College students are back on campus and classes are underway. Parents at some Illinois schools have extra assurance their kids will be safe when they're at school.
Universities and colleges are often ranked, making "best of" lists for one program or the other.
But only a couple in Illinois have achieved the designation of becoming a "Ready to Respond" campus -- a title given by the Illinois Emergency Management Agency after the school has met criteria, like developing a violence prevention plan and going through training exercises.
They no longer had to do it through campaign commercials. Gov. Pat Quinn and his Republican opponent Bruce Rauner faced one another in a joint interview before the Chicago Tribune's Editorial Board Tuesday.
Even though Illinois' general election is months away, a controversial ballot question could be answered by the end of this week. Friday is the deadline for a term limits initiative to make it on the ballot.
Republican's nominee for governor, Bruce Rauner, has made instituting term limits for legislators a central plank of his campaign.
That would require a constitutional amendment. Rauner funded an effort to collected a half million signatures, so that the question could go before voters this fall.
With summer coming to an end, and the November election getting ever closer, Gov. Pat Quinn and other Illinois Democrats gathered Wednesday in Springfield, for an annual party meeting and rally. But Thursday, Republicans had their day. The GOP hopes it'll be their year.
There's no "normal" way to get to the area on the Illinois State Fairgrounds where Republicans had their gathering.
Even as states like Ohio, Iowa and Wisconsin are known as political battlegrounds and bellwethers, Illinois has the reputation for being a solid "blue" state. Illinois sends double as many Democrats to Washington as it does Congressional Republicans. The state legislature tips heavily in favor of Democrats, who hold veto-proof majorities. And it has been more than a decade since a Republican last sat in Illinois' governor's seat.
Amtrak ridership in Illinois has risen in recent years; it's up almost 85 percent from 2006 through last year. That trend developed after the rail service added routes. The train service could grow more in the future.
In 2006, lines branching out from Chicago that went to Carbondale, Quincy and St. Louis added trips.
Illinois students could get a day off of school come election day. Schools are often at the heart of a community, metaphorically, if not literally. That's part of the reason they've long been voting sites.
But with shootings at schools across the country, some lawmakers are concerned the practice is dangerous.
Most of the time visitors need to sign in before entering a school; they say allowing anyone in on election day is asking for trouble.
Illinois gun owners who've been denied a concealed carry permit can appeal. But instead of going through the courts, Illinois' Attorney General wants a state panel to decide those cases.
There are about 200 concealed carry denials before Illinois courts, brought by people who say they shouldn't have been deemed dangerous or a threat to public safety by Illinois' Concealed Carry Licensing Review Board.
Until recently, applicants didn't actually know why they were rejected.