Springfield

Around  1,000 public safety officials are in Springfield this week for the Illinois Emergency Management Agency’s annual training summit.  

The event includes keynote speakers that dealt with the Orlando mass shooting and Flint water crisis.  Michigan Emergency Management Director Chris Kelenske stressed the importance of technology when responding to an emergency. 

Illinois Historic Preservation Agency

The Springfield cemetery containing the grave of President Lincoln now has a monument to Purple Heart recipients.  

"We few, we happy few, we band of brothers; for he to-day that sheds his blood with me shall be my brother."

That quote, from Shakespeare's Henry V. is inscribed on the new granite monument.

It's also etched with a drawing of the medal -- a heart, emblazoned with a profile of George Washington, that hangs from a purple ribbon.

The Purple Heart is the military's oldest award, given to troops killed or wounded in combat.

  A group of people with disabilities came to Springfield Wednesday to call for Illinois to close most of its institutions for the developmentally disabled.  Advocates say closing six of the seven facilities would save the state hundreds of millions of dollars a year. 

But some people with disabilities may require the round-the-clock care that's given in the institutions. Barbara Pritchard of the Community for All Coalition says Illinois is far behind other states in offering community living options. 

Brian Mackey

A group that wants an independent panel to draw Illinois' legislative districts claims support from President Barack Obama.

Obama said politicians should not get to pick their voters in his Springfield speech this week.

He was speaking about federal elections, but the group Independent Maps says this rationale applies to the states.

Obama says politicians' enthusiasm for the idea often depends on whether their party has control of district boundaries.

New Legislation For State To Pay Up On Utility Bills

Jan 15, 2016
State of Illinois

State Senator Andy Manar has filed legislation that would allow Illinois to catch up on payments to the city of Springfield's utility.

The budget impasse has left the state with a mountain of debt.  

Manar represents a portion of Springfield. He says the state needs to take responsibility for its bills.  

"We owe them. We should pay them as a state government. The tax payers of Springfield shouldn't bear the burden of paying the state's bills for electricity,” Manar said.

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