Government and Legislature

Susan Stephens / WNIJ

The following is an essay by Rockford City Manager Jim Ryan, delivered at the ceremony at City Hall for the Morgan Street Bridge ribbon-cutting, December 17th, 2013. Thank you to Jim Ryan for permission to publish his remarks.   

Moving Forward On The Illiana Tollway

Dec 12, 2013

The Chicago area could be getting another highway in a few years. A Northwest Indiana planning board voted overwhelmingly to move forward on the Illiana Tollway. 

@GovernorQuinn, Twitter

Governor Pat Quinn took many pens in hand this afternoon and signed the same-sex marriage bill into law. The signing ceremony was held at the University of Illinois - Chicago Forum, on a desk brought up from Springfield. That desk is said to have been used by President Abraham Lincoln to write his first inaugural address. 

Susan Stephens / WNIJ

Bad news for former Dixon Comptroller Rita Crundwell today: a federal appeals court upheld her nearly 20-year prison sentence.

Win McNamee/Getty Images

Bringing to an end an episode that once again exposed Washington gridlock at its worst, the House approved a Senate deal that will end a 16-day federal government shutdown and avert the first government default in U.S. history.

The 285-144 vote came at the eleventh hour, after weeks of partisan bickering and a very public airing of deep divisions within the Republican party. The bill now heads to the White House, where President Obama said he will sign it "immediately."

Jonathan Ernst/Reuters/Landov


(This post was last updated at 8:54 p.m. ET)

With a little more than a day to go before the nation potentially defaults on its debts, there's still no solid plan on the table in Washington.

There was a flurry of activity on Tuesday, but it produced little significant movement.

The House tried twice to craft a proposal to end the shutdown and extend the debt ceiling, only to pull them back because they didn't have enough votes within the GOP to pass them. Now, the Senate has restarted talks of its own.

Jonathan Ernst/Reuters/Landov

(This post updated at 1:45 p.m. EDT)

With just two days to go before the nation potentially defaults on its debts, the push to reach a deal took on new urgency on Capitol Hill. There was a flurry of activity Tuesday — a potential deal eagerly awaited by the White House seemed to be coalescing in the Senate, and House Republicans skeptical of a potential Senate plan were struggling to come up with a proposal of their own.

Bottom line is that so far, there is no firm deal in either chamber. Here's where things stand:

Susan Stephens / WNIJ

About 200 people showed up for a town hall meeting in Dixon last night to hear more about the financial state of their city…and offer suggestions on how to spend nearly 40-million dollars.

Susan Stephens / WNIJ

The city of Dixon has an unusual problem: how to spend $40 million. Citizens get their say tonight.

Karen Bleier /AFP/Getty Images

Speaker of the House John Boehner, a Republican from Ohio, stepped out of the White House this evening after a 90-minute meeting with President Obama and reported no progress.

"They will not negotiate," Boehner said. "All we are asking for here is a discussion and fairness for the American people on Obamacare."