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This Hour: Latest Illinois news, sports, business and entertainment

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Police: 1 man charged in Chicago train robbery

CHICAGO (AP) - Police say a 20-year-old man has been charged with boarding a Chicago Transit Authority train, pulling out a gun and robbing passengers of wallets, phones and jewelry.

Chicago police said Sunday that Michael A. Taylor of Chicago is charged with four felony counts of robbery with a firearm and two felony counts of aggravated assault in the July 16 incident.

The afternoon robbery had occurred on the Orange Line coming from Midway International Airport toward downtown. Police say they believe two men boarded the train, brandished their weapons and loudly announced that they were robbing passengers, before going from person to person.

Police said Taylor was arrested in Rockford late Saturday. He did not have a listed phone number and it wasn't immediately clear if he has an attorney.


Gov. Quinn to live off equivalent of minimum wage

CHICAGO (AP) - Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn has agreed to briefly live on the equivalent of a minimum-wage salary as he rallies support for a ballot measure.

Quinn and other Democrats spoke at a Chicago campaign event Sunday about the non-binding measure on the Nov. 4 ballot. It asks if the minimum wage should be raised from $8.25 to $10.

U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky said she's lived for a week on a minimum-wage income. She then asked Quinn if he would do the same. He answered, "Yes."

It wasn't immediately clear what that would entail for Quinn. But Schakowsky says her expendable income for the week was $11 a day.

Quinn's Republican opponent, Bruce Rauner, has said he's open to raising the minimum wage. But he'd want to tie it to business reforms.


More Illinois counties could join camera program

CHICAGO (AP) - Half a dozen counties in a central Illinois judicial district could soon join a pilot project that allows cameras in court.

Sangamon County Circuit Judge John Schmidt says a request to take part could be submitted this fall. And he tells The (Springfield) State Journal-Register he expects the Illinois Supreme Court will approve it.

The six counties in the 7th Judicial Circuit are Sangamon, Greene, Jersey, Macoupin, Morgan and Scott. Schmidt says court officials will meet with judges, journalists and others to discuss the plan to join 40 other counties already taking part.

The state's high court launched the cameras-in-court initiative in 2012. Cameras have already been allowed at several murder trials around the state. Cameras are still barred from certain trials, including juvenile and child-custody cases.


Illinois prison guard suffers concussion in attack

VIENNA, Ill. (AP) - State and union officials say a prisoner has assaulted a guard at a southern Illinois prison.

Jeremy Noelle is the Local Union Council 31 representative for the American Federation of State, County & Municipal Employees. He says the prisoner headbutted the guard, causing the correctional officer to suffer a concussion. Authorities say it happened Friday morning at the Shawnee Correctional Center in Vienna.

Illinois Department of Corrections spokesman Tom Shaer says three other officers were present when the incident happened. Shaer says the department is investigating and the inmate has been transferred to a maximum security facility.

Noelle says the officer was taken for treatment and should return to work in four to five days.


Quinn, Rauner budget plans leave questions

CHICAGO (AP) - Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn and his Republican rival Bruce Rauner (ROW'-nur) have been ridiculing each other's budget plans.

But a closer look shows both sides are playing a little fast and loose with the numbers. And University of Illinois economist Richard Dye says neither candidate has specified a plan that truly addresses Illinois' huge financial problems.

Rauner calls Quinn "a big taxer" because he wants to make Illinois' 2011 income tax increase permanent.

Rauner wants to let the income tax rate roll back to its original levels. Quinn says that would blow an $8.5 billion hole in the state budget.

But Quinn overstates the revenue loss under Rauner's plan - at least to start.

And Dye calls Rauner's plan to make up billions in lost revenue through job growth unrealistic.


Dubuque bridge across Mississippi reopens early

DUBUQUE, Iowa (AP) - A key bridge over the Mississippi River has reopened several days ahead of schedule to ease commutes between Iowa and Illinois.

The Dubuque Telegraph Herald reports the Julien Dubuque Bridge reopened Saturday after 5 ½ days of repairs, so drivers will no longer be forced to take a 10-mile detour into Wisconsin.

The bridge closed last Monday, so its deck joints could be replaced. Workers had to remove part of the bridge to do the work.

The contractor had 10 days to complete the job, but the state also offered $20,000 per day for each day ahead of schedule the $920,000 project was completed.

Iowa Transportation Department officials say more work will be done on the piers underneath the bridge, but that won't affect traffic.


Cahokia Mounds excavators make interesting find

COLLINSVILLE, Ill. (AP) - Experts say student archaeologists excavating the Cahokia Mounds in southern Illinois have made an interesting find.

The Southern Illinoisan reports that the students found a bundle of whelk shells and bird bones tied together. Cahokia Mounds Museum Society Executive Director Lori Belknap says the team usually unearths Native American pottery shards or arrow points. She says the items in the bundle were laid "in a very specific order" and found in a ceremonial pit. She calls it a "significant find."

Belknap shared the discovery Saturday at the Mississippian Conference at the historic site in Collinsville. She says an analysis on the bundle "will tell us so much about the culture."


Illinois charity takes veterans on fishing trips

BARTLETT, Ill. (AP) - A charity based in the Chicago suburbs aims to honor and help American veterans by taking them on fishing trips.

Jay Garstecki is president of Bartlett-based Take a Vet Fishing. He is the brother and son of veterans and says he wanted to help veterans return to society after their service by taking them on free fishing trips.

The Daily Herald reports the program started in 2011. The first fishing trip was in 2012, taking 27 veterans to Lake Waubesa in Madison, Wisconsin. Last year the program took 80 veterans on the trip and this June the trip expanded to 130 veterans who fished on 76 boats.

The veterans come from across the Midwest and served in World War II, Korea, Vietnam, the Gulf War, Afghanistan and Iraq.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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