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Round Up: Election 2010

Monday, Dec 28, 2009

* Feb. primary voting kicks off today

* State eases absentee voting rule

* Early primary a godsend for incumbents

* Schoenburg: Candidates duel over Bright Start accord

* Republicans Risk Aiding Democrats by Battling Their Own in 2010

* Finke: Quinn may be prisoner of publicity

* Female voters not supporting Quinn

* Democrats, Republicans seeking governor post differ on how best to fix finances

* Governor candidates take stands on social issues

Six of the seven Republican candidates call themselves “pro-life,” while the Democrats, Gov. Pat Quinn and Comptroller Dan Hynes, support abortion rights. Only Hynes and Green Party candidate Rich Whitney support legalizing gay marriage.

* If William Kelly Does Not Understand Simple Facts About Displays In Illinois State Capitol Building, How Can He Be Comptroller For Entire State?

* Rauschenberger scored another win in political comeback

Cook County Circuit Court Judge Edward O’Brien sided with Rauschenberger in a case that centers on whether the candidate - a veteran GOP lawmaker who heads up a conservative fundraising operation - is really a Republican.

* 8th Congressional GOP candidates toe the party line on health reform

* 10th Congressional Democrats offering intership

* Bernard Schoenburg: Vigils aim to inform Schock and public

A recently formed social justice organization in Springfield is concentrating on areas including immigrant rights, and that plank of its platform has led to weekly vigils outside the capital city office of U.S. Rep. AARON SCHOCK, R-Peoria.

* “No Climate Tax” pledge signers increase to 13 IL congressional candidates

* O’Brien: I have the experience, record to transform Cook Co.

* Jim Mitchell wants one last term on Kane County Board

* Kane Co. Board Dist. 25 hopefuls differ on opinions, strategies

* DuPage County GOP candidates debate H1N1 vaccine preparation

* Census: Illinois remains 5th largest state but may lose 1 representative

* Will Illinois lose say in U.S. House?

* A call to arms

With the new year that begins Friday, you and every other Illinois voter can begin to sweep your state and county governments clean, or leave matters much as they are.

- Posted by Mike Murray   Comments Off      


Round Up: State Government

Monday, Dec 28, 2009

* State politics delivered decade full of news

* More should post what state still owes them

* Lobbying efforts continue in Springfield for FutureGen

* A look at the state’s quest to acquire FutureGen

* New year brings new public records law to Illinois

* Another new year, a whole bunch of new laws

* Do you text while you drive? It’ll cost you when new state law takes effect this week

* 6,100 drivers get Breathalyzers in law’s 1st year

* Early release sends some DUI offenders back to prison

Anti-drunken driving advocates reacted angrily earlier this week when the Chicago Sun-Times revealed that Gov. Quinn’s administration had released 18 felony drunken drivers from prison early to serve the rest of their prison time on home confinement.[…]

On Thursday, those same anti-DUI advocates were cheering after the governor ordered all 18 back behind bars to serve the remainder of their prison time. Each will be paroled between mid-January and mid-October under the terms of their original sentences.

* Quinn should release data on freed inmates

* State court ruling expected on malpractice caps

* Illinois Department on Aging issues winter tips for seniors

* Convicted of corruption, 12 still await sentencing

It has been more than four years since Jacob Kiferbaum pleaded guilty in a kickback scheme involving a hospital that needed state approval for a construction project, one of the earliest corruption scandals under former Gov. Rod Blagojevich.[…]

What’s keeping them out of prison? For most, it’s the help they’re offering authorities in ongoing cases, involving Blagojevich and others — cooperation that could cut their prison time.

* Blagojevich’s lawyer moving sensitive files to new spot

- Posted by Mike Murray   Comments Off      


Morning Shorts

Monday, Dec 28, 2009

* No. 4 Story of the Decade: Economic downturn hits central Illinois

Thanks to early retirement incentives, agency consolidation and layoffs, state employment of 19,600 in Springfield at the beginning of the decade is down to approximately 17,200 by decade’s end.

* Record-low mortgage rates, but many can’t refinance

* Local home sales soar, up for third straight month

* Extension of COBRA subsidy to help Ill. jobless

* Food Depository Demand Up

The Greater Chicago Food Depository says more than 425,000 people picked up groceries from its food pantries in September. That’s up 70 percent since 2007.

* Stores say sales during holiday season trump last year’s

* Dart: Up to 500 Cook County correctional officers will be hired

* Traffic enforcement increasing in end-of-year push

Law enforcement officers in Illinois are increasing their traffic patrols in an end-of-the-year push to save lives on the roads.[…]

The statewide effort focuses on the deadly nighttime hours when data show more people die in motor vehicle crashes than at any other time of day.

* CBOE to offer members early share buyback : source

* The decade that was in Illinois

* President Obama election voted top Illinois story of decade

* Ice knocks out power for hundreds in Chicago

* Supt. Weis asks public to report more criminals

But his holiday spirits were tempered by a bit of bad news: the murder clearance rate has dipped about 4 percentage points this year to 54 percent. That includes killings committed in 2009, as well as older ones.[…]

The dip in the clearance rate is being attributed in part to a failure of citizens to tip the police off to criminals in their midst.

* Expect extra security at Chicago airports

Passengers at O’Hare and Midway airports can expect additional screening today following the failed Christmas Day attempt to blow up a Detroit-bound Northwest Airlines flight.

* Flight 253 and airline safety, plus a check-up on local transit plans

* Winter weather cancels 450 flights at O’Hare

* 3 new Pace express bus routes are slow to draw riders

* Mercury emissions rise in Illinois, even as figures drop nationwide

* Toxic chemicals in water wells have Grundy County residents on edge

* Lawsuit claims landfill made them sick

Residents living near a now-shuttered west suburban landfill are suing the owners, saying their families were sickened and their property values diminished by the stench allegedly caused by methane, hydrogen sulfide and other “landfill gases.”

* New Web site launched for Chicago Climate Action Plan

* Ohio Endorses Lawsuit Against Illinois in Battle over Carp

* Illinois receives $1.8M Internet grant

* Ex-SIU chancellor won’t get $680K

* Boycott Wrigley rink to bring down prices

* H1N1 vaccine now for all; here’s where to get shot

* State’s changes to juvenile age cutoff may raise costs for county

A new state law that makes the criminal justice system classify some 17-year-olds as children and others as adults keeps alive the question of when to punish and when to rehabilitate.[…]

It also raises the possibility, Winnebago County officials say, that they may spend millions of taxpayer dollars to comply with the new rules.

* Program to offer discounts for new appliances, rebates for old

The “cash for appliances” program is part of the federal government’s effort to stimulate the economy and encourage people to save energy. Each state is awarded federal money based on its population to run its own program. Illinois receives $12.4 million as its share.

* Chicago-area Catholic schools ranked by enrollment

* Tension Eases in CHA Mixed Income

Westhaven Park Tower — on the footprint of the Henry Horner public housing complex — is home to condo owners and public housing residents. This mix has led to some squabbles.

To quell some of the stress Westhaven agreed to add two CHA residents to the condo board. Johnnie Braswell is one of them. She says public housing residents now have a more equitable voice.

* Our View: Help that can pay dividends for the mentally ill

* Our View: When central Illinois reveals its ugliest side, confront and condemn it

Multiple articles in this newspaper over the last couple of weeks have made it abundantly clear just how many miles central Illinois has to go before anyone can truly claim victory on this being a “united” America, at least in regard to race. Clearly a gap remains between how we like to think of ourselves and how we are.

* Affirmative action must be based on income, not race

* Stealing may pay for some villages

* Economic council chairman has plan for ‘uphill battle’

* Word on the Street: Big names dropped into town

* Secret’s out Ho! Ho! Ho!

* The politics of minarets — here and over there

* Need for blood higher at this time of year

* Retailers with most thefts see drop in crime in 2009

* Lincoln, Heartland colleges team up to make obtaining degree easier

* Burris denies flip-flopping on health care

Sen. Roland Burris insisted he would never vote for an overhaul of the nation’s health insurance system unless the bill included a strong public option. And he promised that position wouldn’t change.[…]

But last week the Senate passed a health insurance bill that included no government-run health insurance to serve as a public option for those seeking low-cost coverage — and Burris voted for it.

Burris insists he did not flip-flop.

- Posted by Mike Murray   Comments Off      


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