Illinois’ comeback story starts here.

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Food trucks fight for the right to exist

City officials in Chicago and across the state are crushing a pillar of the culinary community. But food trucks are fighting back.

By Austin Berg

Which Illinois county is most likely to lock you up?

Research shows Hardin, Macon and Marion Counties lead the state in prison admissions per 10,000 residents.

By Bryant Jackson-Green

Amid political darkness, a bright spot in criminal justice reform

Pete Leonard has employed 35 ex-offenders since 2009 at Second Chance Coffee Company in Wheaton.

By Austin Berg

Injured Illinois workers take 50 percent more time off than peers in surrounding states

Illinois law gives financial incentives to many injured workers to stay off the job and to doctors to prescribe more medications to workers’ compensation patients.

By Michael Lucci

August jobs report: Worst manufacturing month since Great Recession, unemployment falls due to workforce dropout

The August BLS jobs report shows Illinois is down 8,000 manufacturing jobs on the year, giving the state the worst manufacturing job losses in the region, and a summer workforce contraction totaling 100,000 people.

By Michael Lucci

Illinois counties, cities should have the right to dissolve townships

Some steps have been taken to dissolve unnecessary units of governments, but taxpayers need an easier path to eliminate wasteful governmental bodies.

By Mindy Ruckman

Michigan vs. Illinois: Manufacturing and out-migration

Years of job-killing policies in Illinois have pushed residents out of the state, while nearby Michigan has taken an alternate, pro-growth approach to turn it around.

By Michael Lucci

Chicago State University president resigns with $600,000 in severance pay

The outgoing CSU president’s exorbitant severance package highlights the need to rein in Illinois universities’ high administrative costs.

By Mindy Ruckman

Government jobs surpass manufacturing jobs by 175,000 in Illinois

Illinois stands out in the industrial Midwest for its skewed government-to-manufacturing-jobs ratio.

By Michael Lucci

AFSCME to Illinois: Raise taxes to pay government workers more

AFSCME wants the state to hike taxes on Illinois residents to fund the union’s demands for salary and benefit increases.

By Mailee Smith

Illinois voters support sealing for nonviolent offenses

A majority of Illinois voters surveyed in a recent poll back record sealing for nonviolent offenders. Here’s how policymakers should make this happen.

By Bryant Jackson-Green

Legal food carts roll into Chicago, but roadblocks abound

So far, only two food carts have been licensed to sell tamales in Chicago.

By Austin Berg

Illinois workforce shrinks by 22,000 people in August

August IDES report shows 22,000 people dropped out of the workforce, and 4,400 manufacturing jobs were lost.

By Brendan Bakala