Posts tagged with this author are either entirely or partially reported by the staff at WBEZ. If possible, the specific staff member who reported each story will be listed within the body of each corresponding post.
Mo. lawmakers to consider changes to school funding formula
Legislative leaders say addressing Missouri's school funding formula is one of their top priorities for the annual session that starts Wednesday.
Because of tight budgets there has not been enough money in recent years to fully fund the education formula. That has prompted concern that the distribution of the money could benefit certain districts at the expense of others.
Illinois' anti-gambling lobby speaks out against online lottery plan
Illinois Lottery officials want lotto tickets available online by next spring. Both the state - and gambling critics - agree that'll be a financial boon for Illinois.
"Well, it could be a boon, but at the expense of addicted gamblers," said Anita Bedell, the head of Illinois Church Action on Alcohol and Addiction Problems. Bedell, who has been fighting gambling expansion for years, says she worries online ticket sales will make it too easy for gambling addicts to get their fix.
Rod Blagojevich has just over two months of freedom before he's scheduled to begin a 14-year prison term. But the ex-governor and his lawyers plan to keep fighting.
After Judge James Zagel handed down the sentence, and the public was ushered out of the courtroom, more than an hour passed before the ex-governor, his wife and his lawyers appeared in the lobby of the court building.
Two day sentencing hearing for Blagojevich begins today
Former Ill. Gov. Rod Blagojevich's sentencing hearing is scheduled to start at 10 a.m. Much of today's hearing will be a repeat of what attorneys have already argued in written motions filed with the court.
The one unknown variable is the governor himself. He'll get a chance to address the court.
Former federal prosecutor Dave Weisman says Blagojevich should read a prepared statement and keep it short.
Reporting from WBEZ's Jennifer Brandel used in this report.
Illinois Governor Pat Quinn says he won't sign any gambling expansion bill that doesn't meet his framework.
The gambling expansion bill was narrowly defeated by state legislators a couple weeks ago. Next week, lawmakers are back in session and may try yet again to advance it. Quinn says they shouldn't bother if it still includes slot machines at race tracks .
Reporting from WBEZ's Kate Dries used in this report.
Illinois Senator Mark Kirk says the U.S. doesn't need to give any more aid to Libya.
Speaking to reporters Thursday from Libya, Kirk says the country has enough money to support itself - at least $100 billion seized from former leader Moammar Gadhafi.
"I had my worries that those funds were not being released on time," Kirk said. "But I was reassured by key figures -- the chairman, the prime minister, and the finance minister -- that they have adequate resources for their capacity right now.
Reporting from Illinois Public Radio's Sean Crawford and WBEZ's Sam Hudzik was used in this story.
Gov. Pat Quinn says he will need to lay off 1,900 state employees and close seven state facilities to live within a budget sent to him by the General Assembly.
"Decisions made by members of the General Assembly I may or may not agree with, but once they have adopted their budget, it is now the law of our state," Quinn told reporters in Chicago today. "We have to implement this in a responsible manner."