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Saturday, May 31, 2014

* It was a wild and crazy one. Some really good times, some really bad times, some really bizarre times. Overall, it was pretty much a bust. But at least now it’s over, thank goodness

You just kinda wasted my precious time
But don’t think twice, it’s all right

- Posted by Rich Miller   Comments Off      

Rauner breaks radio silence

Friday, May 30, 2014

* From a press release…

Bruce Rauner Statement on State Budget

Bruce Rauner issued the following statement regarding passage of the phony state budget:

“We learned a number of very telling things today. One, the massive job-destroying 67% Quinn-Madigan tax increase that has robbed the average worker of more than $1,000 every year is rejected by a strong bipartisan majority. At the same time, the politicians in charge of Springfield again refused to make the structural reforms needed to fix state government. Instead, they passed the same type of broken, dishonest budget that career politicians in Illinois have been passing for years. This phony budget is an unsurprising, yet tragic, conclusion to five years of failure under Pat Quinn. It’s time to shake up Springfield.”

- Posted by Rich Miller   23 Comments      

Chicago-area economy heats way up, but jobs aren’t being created

Friday, May 30, 2014

* Wow

The Chicago Business Barometer, an index of local business activity, increased another 2.5 points to 65.5 in May after jumping 7.1 points in April. Anything over 50 indicates the economy is growing, and that’s the highest level the index has reached since October and nearly as high as it’s been for the past decade. [Emphasis added.]

According to the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, Illinois’ growth is actually pretty good when compared to other neighboring states.

* But it sure looks like a jobless recovery

Even though the state’s unemployment rate is coming down, Illinois still has the third worst rate in the nation. Employment was down 3.2 points to 54.6 in the Chicago Business Barometer despite a three-year high in order backlogs and increases in new orders, inventories and a spike in the price of raw materials and components.

“You can’t have employment at 54.6 if you’re going to keep up with demand,” said Alyce Andres-Frantz, Chicago Bureau Chief for Market News International and author of the Chicago Business Barometer. The increased use of temporary workers and interns “doesn’t seem to be going away.”

Only about half of the Chicago-area companies in her survey have plans to hire in the next three months, and only half of those plan to hire permanent workers. “It’s telling me companies are trying to do more with less,” she said.


- Posted by Rich Miller   12 Comments      

Partially staying the course

Friday, May 30, 2014

* Bruce Rauner may have toned down his rhetoric about “corrupt” union “bosses,” but he hasn’t backed away from his longtime belief in local right to work zones

On Tuesday, the Republican candidate addressed a lunchtime gathering of approximately 300 members of the Society of Industrial and Office Realtors and the Association of Industrial Real Estate Brokers at the Rosewood Restaurant in suburban Rosemont. […]

Under the leadership of Daniels and Snyder, Indiana and Michigan became the 23rd and 24th states in the US to pass right-to-work laws.

However, Rauner added that he did not support a similar effort in Illinois. Instead, he believes right-to-work zones should allow local communities to make these decisions.

Rauner would also consider using a superstar team of business leaders to chart a better course for the state.

* In other Rauner news

The guy who recently declared that he would have vetoed Illinois’ new gay-marriage law has been endorsed by — surprise — a national gay-rights group.

It’s interesting timing, as the new law goes into effect over over the weekend. But GOProud, which describes itself as “a national organization of gay and straight Americans who seek to promote freedom by supporting free markets, limited government and a respect for individual rights,” announced in a press release that Bruce Rauner is its candidate for governor of Illinois. […]

He said he would veto the marriage bill,” said Bernard Cherkov, president of Equality Illinois, the state’s largest gay-rights group, which endorsed Gov. Pat Quinn in the Democratic primary but has backed some Republicans in the past and has not made a general-election pick for this year yet. “He would have put it to a referendum, and has declined every opportunity to articulate an inclusive and positive vision for LGBT Illinoisans.” […]

Said Mr. Rauner’s spokesman in a statement, “Bruce’s message of lower taxes, term limits and better schools is one that resonates with everyone across the state.”

- Posted by Rich Miller   25 Comments      

*** UPDATED x2 *** Senate won’t call Madigan’s Lincoln library bill

Friday, May 30, 2014


House Speaker Mike Madigan’s proposal to turn the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum into a standalone state agency will not pass the General Assembly this spring.

As 970 WMAY News was the first to report, a spokesperson says Senate President John Cullerton will not call the bill. She says Cullerton believes more study of the proposal is needed.

Madigan had wanted to take the library and museum away from the control of the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency, because he says that agency is inhibiting hiring and acquisitions. Madigan said creating a separate agency would be revenue-neutral, a claim denied by IHPA.

Good move by Cullerton.

*** UPDATE 1 *** Jak Tichenor asked Speaker Madigan yesterday during a taping of “Illinois Lawmakers” about whether his friends influenced his decision to move the Lincoln Presidential Library out from under the IHP’s control. The museum’s executive director, Elaine Mackevich, and her longtime friend Stanley Balzekas Jr. are close Madigan friends. Balzekas is also the Speaker’s ward office landlord.

His response begins at about the 12:30 mark in the video

* If you can’t watch videos where you are, here’s the transcript…

“You know, in America people have friends. This is not a communist country. People have friends. I have friends, you have friends.

“And this is my reference where I say some people want to be negative, they want to be critics they want to engage in a lot of simple political gossip. So be it. That agency should be left to chart its own course.”

Your thoughts?

*** UPDATE 2 *** More of MJM’s remarks…

“It ought to be improved. We ought to work for federal accreditation and enrollment in the federal system of libraries and museums…

“And today that institution is required to check in with a routine state agency. I’m not being negative when I use the word ‘routine,’ but the Historic Preservation Agency is not one of the premiere agencies of state government. It’s a routine state agency and a treasure like the Lincoln Library and Museum is being required to check in with this other agency.

“They ought to be separated. And the Library and Museum ought to be able to chart its own destiny, work to improve the quality and the beauty of the museum. That’s my thinking.

“There’s similar situations that universities of the state are set up where there’s a governing board that selects a president. The State Board of Education for the state, the governor appoints people, they select a chief executive officer.

“It’s simple. Some people don’t want to make it simple. Some people want to engage in a lot of political speculation. So be it.

“I think history will prove that I know what I am talking about. This is an asset of the state. It ought to be improved. And the route to improvement is to separate them from the jurisdiction of this other agency.”

- Posted by Rich Miller   41 Comments      

Question of the day

Friday, May 30, 2014

* From the synopsis of House Bill 4527

Requires a charter school to comply with all federal and State laws and rules applicable to public schools that pertain to special education and the instruction of English language learners.

Charters have historically been exempt from quite a few state laws and regulations in the School Code, including special ed mandates and English as a Second Language requirements.

* From two opponents

“What you’re doing with this bill is you’re taking away the flexibility and innovation that has characterized charters and made them a success,” [Sen. Kyle McCarter, R-Lebanon] said. “If you want to make charter schools like regular public schools, this bill’s for you.” […]

“It seems like it’s going to make it more difficult for the charter schools, and end up in the long run, providing less choice,” [Sen. Jim Oberweis, R-Sugar Grove] said. “Am I incorrect?”

* From the bill’s sponsor, Sen. Kimberly Lightford

“It actually opens the door for more children,” Lightford said. “These are critical areas. It’s not some general, vague program. We’re talking about kids who have special needs and they should be addressed and able to attend that local charter school as well.”

Lightford said charter schools, like every other school, are subject to federal law and that her bill helps “ensure that federal and state anti-discrimination laws are enforced consistenty in every public school in Illinois.”

* The Question: Should charter schools be required to follow state mandates to offer special education and English as a second language programs? Take the poll and then explain your answer in comments, please.


- Posted by Rich Miller   61 Comments      

This week’s greatest rant

Friday, May 30, 2014

* AP

As many as seven ballot measures could be up for consideration, including four proposed to alter Illinois’ constitution and three poll-style questions. […]

None of the ballot measures — term limits, political redistricting, voters’ rights, crime victims’ rights and minimum wage— are sure things. Some are still emerging as legislators prepare to adjourn this week. Election officials are verifying signatures for petition-driven efforts on political boundaries and term limits, while a lawsuit could threaten both plans. Election officials certify ballots in August.

The sheer number of potential ballot measures could be unprecedented. State Board of Election records, which date back to 1970, show there have not been more than three ballot measures in one election year — including constitutional amendments and nonbinding questions. […]

The issue hit a frenzied pitch in Illinois on Thursday when the Senate advanced one nonbinding question that asks voters if prescription drug plans should cover birth control, an Illinois law on the books since 2003. Opposition from Republican Sen. Matt Murphy of Palatine was so impassioned that he was admonished by leadership to avoid personal attacks.

* A tiny bit of Murphy’s rant

Sen. Matt Murphy, R-Palatine, who voted against her legislation Thursday, called it an election-year gimmick by Democrats meant to “gin up” their voting base this fall, particularly women.

“This is a gimmick. It’s a stunt. It’s a game, and everybody down here knows it,” Murphy said. “You’re talking about something that’s been settled law for 10 years. But you just want to gin people up over issues that really don’t exist.

“What all this stuff is this year is nothing less than the desperation your side of the aisle has because people of this state might actually pay attention this year and fire some of you for the despicable record you have,” Murphy said.

* But, oh, it was so much better than that. You really need to listen to the whole thing. When admonished to “avoid personalities,” Murph ranted…

“Whose personality? What? Your whole party? Are you guys a personality? I’ll say ‘Democratic’ if you let me continue.”


* Seriously, take a few minutes and listen to the whole thing. It’ll be worth it, I promise…

- Posted by Rich Miller   37 Comments      

Adventures in mismanagement

Friday, May 30, 2014

* The state shut down Tinley Park Mental Health Center on June 30, 2012. But the state kept paying a lease on its postage meter for almost another year, according to a new Auditor General’s report. That shows the state probably didn’t have its act together when it closed the facility.

But check this out

During a review of 220 equipment items reported to the Department of Central Management Services as lost, valued at $157,656, the auditors noted the following:

- For equipment items with either an acquisition cost in excess of $500 or deemed a high theft, Tinley Park reported 86 items were lost, valued at $123,772. This represented 10% of the total inventory dollar value and 13% of the total number of items on hand at Tinley Park’s closure date of July 1, 2012. […]

- Tinley Park reported it had lost a refrigerated van trailer, valued at $29,217, during its equipment inventory following the closure. [Emphasis added.]


* The state also left behind a big junk yard

The auditors identified equipment items, including furniture, 4 farm tractors, a forklift, and 10 inoperable State vehicles that were still on site within various buildings across the Tinley Park campus and had, presumably, been abandoned. The inoperable State vehicles appeared they had been inoperable for a considerable length of time. In addition, the auditors identified one vehicle that had been abandoned by a private person at Tinley Park after it was sold by the DCMS several years ago.

The auditors also identified one operable vehicle at Tinley Park that was in use by the Department of Central Management Services’ caretaker at Tinley Park. This vehicle was still on the Tinley Park equipment inventory at June 30, 2013, totaling $18,135.

* This was common at all the facilities checked

At the Jacksonville Developmental Center, which closed on November 27, 2012, auditors found confidential information in trash receptacles, filing cabinets, binders, boxes, and on desks. We found resident’s names, health information, and social security numbers, a labeled medical specimen, photos of residents’ labeled with residents’ names and incident number, security reports which included residents’ names; filing cabinets with folder separators labeled with residents’ names; two computer monitors and three computer towers; large stack of binders which contained the last name and first initial of residents on the spine of the binders; and manila filing folders with patient names written on the tabs.


- Posted by Rich Miller   20 Comments      

Caption contest!

Friday, May 30, 2014

* From the Twitters…

Have fun.

- Posted by Rich Miller   47 Comments      

Quinn’s campaign pokes fun at Rauner silence

Friday, May 30, 2014

* Bruce Rauner’s campaign hasn’t issued any official statements or press releases all week. Gov. Pat Quinn’s campaign had a bit of fun today with Rauner’s silence via their own press release…

EXCLUSIVE: A Detailed Day-by-Day Recap of Billionaire Bruce Rauner’s Week of Courage, Ideas, and Transparency

CHICAGO - With yet ANOTHER of his shady equity firm’s concerns in the docket today (this one in Florida bankruptcy court with the nursing home empire accused in multiple wrongful death lawsuits), billionaire Bruce Rauner had a singular week of courage, ideas and transparency.

Even as issues of the day were being debated in Springfield, with Governor Quinn working to pass legislation to protect pregnant women in the workplace and other important bills related to the future of Illinois’ middle class - Rauner chose a decidedly different path.

Below is a detailed and exhaustive recap of all the bold stands Rauner took on issues like protecting pregnant women in the workplace, and a comprehensive look at the details he provided of his OWN budget plan for Illinois, which, to date, has remained hidden from human eyes for 452 days.




    THURSDAY: Orders staff to clean pool in fourth of nine luxury residences.


- Posted by Rich Miller   45 Comments      

Least surprising news of the day

Friday, May 30, 2014

* Meh

A bid to expand gambling in Illinois appears dead for the spring’s legislative session after the south suburban lawmaker pushing the measure announced Friday he won’t call the bill for a vote.

“The time was not right to build the support needed for the bill to pass the Illinois House and Senate and be signed into law by the governor,” Rep. Bob Rita, D-Blue Island, said in a written statement. “I am disappointed we could not move this issue forward this spring, but I am determined to prepare a bill for consideration in the fall veto session.” […]

He mentioned local squabbles, fear of competition by existing casino owners and the lack of participation in the debate by Quinn and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who has insisted on tackling pension reform ahead of gambling expansion.

Rita said again Friday that support from Quinn and Emanuel is key to passing a casino bill. The same goes for the horse racing industry and communities that would host a new casino, he said — around Chicago and Downstate.

Gaming expansion requires everybody to be pulling in the same direction at once. That didn’t happen this year, so it died. Same as it ever was.

- Posted by Rich Miller   7 Comments      

Aiming at the wrong target

Friday, May 30, 2014

* This headline is completely, utterly bogus

Audit: $12.3M in Illinois Medicaid benefits paid to dead people

First of all, Medicaid doesn’t pay patients. Medicaid pays providers. And that’s just what happened here, which you’ll finally see after you scroll down several paragraphs

The vast majority of the overpayments — $11.4 million — went to managed care organizations, that is, the private insurance companies with contracts to pay for health care for the poor and disabled. The state pays monthly [capitation] fees to those companies on a per-patient basis, rather than paying doctors and hospitals a fee for each separate service.

* To be sure, however, this was most definitely a supremely massive oversight failure by DHFS. From the audit

We determined that many of the individuals were signed up for managed care months after their date of death. For individuals with Title XIX eligibility in fiscal year 2013, of the 993 individuals whose date of death was more than 60 days prior to the payment date, we identified 561 who were enrolled in managed care and had capitation services paid on their behalf more than 90 days after their date of death. The average number of days they were signed up after their date of death was 663.

Due to the fact that these individuals were deceased, the State in most cases was not paying for any fee-for-service expenses for these individuals after their date of death. However, once the Department enrolled these 561 deceased individuals into managed care, the State began paying their monthly premiums, which totaled $6.96 million through October 1, 2013. The highest monthly rate paid was $5,384. [Emphasis added.]


An accompanying chart shows managed care payments on behalf of people who’d been dead more than 60 days were about $50,000 a month back in July of 2011, but shot way up to almost $900,000 a month by October, 2013.

Plain and simple, DHFS dropped the ball.


* From the agency’s audit response

Because capitation payments for individuals enrolled in managed care are made prospectively and the Department may not be immediately notified of an individual’s death, Department policy provides for recoupment of improper payments for deceased individuals from managed care companies.

As deaths are recorded in Department systems, the information is automatically processed to deduct up to 18 months of overpayments for deceased individuals from future payments. […]

As of February 10, 2014, 98% of the 993 people associated with the capitation overpayments identified in this audit have been properly coded as deceased in Department systems. The Department has recouped or is in the process of recouping the $11.4 million in capitation overpayments under managed care that were identified in this audit. The Department expects all overpayments to be recouped by year’s end.

OK, fine, but fix the darned problem.

- Posted by Rich Miller   11 Comments      

Rep. Smith’s lawyer tries to cast doubt on federal case

Friday, May 30, 2014

* Rep. Derrick Smith’s attorney Vic Henderson went after the federal prosecutor’s case during yesterday’s opening arguments

The [FBI] mole was someone who was “down on his luck — he always needed money, always needed a place to stay,” Henderson said. “Because Derrick was a kind-hearted guy, he tried to help out.”

But the mole tricked both Smith and the feds by only recording some of the phone calls and conversations he had with Smith, Henderson alleged.

And Henderson denied Smith had confessed to the FBI, saying Smith had merely admitted he “messed up” by trusting the mole.

Though he acknowledged Smith wrote the letter in support of the grant application, Henderson said “that was his job — he supported anyone who came to him from his district.”

Calling Smith a “baby legislator” who was desperate to hold onto his seat and needed money, he told jurors “there’s a lot you haven’t heard.”

* But the case against Smith appears pretty darned solid

As the 2012 election season loomed, the campaign worker went to the FBI offering to wear a wire and record Smith scheming to receive a bribe, prosecutor Michael Donovan told jurors at the Chicago trial.

In a transcript of one recorded conversation displayed by Donovan on a large courtroom screen, Smith rejects Pete’s suggestion that he accept the money in a traceable cashier’s check.

“OK. Cash?” responds the informant.

“Yeah,” the legislator answers, “I don’t want no trace of it.”

In another recorded conversation, Smith tells Pete he needs plausible deniability, saying, “I don’t let the left hand know what the right hand is doing, man.”

- Posted by Rich Miller   27 Comments      

Kicking the roof can

Friday, May 30, 2014

* Roof repairs on the Executive Mansion would be hugely expensive and therefore potentially politically embarrassing for the governor, especially since he whacked legislators so hard for their expensive Statehouse remodeling program several months ago. So, repairs will be deferred into the future

The Executive Mansion roof is leaking so badly that the third floor has been closed to the public and furniture from two historic bedrooms has been moved to storage to keep it safe from water damage.

However, officials in Gov. Pat Quinn’s administration say there are no plans at this time to repair the leaks, even though they acknowledge there has been some damage to ceilings and walls.

“The maintenance will be deferred for the present time,” Quinn spokesman Dave Blanchette said. “It is not an ideal situation.”

Mansion curator Dave Bourland blamed the leaks on the harsh winter and the mansion roof that is 44 years old. […]

“The water’s coming through the ceiling,” Bourland said. “So there’s plaster falling down. That’s why I’ve got some plastic on the floor and some buckets there. It’s one of those things that came upon us pretty quick.”


- Posted by Rich Miller   78 Comments      

Today’s number: 15 years

Friday, May 30, 2014

* AP

Secretary of State Jesse White has set a record as Illinois’ longest-serving secretary of state.

The 79-year-old White claimed that milestone today, when he surpassed the tenure of James A. Rose, who served from 1897 to 1912.

White has served since his first inauguration in January 1999.

White says he’s proud of honoring a pledge to not use the Secretary of State’s office as a stepping stone to higher office. The Democrat has won five terms in office, often by wide margins.

Secretary White turns 80 next month.

And, I gotta say, he doesn’t seem all that worse for wear. The man is in incredible shape for any age.

- Posted by Rich Miller   27 Comments      

$1.1 billion “mini” capital bill moves through House

Friday, May 30, 2014

* Subscribers were kept abreast of this development yesterday

The Illinois House Thursday overwhelmingly passed a $1.1 billion road-and-bridge package stripped up of what the GOP characterized as pork as the spring legislative session neared a hectic end with several key issues still unresolved. […]

That plan passed the House by a 97-11 vote, with four members voting “present,” in a push sought by labor unions. That measure now heads to the Senate, which also has to vote on a budget Friday or Saturday. Separate legislation to fund the program is up for a House vote Friday. […]

The plan will be paid for, in part, through higher vehicle registration fees put in place in the late 1990s that were used to float construction bonds under former Gov. George Ryan. Some of those bonds have now been paid off by the state.

Led by House Minority Leader Jim Durkin, R-Western Springs, Republicans forced the plan to be scaled back from a $1.6 billion package originally sought by House Democrats, arguing that the hundreds of millions of dollars that were stripped away could have been earmarked for no-strings-attached, election-year goodies.

* More

House Bill 3794 calls for $1.1 billion in construction spending, $1 billion of which would go to road and bridge projects included in IDOT’s 5-year plan. The bill does not list the projects because they would be determined by IDOT, but sponsor Rep. Luis Arroyo said that the department plans to prioritize projects that are ready to go during the summer construction season. The remaining $100 million would go to local street repair projects. The money for construction would come from funding sources approved as part of the 1999 Illinois First capital program. Borrowing for the plan has been paid off, but the increased fees and taxes remain. “Some of that debt has been retired. It’s been paid off, and the revenue stream that was used to support it is now available,” said House Speaker Michael Madigan.

The plan passed with bipartisan support. House Minority Leader Jim Durkin said that after the particularly harsh winter, the state’s roads need work. “Illinois roads were clobbered.” He said that while Republicans opposed other construction projects passed in the House yesterday, this pared-down plan is “responsible” because the spending will be decided by IDOT instead of legislators. “It’s a smaller bill, but this is going to get us through the end of the year.”

But some lawmakers questioned spending money that could otherwise go into the general revenue fund on a rushed capital bill that does not include anything other than road and bridge projects. “I think this is the wrong time to do this, and I think this is the wrong approach,” said Northbrook Democrat Rep. Elaine Nekritz. and Proponents argued that this plan can be accomplished now to get people to work in the coming months, and the issue of a larger capital plan could be revisited later. “Bottom line, this is going to put people to work. Those people will pay taxes, and some of those taxes will come to the state of Illinois,” said Madigan.

* More

Other members complained they did not know what road projects would be included in the program, although many lawmakers had copies of a project list provided to them by the Illinois Department of Transportation.

Transportation Secretary Ann Schneider said the program will focus on “shovel ready” projects that can be undertaken quickly. The projects are coming from IDOT’s five-year plan, which outlines both current road projects and those planned for the future. She said some of the future projects could get moved up under the program.

House Republican Leader Jim Durkin of Western Springs said the capital bill was scaled back from its original idea. At first, he said, it also contained $500 million for building projects other than roads.

“I had concerns with pork-barrel spending,” Durkin said. “We were not going to participate in a program with that type of discretionary spending.”

That part of the bill was removed, leaving only road and bridge projects, which Durkin supported.

You can see IDOT’s full five-year plan broken down into legislative districts by clicking here. Only some of those projects will be funded by this new capital bill.

* Legislators will have to trust IDOT to be fair. Check out the way that a billion of that $1.1 billion is appropriated

The sum of $1,000,000,000, or so much thereof 5 as may be necessary for statewide purposes, is appropriated from the Transportation Bond Series D Fund to the Department of Transportation for preliminary engineering and construction engineering and contract costs of construction, including reconstruction, extension and improvement of state and local highways, arterial highways, roads, access areas, roadside shelters, rest areas, and fringe parking facilities and sanitary facilities, and such other purposes as provided 1by the “Illinois Highway Code”; for purposes allowed or required by Title 23 of the U.S. Code; for bikeways as provided by Public Act 78-850; for land acquisition and signboard removal and control and preservation of natural beauty; and for capital improvements which directly facilitate an effective vehicle weight enforcement program, such as scales (fixed and portable), scale pits and scale installations and scale houses, in accordance with applicable laws and regulations for the state and local portions of the Road Improvement Program.

* House members voting “No” yesterday were

Kelly Burke, Scott Drury, Kay Hatcher, Fran Hurley, Jeanne Ives, Dwight Kay, Dave McSweeney, Tom Morrison, Elaine Nekritz, Sandi Pihos, Ann Williams.

- Posted by Rich Miller   18 Comments      

Protected: SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Session update 2

Friday, May 30, 2014

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Illinois Credit Unions – A Smarter Choice

Friday, May 30, 2014

[The following is a paid advertisement.]

In these uncertain times, it’s important to have a financial institution you can trust. Credit unions have been serving their members for more than a century, providing them with a member-owned, not-for-profit alternative to traditional banks. Credit unions are different. They return profits back to their members in the form of lower rates and reduced fees. And because credit unions are member-owned and member directed, credit unions provide members with services they want, not products that will generate a tidy profit for a few investors. Credit unions know their members. Loan decisions are made locally, not by bureaucrats and computer models from across the country. If you are a credit union member, you already know the credit union difference. If you are not a credit union member, go to to see which credit union can show you the advantage of credit union membership.

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Protected: SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Session update 1

Friday, May 30, 2014

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Friday, May 30, 2014

* As we get closer to the end, the surprises always multiply

- Posted by Rich Miller   2 Comments      

Protected: SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Today’s edition of Capitol Fax (use all CAPS in password)

Friday, May 30, 2014

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* One more day
* Reader comments closed for the weekend
* Sign of the times?
* Question of the day
* Exelon Just Received A $1.7 Billion Rate Increase Through The Market-Based Capacity Auction
* Today's number: 60
* No imminent power shut-offs
* Chamber all-in on impasse
* COGFA: State receipts down almost a billion dollars in first quarter
* Two racetracks will likely close
* "How many babies have to die?"
* Report: "A billion-dollar giveaway rife with failure"
* Frerichs warns of impasse consequences
* Quinn touring the state
* Yesterday's blog posts

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    * Verizon moving center to Rolling Meadows, adding 200 jobs
    * Report shows steep increase in Indiana homeless students
    * Illinois to implement new ratings for schools, districts
    * Elgin schools CEO frustrated with lack of Legionella advice
    * Illinois Senate to get 2 new members to fill vacancies
    * Number of Chicago heroin overdoses hits 74 in 3 days
    * Car crashes into northern Illinois church, injuring 6
    * University of Illinois opens center for wounded veterans
    * Opponents upset Chief Illiniwek merchandise available online
    * Chicago man charged in 20-month-old's death acquitted

    * Illinois to implement new ratings for schools, districts
    * Budget impasse cuts services for domestic abuse victims
    * Weaver tapped to replace LaHood in Illinois Senate
    * Peoria city councilman tapped to replace Darin LaHood in Illinois Senate
    * Illinois budget impasse affecting emergency call systems
    * Legal marijuana stirs hope in southern Illinois town
    * Statehouse Insider: We have a problem. Is anyone there?
    * AP Exclusive: Legal marijuana stirs hope in southern Illinois town
    * Gov. Rauner: Illinois budget standoff 'could go on for a while'
    * State revenues down by nearly $1 billion in first quarter

    * Data hack at 7 Trump hotels confirmed
    * Trump hotels confirm data hack
    * Trib papers offer broadest employee buyout yet
    * Baxalta reaches milestone in besting AbbVie's blockbuster drug
    * Michael Bozic, who confronted Sisyphean task as Sears merchandise chief, dies at 74

    * Shepard High School lifts lockdown
    * Billionaire Ken Griffin and wife in settlement talks, court says
    * A quick guide for the wannabe Cubs fan
    * Mantuano, Contino, Joho among Chicago Chefs Hall of Fame inductees
    * Suspect in terrorist bomb plot for Chicago is found mentally fit for trial
    * Rubio names Lisle state senator to lead his GOP presidential bid in Illinois
    * Kristin Cavallari describes life in the Cutler home during Bears season
    * Famous Naperville Halloween house goes dark
    * Fewer shot this weekend in city than any since February
    * Legal marijuana stirs hope in Illinois town

    * Illinois to implement new ratings for schools, districts
    * Paul Findley: Boehner deserves souvenir from Pope's visit
    * Budget impasse cuts services for domestic abuse victims
    * Weaver tapped to replace LaHood in Illinois Senate
    * Illinois budget impasse affecting emergency call systems
    * Legal marijuana stirs hope in southern Illinois town
    * Bernard Schoenburg: An added loss for workers at Illinois State Museum
    * Angie Muhs: Comics, the 'Power of the Press' and more
    * Bernard Schoenburg: An added loss for workers at Illinois State Museum
    * Statehouse Insider: We have a problem. Is anyone there?

    * Man gets 6 years for aggravated criminal sexual abuse
    * Guilty plea in shooting brings 15-year prison sentence
    * Man to prison for burglary
    * LIVE! Cubit talking Iowa
    * Refs to Illinois: Our bad (And Cubit reaction)
    * Video: Where Am I? Oct. 5, 2015
    * 10-05-15 Monday Morning Quarterbacks
    * Confusion reigns in Illinois-Nebraska game
    * PODCAST: Central Illinois Business 10-3-15
    * Oct. 6 Illini volleyball & women's basketball chat

    * Other than Santos, bad week for kickers
    * District 204 teachers reject second contract proposal
    * Some students, staff return to Oregon campus after shooting
    * Don't trust the kicker? Give it to your All-Pro
    * Off-price apparel retailer Ross opens in Palatine on Oct. 10

    * House lawmakers overcome hurdle on key tra...
    * Rodney Davis talks funding with Bloomingto...
    * The agency that fought Illiana gets a new ...
    * Rep. Dold takes educational cruise down Ch...
    * Lawmakers decry high turnover rate of VA h...
    * CBD Oil, and politics
    * Simon considering state Senate bid
    * Killer Congressman Tom MacArthur trying to...
    * Shutdown? State may not notice
    * Rep. Bob Dold

    * Sweeping Bipartisan Federal Sentencing Ref......
    * More evidence of 'false promises' of Durbi......
    * Judiciary Committee Reaches Agreement on P......

    * David Letterman, Al Franken Team Up to Hel......
    * Illinois Senator betting on Cubs in friend......
    * PA-Sen: Toomey Betting on the Bucs - Polit......

    * Thorner/Ingold: Questions Hillary Needs to Answer as Drip, Drip, Drip Continues
    * Dixon police draw criticism over "Gotcha" crime prevention program
    * Obama to tap genocide fighter, Pulitzer Prize winner Samantha Power to become new United Nations Ambassador
    * President Obama official schedule and guidance June 5, 2013. Lew, Baltimore Ravens
    * President Obama official schedule and guidance June 4, 2013. Chilean President Sebastián Piñera
    * Jesse Jackson Jr. medical condition: Will be a factor in asking for reduced sentence Friday UPDATED
    * Sen. Mark Kirk pokes at Eric Holder: Did NSA spy on Congress?
    * Democratic National Committee Executive Committee meeting in Chicago June 8
    * Emily's List hits Chicago June 27: Sebelius, Lisa Madigan, Neely, Finney to speak
    * Feinstein, Chambliss defend phone data snooping to "keep the homeland safe." Durbin has concerns. UPDATED

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