School funding formula top priority for Manar, Senate Dems

manar-hutchinson-edState Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) continues his efforts to overhaul the state's outdated public school funding system. He's traveled the state over the past year listening to supporters and critics in an effort to put together the best plan for all Illinois students. That new plan centers on the state providing funding to schools based on their needs.

To reflect education's standing as the top priority for Senate Democrats, the first piece of legislation in the Senate -- Senate Bill 1 -- will carry Manar's reform efforts.

"Everybody ... knows our formula's broken. That sets us on a path to fixing it," Manar said in a recent interview with the Associated Press.

Read more: School funding formula top priority for Manar, Senate Dems


Former NBC’s “The Voice” contestant sings “National Anthem” at Illinois Senate Inauguration (VIDEO)

Michael-LynchMichael Lynch may be best known for his time on NBC’s” The Voice,” this week, he sang the “National Anthem” at the Illinois Senate’s 99th Inauguration.

Lynch is a Chicago native whose bilingual singing ability has wowed audiences for some time now, including Christina Aguilera, his coach on “The Voice”. Lynch’s interpretation of Enrique Iglesias’ “Bailamos” is one of the highlights from season 5.

Unfortunately, Lynch could not stay for the entire ceremony. He had to make his way to the United Center in Chicago to sing the “National Anthem” at the Wizards vs. Bulls game that same night.

Read more: Former NBC’s “The Voice” contestant sings “National Anthem” at Illinois Senate Inauguration (VIDEO)


Three time Pro Bowler joins Sen. Harris on Inauguration Day

Harris-Johnson011415It appears that State Senator Napoleon Harris may take on a coaching position this session. Derrick Johnson, middle linebacker for the Kansas City Chiefs, joined the long list of special guests that accompanied the Senate in celebration of the Inauguration of the 99th General Assembly yesterday.

“He called me and told me he was coming to the inauguration,” said Harris. “He enjoyed his time here. Seeing my role as a senator and the ability we have to invoke change in our communities makes him want to do more.”

Read more: Three time Pro Bowler joins Sen. Harris on Inauguration Day


Morrison: Real outdoorsmen don’t need drones

DroneRUsing drones to get an advantage when hunting and fishing wouldn’t just be unfair, it would also be illegal under a new law proposed by state Senator Julie Morrison.

“Let’s keep the man – or woman – in outdoorsman,” the Deerfield Democrat said. “Using drones to hunt makes the process too easy. That’s not fair for hunters and fishers who are seriously into the sport, and it’s not fair for the animals that deserve a chance to escape.”

While small animals that fear birds of prey run when they see unmanned aerial vehicles, big game animals like deer are unfazed by the small aircraft, making them easy pickings for high-tech hunters.

Read more: Morrison: Real outdoorsmen don’t need drones


Cullerton, senators release statements on inauguration of Bruce Rauner

ilstateflagSPRINGFIELD – The following statement was released by Senate President John J. Cullerton on the inauguration of Governor Bruce Rauner:

“Today is a new day in Illinois.  While some challenges remain, I am hopeful that our progress will continue. It is with that hope that I welcome Bruce Rauner to state leadership as our new governor.  I look forward to working together with him to build a better Illinois.
I would also like to recognize the leadership of Pat Quinn.  I thank him for his service and his commitment to Illinois.  I wish him all the best success in his future adventures.”

Read more: Cullerton, senators release statements on inauguration of Bruce Rauner


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Photo of the Day

Senate President John J. Cullerton and his wife, Pam, laugh during a floor speech nominating him for another term as president during Wednesday’ Senate inauguration ceremony at the Illinois State Capitol.

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