Homeland Security Chief To Face Off With Democrats On Border Crisis

Homeland Security acting Secretary Kevin McAleenan will testify on Capitol Hill on Thursday as Democrats step up oversight of an immigration crisis on the U.S.-Mexico border. The House Oversight and Reform Committee could bring McAleenan to task for strained conditions at U.S. immigration detention centers and cases of children separated from their parents. Maryland Democrat Elijah Cummings, the panel's chairman, says he wants McAleenan to explain the Trump administration's child separation...

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Springfield-based Land of Lincoln Goodwill is backpedaling on its recent decision to lay off a number of workers with disabilities. The move by CEO Sharon Durbin sparked broad criticism this week.

Last month, Durbin announced Goodwill would be laying off its workers with disabilities, saying it couldn’t afford to keep them due to the upcoming minimum wage hike. That’s despite the fact that Goodwill is legally allowed to pay those workers below the minimum wage. Durbin herself receives a six figure salary.

Perspective: Principles

4 hours ago
based on work by Olli-Pekka Hannu / Pixabay

Listening to NPR’s interviews of citizens after the Mueller Report was unveiled, I was struck by the statement of an older woman. She was adamant that President Trump was a “despicable man.” But she would probably vote for him for President this time. Her excuse was that things were going well. People had jobs, the economy was booming, things seemed to be going in the right direction. 


Sarah Jesmer

Protesters have been mobilizing to show solidarity with immigrants. Candlelight vigils were held in Rockford and Woodstock over the weekend.


Report Highlights Higher Ed Inequity In Chicagoland

20 hours ago
Photo by Spencer Tritt

Even with Chicagoland students in the same income range, white students have a much greater chance of getting a degree than students of color.

That’s according to a new report from the non-profit Partnership for College Completion. The group just released a report highlighting college access and success disparities in northern Illinois.

It finds gaps exist regardless of academics and have more to do with race and family income levels.

Illinois — and the rest of the country — could soon start seeing more days of extreme heat. That’s according to a report released Tuesday, “Killer Heat in the United States: Climate Choices and the Future of Dangerously Hot Days”— authored by the Union of Concerned Scientists. 

Perspective: Protect The Piping Plovers

Jul 17, 2019
NPS Climate Change Response / cc-pdm-1.0

Today I want to talk on behalf of those who cannot speak -- specifically, two small endangered birds named Monty and Rose.

Monty and Rose are piping plovers. By current estimates, they are only 1 of 70 breeding pairs in the Great Lakes region and the first pair to nest on Chicago’s lakeshore in some 50 years. The fact that these endangered birds have decided to set-up shop on Montrose Beach is both fortuitous and harrowing.

Retired Justice John Paul Stevens, whose Supreme Court opinions transformed many areas of American law during his 34 year tenure, died at the age of 99 in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., of complications following a stroke he suffered Monday.

Chief Justice John Roberts confirmed Stevens' death in a statement from the Supreme Court.

Planned Parenthood of Illinois

Planned Parenthood of Illinois has announced it will stop accepting federal funds because of a new Trump administration rule barring family planning clinics from referring women for abortions.

The administration notified clinics Monday that in addition to immediately enforcing new regulations prohibiting federally funded clinics from making abortion referrals, abortions the clinics perform must be financially separate from services supported by the grant dollars.

Carl Nelson/WNIJ

Illinois raised its per-gallon gasoline tax at the beginning of July and it’s already having an effect on state prices.

AAA reports the current state average is around $3.14 per gallon, and may be driving some border residents to get their fuel in other states. GasBuddy petroleum analyst Patrick DeHaan says the change came quickly.

“Average prices shot up noticeably within the first 24 hours but it took almost 48-72 hours for stations to fully pass along the state’s 19 cent per gallon increase in gasoline tax,” he said. 


In the midst of summer’s high temperatures, DeKalb, Winnebago and Boone Counties are ensuring the public is safe in times of extreme heat.

The Rockford City Market is moving many of its vendors inside the market building and under the Rockford City Market Pavilion on Friday due to the ongoing heatwave. 

The DeKalb County Health Department is sharing tips to help the public stay cool, hydrated, and informed.   

The tips include staying in air-conditioned locations, drinking more water than usual and checking local news outlets for extreme heat warnings. 


News From NPR

A major anime studio in Kyoto, Japan, was engulfed in flames in a suspected act of arson that killed at least 16 people, according to Japan's national broadcaster NHK.

"Dozens more are injured and some others are without vital signs," the broadcaster said.

NPR's Steve Inskeep talks to NPR's Ayesha Rascoe and Scott Jennings, a longtime Republican strategist, about President Trump's continued remarks against four freshman Democratic congresswomen.

One of Chennai's biggest reservoirs, Chembarambakkam Lake, is now a cracked, windswept mud flat. There are swarms of insects as big as hummingbirds, stray goats nibbling at dust-coated shrubs and what look like a few water buffalo – but no water. A massive pipe that's supposed to carry water into the city is empty.

Rome is known as the Eternal City. Over many centuries, it has been sacked by marauders and repeatedly resurrected from decline. But this summer, Roman residents are being tested by a massive trash crisis that has prompted doctors to warn of the possible spread of diseases as birds, vermin and wild animals scavenge amid the rotting refuse.

Already, flocks of cawing seagulls have replaced traffic roar as the soundtrack of Roman life.

In the mid-19th century, Americans developed a frenzied culinary affair with turtle. Almost overnight, the Diamondback Terrapin — a small coastal turtle found from Cape Cod to the Gulf Coast — went from subsistence food to luxury cuisine, showing up on menus from the White House to Gold Rush-era San Francisco.

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