Springfield Municipal Center West
Mary Hansen / NPR Illinois

Springfield Police Reforms Get Support From City Council, Skepticism From Police

A package of police reform proposals is on a path to final passage after Springfield City Council members made changes to the ordinance Tuesday night. The sponsors said the changes removed opposition, and aldermen placed the ordinance on their agreed-upon agenda for next week’s meeting.

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A sign in the Sangamon County building directing voters.
Mary Hansen / NPR Illinois

Voting Begins In Illinois, Mail-In Ballots Being Sent

Early voting for the November election began Thursday in most of Illinois. Local election authorities can also start sending out 1.8 million vote-by-mail ballots.

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Community Voices

Mike Smith / NPR Illinois 91.9 FM

Six Months Into COVID-19 Crisis, Online Volunteer Group In Springfield Continues To Fill Need

On Tuesday nights Jennifer Moore and her children pile into their van and make a stop at a church doing a grocery give-away. They then drop the bags off to people who respond that they need food in the Springfield Families Helping Families group on Facebook.

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KRISTIN WALTERS / IL NEWSROOM

More Than 80,000 Illinois Renters Applied For Assistance Program That Can Serve 30,000

Illinois is starting to award grants to renters to help them catch up on late payments. But the need far outpaces the funding available and more than 50,000 applicants won't get help.

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A New Chapter For David Greene

36 minutes ago

After 8 years as host of Morning Edition, David Greene is stepping back from hosting to focus on other projects. In what he calls the 'hardest decision in his career', David will leave NPR and his sleep-defying schedule on December 29, 2020. NPR will be undertaking a national search to find David's successor.

Here's an excerpt from his note to NPR staff:

When the coronavirus arrived in Philadelphia in March, Dr. Ala Stanford hunkered down at home with her husband and kids. She's a pediatric surgeon with a private practice, and staff privileges at a few suburban Philadelphia hospitals. For weeks, most of her usual procedures and patient visits were canceled. So she found herself, like a lot of people, spending the days in her pajamas, glued to the T.V.

President Trump's selection of Judge Amy Coney Barrett as his nominee to fill the Supreme Court seat left vacant by the death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg came just 38 days before the presidential election on Nov. 3.

The move to have her on the court by then has ignited a major partisan battle on Capitol Hill.

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The street where I grew up in Kano, northwest Nigeria, is called Independence Road.

Updated at 10:30 a.m. ET

United Airlines and American Airlines have sent furlough notices to a total of more than 32,000 employees, saying they can't afford to have them on payroll after Thursday – the expiration date for the federal CARES Act Payroll Support Program.

"To our departing 13,000 family members: thank you for your dedication and we look forward to welcoming you back," United said in a message sent to employees Wednesday night that it also shared with NPR.

Years back, a friend visited the Barnes Foundation, a wonderland of Cezannes, Matisses, and zaftig Renoir gals. After going through the galleries she observed, "All those naked women! What's with that?!"

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Marilynne Robinson created the Boughton and Ames families of Gilead, Iowa in her 2004 Gilead, a lingeringly beautiful epistolary novel in which the aging Reverend John Ames reflects on his life in a letter to his son. Robinson's three subsequent novels — Home, Lila, and, most recently, Jack, all as transcendently lovely as the first — return to Gilead's world, characters, and plot points, retelling and re-examining each one with lapidary care.

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United And American Airlines Tell 32,000 Employees They're Now On Furlough

Updated at 10:30 a.m. ET United Airlines and American Airlines have sent furlough notices to a total of more than 32,000 employees, saying they can't afford to have them on payroll after Thursday – the expiration date for the federal CARES Act Payroll Support Program. "To our departing 13,000 family members: thank you for your dedication and we look forward to welcoming you back," United said in a message sent to employees Wednesday night that it also shared with NPR. American sent a similar...

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Analysis & commentary on the events that made news this past week in Illinois state government & politics.

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Arts & Life

Marilynne Robinson created the Boughton and Ames families of Gilead, Iowa in her 2004 Gilead, a lingeringly beautiful epistolary novel in which the aging Reverend John Ames reflects on his life in a letter to his son. Robinson's three subsequent novels — Home, Lila, and, most recently, Jack, all as transcendently lovely as the first — return to Gilead's world, characters, and plot points, retelling and re-examining each one with lapidary care.

Read More Arts & Life Stories

Education Desk

NPR Illinois

Amid growing calls to allow contact sports to resume this fall, Illinois’ governor Tuesday appeared to double down on postponement of the seasons.

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Equity & Justice

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State Sen. Ram Villivalam says he plans to offer a proposal to create paid family leave in Illinois.

Villivalam, a Chicago Democrat, says the idea would be to allow workers to take leave with pay for themselves or to care for a new baby or other family member.

“There are people that are working, living paycheck to paycheck, without access to pay leave, and they're faced with the impossible choice: Do I care for my child or loved one in need? Or do I try to put food on the table?" he said. "Paid family leave eliminates this dilemma."

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Illinois has awarded the first round of emergency funding to small businesses to help them during the pandemic.  

Read More Illinois Economy Coverage

Statehouse

Illinois State Board of Elections
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

A Lake County power couple has allegedly been breaking state campaign finance laws for years, allowing the pair — who sit on the Lake County Board and Lake Forest City Council — to take in more campaign contributions than legally allowed, including from Republican mega donors Dick and Liz Uihlein.

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Politics

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Despite people's fears, sophisticated, deceptive videos known as "deepfakes" haven't arrived this political season. But it's not because they aren't a threat, sources tell NPR. It's because simple deceptions like selective editing or outright lies have worked just fine.

"You can think of the deepfake as the bazooka and the video splicing as a slingshot. And it turns out the slingshot works," said Hany Farid, a professor at the University of California, Berkeley specializing in visual misinformation.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

COVID-19 is still spreading across the U.S., but you would barely know it by how people are planning to vote this year.

As the pandemic took hold in the spring, voting experts predicted a national shift toward mail or absentee voting: some experts predicted as many as 70% of all votes cast could be by mail, as was the case in Wisconsin's April primary.

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The X from NPR Illinois - LISTEN ON 91.9-3 HD OR STREAM

'I Am Woman' Singer Helen Reddy Is Dead, Aged 78

Australian-born singer Helen Reddy, whose hit "I Am Woman" became a feminist anthem in the 1970's, died in Los Angeles on Tuesday afternoon. She was 78 years old. Her death was announced on Facebook by her children, Traci Donat and Jordan Sommers. Reddy had dementia for several years before her death. "I Am Woman" was by far Reddy's most famous song. But in the wake of its success, she released several more hits, including "Delta Dawn," "Angie Baby," "Leave Me Alone (Ruby Red Dress)" and "Ain...

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NPR Illinois Classic - LISTEN ON 91.9-2 HD OR STREAM

Met Opera Says It Won't Return Until Fall 2021

New York's famed Metropolitan Opera announced on Wednesday that the house will remain closed until September 2021. In a press release, the Met said that it had made its decision to cancel the rest of the 2020-21 season based on the advice of "health officials who advise the Met and Lincoln Center," and keeping in mind the hundreds of performers and staff members required for rehearsals and performances as well as its audiences. The Met added that it will not be able to resume performances ...

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