Illinois Senate

Illinois General Assembly
9:41 am
Mon April 8, 2013

Ill. General Assembly Returns From Break

Credit Flickr/Jason Dunnivant

Legislators and lobbyists will once again fill Illinois' capitol this week, as the General Assembly returns from a two-week break. 

This is the time the legislative session ratchets up - as it will until a scheduled May 31 adjournment.

The Senate will take up legislation already approved by the House, or vice versa -- either killing proposals or sending them to the governor's desk.  For example: a proposal to legalize same-sex marriage in Illinois.  It passed the Senate, but is awaiting a vote in the House.

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Anti-Bullying Legislation
12:06 pm
Tue May 22, 2012

Ill. Senate rejects anti-bullying legislation by one vote

The interior of the dome at the Illinois State Capitol.
(via Flickr/jglazer75)

A push to make Illinois schools adopt more thorough policies to prevent bullying fell short in the state Senate.

The legislation would have required schools to spell out how they would investigate allegations and what would happen to students caught bullying others.

It got 29 votes Tuesday but needed 30 for approval. Twelve senators voted "no" and 12 voted "present."

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Illinois Senate
3:49 pm
Thu May 17, 2012

Ill. Senate rejects Muslim member of rights panel

The Ill. State Capitol in Springfield, Ill.
(via Flickr/jglazer75)

A longtime member of the Illinois Human Rights Commission has been denied another term because of material on his website about the Nation of Islam.

Munir Muhammad is an official in the Coalition for the Remembrance of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, who led the Nation of Islam for decades. The coalition's website includes a statement saying "race mixing" and interracial marriage should be prohibited.

It's not clear from the website whether the coalition endorses that view or is presenting it to show what Elijah Muhammad believed.

Legislative Scholarships
11:42 am
Thu May 3, 2012

Ill. Senate votes to end legislative scholarships

The interior of the dome at the Illinois State Capitol.
(via Flickr/jglazer75)

The Illinois Senate has agreed to end the practice of letting lawmakers hand out free college educations to their constituents.

For years, the Senate had been the last roadblock in efforts to end the program. Thursday's Senate vote makes it likely the Illinois House and governor will quickly take the final steps in getting rid of the tuition waivers.

The measure passed 43-5, with five senators voting "present."

Fracking
2:22 pm
Thu April 26, 2012

Ill. legislation regulating 'fracking' advances

The interior of the dome at the Illinois State Capitol.
(via Flickr/jglazer75)

Illinois legislation is advancing that would regulate decades-old but debated technology used to reach previously inaccessible natural gas reserves deep underground.

The state Senate on Thursday unanimously sent to the House a bill addressing hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. That technology involves using mixtures of water, sand and chemicals to free below-ground energy reserves.

Senate Bill 3280 comes as energy companies are pushing to prospect possible drilling sites using fracking in southern Illinois.

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Education / Illinois Senate
2:11 pm
Mon February 27, 2012

Illinois legislators debate four-year math requirement for high school students

(via Flickr/Boaz Arad)

Reporting from Rachel Otwell of WUIS used in this report.

Illinois state legislators are pushing to tack on a year of math for high school students. But not everyone thinks that's a good idea.

Backers say requiring four years of math instead of the current three will prepare students going into skilled labor and science and engineering fields.

But, state Sen. Dave Luechtefeld, R-Okawville, says tacking on a year of math won't necessarily be beneficial.

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Illinois Tax Breaks
4:00 pm
Tue December 13, 2011

Ill. Senate OKs tax breaks for business, families; goes next to Quinn

A interior view of the dome of the Illinois State Capitol building in Springfield, Ill.
(via Flickr/jglazer75)

Will be updated.

Illinois lawmakers have approved a $330 million package of tax relief to businesses and individuals.

The state Senate approved the business measure 44-9 on Tuesday. The individual tax relief passed 48-4. Both now go to Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn, a supporter.

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Morning round-up
9:22 am
Thu October 27, 2011

Morning headlines: Thursday, October 27, 2011

Very little traffic surrounds Busch Stadium as a steady rain falls in St. Louis on October 26, 2011. Game 6 of the 2011 World Series was postponed due to the inclement weather. Game 6 will be play Thursday night.
UPI/Bill Greenblatt

World Series Game 6 tonight at Busch after being postponed due to rain

Last night, Major League Baseball officials postponed Game 6 of the World Series because of the rainy forecast. The Texas Rangers and the Cardinals will play tonight at Busch Stadium starting at 7:05 CST.

Texas leads the Series 3-2. If Game 7 is necessary, it will be played tomorrow night at Busch.

E. coli outbreak in St. Louis County

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Illinois Utility Rates / Pat Quinn
3:51 pm
Tue October 25, 2011

Ill. Senate OKs changes to electricity measure

(via Flickr/lobo235)

Reporting from Illinois Public Radio's Amanda Vinicky used in this report.

The Illinois Senate has approved changes intended to help revive electricity legislation vetoed by the governor.

The changes passed 37-20 Tuesday, despite opposition from Gov. Pat Quinn.

At issue is a plan to let power companies raise rates to pay for infrastructure improvements, including high-tech changes called "Smart Grid." Critics say the plan guarantees unfair profits and weakens state regulators.

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Illinois Senate
2:33 pm
Wed June 22, 2011

Ill. Senate agrees to cut lawmakers' pay

The Illinois State Capitol building in Springfield, Ill.
(via Flickr/jglazer75)

Illinois lawmakers are cutting their pay for the third straight year as the state struggles with a major budget deficit.

The Illinois Senate approved the pay cut 48-4 Wednesday. The House had passed the measure in May.

It requires lawmakers to take 12 unpaid furlough days and give up their annual cost-of-living increase. The cost for each legislator is about $3,900.

Democratic Sen. Dan Kotowski said it's important for legislators to share the pain so many others in state government are feeling.

But Sen. Annazette Collins disagreed.

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