Illinois

A Local Government Plans to Pay Off Millions in Residents' Medical Debt

Cook County, Illinois, where Chicago is located, is launching the initiative using American Rescue Plan dollars and hopes to wipe out hundreds of millions of dollars in unpaid bills.

Cities With the Lowest Home Prices in the US

Housing prices are soaring and interest rates are rising, but median home prices in these places are less than $185,000.

In a State Renowned for Its Budget Mess, Glimmers of a Turnaround

After decades of mismanagement, analysts say Illinois is “heading in the right direction” but still has work to do.

States Seek Waiver for $380M in Unemployment Loan Interest

The push for a break from the federal government on the borrowing costs comes as Republicans in Congress are increasingly scrutinizing aid for states.

The Indictment of the Nation’s Longest-serving Legislative Leader

The federal prosecution of former Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan is the latest, and biggest, development in a push to crack down on corruption in Chicago.

Legislation Seeks to Block Secrecy With Economic Development Deals

Bills put forward in at least three states aim to ensure there's transparency around tax breaks and other incentives.

Only State That Tapped Emergency Fed Program Pays Off $2B Loan

The program was set up in the early days of the pandemic to help steady the then-rattled world of municipal finance. Now, just one government agency still has debt from it outstanding.

Bills Modeled on Texas Abortion Law Target Sex Abusers, Gun Sellers

California’s governor wants to use Texas tactics to go after assault weapons sold in his state, while an Illinois state lawmaker seeks to penalize sex offenders.

As Food Banks Struggle to Feed More Families at Thanksgiving, Localities Step Up to Help

Food shortages and soaring prices have hampered many charities' ability to collect and buy enough items. Municipal governments are investing new federal funds to boost these efforts.

Tax or Treat! State Laws on Candy Taxation Vary Wildly

Whether you pay tax on your Halloween treat supply depends on which state you live in and how it defines candy.

5 Midwest States Form Electric Vehicle Pact

They plan to work together building out charging infrastructure and on other issues. The agreement comes after Ford unveiled plans for big electric vehicle investments in another region.

Two States Have Decriminalized HIV Transmission, Leaving Eight With Active Laws

Illinois became the second state to repeal a decades-old statute that allowed HIV-positive residents to be charged with a felony for failing to disclose their status before having unprotected sex.

Many New Moms Get Kicked Off Medicaid 2 Months After Giving Birth. Illinois Will Change That.

Each year, hundreds of thousands of new mothers lose Medicaid coverage after 60 days when their income exceeds limits. But deadly childbirth complications persist months longer.

States Look to Ban Police From Lying During Interrogations

Lawmakers in Illinois approved legislation that would prohibit police from lying to minors during interrogations, and similar proposals are underway in other states.

Illinois Becomes First State to Abolish Cash Bail

Judges will instead use a risk assessment tool to determine a defendant's fitness for release. The change is part of a broader criminal justice reform bill Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed this week.

An Urban Hospital on the Brink vs. the Officials Sworn to Save It

Officials fear that the facility's closure will limit hospital access for about 60,000 Chicago-area residents. Inner-city hospitals often struggle with lean Medicaid payment rates.

Illinois Is First in the Nation to Extend Health Coverage to Undocumented Seniors

Undocumented immigrants without health insurance often skip care.

State and Local Republican Officials Shy Away From Trump's Efforts to Overturn Election Results

STATE AND LOCAL ROUNDUP | Illinois House speaker’s power slipping amid federal probe … Milwaukee health workers face death threats … Florida sheriff’s office keeping list of kids seen at risk of “life of crime” … state-local spat over charity venison.

A New Program in One State Will Help People Expunge Marijuana Convictions

A state-funded coalition of legal organizations will help Illinois residents navigate the process of criminal record expungement for pot-related offenses.

Rejecting the ‘Fair Tax’ Ballot Measure, Illinois Voters Decide to Keep a Flat Income Tax

Illinois voters rejected a ballot measure that would have allowed the state to implement a graduated income tax. Campaigns for and against the initiative together raised more than $120 million.