Sam Dunklau | WGLT

Sam Dunklau

Sam is a Public Affairs Reporting intern for spring 2018, working out the NPR Illinois Statehouse bureau.

Illinois government wants to keep kids from leaving the state for college. Its latest effort is a website and app that allows students and their parents to compare in-state schools.

Public health advocates and some state lawmakers spurned Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner’s decision to veto a bill that would have raised the legal tobacco age to 21.

Rauner axed the bill last Friday, though his own Department of Public Health supported it. While he called smoking “detrimental” in his veto message, the governor said Illinois couldn’t take the risk of losing tobacco sales tax revenue to neighboring states.

The Illinois legislature overwhelmingly passed a full year budget Thursday. It includes a few plans to cut down on the state’s massive pension debt.


The legal age to buy tobacco in Illinois may soon go up from 18 to 21. The measure narrowly passed the Illinois House Wednesday night 61 to 49, after failing once before.


After more than two years of extensive renovations, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner moved back into the Governor’s Mansion in Springfield on Monday.

About 114 million people visited Illinois last year, setting a new state record. That’s according to the latest state tourism data released on Tuesday.


Seth Perlman / AP

Gov. Bruce Rauner wants to reinstate the death penalty in Illinois for mass murderers and those who kill police officers.

Ongoing budget talks at the Illinois Statehouse have shown no real sign of progress. This week, Senate Democrats pressed Governor Bruce Rauner’s administration this week to explain its proposal to shift pension costs to local school districts.


lllinois' 3 million Medicaid users will soon have more access to mental health and substance abuse treatments. Officials in Washington, D.C. ok’d a new state program that sets aside about $2 billion in Medicaid funds for the services.


Governor Bruce Rauner’s administration says a costly rebuild of the Quincy Veterans Home is the best way to get rid of legionella bacteria linked to more than a dozen deaths there. While some state legislators support the move, others remain skeptical.

Illinois' largest public employee union feels it has plenty to complain about. The union known as AFSCME has been fighting for what it says is overdue pay -- going all the way back to 2011.

Though Governor Bruce Rauner vetoed a measure to license gun dealers, Illinois House Democrats are trying to muster support to overturn the decision.