News Minute: Here is the latest Illinois news from The Associated Press - WREX.com – Rockford’s News Leader

News Minute: Here is the latest Illinois news from The Associated Press

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - An environmental group says its experts will be spending the holiday weekend going through proposed Illinois fracking rules "with a fine tooth comb." The Department of Natural Resources has released a highly technical 150-page report outlining plans to regulate high-volume oil and gas drilling. Supporters hope the drilling will give the southern Illinois economy a boost. Environmentalists worry the rules are too lenient.

CHICAGO (AP) - Illinois Governor Pat Quinn has granted 38 clemency petitions for people who have been sent to prison for drug crimes, burglary and forgery. He denied 86 others according to a Friday news release. Quinn has been trying to clear a backlog of more than 2,500 clemency cases that built up when Rod Blagojevich was governor.

URBANA, Ill. (AP) - The withdrawal of a job offer is causing controversy at the University of Illinois. The administration pulled back a job offer to English professor Steven Salaita following his Twitter postings during the summer that denounced Israel in its conflict with the Palestinians. University emails show dozens of students, parents and donors begged Chancellor Phyllis Wise not to hire Salaita. But supporters say the professor's academic freedom has been violated.

CHICAGO (AP) - The downtown connection that Chicago drivers call the Circle Interchange is undergoing reconstruction. And it's getting a new name. Governor Pat Quinn says it will be renamed the Jane Byrne Interchange in honor of the city's first and only woman mayor. Byrne was in office from 1979 to 1983.

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 This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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