Illinois Governor Pat Quinn wants lawmakers to return to Springfield later this month, but some legislators aren't sure why.
Quinn released a statement Thursday criticizing lawmakers for failing to address the state's nearly 100-billion dollar pension shortfall and calling a special session which begins June 19th. The announcement follows news that Moody's Investors Service is lowering Illinois' credit rating. But a spokesman for House Speaker Michael Madigan says he believes the special session is to deal with guns, not pensions.
Quinn is currently considering conceal-carry legislation that was passed last week. Quinn hasn't said if he'll sign the plan. If he vetoes it, lawmakers could override the veto.
The Grand Center Arts Academy won't hire a controversial Clayton principal. But they won't keep their current principal either, despite protests by parents and students. On Thursday, school officials reaffirmed their decision not to renew principal Lynne Glickert’s contract.
Glickert says she still doesn't know why she's being let go. Last week she thought she was meeting for her first performance review since the school opened in 2010. Instead, she was told her current contract would not be renewed, even though she just signed a new one in May. "You just think things are fine if no one's telling you there are concerns," Glickert said. "So it was a shock, a real shock."
School officials did change their mind about hiring former Clayton High School principal Dr. Louise Losos. Losos left Clayton High after allegations that she'd created a fake Facebook account to monitor students.
The board plans to conduct a national search for a new principal.
EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. (AP) - Concealed carry legislation is pending before the Illinois governor but the state's attorney in Madison County says citizens can start carrying weapons immediately.
Madison County State's Attorney Tom Gibbons said Thursday that "it serves no just purpose" to deny citizens the ability to carry weapons. The Illinois Legislature passed concealed-carry legislation during its recent session under order by a federal appeals court, which ruled the state's ban unconstitutional. That legislation is awaiting action by Gov. Pat Quinn, who hasn't said if he will sign it or not.
The Belleville News-Democrat reports that Gibbons says people can carry a concealed weapon in his county as long as they meet seven requirements. Those requirements include possessing a valid Firearm Owner's Identification Card. Citizens also must be carrying the weapon for self-defense.
A St. Louis Alderman who had asked friends and supporters to help him pay for his daughter's college education is withdrawing the request.
Freeman Bosley Sr said he needs just over $14,000 to cover the cost of sending his daughter to St. Xavier University in Chicago. Bosley said he was not sure why the request was raising questions and he did not believe he did anything unethical.
Since the story broke, Bosley told the Post-Dispatch he would return all donations. The ethics commission has also said it is an odd request, but it does not seem to be illegal.
In an emotionally charged courtroom, Clay Waller told the judge he killed his wife Jacque Waller two years ago.
Now Waller is headed to prison to serve a 20 year sentence. As part of a plea deal, Waller told authorities where he buried his wife's body. He explained how he punched her in the face then strangled her to death.
Jacque's sister, Cheryl Brenneke, read a statement that saying she is unhappy with the sentence, but knows he will get "jailhouse justice". The judge accepted the deal and said Waller did not get what he deserved, but it will have to do.
Officials say he could serve as little as 85 percent of the sentence, but it is not likely.
AB InBev is announcing another purchase today, albeit a smaller one than Wednesday's $20 billion deal for Grupo Modelo.
The mega-brewer is purchasing a group of Ohio distribution companies. The amount of the sale was not disclosed. The deal was on hold for most of the year while Ohio lawmakers debated a bill that would have prevented breweries from directly acquiring distributors.
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - A second major rating agency is downgrading Illinois' credit worthiness.
Moody's Investors Service lowered the state's $27 billion in outstanding bonded indebtedness to A3 from A2. The new rating's three levels above junk status.
Illinois already has the worst credit rating among the states.
Fitch Ratings downgraded Illinois' credit on Monday.
Both firms blame lawmakers' lack of action on a $97 billion shortfall in its public-employee pension systems.
The Legislature adjourned its spring session without adopting a plan to make up the difference over 30 years.
Moody's says its rating "assumes the government will not take action to reduce the state's pension liabilities any time soon."
A credit-rating downgrade means it costs the state millions more to borrow money when it sells future bonds to finance long-term construction projects.
The National Weather Service has increased the number of tornadoes that touched down in the St. Louis are last week to nine.
The largest and most damaging of the twisters was the EF-3 that cut a 32 mile path of destruction through St. Charles County and north St. Louis County.
Another EF-3 tornado his ripped through Roxana, Illinois, doing serious damage to the landfill. Macoupin County was hit by EF-2 and EF-1 twisters, with one severely damaging a high school gym in Gillispie.
Additionally, there were two EF-1 tornadoes in Franklin and Jefferson Counties, and three EF-0 tornadoes in Montgomery County
ST. LOUIS (AP) - The FBI is seeking help from the public in the search for two suspects allegedly involved in a four-state auto theft ring.
The FBI says that since 2008, more than 100 vehicles were fraudulently obtained from Missouri, Illinois, Iowa and Indiana. Authorities are searching for two men believed to live in St. Louis city or county: Reginald Dante McNeary and Morris Allen Davis. Both are considered armed and dangerous.
Anyone with information is asked to call the FBI at 314-589-2500 or CrimeStoppers at 866-371-TIPS.
A sometimes controversial St. Louis City alderman is raising eyebrows by asking friends and supporters to help him pay for his daughter's college education.
Freeman Bosley, Senior is asking for help covering just over 14-thousand dollars in costs so that his youngest daughter can attend St. Xavier University in Chicago.
Bosley says that's the amount left on the bill after grants and scholarships. The request is raising ethic's questions. But Bosley says it was a personal plea to friends and the letter wasn't sent on city stationary or campaign letterhead.
He told Fox 2 News that he doesn't understand the criticism. "How is that inappropriate. I didn't ask them to give it to me in my name. And I don't never let nobody give me nothing."
Although politicians in other states have been prosecuted for similar requests, Stacey Heislen, the acting director of the Missouri Ethics Commission says it doesn't appear that Bosley's letter violates any laws in Missouri.