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Still No Pension Deal
Republicans are livid over the fact that there's still no deal on pension reform. House minority leader Tom Cross says they've had months to reach an agreement. But, he says Democratic leaders have focused on insignificant things like a puppy lemon law and a ban on lion meat. Cross says the pension issue is the biggest issue facing the state and Illinois faces more financial trouble if they don't send a bill to the governor by the end of the day.
House Approves Fracking Regulations
Tens of thousands of jobs are headed to Southern Illinois. That's if the Senate agrees with state reps and approves a plan to regulate fracking. It's the process of digging deep into the ground and drilling oil and natural gas out of shale rocks. Supporters say it could put about 45-thousand
people to work and breathe new life into areas that have the highest unemployment rates in Illinois. Governor Quinn supports the plan and says he's ready to sign it.
Cost Shift Clears House
The state might soon be off the hook for paying pension costs for university workers. Right now Illinois is dishing out millions of dollars every year to cover the costs, but state reps approved a plan that requires universities to take over payments. University leaders agreed to the deal, claiming they can handle the shift as long as it's phased in. They'll start paying one half of one percent of their pension costs starting next July.
Gay Couples Anticipate Same Sex Marriage Vote
Gay couples swarmed the capital yesterday, hoping lawmakers would take a vote to legalize same sex marriage. But that never happened. Reports indicate support for the measure may be fizzling. Apparently several state representatives changed their yes votes to no after being hounded by people in their districts. But state rep LaShawn Ford says he's still on board. He says he hasn't received many calls since he announced his support earlier this week.
Barrington IL Student 2nd At Scripps Spelling Bee
An Illinois 8th-grader placed second overall at the prestigious Scripps National Spelling Bee outside Washington D.C. yesterday. The thirteen-year-old from Barrington Middle School Station Campus just barely missed out on becoming the overall champion. A student from Queens, New York won the competition which drew the best 281 young spellers in the nation. This year 17 youngsters from Illinois qualified to make the trip to the nation's capital.
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