Quick hits: Illinois news in brief for Friday, Jan. 7, 2022 | Illinois

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University of Illinois to require booster shots for students, faculty, staff

The University of Illinois is requiring all students, faculty and staff to go beyond what’s considered fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

U of I President Timothy Killeen announced those attending all three of the university’s campuses must also have a booster shot.

Federal health officials have not changed the definition of “fully vaccinated” to include booster shots.

Several other universities have decided to start the spring semester remotely.

New bill would allow criminal suspects to make 3 unsupervised calls

Legislation that’s poised for the governor’s desk would clean up various aspects of a controversial criminal justice and police regulation bill in Illinois.

House Bill 3512 passed the Senate in October. It passed the House Wednesday.

One element allows up to three unsupervised calls by criminal suspects upon initial detainment.

Republicans warned that could lead to witness and victim intimidation.

Illinois declares Jan. 17 Betty White Day

Jan. 17 would have been famed comedian and actress Betty White’s 100th birthday.

She died on New Year’s Eve.

The Illinois Senate approved a resolution Wednesday to make Jan. 17 Betty White Day, the day she was born in Oak Park a century ago.

New bill aims to protect social workers 

Following the stabbing death of a social worker in central Illinois, a bipartisan effort is now underway at the statehouse to enhance penalties for such crimes.

Senate Bill 3070 is similar to Republican measures proposed several years ago in the aftermath of the murder of DCFS employee Pam Knight in Dixon in 2017.

DCFS employee Deirdre Silas was stabbed to death Tuesday in Thayer.

COVID antiviral treatments coming to Illinois

Two COVID-19 antiviral treatments will be coming to Illinois in the coming weeks.

The Illinois Department of Public Health announced Pfizer and Merck treatments are for those with mild-to-moderate COVID-19 and who are at high risk of severe illness.

Both medications will be available by prescription only.

The state is coordinating with pharmacies to distribute the drug around the state.

Comptroller won’t collect unpaid fines on some state income tax refunds

Families meeting certain income thresholds in Illinois will not have unpaid fines deducted from their state income tax refunds.

Illinois Comptroller Susana Mendoza announced the continuation of the program she implemented last year amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mendoza’s office said last year’s suspension gave more than 50,000 eligible families $18 million in unpaid fine relief.

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Caleb Alexander

Caleb Alexander

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