Illinois will acquire new rail cars for all of the in-state Amtrak routes. Illinois Department of Transportation Secretary Ann Schneider said the new cars will address the increase in ridership experienced by the service for the past five or six years.
“They're going to be bi-level cars,” Schneider said. “It allows us to transport more passengers on the same footprint, so it makes it more efficient and it gives us opportunity to expand service without having to add train sets.”
Governor Pat Quinn says the Supreme Court ruling on health care means Illinois can move forward with implementation of key provisions under the federal law. The governor says Illinois will go along with the expansion of Medicaid. Quinn also says lawmakers need to resume work on setting up an insurance exchange.
Governor Pat Quinn and Illinois' largest public employees union have yet to agree on a new contract for 40, ooo state workers. But they were able to temporarily extend the current contract, while talks continue.
With First Lady of the United States Michelle Obama looking on, Gov. Pat Quinn signed the Illinois Military Family Licensing Act to help qualified service members and their spouses obtain professional licenses so they can continue working in Illinois while they are here for military service.
Illinois ranks 6th in the nation when it comes to deaths caused to a lack of health insurance. The findings were issued by Families USA, an advocacy group. The report looked at data between 2005 and 2010.
Governor Pat Quinn has signed a measure that will reduce Illinois' regional offices of education. To avoid elimination, offices must serve at least 61,000 residents. Whiteside County's population is under 59,000.
Retired state workers in Illinois will have to pay more for their health insurance. But it appears it won't be right away. The law signed last week aims to reduce retiree health-care costs. It ends the practice of the state covering the entire premium costs for those with at least 20 years of service.