Illinois | WGLT


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.

There currently aren't any known cases of COVID-19 in Peoria County. But officials say it's a matter of when, not if.

Citing the risk from coronavirus disease, the Illinois Department on Aging is ordering senior centers to close.

On this episode of Statewide, the spread of the coronavirus is dominating the headlines and causing numerous cancellations and other changes.  We'll learn about some of those.  Also, does wearing a mask help?  We'll hear from experts.

And an author of a new book on Abraham Lincoln's Second Inaugural Address talks about the importance of that speech and those who were in attendance that day in 1865.  Those stories and more on Statewide.

Updated 5:00 p.m., March 15

Illinois reported its first case of the novel coronavirus, which causes the COVID-19 disease, in January.

On Sunday afternoon, Illinois officials said the total number of cases in the state stands at 93.  There are cases in 13 counties, including in central Illinois.  

Republicans are renewing their call to suspend Automatic Voter Registration after more problems with the system came to light this week.

Earlier this year, it came out that several people who self-identified as non-citizens were permitted to vote. Now, more than 1,100 actual citizens in Illinois were improperly classified as having opted out of voter registration — potentially denying them their right to vote.

Bradley University has named Stephen Standifird as its 12th president.

Peoria is postponing its St. Patrick's Day Parade over COVID-19 concerns.

UPDATE: The Illinois High School Association canceled all remaining winter activities Thursday evening, including the Boys Basketball Tournament in Peoria.

Citing concerns about coronavirus disease, the Illinois General Assembly is cancelling session for next week. Authorities are also restricting other large gatherings in the Capitol building.

Legalized sports betting has officially launched in Illinois. This week, a casino in suburban Chicago opened the state’s first place for gamblers to legally bet on professional sports games. But rolling out Illinois’ sports books has been a slow-going process, and uncertainty remains about how much revenue the practice will end up generating for an already cash-strapped state. For this week’s Illinois Issues report, I explored what’s happening in the wide world of Illinois sports wagering.

UPDATE: Bradley University has joined the long list of Illinois colleges and universities moving to on-line instruction. As with ISU, Bradley is extending spring break by a week and resuming instruction through distance learning March 30 through April 12.

The university recommends students return to their home address after March 14. There will be limited food service for students who have difficulty going home. Health services will remain open. Bradley operations and faculty and staff will continue to work as under regular conditions.

A hotline to address any campus inquiries will be available starting March 16: (309)677-1111.

PREVIOUS STORY: Bradley University isn't canceling classes due to coronavirus, but contingency plans are in the works if a closure happens.

Tomorrow will be the first day Illinois residents can start filling out the 2020 U.S. Census form online. State officials said remote technology will help with the count amid concerns about the spread of COVID-19.

University of Illinois Springfield students are scheduled to return from spring break next week.  But the university is still considering whether or not to hold classroom instruction.  

Before Jeff McLinden gets to deal with what happens should Peoria lose its bid to host March Madness next year, he’s got this year’s basketball tournament to worry about.

The mud is thick and the icy puddles are unavoidable as Mitch Wettstein trudges through a field of corn stubble on his family’s farmland outside Goodfield, Illinois.

As the number of new cases of COVID-19 in Illinois continues to rise - as of Tuesday afternoon, 19 people have contracted the disease - social service agencies and hospitals are taking steps to protect the people they serve.

University of Illinois Springfield officials on Thursday fielded ideas from community members about what a potential downtown building should look like and what purpose it should serve.

Illinois politicians would be allowed to use campaign money to pay for child care under legislation being considered in the General Assembly.

The River City is set to see its first information security conference in years when BSides Peoria kicks off this October. Tim Shelley talked to the event's founder, Nick Schroeder, to learn more about BSides and why he thinks this conference is needed now in Peoria.

Jeff Siegler came to Peoria on Monday with the same message he’s brought to nearly a dozen other towns across the country: if you want to revitalize your community, citizens need to care.

Peoria County is moving three polling places as a precautionary measure to protect vulnerable people from the flu and COVID-19.

Design concepts for a proposed privately-owned 5-story luxury student housing complex across the street from Bradley University were unveiled to the public Monday. 

It appears an East Bluff middle school teacher will get a second chance. 

Peoria Public Schools has a plan in place if a local coronavirus outbreak forces schools to shut down.

When Illinois voters cast their primary ballot on March 17, their first — and even second — choice for president may no longer be in the race.

The Sangamon County Department of Public Health is opening a phone line dedicated to answering questions about the new coronavirus, starting at 8 a.m. Tuesday. The number is (217) 321-2606.

The new hotline comes after a passenger on an Amtrak train that passed through Springfield later tested positive for COVID-19, the disease spread by the novel coronavirus.

Hundreds of people gathered in downtown Springfield Sunday for the annual Women’s Day March. Demonstrators focused on opposing policies they say threaten women’s health and target immigrants.

Darrell Brown scored 21 points and Elijah Childs added 17 to lead fourth-seeded Bradley to its 10th NCAA Tournament with an 80-66 win over seventh-seeded Valparaiso in the Missouri Valley Conference championship game on Sunday.

With new cases of the coronavirus disease known as COVID-19, Illinois public health officials say the question of the virus spreading here is no longer a question of if, but when and how widely. At least two Chicago conventions were canceled, though officials say the risk to most Illinoisans remains low.

Electricity and environmental advocates offered their pitches to Illinois state senators this week on how to reduce a portion of the state’s carbon emissions. But each group has different ideas about how to do it.