Illinois

Illinois lawmakers are also considering proposals to rewrite the way the state funds public schools. 

Marguerite Roza directs the Edunomics Lab at Georgetown University.

Roza gave the State School Board two keys for a good funding formula: Keep it generic, and tie every dollar to students instead of programs.

Board members plan to discuss Roza’s recommendations at their meeting next month. 

WBEZ

Gun owners from around Illinois rallied in Springfield Wednesday in support of their Second Amendment rights.  

Illinois Gun Owner Lobby Day, or I-GOLD, involved a march to the Capitol and a rally to get the attention of the governor and legislators.

New DCFS Director Struggling To Defend Cuts

Mar 18, 2015
DCFS

The new director of Illinois’ child welfare system is having a hard time defending Governor Bruce Rauner’s proposed budget cuts.

Democratic state senators are pushing the head of the Department of Children and Family Services to account for more than $100 million in cuts. Under Rauner’s proposal, 18-year-olds would be cut out of state services.

Rachel Otwell

Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner prepares to support the re-election of U.S. Senator Mark Kirk. Rauner says he’s not familiar with a controversial letter to Iran signed by his Republican ally.

Rauner is close with Senator Kirk. He hired several of Kirk’s employees when he became governor.

state of Illinois

The Illinois Supreme Court has opened its doors for a special evening session tonight. The justices want Gov. Bruce Rauner and other legislators to meet and watch as they hear a case. 

Chief Justice Rita Garman says in a news release that she wants to give lawmakers a window into the system's essential checks and balances. 

Rauner's office announced that he will attend the session, beginning at 6:20 p.m.

flickr/dankdepot

An Illinois lawmaker wants to ticket people possessing marijuana, instead of charging them with a misdemeanor that could mean jail time. 

Representative Kelly Cassidy proposes a $100 fine for anyone possessing less than 30 grams of the drug.

Illinois residents surprised by a tax penalty for being uninsured will get another chance to sign up for coverage.

A special enrollment period under President Barack Obama's health care law starts Sunday and runs through April 30th.

Officials say it's the last chance for those who do not have coverage to avoid paying an even bigger fine when they file their taxes next year. 

Susan Stephens / WNIJ

Northern Illinois congressman Aaron Schock built his personal wealth off of extensive business dealings with campaign contributors. 

That’s according to an AP review. The Republican was under scrutiny for lavishly redecorating his Capitol Hill office and flying aboard private planes owned by donors. 

IDOT

Illinois Department of Transportation says construction work resumes today to replace the Bypass U.S. 20 bridge over the Rock River on Rockford’s south side. 

The ramps are scheduled to be closed today as a result. The department says to use "extreme caution" while driving through work zones.

Traffic will be restricted to one lane in each direction during the construction after today. The $21 million project is scheduled to be completed by the end of November.

childcarecenter.us

Protestors filled the Illinois capitol yesterday and staged a small sit-in in front of Gov. Bruce Rauner's office. They're trying to pressure Rauner and legislators to come up with money for a program that helps low-income families afford daycare. 

Valena Mulonzi works at Steps to the Future daycare in Calumet City. She says lawmakers should listen to parents' pleas.

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