Illinois Lawmakers TV Series Returns for Spring Session


WSIU Public Television, a public media arm of Southern Illinois University, will broadcast coverage of the Spring 2016 Session of the Illinois General Assembly as part of the statewide public television series Illinois Lawmakers on Fridays at 7:30 p.m. on WSIU-TV 8/WUSI-TV 16 beginning May 6 and continuing through June 3.       


“Illinois’ human services safety net is hanging in shreds,” says series host Jak Tichenor, “as Republican Governor Bruce Rauner and the Democratic majorities in the General Assembly continue to butt heads over closing a budget gap that numbers in the billions and grows daily without an agreement.”

“Ninety percent of the state’s budget is being spent on autopilot because of court orders and administrative sleight of hand,” Tichenor continues, “but the fact remains that Illinois is spending at the rate of $38 billion despite revenues of only $32 billion after the state’s temporary income tax increase expired at the end of 2014.”

Governor Rauner insists the General Assembly pass his business-friendly ‘Turnaround Agenda’ to improve the state’s economy before raising taxes, but Democrats say middle class families will suffer because of his policies. Rauner recently signed a $600 million stopgap bill for Illinois colleges and universities passed by the state legislature. The SIU system will receive nearly $58 million for operational costs.

Founded in 1986, Illinois Lawmakers is television’s longest running continuing coverage of the Illinois General Assembly and is a joint production of WSIU-TV Carbondale, WTVP-TV Peoria, and Illinois Public Media (WILL) Urbana-Champaign. publisher, Rich Miller, and Illinois Public Radio Statehouse Bureau Chief, Amanda Vinicky, are regular contributors to the series, as are legislative leaders, lawmakers, and policy analysts. Learn more online at

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