(East St. Louis, IL) -- The State of Illinois is trying to get a federal judge to stop a push to get concealed carry immediately. The Illinois State Rifle Association and gun-rights advocate Mary Shepard argue that waiting harms citizens and intrudes on Second Amendment rights. The state wants Shepard to file a new complaint detailing why the timeframe for concealed carry is unreasonable. The Illinois State Police have six months to get a concealed carry program together and another 90 days after that to process forms before issuing licenses.
>>State Adds 9000 Private Sector Jobs
(Chicago, IL) -- The Illinois Department of Employment Security says the state added nine-thousand private sector jobs in June. IDES spokesman Greg Rivara says the state is seeing continued job growth in the private sector. He says that suggests that business leaders are expecting consumers to feel better about spending money, so they're preparing for that increase in demand. The state has added almost 238-thousand jobs in the private sector since January of 2010. That's when job growth returned after nearly two years of monthly declines. The state's unemployment rate did tick up slightly to nine-point-two percent in June.
>>Illinois Boosting Diabetes Awareness
(Chicago, IL) -- Governor Pat Quinn signed two new bills Thursday to help boost diabetes awareness in Illinois. The first bill creates a license plate to raise awareness along with funds for research. The second bill requires the Illinois State Diabetes Commission to submit a report to the General Assembly every other year detailing the costs of the diabetes and efforts to control and prevent it. In the last 20 years, the number of Illinoisans with diabetes has more than doubled. More than 800-thousand people have diabetes and the Department of Public Health estimates another half-million have it and don't know.
>>Senate Committee Approves Money For Thomson
(Washington, DC) -- United States Senator Dick Durbin says a Senate committee has approved a spending bill that includes money for the Thomson Correctional Center. Three prisons were included in the 166-million-dollar spending plan, but it isn't a done deal yet. House Republicans oppose opening the unused prison. Supporters say it could lead to more than 11-hundred jobs. President Obama first proposed using the prison to house detainees from Guantanamo Bay, but now says it would serve as a high security prison. The State of Illinois built the Thomson Prison more than a decade ago, but never had the money to operate it.
>>Teen Sentenced In Beating Of Veteran
(Pekin, IL) -- A 19-year-old Pekin man will spend 35 years in prison for beating a World War Two veteran. The judge called Charles Cheney impulsive, violent, volatile and abusive while handing down the maximum sentence. Cheney broke into the 85-year-old man's home and when the man saw him, Cheney knocked him to the ground, hit him two more times and then kicked him in the face. Cheney took the medals Ben Piercy earned while fighting in the Pacific Theater, but threw them away after the break-in.
Springfield, IL) -- Illinois' employment rate is inching higher. The latest employment data for the month of June says Illinois added about nine-thousand private sector jobs to bring the yearly total to more than 57-thousand. Despite that uptick in jobs added the state's unemployment rate actually rose one-tenth-of-a-percent to nine-point-two-percent. Right now the most robust employment increases in Illinois are in the sectors of professional and business services.
>>S. IL Power Coop Admits Springtime Ammonia Leak
(Lake of Egypt, IL) -- The Southern Illinois Power Cooperative says it's making changes in the wake of a major ammonia leak at its plant in Lake of Egypt. The utility has only now confirmed publicly that 20-thousand-pounds of anhydrous ammonia leaked sometime last spring. The utility maintains that no one was injured as a result of the leak. However, the leak did reportedly kill the grass at the nearby Lake of Egypt Country Club.
>>'Paddle Pass' Is Law For Use Of Non-Motorized Watercraft
(Undated) -- Illinois natural resources officials are now requiring "paddle passes" for the use of non-motorized watercraft around the state. Beginning July 1st, a "paddle pass" is required to use watercraft such as kayaks, canoes and inner tubes on all public waterways. People stopped without a "paddle pass" will be cited and fined as much as 120-dollars. The state is also now requiring life jackets be warn by everyone who 's using watercraft of any kind.
>>Nebraska Pulls Out Of Soldier Field Game Vs. N-I-U
(Chicago, IL) -- The highly-anticipated football game between Nebraska and Northern Illinois University at Soldier Field in 2016 won't happen after all. Officials from Nebraska announced they're canceling the matchup. The Cornhuskers say they're pulling out because the Big Ten Conference will move to a nine-game conference schedule that same season. The schools are now scheduled to meet four times in the coming years, beginning with a game at Memorial Stadium in Lincoln, Nebraska in 2017.