Associated Press

The Associated Press is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering, supplying a steady stream of news to its members, international subscribers and commercial customers. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, it's a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members.

Dr. Dianne Giammetta
UnityPoint Health - Trinity

Authorities have released the names of a Bettendorf couple killed when their plane heading to Alabama crashed in southern Kentucky.

Northern Illinois University officials say there will be 150 staff position reductions as the school tries to cut expenses.  NIU president Doug Baker says most cuts will be achieved through attrition however 30 of the affected jobs will be active positions. He says most of the affected employees were notified by Monday.

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus is about to disappear. However, Illinois State University will be able to offer a peek under the big top.

 

The university says the son of a man who once helped lead the "Greatest Show on Earth" donated more than 15 boxes of letters and documents that once belonged to his father. The papers will become part of the school's collection of memorabilia, posters and other papers from circuses around the world.  

 

The federal Bureau of Labor Statistics has released figures that show union membership in Illinois matched a historic low in 2016.  Union membership in Illinois accounted for 14.5% of the wage and salary workers in the state last year. That is down from 15.2% from the previous year and ties the historic low set in 2007.

The top Capitol Hill Democrats from Illinois say they believe President Donald Trump's revised travel ban is unconstitutional and won't survive legal challenges.

Illinois officials waited more than five months to alert dozens of domestic violence programs that their funding had been eliminated, an omission that forced layoffs and other cuts.  Officials providing services to victims of domestic violence say they were unaware that about $9 million in state funding was left out of the stopgap plan that expired in December. 

The monarch population in Illinois has decreased 90 percent in the past two  decades because of changes in habitat.
Rodney Campbell / Flickr

A Senate Democrat is proposing a special Illinois license plate to help preserve the monarch butterfly.

The plan by state Senator Melinda Bush of Grayslake is to allow motorists to pay a surcharge for stickers to indicate their support for the insect's viability.

The monarch population in Illinois has decreased 90 percent in the past two decades because of changes in habitat.

Illinois Senate President John Cullerton says his legal staff is reviewing an executive order issued by Gov. Bruce Rauner that eliminates dues paid by workers who aren't public union members.  

 

 Rauner says 6,500 state employees are forced to pay ``fair share'' fees at an

average of $577 a year for each worker.

 

 Cullerton is a Chicago Democrat. He and others are skeptical about whether the

Winnetka Republican has the legal ability to challenge the fee. Unions have

Two Illinois lawmakers are speaking out against the recent decision to end federal funding for a clean-coal project in Meredosia.

Congressman Aaron Schock says he will pay for the redesign of his office. The Peoria Republican's new digs received a lot of attention after a Washington Post article said it was modeled after the TV show "Downton Abbey".

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