Gov. Bruce Rauner says passage of his pro-business Turnaround Agenda would help curb violence in Chicago. Rauner recently said he's "disappointed" in how Mayor Rahm Emanuel has handled the outcry over video of a police officer killing Laquan McDonald, a black teenager.

Advocates of police reforms after disputed shootings in Chicago and elsewhere say extra protections tailored for officers accused of wrongdoing are unfair and should be scaled back.

The shields for officers are contained in union-negotiated contracts, state laws and departmental directives.

They include waiting periods of up to 10 days before officers have to speak to internal investigators.

A common protection is also a ban on launching inquiries on the basis of anonymous complaints.

Springfield Wants State To Pay Utility Bill

Jan 13, 2016
Brian Mackey

The city of Springfield is pushing for the state of Illinois to pay its electric bill.

The state owes Springfield’s utility company about $10 million dollars. The city lights up a lot of state buildings.

But the budget impasse has left the state deeply in the red. Late notices have been sent to state accounts.

Springfield’s Mayor Jim Langfelder says he’s reluctant though to shut the power off.

“Well, the impact would be that people would be sent home," Langfelder said. "They wouldn’t be able to work in the dark or without heat.”

Jenna Dooley

237 positions are currently filled at the Thomson facility. According to a spokesperson for the Bureau of Prisons, 13 additional positions have been selected and are expected to report within the next few months, bringing the total staff to 250.

There are currently 104 minimum security inmates housed at the institution.

Thomson Village President Vicky Trager:

State of Illinois

Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner is observing his first anniversary in office.

Rauner campaigned on a promise to shake up Springfield. On that account, at least, he has succeeded. Illinois is in the midst of a historic budget impasse -- with no signs of it coming to an end.

Critics, including Democratic Rep. Lou Lang of Skokie, lay the blame on the governor.

Jenna Dooley

The DeKalb Public Library will re-open to the public on Monday, January 18th at 9:00 a.m. beginning with a grand opening ceremony and ribbon-cutting. 

According to a release, at 10:00 a.m., there will be a strolling magician and students from NIU’s Black Male Initiative group reading to children in the Children’s department.

At 11:00 a.m. in the Zimmerman Room, DeKalb’s Police Chief Lowery, Dan Kenney, Pastor Joe Mitchell, and a representative from Safe Passage will be a part of a panel discussion to talk about non-violence in the community. 

"Money" By Flickr User Pictures of Money / (CC BY 2.0)

Gov. Bruce Rauner says he will outline a plan to get Illinois out from under court-ordered spending that's plunging the state further into debt during a seven-month budget stalemate.


The Republican was speaking in an interview with The Associated Press marking his first year in office Tuesday. The Legislature begins its spring term Wednesday.

Even without a budget, the state has been required to continue spending on things such as Medicaid because of federal consent decrees and court orders.

Since 2011, The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services has investigated more than 600 allegations of child human trafficking in the state. According to a news release, most of the reports involved children being victimized within blocks of where they live.

The release says both boys and girls, many as young as 12, some younger, are victims. Anyone under the age of 18 involved in this crime is considered a victim.

The child may:

•Show signs of physical harm

•Become depressed, fearful or withdrawn

The head of Chicago's law department says a former U.S. attorney will conduct an independent review of the division that defends Chicago police after a judge last week accused a city attorney of hiding evidence in a lawsuit over a fatal police shooting.

Corporation Counsel Steve Patton said in a news release yesterday that the department has hired Dan Webb to review “practices and standards'' of the Federal Civil Rights Litigation division.

It represents Chicago and its officers in federal civil cases, including claims of excessive force.

Flickr user / alamosbasement "old school" (CC BY 2.0)

More than half of Illinois school districts responding to a recent survey say they're having trouble filling teaching positions.

Three-quarters say they're seeing fewer qualified candidates than in previous years. The State Journal-Register reports 62 percent of the state's school districts completed a survey developed by the Illinois Association of Regional Superintendents of Schools.

It found rural school districts in central and northwest Illinois are having the toughest time finding qualified teachers.