Illinois Campaign For Political Reform

Jenna Dooley / WNIJ

About 20 Illinois lawmakers so far have announced they are leaving the state legislature. For some, it's effective immediately. For others, it means they will not run for re-election -- and the list keeps growing.

But is this kind of turnover normal in Springfield?

State Sen. Tim Bivins, R-Dixon, recently announced he will not run again this coming term. He served for more than a decade in the Illinois Senate after he retired from a 33-year career in law enforcement. So, Bivins says, he thought 11 years was long enough for him to serve as a state senator.

Brian Mackey/Illinois Public Radio

Some Illinois lawmakers – including Elaine Nekritz, Christine Radogno and Tim Bivins – recently resigned or announced they will not run for re-election. Any options they may have for their next steps could even include lobbying for the time being, under the state’s revolving door policy.

ilcampaign.org

Higher education has been among the areas feeling the state budget impasse as funding has been cut.  It has forced some schools to reduce classes, lay off employees and, in some cases, close for several days.

But a review of enrollment indicates small and mid-sized public universities are taking a double hit.  

Wikimedia

Hillary Clinton won the presidential race in the State of Illinois.  But may voters chose "none of the above."  

Nearly 130-thousand voters skipped the presidential category on the ballot, leaving that blank.  That's more than three times the number who sat out the presidential race 4 years earlier.   

The Illinois Campaign for Political Reform compiled the numbers.  But the group can't point to one specific reason why so many voters avoided making a choice this time.   

The Illinois Campaign for Political Reform recently compared enrollment data of Illinois public colleges and universities against similar schools in six neighboring states. 

Enrollment at the state's three largest public universities increased -- but just barely. The biggest gain was at the University of Illinois flagship campus in Urbana-Champaign, at 1.8%.  

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