Central Management Services Hosts Black History Event Recognizing Diversity in State Employment and Beyond

The Illinois Department of Central Management Services CMS announced the latest in Black History Month recognition efforts by the agency. On Friday, February 23, 2024, from 12:00 – 1:00 p.m., the CMS Bureau of Diversity & Inclusion will host a hybrid virtual and in-person event titled “The Black Experience as an Illinois State Employee and the Pathways for the Future.” The event will take place in person at 555 W. Monroe, Illinois Room, and virtually at the following link: https://bit.ly/3vaf1Yq.

Read more about Central Management Services Hosts Black History Event Recognizing Diversity in State Employment and Beyond

ILLINOIS STATE POLICE METROPOLITAN ENFORCEMENT GROUPS AND DRUG TASK FORCES SUCCESSES IN 2023

The Illinois State Police (ISP), working with law enforcement and community partners, continues to decrease the supply of illegal guns and drugs devastating neighborhoods across the state. In 2023, ISP Metropolitan Enforcement Groups (MEGs) and multi-jurisdictional Drug Task Forces (TFs) across the state seized 718 firearms, 17,812 pounds of drugs, and arrested 1,904 individuals. ISP MEGs and TFs are comprised of state, federal, and local law enforcement agencies and are focused on enforcing Illinois drug laws, investigating gang activity, and combating high-level gun, drug, and human trafficking.

Read more about ILLINOIS STATE POLICE METROPOLITAN ENFORCEMENT GROUPS AND DRUG TASK FORCES SUCCESSES IN 2023

Illinois Department of Labor, Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights Partner on Labor Rights Outreach Initiative

The Illinois Department of Labor (IDOL) and the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights (ICIRR) are partnering on an education and outreach program to raise awareness of workplace protections that apply to all workers in Illinois, with a particular focus on labor exploitation and child labor. The program is designed to educate migrants who have recently arrived in Illinois of their rights under State labor laws. The effort comes in part in response to national reporting of instances of migrant children working and being injured in hazardous facilities, including warehouses and food processing plants.

Read more about Illinois Department of Labor, Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights Partner on Labor Rights Outreach Initiative

Springfield state historic sites celebrate Black History Month with history hikes, walking tours, and lunch-and-learn programs

State historic sites in Springfield will present a variety of engaging history hikes, walking tours and lunchtime programs to commemorate Black History Month. Individuals and groups are encouraged to sign up in advance on Eventbrite for educational experiences that will explore important historic events and pathbreaking individuals. Participants who register on Eventbrite and attend a program will receive a limited-production Black History Month “Everyone Belongs in History” vinyl sticker. A limited quantity of the stickers will also be available during February while supplies last at the Lincoln Tomb, Dana-Thomas House, Vachel Lindsay Home, Springfield Visitor Center, Lincoln Home National Historic Site, and the Illinois State Museum.

Read more about Springfield state historic sites celebrate Black History Month with history hikes, walking tours, and lunch-and-learn programs

Governor Pritzker Awards $3.3 Million in Grant Funding for Projects Along the Historic Route 66

Governor JB Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) announced seven awards, totaling $3.3 million, through the Route 66 Grant Program. This funding is intended to boost local tourism and attract visitors to the historic Route 66, leading up to the 100th Anniversary of Route 66 in 2026.

Read more about Governor Pritzker Awards $3.3 Million in Grant Funding for Projects Along the Historic Route 66

State Supreme Court denies state lawmaker’s bid to vacate gun ban ruling

The Illinois Supreme Court has again denied a request from a Republican lawmaker seeking to repeal the state’s assault weapons ban. Governor JB Pritzker signed the ban on the sale, possession and manufacture of a long list of firearms, high-capacity magazines and certain accessories in January 2023. State Rep. Dan Caulkins, R-Decatur, quickly challenged it on state constitutional grounds along with local gun owners and a gun shop owner.

Read more about State Supreme Court denies state lawmaker’s bid to vacate gun ban ruling

ICC 2023 Supplier Diversity Report Shows Spending by ‘Big 6' Utilities Remains Steady

The Illinois Commerce Commission's Office of Diversity and Community Affairs' (ODCA) 2023 Annual Report shows that diverse spending by the state's largest investor-owned utilities remained steady for the third year in a row at over $2 billion. Some utilities reported a nearly 50 percent share of their total spending with diverse suppliers, including minority, women, veteran, and small business enterprises.

Read more about ICC 2023 Supplier Diversity Report Shows Spending by ‘Big 6' Utilities Remains Steady

Governor Pritzker and Department of Revenue Encourage Taxpayers to Take Advantage of Illinois' Expanded, Earned Income Tax Credit

Governor Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Revenue (IDOR) are encouraging Illinoisans to take advantage of savings offered by the newly expanded Illinois Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), a benefit that helps low to moderate income workers get a tax break. For tax year 2023, coverage has been expanded to include taxpayers with an IRS-issued Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN), as well as workers ages 18 to 24 and over 65 (without qualifying child).

Read more about Governor Pritzker and Department of Revenue Encourage Taxpayers to Take Advantage of Illinois' Expanded, Earned Income Tax Credit

Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice to host job screenings

The Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice (IDJJ) will host employment screening events for its Juvenile Justice Specialist Intern positions. The positions are full-time, year-round, shift-work positions and there are job openings at the following Illinois youth centers: Chicago, Warrenville, St. Charles, Grafton, and Harrisburg. The position has a starting salary of $54,648; and interested applicants must attend an upcoming required screening event to be considered. The screening dates and locations are listed below: Phoenix Emerging Adults Career & Education (PEACE) Center at St. Charles- 3825 Campton Hills Rd., St. Charles, IL • February 6, 2024 • March 5, 2024 • April 2, 2024

Read more about Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice to host job screenings

Illinois legislators return to capitol Tuesday

Top of mind is the state budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1. Illinois taxpayers will hear more about how Gov. J.B. Pritzker plans to spend their tax dollars during his budget and State of the State address Wednesday, Feb. 21. He’s indicated there will be a lot of priorities legislators will have to balance. “It’s all a question of priorities, I think the members of the General Assembly and I talk about this all the time, across the aisle too, about what are our priorities, where are we going to put resources,” Pritzker said.

Read more about Illinois legislators return to capitol Tuesday

Lt. Governor Juliana Stratton launches Illinois Healing-Centered Task Force

Lieutenant Governor Juliana Stratton launched the Illinois Healing-Centered Task Force (IHCTF) on Tuesday, January 30, 2024, at Governors State University in University Park, Illinois. The Task Force’s work will provide a thorough blueprint to move Illinois towards becoming a more trauma-informed and healing-centered state. These efforts will be guided by collaborations with community stakeholders. Created by Senate Bill 646, the IHCTF will coordinate existing projects, identify the impact of intergenerational trauma to develop preventative solutions and facilitate broader community engagement. This work will be used to inform legislators on applying trauma-informed principles to the policymaking process.

Read more about Lt. Governor Juliana Stratton launches Illinois Healing-Centered Task Force

Flammable Liquids Burn; OSFM Focuses on Safety and Prevention

The Office of the Illinois State Fire Marshal (OSFM) wants to raise awareness about the importance of safety around flammable liquids as burn injuries can create life altering impacts. National Burn Awareness Week is February 4-10 with this year's theme of "Flammable Liquids Burn." National Burn Awareness Week is a window of opportunity for organizations to mobilize burn, fire, and life safety educators to unite in sharing a common burn awareness and prevention message in communities.

Read more about Flammable Liquids Burn; OSFM Focuses on Safety and Prevention

Unemployment claims in Illinois declined last week

Initial filings for unemployment benefits in Illinois dropped last week compared with the week prior, the U.S. Department of Labor said Thursday. New jobless claims, a proxy for layoffs, fell to 9,945 in the week ending Jan. 27, down from 12,261 the week before, the Labor Department said. U.S. unemployment claims rose to 224,000 last week, up 9,000 claims from 215,000 the week prior on a seasonally adjusted basis.

Read more about Unemployment claims in Illinois declined last week

DCEO Commemorates Black History Month

On February 1,st 2024, the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) launched its annual Black History Month campaign, designed to honor and uplift the contributions of Black Illinoisans, business owners and leaders. As part of the month-long celebration, DCEO launched a webpage featuring events and resources, including resources to support Black-owned businesses, a social media toolkit, proclamation and more.

Read more about DCEO Commemorates Black History Month

Illinois State Police Increases East St. Louis Homicide Clearance Rate in 2023

In 2023, the Illinois State Police (ISP) Division of Criminal Investigation Zone 6 Public Safety Enforcement Group (PSEG) increased the clearance rate for homicide cases in East St. Louis by 29% over 2022. ISP made arrests, had charges filed, and turned cases over to the courts in 67% of its homicide cases in East St. Louis last year, compared to 44% in both 2022 and 2021. PSEG also worked with the Division of Patrol Troop 8 and the South Special Operations Group (SOG) to seize almost 500 guns and almost 200 pounds of illegal drugs from Metro East streets.

Read more about Illinois State Police Increases East St. Louis Homicide Clearance Rate in 2023

Legislation introduced to change Illinois estate tax

New bipartisan measures aimed at ensuring the preservation of family farms in the event of a family member’s death were announced Wednesday after years of attempting to reform the Illinois Estate and Generation Transfer Tax Act. Supported by Illinois Farm Bureau, Senate Bill 2921, introduced by State Sen. Dave Koehler, D-Peoria, and House Bill 4600, introduced by State Rep. Sharon Chung, D-Bloomington, are identical bills that if passed would change the state’s estate tax, specific to farms.

Read more about Legislation introduced to change Illinois estate tax

The Illinois Liquor Control Act Turns 90 Today!

Happy 90th birthday to the Liquor Control Act of 1934! The Act, which regulates the manufacture, distribution and sale of alcohol within Illinois, first took effect on January 31, 1934. When the 21st Amendment was ratified in 1933, officially ending Prohibition in the United States after 14 years, every state in the nation, including Illinois, sought to enact laws with safety measures to regulate the sale of alcohol. These new laws were designed to permit the lawful sale and consumption of alcohol without welcoming back the health and societal issues that resulted from excessive consumption, excessive sales, and lackluster alcohol manufacturing standards.

Read more about The Illinois Liquor Control Act Turns 90 Today!

Carbon Monoxide and Home Heating Safety Awareness Key to Staying Warm and Safe this Winter

As Illinoisans turn up their thermostats to stay warm the rest of this winter the risk of a home heating fire or Carbon Monoxide incident increases. This is why the Office of the Illinois State Fire Marshal (OSFM) encourages residents to have their furnaces checked, change furnace filters, and make sure carbon monoxide (CO) and smoke alarms are functioning properly. Unlike smoke, carbon monoxide is a colorless and odorless gas only detectable by special devices and CO alarms.

Read more about Carbon Monoxide and Home Heating Safety Awareness Key to Staying Warm and Safe this Winter

Gov. Pritzker, IDNR announce $54.9 million in grants for 111 local park and recreation projects throughout Illinois

Nearly $55 million in state grants are being awarded for 111 local park projects throughout Illinois to help communities acquire land and develop recreational opportunities, Gov. JB Pritzker announced Tuesday, January 30, 2024. For the second year in a row, the governor ensured funding was set aside for economically distressed communities, resulting in 32 underserved locations receiving $18.7 million in grants from the Open Space Land Acquisition and Development, or OSLAD, program. This is the 37th year for the program, which is administered by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

Read more about Gov. Pritzker, IDNR announce $54.9 million in grants for 111 local park and recreation projects throughout Illinois

Gov. Pritzker Announces $160 Million In Federal Funding for Great Lakes Water Innovation Engine

Governor JB Pritzker today announced that a Chicago-area water innovation hub, Current, has been selected to receive a $160 million innovation grant from the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) Regional Innovation Engine program for their Great Lakes ReNEW initiative. ReNEW, which was backed by six Great Lakes States, is also supported by Argonne National Laboratory, the University of Chicago, and over fifty other partner organizations and focuses on sustainable water innovation solutions.

Read more about Gov. Pritzker Announces $160 Million In Federal Funding for Great Lakes Water Innovation Engine

Panel of experts suggest legislative measures to reverse journalism decline

A bipartisan task force of legislators and journalism industry leaders has filed a report to the General Assembly detailing the decline of local journalism in Illinois and exploring ways the legislature can help revive it. The Local Journalism Task Force, created in January 2022, found that about one-third of Illinois counties have either no source of local news or a single source, citing research by the Northwestern University Medill School of Journalism.

Read more about Panel of experts suggest legislative measures to reverse journalism decline
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10