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Contract Ratified With University Of Illinois
A new four-year contract with the University of Illinois has been given a thumbs up by the Service Employees International Union Local 73. Union Vice President Aaron Ammons says members ratified the contract in balloting on Thursday and Friday. The deal includes giving workers a 50-cent an hour raise for the first year.
The Governor signs law restricting union membership among state employees
Governor Pat Quinn has signed a law restricting union membership among state employees. The law aims to bar employees from joining collective bargaining units and could force nearly 2,000 to give up recently granted membership. Quinn signed the bill yesterday while on a trade mission to Mexico.
More Job Cuts Coming At Caterpillar's Decatur Plant
A decline in the worldwide demand for mining equipment is being cited by Caterpillar as the reason for more than 460 layoffs at its Decatur plant. Unlike cuts in other Caterpillar plants, a company spokesman says these reductions are permanent, and the spokesman wouldn't say whether more
cuts are planned. Decatur already has the highest unemployment rate among the state's metro areas at 13-point-seven-percent.
Concealed Carry Bill Could Clear House This Month
State Representative Brandon Phelps says a concealed carry bill should clear the House very soon. Phelps says he's not sure what the final bill will look like. Several test votes have cleared the House already, including restrictions on where people will and will not be allowed to carry guns in public. Phelps is open to incorporating some gun-free zones, like schools and churches, but he says those are the places criminals are targeting when they carry out mass shootings. Lawmakers have until June 9th to pass the final bill.
Woman gets 50 year prison sentence for abandoning baby to freeze to death
A northern Illinois woman has been sentenced to 50 years in prison for leaving her newborn daughter to freeze to death in 2004. Winnebago County Judge John Truitt yesterday handed down the sentence to 32-year-old Katie Stockton. The infant became known as Baby Crystal around the Rock River Valley after her frozen remains were found.
FAA Delaying Airport Tower Closings
In a decision that will have an impact on five Illinois airports, the Federal Aviation Administration is delaying the closing of 149 control towers across the country. The first of the shutdowns were planned for tomorrow, but the FAA is delaying all closings until June 15 because of legal challenges raised by airport tower operators. In Illinois, the control towers in Carbondale and East Alton were scheduled to close later this month, and towers in Bloomington-Normal, Decatur and Waukegan next month. The closings are tied to federal budget cuts that Congress chose not to avoid.
Dean of an Illinois college has one request: Be nice please
Tina Nutt has a request for the students at Lincoln College in central Illinois: Be nice. Please. Nutt is the dean of academic affairs at the school. She says the college has started a civility initiative aimed at cutting down on bad manners. Lincoln College is located about 35 miles southwest of Bloomington. Nutt says she's found that rudeness, profanity and what she calls inappropriate use of cellphones have a big effect on students' academic success. She says the initiative is intended to improve behavior beyond just the classroom. The program is modeled on something similar at Rutgers University.
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