online

(via Flickr/Remko van Dokkum)

The Illinois state government is seeking to make more local and state data available online and is challenging entrepreneurs to create applications with the information that will serve the public.

Gov. Pat Quinn announced the Illinois Open Technology Challenge on Saturday and said it would start on a pilot basis in four communities around the state: Belleville, Champaign, Rockford and Chicago's south suburbs.

The governor said the project would increase transparency at the local level and create jobs.

(via Flickr/außerirdische sind gesund)

Both were subjects of new laws signed by Ill. Gov. Pat Quinn today.

(via Flickr/Robert S. Donovan)

Reporting from Amanda Vinicky in Springfield was used in this report.

Illinois officials are hoping to start online sales for the Illinois Lottery early next year.

The U.S. Department of Justice made public on Friday a legal opinion that supports state-regulated online gambling, such as lotteries. Illinois was one of the states to ask for legal clarification on whether the Wire Act applies to online sales of lotto tickets.

(via Flickr/Robert Scoble)

Updated 2:12 p.m. March 11, 2011 to include Overstock.com information.

Amazon.com has made good on its threat to cut ties with Illinois affiliates because of a new law requiring the online store to collect sales taxes.

Amazon notified its Illinois partners Friday that it will stop doing business with them on April 15. It calls the tax law "unconstitutional and counterproductive.

(via Flickr/public.resource.org)

Illinois consumers may find themselves paying sales taxes on some Internet purchases under a new state law.

The law says sales taxes must be charged when people buy from online retailers through an Illinois-based partner. For instance, an Illinois business might sell products through Amazon.com.

Online businesses generally don't charge state sales taxes. Illinois customers are supposed to pay it directly to the state, but they rarely do.

photo by Libby Franklin

In these times of change and uncertainty in the media industry, many doomsday scenarios predicted the end of small-town news coverage.   As small dailies and weeklies all over the country shut their doors, many wondered what , if anything, would fill the void.

Enter Patch.com.