• Rockford Mayor Larry Morrissey gave his ninth State of the City address Wednesday evening. His speech covered topics such as: talking better public safety, education and infrastructure investments. He also explained that Rockford is stomping out unemployment with company partnerships. The State of the City started weeks ago through meetings dubbed “A Better Rockford Today” where Mayor Morrissey spoke with councilmen and residents in every single ward.
  • The name of the victim killed in a shooting near Freeport High School has been released. Officials have announced 31-year-old Melissa Nickel has died as a result of a gunshot wound. Investigators confirmed the shooter and victim lived together. The incident happened Tuesday evening just blocks away from the high school in the 600 block of Elk Street. Police say when they arrived on scene the gunman refused to give up his firearm, which led the officers to shoot him. The suspect, who is recovering at a local hospital, hasn’t been identified yet.
  • There was a shooting on Rockford’s west side. It happened Wednesday night in the 300 block of North Sunset Avenue. Officials say three people have complained of minor injuries sustained from small pellets. Police are in the process of gathering information on a possible suspect. If you have any information in regards to this incident, you are asked to contact Rockford Police.
  • Governor Pat Quinn will be in Rockford today to make an Amtrak announcement. While no details have been released yet, the timing would indicate the Governor could announce funding to bring Amtrak passenger service to Rockford. The proposal would put the Forest City on an Amtrak route connecting Chicago in the east to Dubuque in the west. WROK will share more information as it becomes available.
  • Two Rockford elementary schools were on lockdown this morning due to police activity in the area. The lockdown has been lifted at both Beyer and Riverdahl elementary schools. Officials say the students and staff were never in any harm.
  • The University of Illinois at Chicago faculty has authorized a second strike. The UIC United Faculty said that its members voted Wednesday night to authorize a strike on April 23. The union and the university are negotiating over issues such as salaries and career opportunities for full-time faculty who lack tenure. The university's administration says it can't agree to any long-term increases in expenses because of the state's financial struggles.
  • A proposed constitutional amendment aimed at preventing voter suppression has won Illinois Senate support. The Senate approved the plan 52-0 Thursday. Voters will now get the chance this fall to decide on the proposal, which would make sure no one is denied the chance to vote based on race, color, ethnicity, sex, sexual orientation or income.
  • A school funding proposal is progressing through the Illinois Senate with changes likely coming. The plan would streamline the state's school funding formula by requiring districts to demonstrate need before receiving money. The current method factors in a district's poverty for some types of state aid but not others. The state board is currently tabulating data that would show how specific districts would be affected by the change.