Daily dose: Local history, new state pension reform lacking downstate support, immigrant drivers licenses
In 1912, compliments for teachers and pupils in the Champaign grade schools were showered by Miss Archie L. Dickson of Chicago, representing the Palmer system of penmanship, in a talk to the Champaign school board. She reported exceptionally fine penmanship work in the schools of this city. It also was reported that a fence has been built around the McKinley athletic field and that there would be some money left in the fund, although not enough to build a grandstand.
In 1962, Gov. Otto Kerner has commuted the prison term of Orville Hodge, the former state auditor who looted the state treasury of $1.5 million. Kerner, a Democrat, cut the sentence of Hodge, a Republican, from 12 to 10 years. The action means that Hodge, 58 and in failing health, could be released from the Menard penitentiary by late January. He was sentenced to prison in 1956.
Note that there (is only one) downstater signed onto this pension reform idea
From the Chicago Sun-Times ...
SPRINGFIELD-A bipartisan coalition of Illinois House members intends to step forward with a new stab at pension reform Wednesday as talks between the legislative leaders and Gov. Pat Quinn on a potential January pension deal appear stalled.
But the prospects of this latest effort appear iffy, at best, since it will continue to contain a controversial provision opposed by the Republican legislative leaders that would make downstate and suburban school districts pick up the state's tab on educator pensions.
State Rep. Elaine Nekritz (D-Northbrook), a leader on pension issues in the House is spearheading the latest effort, is being joined by a group of lakefront Democrats and two Republicans - state Rep. Chris Nybo (R-Elmhurst) and state Rep. David Harris (R-Arlington Heights).
(The bill was filed this morning and does have one downstater on board: Rep. Jehan Gordon, D-Peoria).
Immigrant drivers license bill passes
From the Chicago Sun-Times ...
SPRINGFIELD — As many as 250,000 undocumented immigrants could legally drive on Illinois roads under landmark legislation that passed the state Senate Tuesday in a debate colored by sniping between two top Latino lawmakers.
Under the plan, which passed 41-14, with one voting present, undocumented immigrants who have lived in Illinois for one year would be eligible to receive a temporary visitors drivers license that would last for three years.
State Sen. Bill Brady (R-Bloomington) and Sen. Kirk Dillard (R-Hinsdale), both potential 2014 GOP gubernatorial candidates, voted for Tuesday’s measure in a telling sign of how important the Latino vote is becoming in Illinois.
In Brady’s case, he also represents a district that is home base to State Farm and Country Financial, two major auto insurance carriers that could see a spike in auto insurance policies for immigrants if the bill passes both chambers and is signed by Gov. Pat Quinn, as expected.
“Tens of thousands of people in this state get into accidents without insurance,” Brady said, framing the legislation as a safety issue. “There are fatal accidents that occur because people haven’t been trained or tested.”
The license initiative was spearheaded by the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, whose members packed the Senate for floor debate and burst into applause when the bill passed.
“The highway safety legislation is a good first step and proof that both parties can put the politics of fear and scapegoating aside and work on practical solutions that keep our roads and families safe,” said Lawrence Benito, the organization’s chief executive officer.