Illinois News Roundup for Wednesday, May 9


Published on May 9 2012 3:05 pm
Last Updated on July 14 2013 12:07 pm
Written by Greg Sapp

>>Mark Kirk Details Stroke Recovery On YouTube

(Chicago, IL)  --  U.S. Senator Mark Kirk is walking again.  In video posted on "YouTube," Kirk detailed his recovery from a stroke he suffered in January.  The Illinois Republican thanked the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago for helping in his recovery.  He was released from the rehab center last week.  Kirk says he's hoping to be back in Washington, DC, soon and thanked everyone for showing him patience.

>>Emanuel Testifies In Springfield

(Springfield, IL)  --  Mayor Rahm Emanuel appears before state lawmakers in Springfield.  He told a state House committee yesterday there needs to be pension reform in Illinois or taxes will skyrocket.  Saying "the day of reckoning has arrived," the mayor called for changes including an increase in the retirement age to 67.

>>Court Bans Enforcement Of Illinois Eavesdropping Law

(Chicago, IL)  --  A federal appeals court bars enforcement of Illinois eavesdropping law, saying it is probably unconstitutional.  The controversial law makes it a felony to record audio of any conversation without the consent of all parties,and specifically bans recordings of police officers in public.  Critics had feared it could be used to arrest protesters who record police during the May 20-21 NATO summit.

>>Trial Starting In Madison County Heroin Death

(Edwardsville, IL)  --  Testimony begins today for the trial of a man accused of supplying the heroin that killed 17-year-old Triad High School senior Shannon Gaddis last year.  Taylor W. Kennedy of Troy faces a mandatory prison sentence of six to 30 years if he is found guilty of a drug-induced homicide.  He would be required to serve at least 85 percent of the sentence.  Gaddis was off school for a snow day in January 2011 when she overdosed at her home in Troy.


>>Tenaska Pulls Coal Gasification Plan

(Springfield, IL)  --  Tenaska is giving up on plans to build a coal gasification plant in Taylorville, Illinois.  The company has been unsuccessful for several years in trying to get lawmakers to support the plant.  Company officials met with lawmakers and other business executives in Springfield yesterday.  The new plan is to build a 650-megawatt natural gas plant instead, still on the Taylorville site.

>>Eavesdropping Law Unconstitutional

(Chicago, IL)  --  A federal judge has outlawed Illinois' eavesdropping law.  The court says it's illegal to prohibit a person from video or audio recording an on-duty police officer because it violates their right to free speech.  Right now in Illinois, anyone convicted of either video or audio recording a police officer could face up to 15 years behind bars.  Lawmakers are taking steps to reverse the law, but they're meeting resistance from law enforcement agencies across the state.

>>Identity Thieves Targeting Children

(Undated)  --  Identity thieves are targeting children more frequently these days but Steve Bernas with the Better Business Bureau in Chicago says there are things parents can do to protect their child.  He urges parents to monitor their child's online use and set strict privacy settings on social networking sites.  He also says parents should know what school employees have access to their child's social security number, plus they should check their child's credit report once a year.  Records show more than 19-thousand cases of identity theft were reported by people under the age of 19 last year.

>>Health Screenings Offered At Farmers' Market

(Springfield, IL)  --  Health screenings are being offered at the Illinois Products Farmers' Market on the state fair grounds this year.  It's part of a new partnership between the market and the Springfield Clinic.  They'll also offer educational programs related to nutrition, fitness and wellness as part of the deal and of course there'll be fresh produce and other goodies, straight from the farm.  The fair is open every Thursday from 4 until 7 p.m.

>>Two Chicago High Schools Among Best In Country

(Chicago, IL)  --  Two Chicago High Schools are among the best in the nation.  "U.S. News and World Report" ranks Northside College Prep as the 39th best public school in the nation while Walter Payton College Prep comes in at number 41.  The rankings are based on several factors, including state proficiency standards and how well they prepare students for college.  The School for The Talented and Gifted, in Dallas, Texas, is ranked number one.