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MetroSource News 05/07/2013
Illinois Summary

GOP Chairman To Resign

(Chicago, IL)  --  GOP Party Chairman Pat Brady is expected to resign today.  The announcement will reportedly come through a news release about four this afternoon.   Brady has been under fire since last fall after announcing his support for gay marriage.  Several Republican lawmakers have called for Brady to step aside, claiming he could no longer represent the Republican Party with views that strayed away from the platform.

Senate To Move On Union Backed Pension Bill

(Springfield, IL)  --  The Senate is moving forward with a union-backed pension bill instead of the plan passed by the House.  Senate President John Cullerton says the House plan is sure to be challenged in court because it forces workers to accept reduced benefits while the union-backed plan gives workers a choice to reduce benefits.  For example, workers could opt to keep their health insurance when they retire but they'd receive smaller raises each year or, they can forgo health insurance and keep their three percent compounded cost of living adjustments.  The plan would save about 46-billion dollars in the next 30 years.

Tollway Authority To Help Minorities, Women With Bids

(Matteson, IL)  --  The Illinois Tollway Authority is launching an initiative to give minority- and women-owned companies a chance to compete for its business.  The Authority's 600-thousand-dollar Construction Business Development Center at Prairie State College in Matteson will assist smaller construction companies in preparing to bid on future Tollway projects.  Courses taught at the college will also give those companies the chance to compete for Tollway contracts.  The announcement comes as the Tollway Authority prepares to launch a 12-billion-dollar building campaign.

CAT Could Cut Another 300 Jobs

(Decatur, IL)  --  A major Illinois employer is reportedly getting ready to slash another several hundred jobs.  The "Business Journal" reports Caterpillar Incorporated will cut 300 jobs at its plant in Decatur.  Just last month the heavy equipment maker announced it was eliminating more than 450 jobs at that same plant.  The Peoria-based firm says the layoffs are due to struggles in the mining industry. 

Cook County Sheriff Aims To Restrict Gun Rights

(Cook County, IL)  --  People in Cook County could see tight restrictions on where they can and can't carry guns in public.  Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart is moving forward with a plan to keep people from carrying in certain places like schools, hospital, and on public transportation.  He's pushing for the county wide ordinance just in case lawmakers don't meet their June 9th deadline on concealed carry.  If that happens, people will automatically get the right to carry in public without a permit and with very few restrictions.  Dart says that could lead to the Wild West in a city that's already infiltrated with gun violence.

Customers To Dish Out More Money For Online Purchases

(Springfield, IL)  --  Online shoppers could soon be dishing out extra cash to buy their products on the Internet.  The U.S. Senate passed the Marketplace Fairness Act yesterday, which would force retailers to collect sales taxes at purchase time.  Shoppers will be required to pay at least six-point-75 percent on most Internet purchases and about two-percent on food and non-prescription medications.  Illinois is expected to get an additional 212-million dollars a year from the tax collection.  The bill still needs to clear the U.S. House.

More Casinos Equal Trouble For Some

(Springfield, IL)  --  More casinos in Illinois could mean trouble for people who have a hard time walking away.  Experts says many people don't realize they have a problem until it's too late and by that time it's already caused broken relationships, broken homes, and lots of debts.  Statistics show less than one percent of the adult population has a gambling problem, but many don't seek treatment.  The gaming proposal moving through the Illinois legislature would provide about five-million dollars to help people who have compulsive gambling habits.

Nicole Wilson/Akilah Davis/kmc   IL) STL) MO) SCC)
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