Brian Mackey

Brian Mackey covers state government and politics for NPR Illinois and a dozen other public radio stations across the state. He was previously A&E editor at The State Journal-Register and Statehouse bureau chief for the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin.

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More than a thousand Illinoisans with low-level marijuana convictions had their records wiped clean Wednesday. It’s part of the new marijuana legalization coming in January.

A pair of credit rating agencies on Tuesday issued warnings on the finances of both the state of Illinois and its largest city.

Former campaign staffer Alaina Hampton has agreed to settle a lawsuit against the Democratic Party of Illinois and several political organizations tied to House Speaker Michael Madigan.

Would you say that most people can be trusted, or that you can’t be too careful? An NPR Illinois survey shows Illinoisans are divided on the question — though not in the usual ways of politics. This week, we look at the issue of trust, and why it matters for democracy.

Lawyers are asking a federal judge to hold the state of Illinois in contempt over the way it deals with mental illness in prisons.

A new report from the Illinois General Assembly suggests concerns about the economy might be overblown.

A proposal that would let college athletes make money from endorsements cleared a major hurdle Wednesday in the Illinois General Assembly.

A day after state Rep. Luis Arroyo was charged with bribery, his colleagues began the process to throw him out of office.

An Illinois state lawmaker is facing bipartisan calls for his resignation. It comes after he was charged Monday with attempted bribery.

Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker is supporting legislation that would let college athletes get paid for endorsements.

Illinois lawmakers are back in Springfield Monday for the start of what’s expected to be a relatively quiet veto session.

Illinois lawmakers are back in Springfield Monday for the start of what’s expected to be a relatively quiet veto session.

New polling data from NPR Illinois and the University of Illinois Springfield shows Illinois registered voters are sharply split on whether immigrants help or hurt the state.

Illinois Comptroller Susana Mendoza is joining calls for state Sen. Martin Sandoval to step down from his role as chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee.

A broad majority of Illinois voters support major changes to the state income tax, favoring a system where the wealthy pay more. That’s according to new survey data from NPR Illinois and the University of Illinois Springfield.

A majority of Illinoisans think the state is on the wrong track and have a dim view of the economy, but the pessimism doesn’t seem to be affecting Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s job approval.

The federal investigation into state Senator Martin Sandoval involves lobbyists, government officials, and construction companies. That’s according to a newly released copy of a search warrant for the senator’s Springfield office.

FBI agents raided the Capitol office of Illinois state Sen. Martin A. Sandoval Tuesday morning.

Illinois lawmakers are considering a ban on flavored e-cigarettes and vaping products.

Charlie Wheeler has been covering Illinois government for 50 years. As he retires from leading the Public Affairs Reporting program at the University of Illinois Springfield, he reflects on the decline of the Statehouse press corps, the threat that poses to democracy, and the rays of hope in non-profit news.

State agencies are getting a warning from Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s budget office: Be prepared to make significant cuts next year.

BRIAN MACKEY / NPR ILLINOIS

A small gathering of anti-abortion activists prayed in the Illinois Capitol Building Wednesday. It comes as lawmakers are considering whether to further relax the state’s abortion laws.

A little more than two-dozen people gathered to pray and sing with a Roman Catholic priest.

The Rev. Edward Ohm, based in Lincoln, said they were showing sorrow and regret for recent actions of the legislature — particularly this year’s new law protecting and expanding abortion rights.

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker has broken his leg, and his office says he doesn’t know how it happened.

U.S. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi rallied with Illinois Democrats Wednesday in Springfield.

President Donald Trump says he is “very strongly considering” commuting the prison sentence of former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich.

In the wake of last weekend’s shootings in Texas and Ohio, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker is calling for a ban on large-capacity magazines.

People with criminal records could soon have better luck getting jobs in health care.

A group of gun dealers is suing the state of Illinois to block new regulations on their businesses.

After decades of growth, the number of men and women in the Illinois prison system has declined sharply in the last several years. A complex blend of decisions is behind the drop — ranging from the highest reaches of power in the General Assembly down to individual police on the beat.

BRIAN MACKEY / NPR ILLINOIS

When lawmakers made performance-based budgeting the law in Illinois, they promised it would transform the way the state spends money. But after years of failing to invest in the program, backers say Illinois is finally getting serious about Budgeting for Results.

Nine years ago, when Budgeting for Results was becoming the law of the land, then-state Sen. Dan Kotowski promised Illinois would “fund programs based on performance and impact, not politics and special interests.”

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