Category Archives: State News

State launches new $42 million water assistance program

State launches new $42 million water assistance program

By IIS Radio SPRINGFIELD – The state is launching a new $42 million water assistance program for low-income Illinoisans. The effort is for those facing disconnection or who have $250 or more in overdue water and sewer bills. Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity Acting Director Sylvia Garcia says to qualify, applicants need to…MORE

State lawmaker introduces “Freedom Act”

State lawmaker introduces “Freedom Act”

By Dave Dahl SPRINGFIELD – Denying someone their job because of their vaccination status is discrimination, according to State Rep. Adam Niemerg (R-Dieterich). His “Freedom Act” would outlaw it. Shouldn’t people go to work with the assurance everyone around them is vaccinated? “Well, shouldn’t everybody that has the right to go to work understand that…MORE

Pritzker: No plans for a private sector vaccine mandate like in NYC

Pritzker: No plans for a private sector vaccine mandate like in NYC

By IIS Radio WESTMONT – Gov. JB Pritzker says he’s not planning to institute a new COVID-19 vaccine mandate like the one in New York City. New York Mayor Bill de Blasio is enacting a mandate for private sector workers. Pritzker was asked if that’s something we could see in Illinois. “That again is not…MORE

Governor speaks at tourism and travel convention

Governor speaks at tourism and travel convention

By IIS Radio CHICAGO – Gov. JB Pritzker is thanking state tourism leaders for their perseverance during the pandemic. Speaking at a tourism and travel conference in Chicago, the governor noted that the last 20 months have been very tough for the hospitality industry. “This has been an unprecedented health emergency, and yet you’ve stepped…MORE

Second round of COVID-19 rental assistance available for Illinois renters and landlords

Second round of COVID-19 rental assistance available for Illinois renters and landlords

By IIS Radio SPRINGFIELD – Applications for rental assistance in Illinois are now being accepted. State Housing Development Authority executive director Kristin Faust says those still struggling to pay their rent due to the pandemic can now apply for grants online at IllinoisHousingHelp.org. “They are up to $25,000 and if people need additional help applying…MORE

ISP further reduces FOID card backlog

ISP further reduces FOID card backlog

By IIS Radio SPRINGFIELD – Illinois State Police are announcing a significant decrease in the backlog of FOID cards that need to be processed. ISP Trooper Jason Wilson says the FOID card backlog in November of last year reached nearly 139,000, but has now been whittled down to 7,800. Processing times currently average about 38…MORE

Illinois gas prices inch down over the week

Illinois gas prices inch down over the week

By Neil Doyle BLOOMINGTON – Gas prices in Illinois are down three cents this week, averaging $3.49 a gallon, according to GasBuddy’s daily survey of 4,378 stations in Illinois. According to GasBuddy price reports, the cheapest station in Illinois is priced at $2.79 while the most expensive is $4.52. Gas prices in the state are…MORE

“Now Hiring” signs are still all around

“Now Hiring” signs are still all around

By Dave Dahl SPRINGFIELD – Here’s a twist on the “labor shortage” story. A recent report showed a sixteen percent jump in costs related to hiring people and other HR-related matters. And that’s if you can find people to hire. Illinois Manufacturers’ Association president and CEO Mark Denzler says there’s more to manufacturing than simply…MORE

Blogs

Labor Day – Expanding voting rights for all

By Mike Matejka Because of COVID, there is no Labor Day Parade this year.  It’s always a great event for our everyday workers to march proudly down the street and enjoys the festive crowd. If there had been a parade, this year’s Labor Day theme was to be “150 years of struggle: your right to vote.” …

Is federal mobilization the answer?

By Mike Matejka As President Donald Trump threatens to send federal marshals into Chicago, over the objections of Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker, recall another Illinois Governor who protested the incursion of armed federal personnel into the city.   Those federal troops, rather than calming, escalated the situation, leading to deaths and violence. Illinois poet Vachel Lindsay…

In these troubled times, to my fellow white Americans

By Mike Matejka Our nation is at a unique watershed in human relations. African-Americans have been killed too many times in the past before George Floyd, but the response to this man’s death is international and all-encompassing. I was a grade-schooler during the Civil Rights 1960s. I watched Birmingham demonstrators hosed and the Selma – Montgomery…

Workers’ Memorial Day – Remember those whose job took their life

Looking around our community, when we say employer, most will respond to State Farm, Country, or Illinois State University.   We too often forget those who are building our roads, serving our food, or our public employees. COVID-19 has made us more aware of the risk.  Going to work every day for some people means…