MetroSource News 03/01/2013

Prison Leaders Deny Uptick In Violence

(Springfield, IL)  -- Prison leaders have no strategy when it comes to reducing violence within the Department of Corrections.  DOC Director Salvador Godinez met with several state senators this week.  He says they're not seeing an increase in staff attacks, despite the recent beatings of guards at three different facilities - all of whom were hospitalized.  Senator Dave Luechtefeld disagrees with Godinez on that point.  He says from what they see, staff attacks are up and he plans to do everything in his power to protect front-line workers.

State Reaches Tentative Deal With AFSCME

(Springfield, IL)  --  Union leaders are pleased with the deal they've hashed out with Governor Quinn.  Details of the agreement haven't been made public.  But AFSCME Council 31 Executive Director Henry Bayer says the deal is fair and protects their standards of living.  Governor Quinn says the deal is also fair to the taxpayers.

Senate Passes Medicaid Expansion

(Springfield, IL)  --  Lawmakers are moving forward on implementing the Affordable Care Act.  State Senators approved a bill to expand the Medicaid program yesterday, clearing the way for about a half-million more poor people to get health coverage.  Democrats say the federal government will pick up the full costs of the program for the first three years.  The bill now moves to the House.

Pension Reform Hits Brick Wall

(Springfield, IL)  --  There's a big game going on in Springfield, and according to House Republican leaders, taxpayers are footing the bill.  Leader Tom Cross says Democrats aren't making a real effort to reform the state's pension system, which is 96-billion dollars short of funding.  Cross says it's time to stop playing politics and get serious about shoring up the accounts, otherwise schools and other vital services will suffer.

Johnson City Police Chief Under Investigation

(Marion, IL)  --  The Johnson City Police Chief is under investigation.  Vernon Campbell allegedly punched another officer during an argument last month.  Apparently no one else was around when the incident occurred, so there are no witnesses or physical evidence that it ever happened.  But the officer filed criminal charges against Campbell.  The Williamson County State's Attorney has requested a special prosecutor to investigate the matter.

Crundwell Homes Stay In The Family

(Dixon, IL)  --  Rita Crundwell's homes are staying in the family.  At least two of her homes have been purchased by relatives.  Crundwell's brother, Richard Humphrey, Senior paid 600-grand for one of the homes plus 40-acres of farmland.  Humphrey's son purchased a different home for 400-thousand bucks.  Crundwell is serving just over 19-years in prison for stealing 53-million dollars from the city of Dixon.

Nicole Wilson/acb   IL) STL) MO) SCC)

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