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Lawmakers, cannabis industry calls for ban on ‘delta-8’ and other psychoactive hemp products

Lawmakers, cannabis industry calls for ban on ‘delta-8’ and other psychoactive hemp products

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – Illinois’ largest cannabis business association is pushing to ban the sale of delta-8 THC, an increasingly popular psychoactive substance that’s popped up in corner stores across the country in recent years. New legislation filed in Springfield this week revives an ongoing debate over delta-8 and other…

As state continues to inventory lead pipes, full replacement deadlines are decades away

As state continues to inventory lead pipes, full replacement deadlines are decades away

By COLE LONGCOR Capitol News Illinois Clongcor@capitolnewsillinois.com Lead pipes in public water systems and drinking fixtures have been banned in new construction since 1986, when Congress amended the Safe Drinking Water Act, but they are still in use across the U.S. and in Illinois.  The presence of lead pipes has persisted due in part to…

Illinois Senate advances changes to state’s biometric privacy law after business groups split

Illinois Senate advances changes to state’s biometric privacy law after business groups split

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – It’s been more than a year since the Illinois Supreme Court “respectfully suggest(ed)” state lawmakers clarify a law that’s led to several multi-million-dollar settlements with tech companies over the collection of Illinoisans’ biometric data. On Thursday, a bipartisan majority in the Illinois Senate did just that,…

Giannoulias calls for disclosure of lobbyist contracts

Giannoulias calls for disclosure of lobbyist contracts

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois phancock@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – For decades, lobbyists in the Illinois Statehouse have been required to report how much they spend wining, dining and entertaining lawmakers. Currently, though, there is no law requiring lobbyists to disclose how much they are paid by corporations, industry groups or other special interest organizations.. That…

Komatsu mining truck named 2024 ‘coolest thing made in Illinois’

Komatsu mining truck named 2024 ‘coolest thing made in Illinois’

By COLE LONGCOR Capitol News Illinois Clongcor@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – A mining truck manufactured by Komatsu was crowned the winner of the 2024 “Makers Madness” contest, earning the title of “the coolest thing made in Illinois” at the Governor’s Mansion Wednesday.  The truck was one of more than 200 entries in the 5th annual contest hosted…

Regulators weigh future of gas industry in Illinois, while clamping down on Chicago utility

Regulators weigh future of gas industry in Illinois, while clamping down on Chicago utility

By ANDREW ADAMS Capitol News Illinois aadams@capitolnewsillinois.com CHICAGO – Natural gas is fueling a fight between consumer advocates, a powerful utility company and the state. Amid competing advertising campaigns, accusations of mismanagement and state decarbonization efforts, the Illinois Commerce Commission is starting a process that will shape how the state regulates the increasingly controversial industry. …

Capitol Briefs: State allocates additional $14M for grocery startups

Capitol Briefs: State allocates additional $14M for grocery startups

By ALEX ABBEDUTO & COLE LONGCOR Capitol News Illinois news@capitolnewsillnois.com Grocery startups can now apply for funding allocated in last year’s $20 million Illinois Grocery Initiative aimed at preventing and eliminating food deserts in Illinois. The Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, which is administering the grants, is currently accepting applications in the second round…

Pritzker names Sen. Ann Gillespie new head of state insurance oversight agency

Pritzker names Sen. Ann Gillespie new head of state insurance oversight agency

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois phancock@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – Gov. JB Pritzker on Monday announced a change in leadership at the agency in charge of regulating the state’s insurance industry. State Sen. Ann Gillespie, D-Arlington Heights, will take over as acting director of the Illinois Department of Insurance starting April 15, replacing Dana Popish Severinghaus,…

Capitol Briefs: State allocates additional $14M for grocery startups; announces first awardees

Capitol Briefs: State allocates additional $14M for grocery startups; announces first awardees

By ALEX ABBEDUTO & COLE LONGCOR Capitol News Illinois news@capitolnewsillnois.com Grocery startups can now apply for funding allocated in last year’s $20 million Illinois Grocery Initiative aimed at preventing and eliminating food deserts in Illinois. The Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, which is administering the grants, is currently accepting applications in the second round…

Total Solar Eclipse

Total Solar Eclipse

Capitol News Illinois student photographers were on the scene in southern Illinois to capture the total solar eclipse on April 8, 2024. Photography by Lylee Gibbs and Dominique Martinez-Powell. Visit our Facebook page to see our full Total Solar Eclipse photo albulm. Read More:  ‘The great show in the sky’: Solar eclipse will once again…

‘The great show in the sky’: Solar eclipse will once again drive Illinois tourism

‘The great show in the sky’: Solar eclipse will once again drive Illinois tourism

By BETH HUNDSDORFER Capitol News Illinois news@capitolnewsillinois.com The total solar eclipse on the afternoon of April 8 will be visible over 128 miles throughout southern and southeastern Illinois, a phenomenon that is expected to bring up to 200,000 visitors to the eclipse’s prime viewing path. “We know this year’s solar eclipse will have an extremely…

State spends $73 million to protect Illinois’ only undeveloped Lake Michigan shoreline

State spends $73 million to protect Illinois’ only undeveloped Lake Michigan shoreline

By COLE LONGCOR Capitol News Illinois clongcor@capitolnewsillinois.com A $73 million state-funded project in Lake County aims to stabilize the last undeveloped Lake Michigan shoreline in Illinois and help protect native endangered species. Illinois Beach State Park in Zion on the state’s northern border contains about 10 percent of Illinois’ Lake Michigan shoreline, with 6.5 miles.…

Appeals court skeptical of Mike Bost’s case to stop ballot counts after Election Day

Appeals court skeptical of Mike Bost’s case to stop ballot counts after Election Day

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com CHICAGO – A panel of federal appellate judges on Thursday seemed skeptical of legal arguments made on behalf of Republican U.S. Rep. Mike Bost, who claims Illinois’ law allowing counting of mail-in ballots for two weeks after an election is in violation of federal law. Bost’s late 2022…

Photographing History

Photographing History

BY Dean Olsen Courtesy of the Illinois Times The date was Jan. 29, 2009, and Pat Quinn was sitting at his desk in the lieutenant governor’s office, writing notes for what would become his inaugural speech as governor while the state Senate, one floor above, considered voting to remove Rod Blagojevich from office. A few…

‘The great show in the sky’: Solar eclipse will once again drive Illinois tourism

‘The great show in the sky’: Solar eclipse will once again drive Illinois tourism

By BETH HUNDSDORFER Capitol News Illinois news@capitolnewsillinois.com The total solar eclipse on the afternoon of April 8 will be visible over 128 miles throughout southern and southeastern Illinois, a phenomenon that is expected to bring up to 200,000 visitors to the eclipse’s prime viewing path. “We know this year’s solar eclipse will have an extremely…

Appeals court skeptical of Mike Bost’s case to stop ballot counts after Election Day

Appeals court skeptical of Mike Bost’s case to stop ballot counts after Election Day

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com CHICAGO – A panel of federal appellate judges on Thursday seemed skeptical of legal arguments made on behalf of Republican U.S. Rep. Mike Bost, who claims Illinois’ law allowing counting of mail-in ballots for two weeks after an election is in violation of federal law. Bost’s late 2022…

Court upholds law limiting where child sex offenders can live

Court upholds law limiting where child sex offenders can live

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois phancock@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Supreme Court has ruled that a state law restricting where previously convicted child sex offenders can live is constitutional, although it left open the possibility that it was improperly applied to one individual. In a 6-0 decision, the court found the residency restriction “does…

Bill ending state’s tipped wage advances but prospects uncertain amid pushback

Bill ending state’s tipped wage advances but prospects uncertain amid pushback

By COLE LONGCOR Capitol News Illinois Clongcor@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – An Illinois House committee advanced a measure that would end the state’s subminimum wage for tipped workers amid bipartisan opposition this week, but the bill’s sponsor said she’d seek further compromise before presenting it for a vote.  Current Illinois law allows employers to pay their tipped…

In Chicago visit, Attorney General Garland announces $78M anti-violence initiative

In Chicago visit, Attorney General Garland announces $78M anti-violence initiative

By DILPREET RAJU Capitol News Illinois draju@capitolnewsillinois.com CHICAGO – In a visit to Chicago on Wednesday, U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland announced $78 million in federal grant funding for community-based anti-violence programs.  Garland, a Chicago area native, made the announcement while speaking at the second annual Community Based Violence Intervention and Prevention Initiative Conference featuring…

Lawmakers question Pritzker’s plan for new early childhood agency

Lawmakers question Pritzker’s plan for new early childhood agency

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois phancock@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – Gov. JB Pritzker’s plan to consolidate the state’s early childhood programs into one new cabinet-level agency ran into tough questions this week during a House budget committee hearing. The plan, which Pritzker first announced in October and which he included in his budget address in February,…

Amid controversy at Prisoner Review Board, Pritzker calls for more training as GOP again seeks reform

Amid controversy at Prisoner Review Board, Pritzker calls for more training as GOP again seeks reform

By COLE LONGCOR Capitol News Illinois Clongcor@capitolnewsillinois.com After two members of the state’s Prisoner Review Board resigned last week following the release of a prisoner who then stabbed his ex-girlfriend and killed her son, Republicans are again calling for reforms while Gov. JB Pritzker says he will order better training.  The PRB voted in February…

Photographing History

Photographing History

BY Dean Olsen Courtesy of the Illinois Times The date was Jan. 29, 2009, and Pat Quinn was sitting at his desk in the lieutenant governor’s office, writing notes for what would become his inaugural speech as governor while the state Senate, one floor above, considered voting to remove Rod Blagojevich from office. A few…

Defamation case linked to former Madigan aide sent back to Illinois

Defamation case linked to former Madigan aide sent back to Illinois

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois phancock@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – A federal judge in Puerto Rico last week told a politically connected former state contractor that if he wants to sue for defamation against the people who’ve accused him of defrauding the state of Illinois, he’ll have to do so in an Illinois courtroom. U.S. District…

State spends $73 million to protect Illinois’ only undeveloped Lake Michigan shoreline

State spends $73 million to protect Illinois’ only undeveloped Lake Michigan shoreline

By COLE LONGCOR Capitol News Illinois clongcor@capitolnewsillinois.com A $73 million state-funded project in Lake County aims to stabilize the last undeveloped Lake Michigan shoreline in Illinois and help protect native endangered species. Illinois Beach State Park in Zion on the state’s northern border contains about 10 percent of Illinois’ Lake Michigan shoreline, with 6.5 miles.…

Local News

CRRNH_CosmoPhotoMDWArmory_032724

Pols want 63rd St. armory for new police HQ

. Porfirio, Guerrero-Cuellar push plan in Springfield . By Tim Hadac Any plans the Chicago Department of Aviation may have had for the vacant Army National Guard Midway Armory, 5400 W. 63rd St., may be grounded, at least for now. Several elected officials are eyeing the parcel as the headquarters of a new police district,…

Stacy Cygan. --Supplied photo

Her back against the wall, Stacy needs help

. By Tim Hadac Editor Clear-Ridge Reporter & NewsHound (708)-496-0265 . Clearing and Garfield Ridge have earned a reputation as a place where people look out for each other—and that sometimes means caring for each other in times of need. Today, I want to talk about one such person, who sure could use a boost…

CRRNH_OLS3rdGradersWinPizzaParty_042424

It’s (pizza) party time at OLS

. Third graders at Our Lady of the Snows School break into cheers as they learn they’ve won a pizza party for selling more raffle booklets than any other class. The recent Grand Raffle fundraiser brought in about $6,000. Parents looking for a grade school for their sons and daughters for 2024-25 are welcome to…

Cook County Sheriff Thomas J. Dart

Dart wants free mental health care for first responders

. From staff reports The Illinois Senate has passed legislation proposed by Cook County Sheriff Thomas J. Dart that eliminates out-of-pocket expenses for first responders seeking mental health treatment. “We ask first responders to be constantly exposed to traumatic and dangerous situations to protect us,” Dart said. “This legislation is a solid step toward helping…

Members of the Green Team, Pat Stifter, Tara Rosenwinkeo, Gareth Blakesley, Lake Katherine's Director & Chief Naturalist; and Beth Enriquez welcome volunteers for Palos Heights' Clean Up Day on April 13. (Photos by Kelly White)

Volunteers give Palos Heights a spring cleaning

By Kelly White Palos Heights works hard to keep its city beautiful. Gathering residents together for a day of cleaning and fun was the Palos Heights Green Team with a Clean Up Day on April 13. “This event invited everyone in our community to do their part in combating pollution by having a fun morning…

A security-camera image of the man wanted for the crimes. --Supplied photo

Hunt man who tried to rob Chase Bank

. FBI looking for tips from public .  From staff reports FBI officials are appealing to the public for help in finding a man who attempted to rob a Southwest Side bank branch. The bandit tried to rob the Chase Bank branch at 5687 S. Archer (just west of Laramie) at about 11 a.m. Wednesday,…

Congressman Sean Casten, speaking at a Town Hall meeting at Moraine Valley Community College.
(Photos by Jeff Vorva)

Casten lauds Biden for ‘clean energy’ move

. From staff reports A move designed to spur the responsible development of clean energy on America’s public lands was recently lauded by U.S. Rep. Sean Casten (D-6th). The congressman, co-chairman of the House Sustainable Energy and Environment Coalition (SEEC) Clean Energy Deployment Task Force, joined by co-chairman Mike Levin (D-Calif.), released a statement in…

Giannoulias

E-Notary makes things easier, Giannoulias says

. From staff reports Illinois residents will no longer have to notarize documents in person under a new Electronic-Notary system administered by Secretary of State Alexi Giannoulias’ office. Electronic Notarization, or “E-Notary,” will radically change the way people and use notary services, Giannoulias predicted. Without leaving the home or office, an individual or business can…

Fire Bureau Chief David Wheeler (from left), Mayor Terry Vorderer and Police Chief Daniel Vittorio congratulate the winners of the 2023 Fire and Safety Coloring Book Contest during the April 9 Oak Lawn Village Board meeting. (Photo by Joe Boyle)

Oak Lawn honor Fire and Public Safety Contest winners

By Joe Boyle The Oak Lawn Chamber of Commerce presented awards to the winners of the 2023 Fire and Public Safety Coloring Book Contest at the Oak Lawn Village Board meeting on April 9. Fire Bureau Chief David Wheeler and Police Chief Daniel Vittoro were on hand to present the plaques, along with Oak Lawn Mayor…

Abdelnasser Rashid

Rashid scolds TV news orgs on climate change

. From staff reports State Rep. Abdelnasser Rashid (D-21st) recently scolded major news organizations for what he called a lack of attention to climate change. “Last year was marked by alarming climate extremes, from record-breaking heat waves to devastating floods, droughts and wildfires,” Rashid wrote earlier this month in a letter to his political supporters.…

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