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Illinois Lawmakers investigates State Budget Crisis

For Immediate Release
May 11, 2010

Contact: Jak Tichenor, WSIU Producer and Program Host, (618) 201-6887 or (618) 453-6187,

Carbondale, Ill. - Illinois Lawmakers, WSIU Public Television's award-winning coverage of the state General Assembly, returns with a special edition focusing on the budget stalemate that extended the spring session of the General Assembly beyond the legislature's self-imposed May 7 adjournment date. The program airs on WSIU-TV 8/WUSI-TV 16, the public television stations of Southern Illinois University Carbondale (SIUC), on Wednesday, May 12 at 11pm.

"It's back to the drawing board," said WSIU-TV's Jak Tichenor, host of the Illinois Lawmakers series. "In the end, lawmakers could not agree on raising taxes, cutting state programs, or borrowing money to keep the state government operating." House and Senate leaders sent their members home on May 7 and will recall them to the Capitol when they believe they've worked out a solution to close the state's historic $13-billion budget gap. Although it is not immediately clear when they will return, a vote is expected before June 1 when the Illinois constitution would require a three-fifths majority would to pass legislation.

The TV program will include in-depth interviews with legislative leaders, including House Democratic leader Barbara Flynn Currie (D) Chicago, Senate Appropriations I Committee Chairman Donne Trotter (D) Chicago, Deputy Senate Republican leader Dale Righter (R) Mattoon, and Assistant House Republican Leader David Leitch of Peoria.

Illinois Lawmakers also went on the road for this episode to talk with members back in their districts, including Senator Gary Forby (D) Benton and Representative Mike Bost (R) Murphysboro, Senator David Luechtefeld (R) Okawville, Senator David Koehler (D) Peoria, and Senator Dale Risinger (R) Peoria.

About Illinois Lawmakers
Recognized as television's only ongoing, in-depth coverage of Illinois' "no holds-barred" brand of hardball legislative politics, Illinois Lawmakers features exclusive newsmaker interviews with legislative leaders, lively on-set debates between leading lawmakers from both parties, and expert analysis from some of the state's top journalists.

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Photo caption:
From a recent WSIU presentation of Illinois Lawmakers. Shown: Senate President John Cullerton (back, right) and House Speaker Michael Madigan (front, right) talk with program host Jak Tichenor. Photo: WTTW.

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