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Thanksgiving is a time to reflect upon all for which we are grateful. Here are a few quotes on gratitude and thanks to get your started:
"Thanksgiving, after all, is a word of action." ~W.J. Cameron
"Thanksgiving Day comes, by statute, once a year; to the honest man it comes as frequently as the heart of gratitude will allow." ~Edward Sanford Martin
“The unthankful heart… discovers no mercies; but let the thankful heart sweep through the day and, as the magnet finds the iron, so it will find, in every hour, some heavenly blessings!” ~Henry Ward Beecher
The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) is joining Illinois State Police (ISP) and local law enforcement agencies to remind motorists to buckle up and drive sober during one of the heaviest travel periods of the year. With one of the biggest party nights of the year on Wednesday and more people on the roads through Sunday, police throughout the state are stepping up their enforcement of seat belt law violators and impaired drivers during the long holiday weekend.
The holiday season is upon us and shopping is about to commence. Before you head out on Black Friday be sure the gifts you intend to buy are safe for your family.

The Illinois Attorney General’s office recently released the 2015 Safe Shopping Guide to aid you in your gift buying decisions. The guide provides detailed descriptions of toys, baby products, children’s clothing and other items recalled by the U.S. Consumer Produced Safety Commission.

Since technology gifts continue to be at the top of our children’s wish list, the guide also includes helpful information for parents considering the purchase of a smartphone, tablet, video game or other Internet-accessible devices for their children.

Before you shop, arm yourself with the 2015 Safe Shopping Guide.

FY16 Budget
Leaders’ budget meeting with Governor moved to December 1. The face-to-face meeting is scheduled to bring together Governor Bruce Rauner and the leaders of the four General Assembly legislative caucuses, including House Republican Leader Jim Durkin. Originally scheduled to be held on Wednesday, November 18, the meeting has been reset for Tuesday, December 1. The new time will allow preparations to continue over the Thanksgiving holiday.

Standing at the front, cordoned-off entrance to the former Illinois Youth Center, State Rep. Terri Bryant, R-Murphysboro, shared plans for the facility to be reopened and converted into a work camp for adults.

Bryant's announcement came Thursday afternoon before a small crowd that included some Murphysboro and Jackson County officials, a handful of corrections officers and a candidate for the 58th Senate District seat, Sharee Langenstein.

The facility, which was opened in 1997. was closed in 2013 as a cost-saving measure by then-Governor Pat Quinn. That facility could house 150 juveniles and employed up to 135 people.

"I have introduced legislation that would provide the funding and administrative support necessary to re-open and repurpose this institution as an adult correctional facility," Bryant said of House Bill 4340. "(Former Governor) Pat Quinn's mistake needs to be corrected so we can reduce the overcrowding in our correctional facilities across the state." Read more in the Southern Illinoisan.

More on this issue:

IL Rep. files legislation to reopen Murphysboro correctional facility
Bryant pushes to reopen IYC as adult prison
Bryant announces bill to reopen Murphysboro correctional facility
Front line correctional officers joined Rep. Terri Byant in
support of her legislation to reopen and repurpose the
shuttered Murphysboro correctional facility.
Calling it a necessary step in reducing Illinois’ overcrowded prison population, State Rep. Terri Bryant (R - Murphysboro) announced Thursday that she has filed legislation aimed at reopening and repurposing the shuttered Illinois Youth Center at Murphysboro.

During a press conference in front of the facility, which was closed in 2013 by Democrat Governor Pat Quinn, Bryant detailed her support for an accompanying resolution to study the effectiveness of work camps and adult rehabilitation facilities in reducing recidivism rates. Read more.

Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) has named State Representative Barbara Wheeler (R-Crystal Lake) a “2015 Legislator of the Year” for her efforts to curb repeat drunk driving. Wheeler was the chief sponsor of House Bill 3533, which prevents repeat drunk drivers from prematurely reobtaining a driver’s license and increases the length of time breathalyzer ignition devices (BAIID devices) must remain in their vehicles. Read more.