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  • Tuesday, December 6, 2016
    Illinois lawmakers prove whose interests matter most: Theirs
    Comptroller (21) Cloonen, Katherine "Kate"--State House, 79 , Costello II, Jerry--State House, 116 , Flowers, Mary--State House, 31 , Harper, Sonya--State House, 6 , Hernandez, Elizabeth "Lisa"--State House, 24 , Tabares, Silvana--State House, 21 , Welch, Emanuel "Chris"--State House, 7
    Democratic Illinois lawmakers are suing to get their paychecks now that the Republican who put them at the end of the $10.4-billion ... </span> 
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  • Tuesday, December 6, 2016
    Amid budget impasse, Jackson County Health Department down to four-day weeks, cuts programs
    Budgets--Local , Health (49)

    MURPHYSBORO — The Jackson County Health Department is operating on one of its smallest budgets and staffs in about a decade, one administrator said.

    The center just set its 2017 fiscal budget, which is $3,657,089, administrator Miriam Link-Mullison said.

    The agency received funding from the state's stop-gap budget, but still has to be cautious be...   read more >

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  • Tuesday, December 6, 2016
    New comptroller Mendoza vows to continue prioritizing money for service providers, delaying lawmaker pay
    Budget--State (8) , Comptroller (21)

    SPRINGFIELD — When Susana Mendoza took the oath of office Monday to become Illinois’ next comptroller, she didn’t just inherit an office previously held by Democrat Dawn Clark Netsch and Republican Judy Baar Topinka, political role models whom she praised as “equally unforgettable and completely awesome.”

    As the person now in charge of th...   read more >

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  • Tuesday, December 6, 2016
    Comptroller to face raging river of red ink ‘Please bear with me,’ Mendoza says at her ceremony
    Comptroller (21)
    Democrat Susana Mendoza was sworn in Monday as state comptroller during a small ceremony at the Capitol, asking for patience and prayers as she takes office with lllinois’ pile of unpaid bills topping $10.4 billion.

    Mendoza said she will use her role overseeing the state’s checkbook to “safeguard the interests of the state’s most vulnerab...   read more >

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  • Tuesday, December 6, 2016
    Emanuel, aldermen call on Rauner to back Chicago as sanctuary city
    Chicago Mayor (16) , Rauner, Bruce

    Mayor Rahm Emanuel wants Gov. Bruce Rauner to publicly back his efforts to...   read more >

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  • Tuesday, December 6, 2016
    Judge sides with state against embattled group home operator facing shutdown
    Disabled (47) , Human Services (75)

    A Cook County judge Monday refused to halt a state shutdown of a troubled network of group homes for adults with developmental and intellectual disabilities.

    In its "Suffering in Secret" series, the Chicago Tribune last month exposed grave problems, including deaths and injuries linked to neglect, at group homes run by a business now known as Disability Services of Illinois.

    ...   read more >
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  • Tuesday, December 6, 2016
    Morning Spin for Tuesday, December 6, 2016
    Budget--State (8) , Legislature (56) , Rauner, Bruce

    Topspin

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  • Tuesday, December 6, 2016
    Chicago Suburbs Feel Strain Of New Cook County Ordinances
    Chicago (16) , Cook County , Labor (55) , Minimum Wage (10)
    At a time when many Cook County employers are already feeling their purse strings tightening, two recent actions from the Cook County Board, mirroring similar actions taken by the city of Chicago, have prompted many to worry over their impact on businesses – and particularly in suburban corners of the county, far from Chicago’s city limits.

    In October, county commission...   read more >
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  • Tuesday, December 6, 2016
    So-called workers’ comp ‘reform’ sticks it to taxpayers
    Rauner, Bruce , Workers' Compensation (97)
    Any one of us could be hurt on the job. It doesn’t matter if we work in an office, a factory or on a farm, accidents happen to people in every occupation. When someone is seriously injured, the question becomes whose responsibility is it to pay for their care and rehabilitation so they can get back to work? For Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner, his insurance industry allies and many businesses,...   read more >
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  • Tuesday, December 6, 2016
    Video Gambling At Race Tracks Remains Wait & See
    Gambling, Gaming

    The fate of the horse racing industry in Illinois remains on edge with a lack of action last week on a proposal to permit tracks to operate up to 150 gaming terminals and off track...   read more >

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  • Tuesday, December 6, 2016
    Mendoza on state's financial crisis: 'We're going to get out of this'
    Budget--State (8) , Comptroller (21)

    Democrat Susana Mendoza was sworn in as Illinois comptroller Monday, saying bipartisan agreement is needed to get the state out of its fiscal crisis, but also saying GOP Gov. Bruce Rauner’s “turnaround agenda” shouldn’t be linked to passing a budget.

    “I don’t think that the ap...   read more >

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  • Tuesday, December 6, 2016
    Picking financial priorities
    Energy, Alternative Energy (93) , Rauner, Bruce

    I just cannot understand why Illinois is in such lousy financial shape with such great leadership at the helm.

    Why just last week our financially astute governor chose to give Exelon a multi-billion dollar corporate bailout, as I guess last year's $2.27 billion in profits just weren't good enough to squeak by on....   read more >

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  • Monday, December 5, 2016
    Illinois lawmakers sue to get paid despite state budget mess
    Budget--State (8) , Comptroller (21) , Legislature (56) Cloonen, Katherine "Kate"--State House, 79 , Flowers, Mary--State House, 31 , Harper, Sonya--State House, 6 , Hernandez, Elizabeth "Lisa"--State House, 24 , Tabares, Silvana--State House, 21 , Welch, Emanuel "Chris"--State House, 7

    SPRINGFIELD — Six state representatives filed a lawsuit Friday demanding paychecks the Illinois comptroller cut off last spring because there's no budget agreement.

    The Democrats sued Republican Leslie Munger claiming that she's violating the state constitution through executive-branch interference with the Legislature. The lawmakers also took a shot at Munger's...   read more >

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  • Monday, December 5, 2016
    How government seizes property
    Courts (27) , Legislature (56) , Police (28)

    Two unlikely allies — the ACLU of Illinois and the Illinois Policy Institute — expose the abuses inherent in civil asset forfeitures laws.

    In August 2015, Judy Wiese of Moline went to bed worried. Her grandson had used her car to go to work, but he wasn't home.

    At 1:30 a.m., the police called to say that her grandson had been arrested for driving on a revoke...   read more >

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  • Monday, December 5, 2016
    Madigan cites 'lack of trust' with Rauner as budget meetings continue
    Budget--State (8) , Legislature (56) , Rauner, Bruce Madigan, Michael--State House, 22

    A closed-door meeting Saturday between Gov. Bruce Rauner and legislative leaders provided little if any headway on a budget deal to keep state government running into the new year, with Democratic House Speaker Michael Madigan declaring "a lack of trust with the Rauner administration."

     

    Madigan's comments followed a Friday request in which he asked for so-called "memorandu...   read more >

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  • Monday, December 5, 2016
    Morning Spin for Monday, December 5, 2016
    Comptroller (21) , Rauner, Bruce

    Topspin

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  • Monday, December 5, 2016
    Senate GOP leader: Dems stalling Impasse talks falter amid concerns over Trump unknowns
    Budget--State (8) , Legislature (56)

    Democratic leaders on Sunday said they need more information to formulate a comprehensive budget plan, including the potential effects of an incoming Trump administration, but Republicans called the request a stall tactic aimed at creating financial havoc with a short-term state spending plan due to expire at month’...   read more >

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  • Monday, December 5, 2016
    To Illinois’ political leaders: Get it done
    Budget--State (8)

    The citizens of Illinois need to have a fiscally responsible annual budget that reflects actual projected revenue streams into the state’s treasury.

    The budget must be balanced, and this will probably require new taxable monies concomitant with some spending reductions or limitations on...   read more >

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  • Monday, December 5, 2016
    Route 89 bridge gets a new name
    Legislature (56) , Transportation (91) , Veterans (95) Rezin, Sue--State Senate 38 , Skoog, Andy -- State House, 76

    It’s only about half way completed, but the new Route 89 bridge will already have an official name when it is opened for traffic.

    The bridge was designated “The Illinois Valley Veterans Memorial Bridge” when House Joint Resolution 142 passed the state Senate Thursday.

    “Illinois Veterans deserve the utmost appreciation and respect,&#...   read more >

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  • Monday, December 5, 2016
    What would happen after NAFTA?
    Agriculture (2) , Business (10) , Employment, Jobs (40) , Foreign affairs (99) , President (73)

    Nina’s Mexican Market in La Salle sells staples such ascitrus, bananas and bread, but it also has food for less common tastes, like cactus.

    Many of the products come from Chicago, said assistant manager Mila Tintori, but their origin often is Mexico. That fact alone may make the items more expensive, depending on how president-elect Donald Trump carries out his campaign pledge to re...   read more >

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  • Monday, December 5, 2016
    Thanks for creating brighter future for Illinois, Q-Cs
    Business (10) , ComEd (94) , Education Funding (36a) , Education--Elementary and Secondary (36) , Employment, Jobs (40) , Energy, Alternative Energy (93) , Environment (41) , Governor (44) , Legislature (56) , Nuclear (67) , Rauner, Bruce , Taxes, property (87) , Utilities (94) Anderson, Neil--State Senate, 36 , Gabel, Robyn--State House, 18 , Moffitt, Donald--State House, 74 , Smiddy, Mike--State House, 71 , Verschoore, Patrick--State House, 72 , Weaver, Chuck -- State Senate, 37

    This story was edited Dec. 5, 2016, to remove Sen. Chuck Weaver's name from the list of lawmakers who supported the Future Energy Jobs Act.

    Leaders are spot on in calling a “tremendous victory” Thursday’s passage of a comprehensive clean energy act that saved the Quad-Cities region’s nuclear plant.

    Not only will the Future Energy Jobs Act protec...   read more >

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  • Monday, December 5, 2016
    State Lawmakers Sue to Restore Timely Pay, Faulting Rauner, Munger According to the group bringing the suit, the effort looks to “end unwarranted political pressure being brought by Gov. Bruce Rauner and Comptroller Leslie Munger."
    Comptroller (21) , Rauner, Bruce Cloonen, Katherine "Kate"--State House, 79 , Flowers, Mary--State House, 31 , Harper, Sonya--State House, 6 , Hernandez, Elizabeth "Lisa"--State House, 24 , Tabares, Silvana--State House, 21 , Welch, Emanuel "Chris"--State House, 7

    A group of Illinois representatives have filed a lawsuit looking to end a divisive policy pushed by Republican leaders that withholds state government paycheck until other bills are paid.

    According to the group bringing the suit, the effort looks to “end unwarranted political pressure being brought by Gov. Bruce Rauner and Comptroller Leslie Munger." That...   read more >

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  • Monday, December 5, 2016
    Jack Franks takes collaborative approach as McHenry County Board chairman
    Local Government (60) , Political Parties (Incld Tea Party) (39a) Franks, Jack--State House, 63

    Jack Franks appears to be taking the responsible approach as he is set to be sworn in Monday as the McHenry County Board’s first popularly elected chairman.

    A Democrat and longtime state representative, Franks has knocked heads numerous times in the past with the Repu...   read more >

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  • Monday, December 5, 2016
    AS IT IS: 4 tips on budget crisis
    Budget--State (8)

    Politicians like Gov. Bruce Rauner have no easy solutions for the state's budget crisis. Springfield politicians need to raise taxes or cut spending or both.

     

    — Hold local lawmakers accountable. Newspaper editorial boards around the state, including ours at times, like to thunder at the politicians in Springfield. But they seldom take their local lawmakers to task.  read more >

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  • Monday, December 5, 2016
    Rauner to sign Exelon energy bill Wednesday in Clinton
    Business (10) , ComEd (94) , Emissions (41) , Employment, Jobs (40) , Energy, Alternative Energy (93) , Environment (41) , Governor (44) , Rauner, Bruce , Utilities (94)

    SPRINGFIELD — Gov. Bruce Rauner plans to visit Clinton on Wednesday to sign a bill overhauling Illinois’ energy policy and creating $235 million in annual ratepayer subsidies to keep open Exelon Corp.’s nuclear power plants there and near the Quad-Cities.

    The Clinton Chamber of Commerce announced Sunday on its Facebook page that Rauner plans a bill-...   read more >

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