be required to give their workers information about equipment, protective clothing and training before sending them to a work place and, if the agency offers transportation to and from work, the service should be free of charge.

Illinois draws about 512,000 hunters every year. Now, a group is promoting how that number affects the state's economy.

The group, called "Hunting Works for Illinois," said the money that hunters spend on equipment, travel, food and lodging creates a "ripple effect" by adding jobs and maintaining local economies.

As of this month, Illinois is required to have updated signage for emergency situations at railroad crossings. People can call the number on these standardized blue signs to report track obstructions or other safety issues at specific locations. If a crossing gate is malfunctioning, for example, railroad authorities need to know.

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