Jaclyn Driscoll

Jaclyn has an MA in Journalism from DePaul University and a BS in History form Monmouth College. Prior to reporting, Jaclyn was a social science teacher and department chair at Greenfield High School. Previously, Jaclyn reported for WICS Newschannel 20 where she covered a variety of assignments including courts, politics, and breaking news. She also reported at Siouxland News in Sioux City Iowa, the shared CBS/Fox television newsroom. Her internships included WGN and Comcast SportsNet in Chicago. 

Missouri lawmakers are headed back to the state capitol Monday to pass a state budget by May 8. 

The coronavirus has left the 2020 legislative session in limbo, and there’s still serious concerns about spreading the virus. But House Speaker Elijah Haahr said it’s imperative to get a budget complete. 

“Our constitution doesn’t allow us to do anything but to pass it by May 8,” said Haahr. 

Missouri has already approved more than 17,000 patients for its yet-to-be-launched medical marijuana program — a stark contrast to neighboring Illinois, which had fewer than 3,000 patients in the first 10 months. 

Licenses for Missouri’s dispensaries are expected to be awarded by January, and cannabis should be available for medical card holders by spring. 

At their core, Missouri and Illinois programs do the same thing: They allow doctors to certify patients to use cannabis if they have a qualifying condition. But there are significant differences in the details of each law, including who has access, how they’re getting access and how the programs can be changed in the future.

Illinois is poised to become the 11th state to legalize recreational marijuana after lawmakers approved a massive 610-page proposal that is touted as one of the most equitable in the country. 

Illinois lawmakers have agreed to make a change to the state's minor consent law for health care services. The current statute allows children 12 and up access to diagnosis and treatment options for sexually transmitted infections and HIV, but not preventative healthcare or counseling. A proposal, that now heads to Gov. J.B. Pritzker's desk, would ensure youth also have access to preventions options without parental consent.  

Illinois has officially proposed legalizing cannabis for adults 21 years and older by Jan. 1, 2020. But as details of the legislation emerge, so does the opposition. 

In January, Gov. J.B. Pritzker proposed several tax increases to help balance Illinois' budget. One of those proposals was a 32-cent hike on a pack of cigarettes, but some of his fellow Democrats want to triple that.

In today’s legal marijuana market, there is more than just a typical joint to get high. There are cookies, gummies, weed-infused drinks and more. But, there are few studies available in the United States that examine the long-term effects of these different products.

Illinois lawmakers are moving forward with a measure that aims to keep your digital devices from secretely recording you without consent. The bill is called the KIDS Act, which stands for Keeping Internet Devices Safe.

This week, public radio station across Illinois are tackling a once taboo topic.

In the midst of the recreational cannabis debate, Illinois lawmakers are also looking to make the medical cannabis pilot program permanent, but it will include a few changes. 

The Illinois Department of Agriculture has submitted their final draft of rules for the industrial hemp program. There were a few noteworthy changes made from the initial draft that was posted back in late Dec. 2018. 

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker says he’s counting on new taxes to help close the state’s  3.2 billion dollar budget hole. NPR Illinois reporters are taking a closer look at some of his ideas. First up, Jaclyn Driscoll breaks down the biggest chunk of revenue in Pritzker’s proposal -  a tax on health insurers.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker delivered his first budget address at a time of acute fiscal distress for the state of Illinois. It also comes after Democrats have taken total control of the executive and legislative branches of state government, including supermajorities in the Illinois House and Senate.

For this week's Illinois Issues report, NPR Illinois reporters analyzed the governor's speech:

Illinois lawmakers may be slowing the process to increase the minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2025. The proposal was expected to be called for a vote and passed out of the Senate as soon as Thursday.

State Sen. Kim Lightford (D-Maywood), sponsor of the plan, said Gov. J.B. Pritzker wanted the bill approved in time for his budget address on Feb. 20.

“We’re off next week,” she said. “And the House will still be in, so the goal was to actually send the bill over so that the House could work on it next week while we’re not here.”

  The Illinois Department of Agriculture heard from the public on Tuesday regarding proposed rules for the state's industrial hemp program

As Illinois explores the possibility of legalizing cannabis for recreational use, the state’s six Catholic bishops say they’re urging lawmakers to say "no." 

John Sullivan was chosen by Gov. J.B. Pritzker to head the Illinois Department of Agriculture, succeeding former director Raymond Poe. 

Illinois launched its opioid alternative program on Thursday. The program allows patients immediate access to medical cannabis if they have a current prescription for opioids or would have been prescribed one. 

When talking about legalizing recreational cannabis in Illinois, the conversation has shifted from “if” to “when.” Still, many residents have questions and concerns about what such a program would mean for the state. Lawmakers pushing for a legalized program held a meeting in Springfield on Monday where they attempted to clear up any confusion and gather feedback from residents. 

Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed an executive order making Illinois the 18th state to join the Unites States Climate Alliance on Wednesday. The alliance was created when President Donald Trump withdrew from the Paris climate change agreement back in 2017. 

Republican state Representative Jeanne Ives, from Wheaton, made a name for herself as one of the most outspoken far-right conservatives in the legislature. She gave up her seat to challenge Bruce Rauner for governor, but even though she lost, Ives said she’ll still carry the torch for conservatives in the state. 

The age to buy cigarettes and other tobacco products in Illinois remains at 18, for now. The Illinois House of Representatives failed to override Republican Governor Bruce Rauner’s veto on Wednesday with a vote of 62-45.

Meningitis B is rare, but it’s potentially fatal and 3 colleges across the country have reported ongoing outbreaks of the disease. 

In 2016, the Illinois Department of Corrections reached a settlement agreeing to properly care for the needs of mentally ill inmates. The lawsuit was filed a decade ago on behalf of inmates claiming the lack of care in prisons qualified as cruel and unusual punishment. On Wednesday, a federal judge found the corrections department is still failing to meet those needs. 

People with disabilities in Illinois said a recent change in state law is endangering their lives. The law limits their home-caregivers to working 45 hours a week, but they say that’s not nearly enough.

It’s been five years since Illinois enacted the concealed carry law, and gun owners who got their permits when they first became available will soon need to renew.

Last year brought a lot of flu activity across the state and this year health professionals are urging the public to roll up their sleeves and get flu shots early this year. 

The Illinois Supreme Court heard arguments Tuesday from a man who earned a state teacher pension after substitute teaching --  for one day. 

Governor Bruce Rauner signed a measure on Tuesday that will allow medical cannabis to be used as an alternative treatment for conditions often treated with opioids, such as cancer, HIV, Alzheimer’s and more.

Pages