Illinois | WGLT

Illinois

Headlines from around the state, curated by the GLT newsroom. If you want more state news, listen to Illinois Public Radio's The 21st on Mondays-Thursdays at 11 a.m., and Statewide at 11 a.m. Fridays.

If you watch TV via antenna in the Peoria area, you lost a couple channels after the great January rescan.

Three Republicans made their cases for why they deserve their party's nomination for the 17th Congressional District this March.

A withdrawn Republican candidate for the 17th Congressional District now claims he's back in the race. But the Illinois State Board of Elections says that's not necessarily the case.

State Sen. Don Harmon is now president of the Illinois Senate. Meanwhile, state officials say more than 500 non-citizens were inadvertently registered to vote.

A federal judge banned two Central Illinois men from hunting worldwide after they admitted to breaking federal hunting laws in separate cases.

Home sales in the Peoria area were down a bit in 2019. But there are also fewer homes on the market.

A former Streator funeral director who lost his state license after alleged professional misconduct turned himself in Friday on multiple felony warrants. 

William "BJ" Elias, 51, is charged with 14 counts of violating the Illinois Funeral Funds or Burial Act in between 2003 and 2019. Illinois Comptroller Susana Mendoza said Elias stole more than $136,000. 

Springfield utility officials presented their budget to aldermen Thursday. Utility leaders said the spending plan would change little if the city decides to shutter much of its coal plant.

Three women serve on the Springfield City Council, the most in the city’s history. Next Tuesday, Ward 3 Ald. Doris Turner, Ward 6 Ald. Kristin DiCenso and Ward 8 Ald. Erin Conley are inviting mothers and daughters to the Committee of the Whole meeting.

Conley, the newest woman on the ten-member council, said it’s important for young people to see them working together.

“I’d like especially young girls to see what it means to be leader,” she said. “But also what it means in leadership roles to work as a team. It’s not one person. We work as a team, we pull together.”

A pre-professional soccer team will call Peoria home starting this season.

Last weekend, lawmakers elected Don Harmon to be president of the Illinois Senate. It’s been described as a bitter fight, but it has nothing on some of the conflicts from Illinois’ past, including one particularly “discreditable row” from the year 1857.

There is still a lot of optimism regarding hemp as a cash crop in Illinois and other states.  But the first year since it became legal to grow shows there is still a lot of work to be done. We'll hear from some farmers.  

Are people from the midwest nicer than those in other parts of the country?  And how can you you measure it?  

Those stories and more on this episode of Statewide.

Listeners may have heard some of our series on Illinois special education students being sent out of state, many to “behavior modification” programs. One response we got was from Marcus Chatfield, currently working toward his PhD at the University of Florida. He has written two thesis papers on such programs.

Chatfield has been interested in this topic since the 1980s, when he was placed in the Straight Incorporated center in Springfield, Virginia, as a teenager. Straight Incorporated was a massive drug treatment program that operated 43 centers across 18 States until 1993, when it shut down facing investigations documenting abuse and multimillion dollar judgments in several lawsuits.

 

Chatfield spoke with our education reporter.

The Peoria Heights School District Athletic Director has resigned after administrators say he sent inappropriate texts and social media messages to recent female graduates.

University of Illinois Springfield professor Jason Pierceson recently published an encyclopedia detailing LGBTQ politics. It includes profiles on candidates, officials and activists; a timeline of events;  government documents; speeches; and court cases. Pierceson recently talked about the two-volume work with reporter Maureen McKinney, as well as the Trump administration's handling of LGBTQ issues. 

The Illinois State Board of Elections is correcting information it previously released about non-citizens mistakenly registered under the state's automatic voter registration system who then illegally cast a ballot. 

East Peoria might get a swimming pool again...if voters decide they want it. 

Developer Casey Baldovin is announcing a new project in the Warehouse District. 

Both Republicans and Democrats say they want more answers as to why more than 500 non-U.S.citizens were mistakenly added to Illinois voter rolls.

Members of both parties say they take the issue of election security seriously.

A suburban Chicago school teacher is asking the Illinois Supreme Court to agree she can use her paid sick days for maternity leave. The catch? Her baby was born in June, on the last full day of the school year. The teacher wanted to use her remaining 28 paid sick days at the start of the following school year. 

 

Adam Dauksas, an attorney representing the school district, told the court that interpretation disconnects the leave from the birth, and could have absurd results.

Illinois lawmakers are considering whether the state should begin paying for deferred prosecution programs. They’re intended to give non-violent offenders a second chance.

An 80-year-old Peoria woman died Tuesday due to cold weather exposure.

2019 was a violent year in Peoria. The city recorded 25 homicides — the highest number in more than 30 years.

Yona Stamatis talks with ISO Conductor and Music Director Ken Lam about this weekend's "Magnificent Mozart" concert, featuring Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante, Jennifer Higdon’s To The Point, and Stravinsky’s Dumbarton Oaks, inspired by Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos.

Friday, January 24, 7:30 PM, at the First Presbyterian Church in Springfield.

Saturday, January 25, 7:30 PM, at the Second Presbyterian Church in Bloomington.

https://www.ilsymphony.org/

 

Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker signed a law Wednesday aimed at bringing more young people into the civic conversation.

A recreational marijuana lounge is coming to downtown Springfield. The City Council on Tuesday granted one of the first permits to open an establishment specifically for the consumption of marijuana. It also allows on-site consumption at the dispensary.

A new resident police officer has moved into the East Bluff.

Thomas Railsback, an Illinois Republican congressman who helped draw up articles of impeachment against President Richard Nixon in 1974, has died at age 87. 

The East Peoria City Council took the first step to approve Roy Sorce's application to start up a craft cannabis growing operation off Route 116. 

A couple is making one of the largest donations in Bradley University's history.

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