(SPRINGFIELD) Illinois lawmakers continue to consider tax increases on businesses as they head into the final nine days of the scheduled spring session. Conversations also continue about zeroing out Illinois’ grocery tax and whether local governments will get state taxpayer funds to offset losses to local coffers. Last week, Governor J.B. Pritzker’s office told state agencies his proposed $1 billion in tax increases are not popular and to prepare for some $800 million in cuts. Lawmakers are scheduled to adjourn the spring session May 24th. They have until May 31st to pass a balanced budget with simple majorities.

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) The United States Postal Service has announced it is pausing the consolidation of mail processing facilities around Illinois until at least next year. Met with a lot of opposition by postal workers and customers, USPS officials previously announced that the Processing & Distribution Centers in Champaign, Peoria, and Springfield would be modernized in a cost cutting move with all statewide mail to be processed at only two sites, in St. Louis and Chicago. Lawmakers also expressed concerns about delays caused by shipping mail out of state, plus the likelihood of hundreds of jobs being lost as well.

(SPRINGFIELD) The exodus from Illinois continues, according to the latest Census data for 2023, showing that most people are moving to Texas, Florida, and Arizona. The nonprofit think tank, Wirepoints, reports a majority of Illinois cities lost population, a total of 93 of the 122 largest cities in Illinois shrunk in the past year. One study shows Illinois with the second highest population loss from 2008 to 2023. Only West Virginia had a higher loss.

(SPRINGFIELD) Cream cheese products are being recalled in Illinois and 28 other states over salmonella concerns. Four cream cheese spreads in 8-ounce containers, sold under the Aldi brand name have been impacted by the recall. Hy-Vee, an Iowa-based grocery retailer, issued a voluntary recall on two cream cheese varieties. For more, go to