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State of Illinois News

Rauner, state reply to school districts' opposition to dismiss funding dispute

In a response to several school districts’ opposition to their motion to dismiss, defendants named in a school funding dispute argue that it is the “legislature’s exclusive constitutional authority” to allocate state funds.

Rauner, state file motion to dismiss school districts' lawsuit over state funding

Attorney General Lisa Madigan argues that claims brought against Gov. Bruce Rauner and the state by 17 school districts must be dismissed, stating that funding for public education is controlled by legislators.

Rauner seeks court guidance on illegally hired patronage workers in wake of special report; Hoffman and Clayborne connected to 11

In the wake of a scathing report from a court-appointed “special master” empowered to investigate political hiring abuses under former Gov. Pat Quinn, Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan and other state officials and lawmakers, current Gov. Bruce Rauner has asked for the court’s guidance on whether those improperly hired, thanks to political connections, should now be able to use collective bargaining agreements to leverage the experience they gained in those positions to land in different positions or even move up in the state’s employment ranks.

Report urges asbestos trust transparency in Illinois; 'Disconnect' between asbestos trusts and asbestos litigation leads to 'double dipping'

A new study released Monday by the Illinois Civil Justice League discussing the need for asbestos trust transparency in Illinois argues that "disconnect" between the asbestos bankruptcy trust system and asbestos litigation creates an unfair atmosphere for solvent defendants.

Cahokia has highest percentage of low-income students in lawsuit, but endures one of the highest property taxes in IL; Superintendent: District seeks full funding for costly curriculum

Given that his district educates a high percentage of low-income students and Cahokia property tax payers already are among the most burdened in the state, Superintendent Art Ryan says District 187 cannot be expected to meet more stringent testing requirements without more state funding.

Several school districts sue Rauner, state for 'financial aid erosion;' They say they weren't provided funding to achieve more rigorous and costly learning standards

After two similar sales tax proposals benefiting schools failed in Madison and St. Clair Counties, several local school districts are suing the state for failing to provide the funding necessary to achieve the more rigorous and expensive learning standards required by in Illinois.

Let's review the review boards and get rid of some

In his ongoing efforts to reform state government in Wisconsin and get costs under control, Gov. Scott Walker has proposed eliminating an independent review board that handles workers' compensation cases.

John Cullerton feeds the rumor mill to deflect blame for his failures

Rumor has it that State Senate President John Cullerton (D-Chicago) is “frustrated” with the current Illinois budget crisis and is contemplating retirement.

Edward Blake named one of Illinois' top ten family law attorneys

BELLEVILLE – Edward J. Blake Jr. of Blake Behme Law Group, P.C., has been named one of Illinois' top ten family law attorneys by the National Academy of Family Law Attorneys (NAFLA).

If it could, Illinois should declare bankruptcy

Democrats and Never-Trumpers have had a lot of fun scoffing at Donald Trump's self-proclaimed business acumen by pointing to his multiple bankruptcies.

Illinois continues to see a ciphoning of employees outside the state

The state of Illinois saw 5,500 employees leave its workforce this fall, prompting another decline for the fifth consecutive month in September. October brought additional jobs to eight metro areas, but it still isn’t enough to make a big difference.

Illinois joins campaign seeking to reform court bail systems for lower-level cases

The state of Illinois has joined the 3DaysCount campaign, a national campaign dedicated to reforming bail systems.

Ray Coleman: Accepted at White House but not in East St. Louis?

I am not an easy guy to get along with if you are dishonest, corrupt, a leader who refuses to lead, a selfish or ineffective bureaucrat, steal from kids, steal from the government. Again, I am by no means perfect, but I try to wake up every morning wanting to do good.

Judge slaps down Illinois Election Day voter registration system, saying it dilutes rural citizens' rights

A federal judge has prohibited Illinois’ most populated counties from continuing to register voters at polling places on Election Day, saying the way the system is currently set up in the state violates the rights of people voting in Illinois’ more rural regions.

Redistricting reform proponents say voters need voice over legislators' self interest

SPRINGFIELD – Attorneys for Independent Maps submitted a brief to the Illinois Supreme Court arguing that a lower court’s ruling against the constitutionality of a proposed redistricting reform amendment is contrary to both the drafters' intent for the 1970 Illinois Constitution and the language of the constitution’s provision allowing voters to propose amendments.

Lebanon senator backs Rauner veto of police and fire pension bill

SPRINGFIELD – State Sen. Kyle McCarter (R-Lebanon) reacted to Gov. Bruce Rauner's veto last week of a bill that would have given municipalities authority to go against the wishes of its citizens in authorizing new police and fire pension obligations by a resolution, saying he did the right thing.

Illinois governor vetoes bill that would have given more benefits to SURS employees who've already cashed in

SPRINGFIELD—Gov. Bruce Rauner vetoed legislation July 29, that would have allowed public university employees who are part of the State Universities Retirement System (SURS) to obtain additional health benefits without making further contributions to the retirement system after they returned to teaching.