Illinois

"Dennis Hastert 109th pictorial photo" by United States Congress

A judge is expected to rule on a request from Dennis Hastert's lawyers to delay a Feb. 29 sentencing in his hush-money case because he's recuperating from a stroke and other ailments.

A hearing in Chicago federal court today comes a week after attorneys said in a filing the former U.S. House speaker now wears a leg brace and relies on a walker.

The hearing will be prosecutors' first chance to weigh in. Hastert isn't required to attend.

The largest city in Illinois is nowhere near the top in a 2016 ranking of the best Illinois cities for families, and the third-largest city didn’t fare much better.

Chicago ranks 154th of the 162 cities on the WalletHub family-friendly list, and Rockford placed 149th. Aurora – the second-largest Illinois city – came in at number 99.

WalletHub says it rated Illinois cities on four weighted categories of and then totaled the scores to achieve the ranking.

cps.edu

The head of the Chicago Public Schools is demanding his predecessor reimburse the financially troubled school district about $10 million.

Barbara Byrd-Bennett pleaded guilty in October to her role in a scheme to steer $23 million in no-bid contracts to education firms for $2.3 million in bribes and kickbacks.

The Chicago Sun-Times reports schools CEO Forrest Claypool wants to use a state law allowing government agencies to go after corrupt individuals or contractors for triple the amount paid them.

"stethoscope" by flickr use rosmary (CC BY 2.0)

Enrollment events are planned in Chicago as an important deadline approaches for President Barack Obama's health care law.

Sunday is the last day to sign up to buy private insurance on the marketplace for coverage in 2016.

Fines for being uninsured are rising and could average nearly $1,000 per household.

The penalties are the law's nudge to get healthy people into the insurance pool, helping keep premiums manageable for everyone.

Chicago enrollment events are planned Saturday at the Chicago Urban League and the Community First Medical Center.

 Gov. Bruce Rauner will give his second annual State of the State address at noon Wednesday. After a year of stalemate, he's expected to make some effort to bridge a bipartisan divide.

woodstockgroundhog.org

Yep...it's that time again. The city’s annual Groundhog Days.

The northern Illinois community square served as the focal point of the 90s movie “Groundhog Day” starring Bill Murray. In the movie, Murray's character re-lives the same day over and over again.

Ever since then, residents and tourists congregate in the town square every year to re-live places made famous by the movie.

Organizer Rick Bellairs says most of the activities are free, including a Groundhog Day Dinner and Dance.

Susan Stephens / WNIJ

Chicago's Independent Police Review Authority says a 19-year-old Northern Illinois University student called 911 three times asking them to send police before he was fatally shot by an officer.

The agency that investigates police shootings revealed Monday the Chicago Office of Emergency Management and Communication identified two additional 911 calls placed by Quintonio LeGrier prior to his death and that of 55-year-old Bettie Jones.

One call by LeGrier had previously been made public.

"Courtroom One Gavel" by Flickr User Beth Cortez-Neavel / (CC BY 2.0)

About 100 convicted Illinois murderers sentenced as teenagers to life without parole are assured of resentencing after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling Monday.

The high court ruled that its 2012 opinion barring automatic life terms for young offenders is retroactive.

The Illinois Supreme Court decreed the same thing two years ago.

Heidi Lambros, of the Office of the State Appellate Defender, says sentencing in two Illinois cases  already has been reconsidered.

Emanuel: Ramsey Doesn't Want Police Commissioner Job

Jan 26, 2016
"Charles Ramsey..." by Flickr User Elvert Barnes / (CC BY 2.0)

Mayor Rahm Emanuel is making it sound like former Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey would be a perfect choice to be Chicago's next police commissioner, but says Ramsey isn't interested.

Emanuel's office announced Sunday that Ramsey will advise the department through “civil rights reforms'' the mayor called for after the release of a video of a white police officer fatally shooting black teenager Laquan McDonald.

Illinois is spending millions of dollars on foster care, Medicaid, and other expenses despite a lack of budget. 

That's because of laws that require it, as well as court orders. 

President of Lutheran Social Services of Illinois Mark Stutrud says that's taken pressure off of politicians to reach a deal.

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