(CHICAGO) While Chicago has introduced a budget that includes an additional $150 million to help shelter and care for non-citizen migrants, Governor J.B. Pritzker late last week announced an additional $160 million will also be added to the cause from the Illinois Department of Human Services, money that critics say could be spent to help those that pay taxes in Illinois. On top of the millions set aside in the state budget, Illinois has already suspended it’s new enrollment for a program intended to provide taxpayer-subsidized health care to the influx of illegal immigrants over the age of 65. The program is already up to $831.6 million. Illinois has spent over $500 million in taxpayer funds to care for the over 24,000 migrants since they arrived illegally in the Land of Lincoln over the past 15 months.
(SPRINGFIELD) The U.S. News & World Report is out with its annual nursing home ratings and many Illinois facilities did not make the grade. The report looked at both short and long term care at 15,000 nursing homes across the nation. The facilities were evaulated on patient & resident outcomes, such as infection rates, staffing levels, health inspection results, reliance on antipsychotic drugs, and other indicators of quality. Over 400 of the 700 total nursing homes in Illinois consistently failed to meet current federal requirements mandating that a registered nurse be available for at least eight hours a day, seven days a week. Only 39 Illinois nursing homes out of the 700 received a perfect 5 out of 5 points.
(BLOOMINGTON) The 38th Annual American Farm Bureau Federation’s “Thanksgiving Cost Survey” is out, showing that the average cost of a traditional Turkey Day meal is down slightly from a year ago. The Illinois Farm Bureau volunteer shoppers reported a statewide average price of $63.87 for a classic holiday feast for ten people, or around $6.39 per person. This reflects a 2.5% decrease over last year’s state average of $65.53 per meal. In fact, the centerpiece on most Thanksgiving tables, the turkey, brought down the overall cost of the meal with the national average price for a 16-pound turkey at $27.35. That’s $1.71 per pound, down 5.6% from 2022. The shopping list for the Farm Bureau’s informal survey includes turkey, stuffing, sweet potatoes, rolls with butter, peas, cranberries, a veggie tray, and, of course, pumpkin pie with whipped cream, all in quantities sufficient to serve a family of ten with leftovers. An extended menu included potatoes, boneless ham, and green beans.