Frozen funding under review

SPRINGFIELD – Gov. Rod Blagojevich has indicated he may soon thaw out a frozen $1 million operating grant for a bonding authority to help develop the University of Illinois Research Park and others like it.

Vetoed bill cuts prison captains

SPRINGFIELD - Corrections captains got some unwelcome but not unexpected news Wednesday when Gov. Rod Blagojevich vetoed the $17.3 million lawmakers inserted into the budget to save those 219 jobs.

Budget proposal passes

SPRINGFIELD - On the final day of the legislative session, the Democrat-controlled Illinois General Assembly sent the governor a bill to increase the state's minimum wage, and passed a package of revenue proposals designed to balance the budget by ending some tax business tax breaks and raising various other taxes and fees.

Bill aims to tighten ethics laws

SPRINGFIELD - The Illinois House overwhelmingly approved a comprehensive ethics reform package Friday and sent it on to the Senate, where it is expected to be voted on today.

Future may hold limited pensions for lawmakers

SPRINGFIELD - The Illinois House sent the governor a scaled-back pension reform bill that would prohibit future members of the General Assembly from earning bonuses for serving more than 20 years.

Senate vote on ERA likely will be delayed

SPRINGFIELD - A Senate panel approved the Equal Rights Amendment Thursday, but a vote by the full chamber will likely be delayed until the fall to give time for more public hearings, said Senate President Emil Jones, D-Chicago.

Plan for pension systems delayed

SPRINGFIELD - The governor's budget director said Wednesday that no effort would be made this final week of the legislative session to combine the state's pension systems, but he did not say the idea was off the table permanently.

Bill on taping closed meetings advances

SPRINGFIELD - Local governments would have to maintain audio or videotapes of closed meetings, under legislation the House sent to the governor's desk Wednesday.

Mental health funding looks 'optimistic'

SPRINGFIELD - A campaign to avert further funding cuts for mental health and other human services programs appears to have found an ear in Springfield.

Practicing terrorism preparedness

CHICAGO - A national mock terrorism response drill last week in Chicago showed that a major terrorism incident could have an impact in East Central Illinois.