Illinois

Illinois Congressional Redistricting
11:40 am
Fri May 27, 2011

New Illinois congressional map released

A screen capture via Google Earth of the proposed Congressional redistricting map from Illinois Democrats. You can interact with the map via the link in the story below.
(Screen capture via Google Earth/Illinois Senate Redistricting Committee)

Illinois Democrats have released a much-anticipated map of new congressional districts.

The new map shows the state with 18 U.S. House districts after it lost one of its seats because of slowing population growth in the latest census.

The congressional map is a chance for Democrats to try to neutralize Republicans who captured a number of U.S. House seats in the last election.

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Illinois Redistricting
2:27 pm
Thu May 26, 2011

Ill. Republicans propose redistricting map

The Illinois Republican's version of changes in the state's legislative districts. Shown is the St. Louis surrounding area. You can explore the full map via a link in the story below.
(Screen capture via Illinois House Republicans website)

Updated at 3:52 - Replaced story from the Associated Press with story from Illinois Public Radio.

Reporting from Illinois Public Radio's Luke Runyon was used in this report.

Republicans at the Illinois statehouse Thursday countered new legislative boundaries drawn by the ruling Democrats. The GOP touts its map as far superior, but at this point it may be moot.

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Illinois Redistricting
1:49 pm
Tue May 24, 2011

House committee OKs new Ill. legislative districts

A screen capture of the proposed redistricting map from the Illinois House of Representatives via Google Maps. (See a link to the full map in the story below). This map passed through a Ill. House committee today.
(Illinois House of Representatives via Google Earth)

An Illinois House committee has approved new legislative districts despite opposition from a leading Latino advocacy group. The districts drawn by Democrats advanced on a party-line vote.

You can see the full map, and interact with it, here.

It's not clear when the full House might vote.

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Severe Weather
11:19 pm
Sun May 22, 2011

Severe weather hits Missouri

Previously, parts of the St. Louis Public Radio listening area were under a tornado watch. This tornado watch has now been lifted.

For the latest updates from the National Weather Service, see this update page.

Joplin, Mo. was also hit particularly hard from this round of tornadoes and storms. Fatalities have been confirmed.

See previous updates after the break.

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Illinois Redistricting
4:29 pm
Fri May 20, 2011

Democrats unveil plan for Ill. House districts

A screen capture of the proposed redistricting map from the Illinois House of Representatives via Google Maps. (See a link to the full map in the story below).
(Illinois House of Representatives via Google Earth)

Democrats have released their proposal for new Illinois House districts that would make political life harder for Republicans.

The map was made public Friday afternoon. Democrats plan a hearing on Sunday where more detail may be available and critics can air their concerns.

The proposal throws some Republicans into the same districts.

Others would lose territory that could be used to help elect Democrats.

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Illinois & Firearms
3:17 pm
Fri May 20, 2011

Names of licensed gun owners in Ill. likely to remain private

(via Flickr/Cast a Line)

Reporting from Illinois Public Radio's Luke Runyon used in this report.

A plan to prohibit public disclosure of licensed gun owners is headed to the Governor, who has indicated he supports it.

The 42 to 1 Senate vote Friday would overturn a ruling earlier this year by Attorney General Lisa Madigan's office that the names are public under the Freedom of Information Act.

Madigan responded after the Illinois State Police refused to release the names to reporters.  Roughly one million people are registered to own firearms in Illinois.

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Deceptive Cadence
1:52 pm
Fri May 20, 2011

The Lesson Of Britten's 'War Requiem': Don't Underestimate Younger Audiences

Coventry Cathedral in ruins, November 1940. Britten's War Requiem was written for the church's reconsecration more than 20 years after it was destroyed by German bombers.
Central Press Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 18, 2011 9:54 am

Soprano and Illinois native Christine Brewer — once a music teacher in a small former coal-mining town — writes about not underestimating adolescents' powers of subtle understanding.

If you were choosing repertoire to explore with this age group, what would you pick? Tell us in the comments section below.

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Illinois Unemployment Data
3:05 pm
Thu May 19, 2011

Illinois April jobless rate falls to 8.7 percent

(via Flickr/KellyB.)

Illinois' unemployment rate fell to 8.7 percent in April, improving for the 15th consecutive month.

The Illinois Department of Employment Security released the new figures on Thursday.

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Illinois Redistricting
11:20 am
Thu May 19, 2011

Illinoisans get first look at new state Senate map

A screen capture of the proposed redistricting map from the Illinois Senate via Google Earth. (See a link to the full map in the story below).
(Illinois Senate via Google Earth)

Updated at 1:28 p.m. with Republican reaction via the Associated Press:

Some Republican Illinois senators are satisfied with a newly proposed remap of their legislative
districts.

Sen. Kirk Dillard of Hinsdale says his new district would grow by about 7,000 people and pick up parts of Cook County in a proposed Senate redistricting map released Thursday.

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Illinois Legislative Session
2:46 pm
Tue May 17, 2011

Ill. lawmakers face big decisions in final 2 weeks

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

Illinois lawmakers face some big decisions in the next two weeks, including how much to cut the budget and whether to overhaul workers' compensation.

The spring legislative session is supposed to end by May 31, but there are still three different budget plans on the table. They're roughly $2 billion apart on how much to spend.

Now lawmakers must decide whether to back one particular proposal or come up with a compromise.

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