20

Apr

2014

Panel: Will County saw drop in heroin deaths

Author: Editor

The number of heroin overdose deaths in Will County dropped from 58 in 2012 to 38 in 2013, thanks in part to expanded educational awareness, local officials told the Young Adults Heroin Use Task Force.

However, monitoring deaths is only the tip of the iceberg, Will County Coroner Pat O’Neil told the state-appointed task force, which is collecting testimony on heroin abuse from communities throughout Illinois.

A more effective indicator might be to track overdose treatments by first responders, who often are able to save victims by using anti-opiate drugs such as Narcan.

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Categories: Local Issues, State Issues

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18

Apr

2014

Obama: 8 million have signed up for health care

Author: Editor

President Obama announced Thursday that 8 million people have signed up for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, calling the feat a success story that Democrats should "forcefully defend and be proud of" in the face of Republican election-year attacks on the law.

The enrollment figure, revised upward from the 7.5 million signups that the administration had announced earlier this month, renewed hopes at the White House that Democrats will be able to overcome the initial rocky rollout of the health law in the fall as they battle to maintain control of the Senate in the midterms this fall.

"This thing is working," Obama said at an afternoon news conference. Of the GOP, he added: "They said no one would sign up. They were wrong about that. They are wrong to try to repeal a law that is working."

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17

Apr

2014

Gov. Quinn with nearly $9 million as Rauner reloads

Author: Editor

Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn stashed away nearly $9 million in campaign funds during the first three months of the year, but it’s likely he’ll need every cent of it and a lot more as he defends his seat against wealthy Republican challenger Bruce Rauner.

New campaign finance reports showed Rauner gave his campaign $5.3 million from January through March — more than the nearly $5 million Quinn was able to raise from a variety of donors during that time frame.

Overall, Rauner, an equity investor from Winnetka, raised nearly $9.2 million during the first quarter and spent more than $8.2 million in winning the GOP nomination last month over state Sens. Kirk Dillard of Hinsdale and Bill Brady of Bloomington and Treasurer Dan Rutherford of Chenoa.

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11

Apr

2014

Gov. Quinn, Rauner spar on education

Author: Editor

Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn and Republican businessman Bruce Rauner held little back in their first meeting of the 2014 campaign, with Rauner telling an influential teachers union that Quinn has broken his promises on issues from school funding to taxes, and the governor calling his opponent "the biggest threat to public education" in Illinois.

The swipes came during a sometimes-rowdy meeting of the Illinois Education Association in Chicago -- a crowd of more than 1,000 that clearly favored Quinn but was not unanimous in its support.

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9

Apr

2014

GOP derails gender pay gap bill in Senate

Author: Editor

Senate Republicans derailed a Democratic bill Wednesday curbing paycheck discrimination against women, an effort that even in defeat Democrats hoped would pay political dividends in this fall's congressional elections.

Wednesday's vote was 53-44 to halt GOP tactics aimed at derailing the legislation, but that fell seven short of the 60 votes Democrats needed to prevail.

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