Home health assistant pleads guilty to aggravated ID theft

A former home health personal nursing assistant, Melissa Charlton, 36, of Valmeyer, Ill., pleaded guilty Thursday to access device fraud and aggravated identity theft, The United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, Stephen R. Wigginton, announced the documents were filed in U.S. District Court. The charges say that Charlton exploited an 82-year-old woman…

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Grant transparency bill headed to the governor

SPRINGFIELD-State Senator Dan Kotowski’s, D-Park Ridge, Grant Accountability and Transparency Act, which requires greater accountability of grant funding recipients, passed the Senate Thursday and is headed to the governor’s desk. “This measure makes sure that we invest in the best performing grant recipients and prevents questionable organizations and individuals with criminal histories from getting taxpayer…

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Bill advances to protect low-wage workers paid by payroll card

SPRINGFIELD — Attorney General Lisa Madigan praised Senate lawmakers Thursday for unanimously passing legislation that she says puts in place protections for low-wage workers who receive their wages on a payroll card, an increasingly common method of payment used by Illinois employers. The bill will provide important protections for workers against unreasonable fees to access…

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Measure advances to name area highway after fallen firefighter

SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois State Senate this month adopted a resolution honoring fallen Firefighter Tim Jansen of Bartelso. House Joint Resolution 74, sponsored by Sen. Kyle McCarter, R-Lebanon, in the Senate, was introduced by state Rep. Charlie Meier, R-Okawville, and passed the Illinois House on April 7. “I am happy the Senate adopted this Resolution…

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Senate passes Meier’s tinted windows bill

SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois State Senate approved legislation introduced by state Rep. Charlie Meier, R-Okawville, to extend the renewal period for people with medical conditions to get permission for tinted windows on their vehicles. House Bill 5468 allows for persons with medical certificates that permit tinted windows need to renew their medical certificates every four…

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Millionaire-tax ballot proposal goes to governor

SPRINGFIELD – The State Senate today approved a proposal to ask voters whether the state should amend its constitution to allow an added tax on income greater than $1 million for education funding. The vote was 33-17. The proposal, House Bill 3816, would direct the State Board of Elections to put the following question on…

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Belleville man pleads guilty in wire fraud case

A Belleville man pleaded guilty Wednesday to counts of wire fraud and money laundering. At his sentencing, Brian J. Fields, 52, will face up to 20 years in federal prison as to each count, a fine of up to $750,000 and up to three years of supervised release, Stephen R. Wigginton, United States attorney for…

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Bill to give voters say on minimum wage goes to governor

SPRINGFIELD – A plan to ask voters whether Illinois should raise the minimum wage passed the General Assembly today. “Giving the people an opportunity to voice their opinions should help inform our debate at the State Capitol,” said state Sen. Kimberly A. Lightford, D-Maywood, the sponsor of the legislation and a supporter of raising the…

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Haine wants Feds to protect American steel

SPRINGFIELD – State Sen. Bill Haine, D-Alton, introduced a resolution Wednesday urging the U.S. Department of Commerce and President Obama to investigate unfair South Korean trade practices. There have been recent reports of low-quality, Korean-made steel being dumped into the U.S. market. These goods are being brought into the U.S. through deceptive trade practices and…

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Legislation allowing fire district consolidation heads to governor

SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois State Senate has approved legislation giving voters living in fire protection districts the opportunity to consolidate with adjoining districts. State Senator John Sullivan, D-Rushville, and Rep. Don Moffitt, R-Gilson, sponsored the legislation – House Bill 5856 – to let local voters dissolve their fire protection districts and join neighboring districts. “Consolidation…

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