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Illinois General Assembly

Gov. Rauner to Lawmakers: Pass a Budget, or No Pay Raise

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 07.02.2015 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

The fact that the law may not be on his side here is irrelevant. The bigger question: What lawmaker right now will be willing to be a plaintiff in the lawsuit that seeks restoration of those statutorily guaranteed raises? Precedent says it will be a slam-dunk victory in a court of law. But the jury in the court of public opinion won't be so kind.

After Rauner's Ad Blitz, Madigan and Cullerton Respond

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 06.17.2015 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

Even with all the news of the budget stalemate coming out of the General Assembly, the Better Government Association's Andy Shaw wants Illinoisans to remember that not all new developments out of Springfield this spring have been bad.

This Is Not Illinois' First Budget Crisis Go-Round

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 06.09.2015 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

Illinois' current budget fight is frustrating, but it's not the first time the state has found itself in a similar situation. Former Gov. Jim Edgar spoke to Reboot Illinois' Madeleine Doubek about his own budget brawl in 1991.

Illinois' Democrats and Republicans Have a Fundamental Misunderstanding

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 06.08.2015 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

With Illinois' state government divided (a Republican executive and a Democratic legislature), Rich Miller of Capitol Fax wonders why, after months of being forced to work together, members of the two parties haven't been able to understand each other.

Bruce Rauner Appeals to Allies in Budget Crisis

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 06.05.2015 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

Gov. Bruce Rauner on Wednesday rallied his top lieutenants and warned them to prepare for "the very real possibility that we are facing cash crisis and a major, major restructuring of the government."

Rauner Says Legislators Are Either With Him or Against Reform

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 05.27.2015 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

On Tuesday, House Speaker Michael Madigan and his Democratic majority passed a bundle of budget bills that propose spending at least $3 billion more than the state will take in during the budget year that starts July 1.

Q&A: Illinois Rep. Terri Bryant Focuses on Education and Prisons

Reboot Illinois | Posted 05.19.2015 | Chicago
Reboot Illinois

Reboot Illinois is speaking with the 22 new Illinois state legislators who joined the other General Assembly lawmakers for the body's 99th session in 2015. We would like to learn about their professional goals and more about them as people.

Illinois State Rep. Grant Wehrli: Q & A

Reboot Illinois | Posted 05.08.2015 | Chicago
Reboot Illinois

Reboot Illinois is talking to the new legislators about what they hope to accomplish during their time in office, their favorite things about the state and what they want Illinoisans to know about them.

Vote a Wish

Claire Wapole | Posted 05.01.2015 | Chicago
Claire Wapole

A week ago, I had the Illinois General Assembly meeting streaming in live on my computer. I wanted to follow the life of HB306, the bill that would bestow upon Illinois parents, the legal right to speak on behalf of their children when it comes to opting out of standardized tests.

Industry Campaign Contributions Should Disqualify Rauner's Pick for Natural Resources Director

Will Reynolds | Posted 03.17.2015 | Chicago
Will Reynolds

Foresight Energy also gave $10,000 to Rauner's campaign fund and was a top inauguration sponsor giving up to $100,000. It's looking like business as usual in the new administration.

How Do Illinoisans Feel About Stricter Gun Violation Penalties?

Reboot Illinois | Posted 01.20.2015 | Chicago
Reboot Illinois

Most politicians have made their stances on gun control laws widely known. Republican Illinois Gov.-elect Bruce Rauner has said he supports the rights of Illinoisans to own guns while some Democrats have expressed support for stricter gun control laws as a way to stymie violence in the state.

How Does Illinois' Income Tax Compare to the Rest of the Country?

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 10.06.2014 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

The Illinois income tax has been a topic of hot debate in the 2014 governor's race. Currently, Illinoisans must give 5 percent of their income to the ...

Illinois Rejects Fracking Sacrifice Zones in Latest Victory

Will Reynolds | Posted 07.29.2014 | Chicago
Will Reynolds

This victory is the first time Illinois environmentalists worked together on fracking since four Chicago-based organizations chose to support a flawed regulatory bill over the loud objection of people in potentially impacted regions.

Illinois Infrastructure: Getting Our Water Systems Up to Snuff Amidst the Climate Crush

Henry Henderson | Posted 07.09.2014 | Chicago
Henry Henderson

Across the nation, states have about $110 billion in capital available through similar water infrastructure funds, which are supported by annual federal and state appropriations. As climate impacts worsen, they are going to need to tap that cash.

How Much Fracking Will Remain Unregulated in Illinois?

Will Reynolds | Posted 06.30.2014 | Chicago
Will Reynolds

Opposition to fracking in southern Illinois continues as people learn more about the inadequacy of a law that was written behind closed doors and rushed through the legislature with very little public scrutiny.

Springfield's Gift to Chicago: Step One of Pension Reform, or an Election Year Headache?

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 06.09.2014 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

Mayor Rahm Emanuel's pension bill finally got passed through the General Assembly after some property tax language was stripped from the bill.

Illinois Supreme Court Gets it Right on Juvenile Life Sentences: Now, the Legislature Ought to Act

Jeanne Bishop | Posted 05.20.2014 | Chicago
Jeanne Bishop

The Illinois Supreme Court got it right today when it ruled that juveniles are eligible for new sentences.

Will Illinois Ban Fracking After Disaster Strikes Or Before?

Will Reynolds | Posted 03.16.2014 | Chicago
Will Reynolds

An Illinois ban on fracking is inevitable. The question is whether it will happen before or after a major fracking disaster.

Governor's Budget Projections Mean Huge Cuts for Kids

Emily J. Miller | Posted 03.11.2014 | Chicago
Emily J. Miller

While Illinoisians rang in the New Year with family and friends, a little-noticed new forecast released by the Governor's Office of Management and Budget (GOMB) on the first of the year leaves no room for celebration.

Mandatory Minimums Will Not Solve Chicago's Epidemic of Gun Violence

John Maki | Posted 12.14.2013 | Chicago
John Maki

The question the public and lawmakers need to address is who would you rather meet on the streets of Chicago?

Daley on Exit: I Could Have Won, That's Why I Quit

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 11.18.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

Bill Daley offered a unique excuse Tuesday for why he had abandoned his bid for governor the previous day: He was confident he'd win. And he realized that, at 65, he wasn't prepared for the 5- to 9-year commitment winning the governorship would entail.

State Rep. Jack Franks: Maybe Clifford Broke the Law?

Madeleine Doubek | Posted 10.19.2013 | Chicago
Madeleine Doubek

Ex-Metra CEO Alex Clifford might have had a duty to report to authorities the pressure he felt from House Speaker Michael Madigan and others to promote and hire certain workers. Madigan writes laws and doesn't break them.

Income tax debate takes center stage

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 09.24.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

SPOTLIGHT ON INCOME TAX Jan. 1, 2015, is D-Day for Illinois' income tax. That's when most of the 2011 temporary income tax increase expires, dropping ...

Campaign 2014: Bill Brady is in again; Quinn to Illinois: I'll veto weak pension bill; Prediction: Lisa won't run

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 08.25.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

BRADY IS IN... AGAIN State Sen. Bill Brady lost one of the closest races for governor in history in 2010: He was defeated by fewer than 32,000 votes, ...

Daley takes on L. Madigan, Quinn

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 08.18.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

MEET THE PRESS Gubernatorial candidate Bill Daley ripped his two probable competitors Monday for their failures in the state's crippling pension crisi...