ROCKFORD (WREX) — A new bill filed by a Rockford lawmaker aims to ensure local journalism survives in Illinois' small towns and mid-sized cities.
The new bill would create a Local Journalism Task Force comprised of 10 individuals representing print, broadcast, journalism schools, state and local government.
The task force would be assigned with conducting a study on communities underserved by local journalism and making recommendations on how to preserve and restore news coverage in these areas.
The bill has been passed by the Senate Commerce Committee and is set to go the Senate floor for further consideration.
If the bill signed into law, the task force would be required to submit the study to the governor's office and the General Assembly no later that January 1, 2023.
This new initiative was proposed by State Senator Steve Stadelman, a former local journalist.
“As a former journalist and news anchor, I know how important it is to have access to truly local news,” Stadelman said. “People deserve to know what’s happening in their communities, regardless of where they live.”