Gov. Pat Quinn

John Paul Henry

Illinois officials say more than 2,000 people have applied for federal assistance following November tornadoes that prompted disaster declaration in their counties.

Gov. Pat Quinn’s office says the government has approved more than $1.6 million in federal grants and more than $5.6 million in low-interest loans.

Illinois officials say the $7 million announced for efforts to move incarcerated non-violent offenders into community-based programs comes from the state's general revenue fund.

Gov. Pat Quinn announced the money Sunday, saying community programs save money and are shown to produce better results in rehabilitating non-violent offenders.

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The Illinois Legislature has wrapped up its official 2013 session after passing historic gay marriage legislation.

But it made little progress on many other high-profile issues.

Lawmakers have yet to solve the state's $100 billion dollar pension crisis. They haven't raised the minimum wage, enacted an assault weapons ban or approved additional ethics reforms.


The Illinois horse racing industry could find itself in a bind if lawmakers don't renew an online betting law that expires in January.

The Illinois Legislature's fall veto session is just a week away, but a committee tasked with the solving the state's enormous pension problem is divided.

An Associated Press survey of the 10-member committee found five Democrats support a plan that would save the state $138 billion over 30 years.

Illinois' top Democratic legislative leaders are asking the Illinois Supreme Court to reject Governor Pat Quinn's appeal of a lawsuit over legislative pay.

Quinn halted lawmakers' pay in July until pension reform was achieved. A Cook County Circuit Court judge ruled last month that the move was unconstitutional and ordered lawmakers to be sent back pay, with interest. An appeal is being reviewed by the state Supreme Court.

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The Illinois State Board of Education is announcing a series of public hearings as it re-examines school funding. The first hearing will be held in Carbondale on Oct. 23 and is followed by others in Macomb, Champaign, Grayslake and Chicago.

Hearing participants will be asked to detail the value of the programs and services they feel are vital to education in Illinois.


An Illinois state senator wants to add churches to the list of places where concealed guns wouldn't be allowed in new state law.

Park Ridge Democrat Dan Kotowski said he doesn't agree with a provision in the state's new concealed-carry law that allows guns in churches, temples or mosques. He filed an amendment to the law Monday and said he'll push for its approval.

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Illinois Governor Pat Quinn says lawmakers who didn't send him a pension overhaul bill have let down taxpayers.  Quinn set Tuesday as the deadline for a bipartisan pension panel to report back with a plan. That was even as members of the so-called conference committee formed last month called his deadline arbitrary and irresponsible.  Quinn says there'll be consequences, but he's declined to say exactly what he'd do. 

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An Illinois bipartisan panel has finished a third meeting about the state's $97 billion pension crisis as another deadline set by Governor Pat Quinn lapses without a solution.  The group has now asked for reports of the cost-savings of a university-backed retirement funding proposal after meeting Monday. Quinn gave the committee a deadline of today to achieve pension reform.  Lawmakers moved to form the committee after a compromise couldn't be reached last month.