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NIU Police Chief Put On Paid Leave
(DeKalb, IL) -- Northern Illinois University's police chief is on paid leave and has been banned from his department as part of a misconduct investigation tied to a sexual assault case. Chief Donald Grady has lead the department since 2001, but now faces dismissal after a judge accused the department of misconduct and deliberately withholding evidence. Former NIU Police Officer Andrew Rifkin was accused of sexual assault, but his lawyers say statements by witnesses saying saying he had a consentual relationship with a female student were suppressed by the police. The judge hearing the case called the evidence suppression, quote, "egregious," and the university administration then initiated the disciplinary action against Chief Grady.
Illinois Democrats Face "Fiscal Cliff" In State
(Springfield, IL) -- With the state of Illinois facing its own "fiscal cliff," Democrats will return to the state house with veto-proof majorities in both houses of the legislature and a need to move quickly to solve the state's problems. One action expected almost immediately is for the state to permanently implement tax increases set to expire in 2014, locking in a five-percent individual tax rate and a seven-percent corporate rate. Legislators will have to find also find a way to institute pension reform, since all seven-billion dollars of the 2011 tax increases was spent to pay
the state's ballooning annual pension payments. Without tax increases and pension reform, an independent panel estimates the state could have a budget gap of nine-point-four-billion dollars in fiscal 2016.
Tollway To Hold Hearings On Budget
(Downers Grove, IL) -- The Illinois Tollway will hold two public hearings about its 2013 budget and is asking the public for its input. The first hearing will be held this Tuesday at 6 p.m. at the Tollway's headquarters in Downers Grove, and will be broadcast live on the Tollway's website, illinoistollway.com. There will also be an open house this Wednesday from 3 to 6 p.m. at the O'Hare Oasis on the Tri-State Tollway in Schiller Park. Tollway officials will review all public comment on the budget and present it for approval at the board's December 13th meeting.
Governor Wants Pension Overhaul By January 9th
(Chicago, IL) -- Governor Pat Quinn is setting a target date of January 9th to have the state's pension debacle fixed. Yesterday, Quinn said he wants it done with bipartisan cooperation and before a new Legislature is sworn in. He says an overhaul of the employee retirement system is needed to provide adequate resources for schools, public safety and veterans programs.
Man Sentenced For 2011 Slaying
(Peoria, IL) -- A 24-year-old Peoria man will be going to prison for a deadly shooting last November. Robert Buford was sentenced in Peoria County Circuit Court yesterday to 20 years in prison for a robbery in which a man was shot and later died. Buford must serve at least 85-percent of his sentence and, with time already served, could get out of prison in 16 years.
October Crime Rate Falls In Peoria
(Peoria, IL) -- Peoria's overall crime rate is down for October. The city's monthly report shows crime dipped 25-percent with drops in robberies, burglaries, theft and arson. In addition, Peoria's murder rate fell 100-percent last month, compared to the same time in 2011. The only classification to show an increase was aggravated assaults with a rise of six-percent.
Bloomington City Council To Consider Cap On Dowtown Liquor Licenses
(Bloomington, IL) -- The Bloomington City Council is making moves to address the downtown bar scene. Councilmembers have directed City Manager David Hales to coordinate efforts to enhance the health and safety of the downtown environment. In the weeks ahead, the city will consider capping the number of liquor licenses downtown for a six month period.
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