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Men's Health Tips

On average men live shorter lives than women – in part because men don’t give as much attention to their health, and they don’t get physical check ups and screenings on a regular basis.

Men have more chronic health issues than women. That’s because men drink more alcohol and use more tobacco products than women, says Dr. Harald Lausen, associate professor of family and community medicine at SIU School of Medicine in Springfield. He explains a common medical issue for men.

[audio:siumen1.mp3]Men's Health[/audio]

Dr. Lausen says some diseases could be prevented or better managed if men didn’t put off seeing a doctor. Men also need to get the appropriate screenings and follow various health guidelines to take good care of themselves. They should know their readings for blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol.

[audio:siumen2.mp3]Health Screenings[/audio]

Dr. Lausen advises men to stop smoking, get adequate exercise and manage their weight. He stresses the importance of eating a healthy, low-fat diet and increasing physical activity as the best ways to staying healthy.

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Lincoln Park Zoo Hosts Pork-A-Pa-Looza

(Springfield, IL)  --  Some Illinois farmers are headed to Chicago's Lincoln Park Zoo for "Pork-a-pa-ZOO-la."  Tim Maiers with the Illinois Pork Producers Association says it's a great way to dispel some of the myths about pigs.

[audio:rddPorka1.mp3]Pig Myths[/audio]

Pork-a-pa-ZOO-la is a free event with complimentary food samples, games, prizes, and educational opportunities for the kids.  All the excitement starts tomorrow at 10 a.m.

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Treasurer Securing Money to Weather Any Debt Crisis

Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford says he's preparing to secure state money to weather any financial crisis should Congress not agree on raising the federal debt ceiling by a Tuesday deadline.

Rutherford told reporters Friday that he's now holding twice-daily meetings with investment teams to gauge how to respond if the ceiling's not raised and federal bond ratings are downgraded. If that happens, Rutherford says there's likely to be an impact on Illinois's own ratings, pushing them down as well.

He says his top priority is making sure $7 billion in state investments would be safe amid financial turmoil.

Rutherford says that could mean putting those billions into accounts that are insured but which offer no interest. That could cost the state millions of dollars a month in lost interest payments.

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Illinois Flood Victim

A 75-year-old western Illinois man has been found dead in his car about 12 hours after floodwaters carried him away from rescuers.

The Jo Daviess County Sheriff's Department says Daniel Wegner's body was recovered from his car Thursday morning in his hometown of Galena.

Members of the department had tried to rescue Wegner Wednesday night after getting a call about a vehicle being stranded in water.

But the rising floodwaters carried Wegner's vehicle away, and rescue crews couldn't find him until the next day.

Galena officials say the city received about 15 inches of rain overnight Wednesday and early Thursday.

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Ameren Working to Restore Power

Ameren says it's working as quickly as possible to restore power to about 2,000 customers who lost power after storms swept across central Illinois late Thursday night

Ameren spokeswoman Victoria Busch said Friday afternoon that the majority of outages, about 1,600, were in the Peoria area.

She said she didn't have estimates on when power might be restored.

The National Weather Service says a weak cold front will move through the area, which could mean more scattered thunderstorms.

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Weekly Weather Recap

Weather this past week was much more bearable, however, things are going to heat back up mid-week. Meteoroligist Steve Hilberg has more...

[audio:wx.mp3]Weather Recap[/audio]

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CornBelters Offense Explodes Again to Beat Miners

A six-game road trip ended on a winning note as the Normal CornBelters, presented by Illinois Corn Farmers, knocked off the Southern Illinois Miners 11-3 on Friday night at Rent One Park in Marion, Illinois.  The win gave the CornBelters their second series victory over the Miners, and closed out the road trip with a 3-3 mark.

 
The CornBelters continued the trend of early offense.  Alvaro Ramirez and Brandon Newton led of the game with singles and moved up to second and third.  Miners starter B.J. Dail intentionally walked Steve Alexander to load the bases, but then walked Asif Shah and Mike Mobbs to give the Belters a 2-0 lead.  The Miners avoided further damage in the frame when a Daniel Cox line drive up the middle was caught by Will Block, who was able to double off Shah.
 
The Miners also took advantage in the bottom of the first. Justin Randall led off with a walk followed by a one-out single by Ken Gregory.  With two outs, a ground ball up the middle was stabbed by Brandon Newton, but the Belters second baseman threw wide to first to allow both Miners on the basepaths to score to tie the game at 2-2.
 
The CornBelters exploded in the fourth, scoring six runs on six hits and batting ten men.  Tyler Keeble led off with a walk and went to third on a double by Andrew Barbaro.  Keeble scored on a base hit up the middle by Alvaro Ramirez to give the Belters a 3-2 lead.  A walk to Brandon Newton loaded the bases and chased Miners starter B.J. Dail, but Frank Martinez greeted reliever Darren Tew with a single to left to score Barbaro and Ramirez for a 5-2 lead.  Steve Alexander singled to again load the bases.  Asif Shah then lined a base hit to center to score Newton, although Martinez was thrown out at the plate.  The Belters weren't finished, as a Mike Mobbs ground ball resulted in the second out but scored Alexander, then Mobbs came home on a Daniel Cox double off the base of the left-field wall to complete the scoring and give Normal an 8-2 lead.
 
Southern Illinois put up their third unearned run in the sixth as Justin Randall led off with a double off the right field wall, then scored when the relay throw went into the CornBelters dugout to cut the Belters lead to 8-3.
 
Normal cushioned the lead to 10-3 in the eighth on the eighth home run of the year by Daniel Cox, which also scored Mike Mobbs, who had singled with two outs.
 
Tyler McNeely put an exclamation point on the victory, as he hit a booming solo home run to left in the ninth to complete the scoring.
 
Donald Furrow (1-1) picked up the win.  B.J. Dail (1-4) took the loss.  Normal's Bobby Pritchett took a no-decision, going four innings in his second appearance since returning from the disabled list and his first start since July 5, giving up three hits and two unearned runs while walking one and striking out one.  Every CornBelter in the lineup had at least one hit, with Newton and Cox each registering three hits.  Cox drove in three runs.
 
The CornBelters return to the Corn Crib for a brief three-game homestand against the Gateway Grizzlies.  Matt Mossey (1-0, 4.50) takes the ball for the CornBelters and Brad Stone (0-4, 7.01) is on the mound for the Grizzlies in a matchup of right-handers.  It's a State Farm Starstruck Saturday with actress Dawn Wells, best known as Mary Ann on Gilligan's Island, making a special appearance.  First pitch is at 7 p..m., and the game can be heard on WJBC (AM 1230, FM 93.7) and WJBC.com.
 
Transaction note:  Prior to Friday's game, the CornBelters traded catcher Jeff Dunbar to the Florence Freedom for a player to be named.  Dunbar appeared in 49 games with Normal with a .209 batting average, three home runs and 17 RBI.

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WHOW/WEZC Owner Purchasing WEIC Charleston

 width=(Clinton)—The Miller Media Group, based in Taylorville and owners of 8 radio stations in central and northwest Illinois, including WHOW and WEZC Radio in Clinton, has announced it has filed an application with the Federal Communications Commission, to purchase WEIC (AM) 1270 Radio in Charleston, from Eastern Illinois Christian Broadcasting, Inc.

Terms of the deal were not announced. Miller Media’s Kaskaskia Broadcasting, Incorporated, will own and operate WEIC once the purchase is closed, which is expected around October 1.

WEIC operates at 1270 on the AM dial with 1000 watts of daytime power, and 500 watts of nighttime power, covering an area from Illinois Route 16 to Interstate 70, and Shelbyville to the Indiana state line in eastern Illinois.

Kaskaskia Broadcasting, Incorporated, already owns a construction permit for an FM translator in Charleston, and it will re-broadcast WEIC after the purchase is completed. The FM signal will be at 107.5 on the dial, and cover Coles County and surrounding area. That signal is expected to be on the air during the 4th quarter of 2011.

Miller Media president Randal J. Miller, said his company is excited about its entry into Eastern Illinois, and looks forward to providing local radio to that area of the state.

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Former School Superintendent Imprisoned After 20 Years On The Run

 He ran for nearly 20 years, but one former Illinois school superintendent is finally behind bars.  Dennis Catron was arrested in Bangkok, Thailand last month.  The former Hoopeston alderman and school superintendent for the Ludlow School District was accused of sexually abusing a 13-year-old boy in 1991.  Catron was arrested for the crime but posted bond and later fled the country to avoid prosecution.  While he was on the run he was found guilty in absentia and sentenced to 36 years in prison.  Authorities were tipped off last month when Catron reportedly tried to renew his passport at a U.S. Embassy in Thailand.  He appeared in a Vermillion County court yesterday and waived his right to a hearing.  He's now in the custody of the Illinois Department of Corrections.

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Eastern Illinois Man Gets 35 Years in Brothers Murder

An eastern Illinois man has been sentenced to 35 years in prison for shooting his brother to death in a grocery store owned by their family as part of a long-running feud over money.

43-year-old Brian Maggio of Savoy will have to serve all the sentence handed down Wednesday in a Champaign County Court.

Maggio pleaded guilty in June to first-degree murder in the July 2010 death of 32-year-old Mark Maggio.

Witnesses told authorities that Brian Maggio shot his brother once during a disagreement in the IGA grocery in Tolono. The small town is about 7 miles south of Champaign.

At the time, the brothers owned two grocery stores, the one in Tolono and another in nearby Arcola.

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Gas Prices Not Associated To Debt Talks in Washington

Gas prices are expected to go up over the weekend but according to Patrick DeHaan, with gasbuddy.com, it has nothing to do with what's going on in Washington. 

[audio:rddGasUpdate.mp3]A Word From DeHaan[/audio]

DeHaan says the slight increase can be blamed on the rising costs of wholesale gasoline.  He says if gas stations have to pay more for the oil, they'll pass the costs on to the consumer.

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Illinois Farmers Watching Crops for Heat and Disease Stress

Several weeks of high temperatures have Illinois farmers and crop experts keeping a close eye on corn and soybeans.

Patrick Kirchhofer of the Peoria County Farm Bureau says the heat has been accompanied by high humidity that increases disease problems.

Rick Fritz is a crop consultant with Brimfield Ag Service. He said the corn crop has already been hurt by the heat. No one knows how much yet, though.

The demand for corn to make ethanol and feed livestock in the United States and overseas has pushed prices high this year. That puts tremendous pressure on farmers to produce a big crop.

Matt Montgomery of the University of Illinois Extension Service said last Sunday's heavy rain in central Illinois helped slow crop damage.

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Regional Superintendent Fight Could Threaten Start of School

Parents have soon get a new reason to pay attention to the Illinois budget.

Regional superintendents in Illinois, who've been working without a paycheck since Governor Pat Quinn swiped the $11-million dollars they were supposed to get, say they can't guarantee schools will open in mid-August and early September.

Bob Daiber is the Madison County regional superintendent and the head of the state superintendent's organization. He said regional superintendents are guaranteeing one more week.

[audio:072711BobDaiber1.mp3]A Word From Daiber[/audio]

Regional superintendents are the only ones in the state who can sign-off on new school buildings, new teachers, new bus drivers, GED test, and truancy enforcement.

In DeKalb, Regional Superintendent Gill Morrison said if he leave, DeKalb's brand new, $80 million dollar high school won't be able to open for the new school year.

[audio:072711GillMorrison3.mp3]A Word From Morrision[/audio]

The Illinois State Board of Education says it can't pick-up the slack.

There has been talk of a deal to get the regional superintendents paid, but lawmakers may not be able to vote on anything until October. Daiber said that might be too late for too many superintendents.

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Illinois Most Broke State

Illinois ended the 2010 fiscal year as the most broke state in the nation.
 
That state was in the red $37.9-billion as of July 1, 2010, according to a recent statewide financial audit put out by the Illinois Auditor General and Illinois Office of the Comptroller.
 
Illinois was so busted that it borrowed $1.4-billion from unknowing taxpayers, causing a delay in tax refunds.
 
A combination of mismanagement during the past decade and a global recession are the largest factors in Illinois money woes, according to U of I economics professor Fred Giertz.
 
[audio:072811giertz1.mp3]A Word From Giertz[/audio]
 
The state has taken some small strides to get its fiscal foot back, but David Yepsen, Director of the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute at SIU says it’s going to take a lot more to fix the problems.
 
[audio:072811yepsen2.mp3]A Word From Yepsen[/audio]
 
Yepsen says whatever politicians do, they need to do it quickly so Illinois can continue to compete with other states to keep businesses and jobs here.

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Rumble In Marina At Clinton Lake Postponed to 2012

Due to lack of funds necessary for sanctioning fees and insurance costs, the Clinton Inboard Racing Club had postponed the RUMBLE IN THE MARINA at Clinton Lake until 2012.  Clinton Inboard Racing Club (CIRC), the group responsible for planning and hosting the event, looked to the community for financial support to make the race happen.  Although pledges were made by Clinton's Tourism Bureau, DeWitt County Development Council, Tabor Feed Mill, and First National Bank & Trust, the initial reserve required to move forward with the event was not met.  The total expense to hold this American Power Boat Association (APBA) sanctioned event is $30,000.00.  Sean Bowsher, chairman of CIRC, explains most business budgets were already in place when fundraising started. He believes they are in good position to host the event in 2012.

Carolyn Jameson, Tourism Director at the Clinton Area Chamber of Commerce & Tourism Bureau, is disappointed that the race won't take place this year, but optimistic to see it happen in 2012. Projected expenditures of boat race visitors staying in the county were around $105,000.00. The Clinton Area Chamber of Commerce & Tourism Bureau looks forward to working with the Clinton Inboard Racing Club in 2012, when they host the first Rumble in the Marina."

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Clinton YMCA's Strong Kids Campaign Making Good Progress

An annual effort aimed at allowing greater access to the Clinton Community YMCA is making good progress.

The Clinton Y conducts their "Strong Kids" Campaign every spring in an attempt to raise thousands of dollars to support local families that may otherwise not have access to programming.  Executive Director Jann Martin explains the fund drive goes toward financial aid opportunities.  She says the Y is hoping to raise around $90-thousand this year and they are already at $73-thousand.

[audio:strongkidsupdate1.mp3]A Word From Martin[/audio]

Martin notes the Y has seen a dramatic increase in families needing some help, and feels the campaign has a far reaching effect throughout the community. She adds a lot of times agencies will shut down when they do not receive the funding they need, she says the Y does not shut down, which is why they play such a large role in the community.

[audio:strongkidsupdate2.mp3]A Word From Martin[/audio]

About 1-hundred volunteers are donating their time and efforts to make phone calls on behalf of the Clinton Y's Strong Kids Campaign.  If you'd like to contribute but haven't yet received a solicitation call, then contact the Clinton Community YMCA at 935-8307.

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DJWH Has New Board President

The Dr. John Warner Hospital has a new Board President.

Earlier in the week Randy Workman was appointed the President of the Dr. John Warner Hospital Board. Workman has served on the board for several years now. He says he has enjoyed his time serving on the board and looks forward to serving as the leader of the board.

[audio:boardprez1.mp3]A Word From Workman[/audio]

The hospital board is the primary decision making body for the hospital. They set the budget and make a lot of the financial decisions. Workman says being the Board President is going to make him a lot more involved and working closely with the administrators.

[audio:boardprez2.mp3]A Word From Workman[/audio]

Workman says he is looking forward to working with CEO Earl Sheehy. He says Sheehy has done a lot of good things in the one year period he has been with the Hospital. He says Sheehy has a lot of experience and looks forward to working him to help keep the hospital financially strong.

[audio:boardprez3.mp3]A Word From Workman[/audio]

Workman was appointed to the board Monday to replace Julie North, who stepped down due to a career related matter, however, will continue to serve on the board. Each member of the Hospital board is a volunteer.

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CornBelters Top Miners With Early Runs

The Normal CornBelters swung a big bat early, scoring all of their runs in the first two innings in a 7-2 win over the Southern Illinois Miners on Thursday night at Rent One Park in Marion, Illinois.

The CornBelters reached Miners starter David Harden quickly with a single to lead off from Alvaro Ramirez.  He was forced at second on a Brandon Newton ground ball, but Newton moved to second with a base hit by Frank Martinez.  Steve Alexander collected his 42nd RBI with a double to left, scoring Newton, and Martinez came home on Asif Shah's ground ball to second base to give the Belters a quick 2-0 lead.

The Miners got one run back in the bottom of the first.  Justin Randall walked with one out, followed by a triple by Will Block to cut the Normal lead to 2-1.  Block's hit was his seventh triple, most in the Frontier League.

The CornBelters placed another crooked number on the board in the second, batting ten men and scoring five times to take a 7-1 lead.  A.J. Miller reached with one out after taking first base on a wild third strike, then moved to second on a single from Andrew Barbaro.  Alvaro Ramirez reached on an error to load the bases, and with two outs, Frank Martinez cleared the bags with a double to increase his RBI total to a team-leading 44.  Steve Alexander hit his second consecutive RBI double to score Martinez.  Asif Shah then singled followed by an RBI base hit from Mike Mobbs to complete the scoring and give the Belters a 7-1 heading into the bottom of the second.

Southern Illinois tallied one more in the fourth, when a lead-off walk to Nate Hall came around to score thanks to a pair of singles to cut the Belters lead to 7-2.

Tyler Lavigne (4-7) picked up his first win since July 4th with his six-inning start, in which he gave up two runs on five hits while walking six and striking out six.  Jacob Liedka pitched the final three scoreless innings for his second save.  Miners starter David Harden (5-3) recorded the loss.

The road trip concludes with the series finale on Friday night at Rent One Park in Marion at 7:05 p.m. Right-handers are scheduled to start on the mound for both teams, Bobby Pritchett (5-3, 4.63) for the CornBelters and B.J. Dail (1-3, 5.51) for the Miners.

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Cubs & Cards Lose; Cards Debut Jackson Tonight; Cubs Deal Fukudome

>>Astros Clip Cardinals

(St. Louis, MO)  --  Carlos Lee went 2-for-4 with a homer and two RBI as the Astros clipped the Cardinals 5-3.  Lee also scored a pair of runs to help Houston earn a split in the four-game series.  Wandy Rodriguez struck out six over seven strong innings to even his record at 7-and-7.  Mark Melancon pitched a perfect ninth to notch his 10th save.  Albert Pujols ripped an RBI double for the Cards, who are now a game-and-a-half behind the NL Central-leading Brewers.  Jaime Garcia allowed five runs, four earned, over six innings to fall to 10-and-5.  The Cardinals host the Cubs for three games starting tonight.

>>Crew Sweep Cubs

(Milwaukee, WI)  --  Ryan Braun finished 3-for-4 with a solo home run and an RBI double as the Brewers beat the Cubs 4-2 to sweep a three-game set.  Shaun Marcum gave up two runs in six innings to improve to 10-and-3 on the season.  John Axford worked a flawless ninth to notch his 27th straight save and 30th of the season.  Aramis Ramirez and Alfonso Soriano plated runs for Chicago, which was coming off its first three-game sweep of the season before getting swept at Miller Park.  Randy Wells allowed all four runs through six frames to absorb the loss.  The Cubs come to St. Louis tonight for a three-game set at Busch Stadium.

MLB NL
------
New York Mets 10, Cincinnati Reds 9
Florida Marlins 5, Washington Nationals 2
Milwaukee Brewers 4, Chicago Cubs 2
San Diego Padres 4, Arizona Diamondbacks 3
San Francisco Giants 4, Philadelphia Phillies 1
Pittsburgh Pirates 5, Atlanta Braves 2
Houston Astros 5, St. Louis Cardinals 3

MLB AL
------
LA Angels of Anaheim 12, Detroit Tigers 7
Kansas City Royals 4, Boston Red Sox 3
Tampa Bay Rays 10, Oakland Athletics 8
Toronto Blue Jays 8, Baltimore Orioles 5
Texas Rangers 4, Minnesota Twins 1

>>Jackson To Make Redbirds Debut

(St. Louis, MO)  --  The Cardinals will get a look at the newest member of their rotation tonight.  Edwin Jackson, who was acquired in Wednesday's eight-player trade with the Blue Jays, starts the first of a three-game series against the Cubs.  Jackson was acquired by Toronto from the White Sox earlier in the day before being shipped to St. Louis in the deal for Colby Rasmus.

>>Cubs Deal Fukudome To Tribe, Recall Colvin

(Cleveland, OH)  --  The Indians have added some outfield depth with the acquisition of Kosuke Fukudome from the Cubs.  Cleveland also received cash in the deal, with outfielder Abner Abreu and pitcher Carlton Smith going to Chicago in return.  The 34-year-old Fukudome is making $13.5-million in the final season of a four-year pact.  He's batting .273 with three home runs and 13 RBI, and sports a .375 on-base percentage. The Northsiders recalled outfielder Tyler Colvin from Triple-A Iowa to fill Fukudome's roster spot.

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NFL, NASCAR Notes

>>Rams Open Training Camp

(St. Louis, MO)  --  The Rams officially open training camp today at Rams Park.  The team will hold its first practice at 1:50 p.m. this afternoon.  With the August 7th Hall of Fame Game against the Bears cancelled due to the lengthy lockout, the Rams will instead play a scrimmage that day at Lindenwood University.  The first preseason game is August 13th against the Colts.

>>Panthers Get Olsen From Bears

(Charlotte, NC)  --  The Carolina Panthers acquired tight end Greg Olsen from the Bears on Thursday.  The Bears will receive an undisclosed draft pick in return.  A first-round draft choice in 2007 with the Bears, the 26-year-old Olsen caught 41 passes for 404 yards and five touchdowns last season.

>>Bears Release Manumaleuna, Add Spaeth

(Lake Forest, IL)  --  The Bears released tight end Brandon Manumaleuna [[ man-oo-mal-ee-OO-nah ]] on Thursday and reportedly picked up former Steelers tight end Matt Spaeth.  The 31-year-old Manumaleuna signed a five-year contract with the Bears before last season and played all 16 games, including 13 starts at fullback.  The team said the 300-pound veteran failed a physical.  NFL Network reported the Spaeth signing earlier Thursday.  The 27-year-old tight end played 60 games for the Steelers over the past four seasons, making 39 starts.  Used mostly as a blocker, Spaeth has scored five touchdowns on 36 career catches for 275 yards.

>>Sprint Cup Returns This Weekend

(Indianapolis, IN)  --  After taking a week off, the Sprint Cup Series returns to action this weekend with the Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.  With seven races remaining before the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship begins, the pressure is on for several drivers hoping to make the 12-member field.  Jamie McMurray won the Brickyard 400 last year.  Two weeks ago at the last Spring Cup Series race, Indiana native Ryan Newman won in New Hampshire.

This race is the first one in the new "Sprint Summer Showdown" bonus program.  Any driver who wins between Indianapolis and Bristol qualifies for the bonus in the Labor Day weekend event at Atlanta.  If one of those eligible drivers wins the Atlanta race, then he and one lucky fan collect $1-million each.  The driver's charity also receives the same amount of money.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 7-29

 

July 29, 2011

 

Jail Population: 51

Summons Served: 2

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

 

Dustin Clemons, 19, Farmer City, was arrested on a Ford County warrant charging him with Forgery. Clemons is currently housed in the DeWitt County Jail.

 

 

Edith Koch, 85, Oakland, MI, was issued a citation for Speeding (78 mph in a 55 mph zone). Koch posted the necessary bond and was released.

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Central Illinois Police Cracking Down on Drugs

Central Illinois police are cracking down on drugs and they say a recent arrest should send a message to drug dealers in the community.  Authorities arrested Kyle Mason on a search warrant, after he picked up a package containing two pounds of marijuana from a post office in Cooksville.  McLean County Sheriff Mike Emery says the investigation involves other rural McLean County communities.

[audio:rddpipeline.mp3]Pipeline[/audio]

Police say Mason's package was delivered from California, where medical marijuana is legal.  The street value of the drugs is worth eight-thousand dollars.  He faces charges of manufacturing and delivering cannabis.  Bond has been set at 100-thousand dollars.

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Police Cracking Down on Drunk Driving

In an effort that began on June 17 and runs through July 4, the Illinois State Police and approximately 300 local police and sheriff departments are conducting 200 roadside safety checks and more than 300 nighttime safety belt enforcement zones. Additionally, thousands of patrols will occur throughout the campaign in which law enforcement will be alert for impaired drivers and safety belt law violators. In all, more than $1 million in federal highway safety funds will be committed to this enhanced effort to keep Illinois roads safe through the holiday period.

Crash data indicates 319 people in Illinois died in crashes in 2009 that involved an impaired driver. This number represents 35 percent of the motor vehicle fatalities that occurred that year.

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Bloomington Representative Defends Union Pay Freeze

Bloomington Representative Dan Brady is defending the budget signed by Governor Pat Quinn.  He says no matter what agreement the governor made with AFSCME, the fact remains that the 77-million dollars needed for pay raises was not appropriated in the budget. 

[audio:rddBradyPR.mp3]A Word From Rep. Brady[/audio]

Brady says Democrat and Republican members of the House worked together to pass a responsible budget.  He says the process that lawmakers took this year was a step in the right direction toward reducing the state's debt.  Unfortunately, he says, drastic cuts sometimes come with the territory.

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MLB: NL and AL All-Star Teams; Cubs, Cards, Sox All-Stars

>>Bautista, Braun Lead AL And NL All-Stars
(New York, NY)  --  Major League Baseball revealed the rosters for the 2011

All-Star Game on Sunday.  The 82nd Midsummer Classic will be played July 12th

at Chase Field, home of the Arizona Diamondbacks.  Toronto Blue Jays outfielder

Jose Bautista was the top overall vote-getter, while Milwaukee Brewers' outfielder

Ryan Braun claimed the number-one spot in the National League.  Bautista's nearly

seven-and-a-half-million votes broke Ken Griffey Junior's record of over six-million

votes set in 1994.  The rest of the NL infield starters include Atlanta Braves catcher

Brian McCann, Brewers first baseman Prince Fielder, his teammate Rickie Weeks

at second base, New York Mets shortstop Jose Reyes and Philadelphia Phillies

third baseman Placido Polanco.  Joining Braun in the NL outfield will be Matt

Kemp of the Los Angeles Dodgers and Lance Berkman of the St. Louis Cardinals. 

Headlining the NL pitching staff is a trio of Phillies starters in Roy Halladay, Cliff

Lee and Cole Hamels.

The American League's starting infield is Detroit Tigers catcher Alex Avila, Red

Sox first baseman Adrian Gonzalez and the Yankees' Robinson Cano, Derek Jeter

and Alex Rodriguez at second base, shortstop and third base, respectively.  Curtis

Granderson of the Yankees and Josh Hamilton of the Texas Rangers join Bautista

in the AL outfield, with Boston's David Ortiz in the DH role.  Reigning AL Cy

Young award winner Felix Hernandez of the Seattle Mariners highlights the AL

pitching staff.  Each team will have one additional player added by fan vote.  The

National League choices are Andre Ethier of the Dodgers, Todd Helton of the

Rockies, Ian Kennedy of the D'backs, Michael Morse of the Nationals and Shane

Victorino of the Phillies.  The American League candidates are Alex Gordon of the

Royals, Adam Jones of the Orioles, Paul Konerko of the White Sox, Victor

Martinez of the Tigers and Ben Zobrist of the Rays.

>>Quentin, Castro Named All-Stars
(Phoenix, AZ)  --  White Sox outfielder Carlos Quentin and Cubs shortstop Starlin

Castro were both named All-Stars on Sunday.  Quentin was named a reserve for

the American League, while Castro is a reserve for the National League. 

Meantime, Sox slugger Paul Konerko is one of five AL players who can be voted

on to the team by virtue of the league's "Final Vote".  Fans can vote online at

MLB.com.

>>Trio Of Cards Selected As All-Stars
(St. Petersburg, FL)  --  Lance Berkman leads a trio of Cardinals as selections for

the 2011 Major League All-Star game.  Berkman, a six time all-star, will be a

starter next week in Phoenix, and will be joined by catcher Yadier Molina and

outfielder Matt Holliday, who were selected in reserve roles for the National

League.  Injured first baseman Albert Pujols fell to the third in the voting in the final

weeks of voting.  Molina will be making his third All-Star appearance while

Holliday will mark his fifth.  The game is set for next Tuesday night, July 12th.

 

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U of I Leading Work To Link Research

The University of Illinois will lead a new $121 million effort to build a better technology network to link researchers.

The National Science Foundation is providing the money over five years with the possibility of funding for five more years to build a secure environment for research to happen.

John Towns of the university's National Center for Supercomputing Applications is the project leader. He says the university is 1 of 17 institutions involved in building the Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment, or XSEDE.

The work is intended to improve on the existing TeraGrid system.

The idea is to give researchers anywhere the ability to share data and collaborate as if they were working in the same lab with the same sort of equipment.

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Cubs Cruise By Sox; Cards Crushed

>>Cubs Cruise By Sox
(Chicago, IL)  --  Aramis Ramirez's two-run homer was enough for the Cubs to

slip by the White Sox, 3-1, and avoid a three-game sweep.  Rodrigo Lopez

allowed just two hits in seven scoreless innings to pick up his first win in a Cubs

uniform.  Starlin Castro went 2-for-4 with a run batted in for the victors.  Carlos

Marmol registered his 17th save of the season.  Gavin Floyd took the loss after

surrendering three runs on seven hits in his seven-inning start.  Mark Teahen scored

in the eighth on a wild pitch from Kerry Wood.  The ChiSox had won four straight.

>>Cubs Clash With Nats
(Washington, DC)  --  The Cubs will begin a four-game series with the Nationals

this afternoon in Washington.  Casey Coleman is slated to get the start on the

mound for Chicago.  The Nats will counter with Jordan Zimmermann.  First-pitch is

slated for 12:05 p.m.

>>White Sox Visit Royals
(Chicago, IL)  --  The White Sox will open up a three-game series with the Royals

at The Cell this evening.  Mark Buehrle [[ BURR-lee ]] is scheduled to be on the

mound for the Sox.  The Royals will counter with Jeff Francis.  First-pitch is at 6:10

p.m.

>>Cards Crushed By Rays
(St. Petersburg, FL)  --  Johnny Damon finished a homer shy of the cycle and

knocked in four runs, leading the Rays to an 8-3 victory over the Cardinals in the

finale of a three-game series.  Damon's hits included a three-run triple and an RBI

double that he scored on because of a throwing error.  The Rays took the lead for

good on RBI singles from B.J. Upton and John Jaso in the sixth inning, giving

rookie right-hander Jeremy Hellickson his first win in five starts.  Kyle Farnsworth

recorded his 17th save of the season.  Tampa  Bay won the last two games of the

series and finished Interleague play with a 12-and-6 record.  All-Stars Lance

Berkman and Yadier Molina homered for the Cardinals, who have lost two straight

on the heels of a four-game winning streak.  Kyle Lohse [[ Lowsh ]] took the loss,

giving up five runs, four earned, over five-and-a-third frames.  The Cards will open

a three-game set with the Reds tonight at Busch Stadium as Chris Carpenter goes

to the hill against Johnny Cueto. 

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Japanese Beetle Increasing In Farm Fields

The Japanese beetle has been striking Missouri and Illinois with full force, eating its way through rose bushes and tomato plants and threatening major crops like corn and soybeans.

The beetle has been an urban problem for years. But now, farmers in both Missouri and Illinois say the bugs are moving into corn and soybean fields - crops vital to both states.

The bugs eat the corn silks, preventing pollination and development of the corn kernel. To stop it, farmers in some areas are spending $20 per acre to have their fields sprayed with chemicals from airplanes.

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CREP Returns

After more than a three year hiatus, a program aimed at promoting agricultural conservation in Illinois is up and running again.  Jared White has more...

[audio:6-27-11 CREP Program Back In IL WRAP.mp3]Jared White[/audio]

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Local Post Offices To Close

Some Illinois residents are worried about the potential closure of hundreds of postal offices in the state,

The financially-troubled Postal Service announced Tuesday that it's considering closing more than 1 in 10 of its retail outlets. It will study 3,653 local offices and branches for possible closing.

More than 200 offices in Illinois are on the list, including the offices in Cisco, De Land, DeWitt, Kenney, Armington, Chestnut, Cornland,

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4th Boat Safety Reminders

With the 4th of July here, local law enforcement encourages anyone taking to local waterways to be responisble.

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources Conservation Police will be monitoring the waters very closely.  Officer Ray Wichus with the Conservation Police indicates the holiday weekends are always busy at the parks and campgrounds. With that in mind, Conservation Officers will be putting in extra hours this weekend to be out focusing on making alcohol arrests, among other things.

[audio:dnrcrackdown1.mp3]Wichus Part 1[/audio]

The crackdown on operating under the influence is not only taking place on land.  Officer Wichus notes that officers will also be on the lookout for alcohol-related boating offenses.  He says those on the water are under the same regulations operating a boat as a driver on the road operating a vehicle.

[audio:dnrcrackdown2.mp3]Wichus Part 2[/audio]

Wichus stresses the primary goal of the increased patrols make sure everyone out this weekend will be safe wherever they are.  He also encourages anyone heading out on the water to be sure to have enough life jackets on board. Wichus stresses anyone under the age of 13 must be wearing a life jacket and there also must be a life jacket for every person on board of the boat.

[audio:dnrcrackdown3.mp3]Wichus Part 3[/audio]

Conservation Police are also reminding the public that fireworks are not allowed in the state parks.  They encourage everyone to have a safe and responsible weekend.

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Independence Day Firework Safety

With the 4th of July here, local officials are asking citizens to practice safe habits throughout the holiday weekend.

The biggest concern this 4th of July is the issue of fireworks safety. Jerry Milton with the public health and safety department for the city of Clinton says the 4th of July is a fun time, but he reminds parents to keep a watch on kids who are handling fireworks.

[audio:fireworkssafety1.mp3]Jerry Milton on Safety[/audio]

The fireworks of the illegal variety will almost definitely get shot off throughout the weekend. Clinton Police Chief Mike Reidy also notes possession of illegal fireworks is a criminal offense. Reidy says if fireworks packages are labeled "Caution", they are legal in Illinois, however, if they read "Warning", then they are illegal.

[audio:fireworkssafety4.mp3]Chief Reidy on Safety[/audio]

Clinton Fire Chief Shawn Milton says if you are going to handle illegal fireworks to observing the city regulations of distance from buildings and objects. He also suggest using a punk instead of a lighter or matches to light those fireworks off.

[audio:fireworkssafety3.mp3]Shawn Milton on Safety[/audio]

Authorities also ask to practice safe drinking habits. If you have been drinking, do not get behind the wheel of a vehicle, appoint a designated driver, alcohol is involved in over 40 percent of fatal crashes in Illinois.

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Slammer Top CornBelters

Slammers come from behind to hand sixth straight loss to CornBelters
 
The Normal CornBelters, presented by Illinois Corn Farmers, had a thin lead until the seventh inning, when the Joliet Slammers scored twice and made it hold up to take a 2-1 win and give the Belters their sixth straight loss on Sunday night at Silver Cross Field in Joliet.  The loss coupled with a win by the Florence Freedom drops the CornBelters to fourth in the Frontier League West Division.
 
The CornBelters struck first in the second with a run when Asif Shah singled to lead off the inning, moved to second on a walk, then scored when Tyler Keeble's base hit was misplayed in left field.
 
The Slammers finally pushed a runner to third base in the fourth inning with runners on second and third with one out, but Normal starter Ryan Sheldon was able to coax a broken bat pop-up and a ground out to end the inning.
 
Joliet reached Ryan Sheldon in the seventh to take a 2-1 lead.  Sheldon hit leadoff batter Sean Estand with a pitch, and Kyle Maunus sacrificed him to second.  With two outs, Bobby Leeper hit a 3-2 pitch off the base of the left-field wall to tie the game, then Leeper scored on a triple to right-center to give the Slammers the lead and chase Sheldon from the game.  Reliever Marshall Schuler then struck out Josh Flores to retire the Slammers.
 
The Belters didn't go without a fight, loading the bases in the ninth with two outs via a walk to A.J. Miller, a double from Alvaro Ramirez and a walk to Frank Martinez, but Daniel Cox struck out to end the game.  The CornBelters mustered only five hits off Joliet pitching and stranded 11 baserunners.  The Belters also committed three errors.
 
Jeremy Tietze took the win in relief to improve to 3-1.  Ryan Sheldon fell to 5-3 with the loss, in which he scattered eight hits while walking one and striking out seven.
 
The series and the road trip concludes on Independence Day Monday at Silver Cross Field in Joliet as right-handers are again expected to get the call on the mound, Tyler Lavigne (2-5, 3.29) for the CornBelters and Jake Renshaw (4-2, 3.83) for the Slammers.  First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m. with pre-game at 6:50 on WEZC-FM 95.9 and WJBC.com.  The CornBelters then begin a six-game homestand before the Frontier League All-Star game break with three games each against the Windy City ThunderBolts and the Joliet Slammers.  Tuesday is the second annual Armed Forces Night at the Corn Crib with more than 1,100 past and present members of the armed forces attending for free thanks to many local sponsors.  The evening will feature many events with a patriotic theme, the Fifty American Flags Memorial around the park and a special rendition of God Bless America during the seventh-inning stretch.  Game time is 7 p.m. on Tuesday, and gates open at 6 p.m. at the Corn Crib.

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State Lawmaker Says Rural School Districts Hurt Most By Gov. Cuts

A state lawmaker isn't happy with some of Governor Quinn's budget reductions.  Republican Representative Roger Eddy says rural school districts will be hit hardest by an 89-million-dollar cut in school transportation funds. 

[audio:rddEddy1.mp3]A Word From Eddy[/audio]

Eddy is also the school superintendent in the Hutsonville School District.  The governor's budget director defends the governor's actions, saying it's a parent's responsibility to get their child to school.

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DeWitt County Board Decides To Move Forward With Animal Shelter

The DeWitt County Board discussed in length the next step in building a new animal shelter facility in the county.

The board received a proposal from Architectural Expressions in Forsyth to discuss their services in an amount not to exceed $65-thousand. Jim Foust with the firm explained to the board the proposal they brought before the board was dependent on them building a masonry building. He said should the board approve anything other than that, they would not work with them.

[audio:animalshelterupdate1.mp3]A Word From Foust[/audio]

Up to this point, the process of getting the project moving forward has taken quite a while. DeWitt County Board Chair Melonie Tillie explains the next step in the process is getting the entire board's approval.

[audio:animalshelterupdate2.mp3]A Word From Board Chair Tillie[/audio]

Much of the discussion revolved around finances. Terry Ferguson discussed the possibility of building the facility and then not having it put to good use. He believes the county needs to know where they are financially before they put up the building because all of all the bills that will come with the new building will go up. Tillie says the next step is to simply work with the architectural firm to work on putting plans together.

[audio:animalshelterupdate3.mp3]Ferguson and Tillie Discussion[/audio]

Board Chair Tillie asked Finance Chair Ed Young for an amount to move forward with to begin working with Architectural Expressions on getting a design to move the project forward. Young put the limit at $350-thousand because of the rising costs associated with the new facility.

[audio:animalshelterupdate4.mp3]A Word From Young[/audio]

Tillie believes the committee is being conservative with what kind of animal shelter they are looking to construct. She says finding something cost effective and at the same time something that will last for a long time is what the committee is after.

[audio:animalshelterupdate5.mp3]A Word From Tillie[/audio]

The Board voted and approved the motion in a 7 to 5 vote, to accept the proposal from Architectural Expressions for architect and engineering services in an amount not to exceed $65-thousand.

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Sox Win; Cards & Cubs Lose; Cards Deal Rasmus, Get Chicago's Jackson

>>De Aza, Danks Lead White Sox Over Tigers

(Chicago, IL)  --  Alejandro De Aza belted a two-run homer in his first at-bat of the year and the White Sox held on to trim the Tigers, 2-1, on Wednesday afternoon at The Cell.  De Aza was just called up to take the place of Mark Teahen, who was traded with pitcher Edwin Jackson to the Blue Jays earlier in the day.  His home run in the second inning was all Chicago needed.  John Danks fired six shutout innings before giving up a solo homer to Austin Jackson leading off the seventh.  He struck out 10 over six-plus innings of one-run ball for the win.  The Southsiders are off today.  They open up a three-game series against the Boston Red Sox starting tomorrow evening in the Windy City.  Gavin Floyd gets the nod in the opener.

>>Astros Strike Late To Sink Cards

(St. Louis, MO)  --  Jose Altuve singled home the go-ahead run in the top of the ninth inning to lift the Astros to a 4-2 win over the Cardinals.  Clint Barmes clubbed a two-run homer for Houston, which put the brakes on a five-game skid.  Fernando Rodriguez tossed two scoreless innings to get his second win.  Mark Melancon notched his ninth save.  Jon Jay and Yadier Molina plated a run apiece for the Cardinals.  Chris Carpenter struck out eight over seven innings of two-run ball in a no-decision.  Mitchell Boggs was charged with the loss.  The four-game set concludes tonight as Jaime Garcia opposes Wandy Rodriguez.

>>Greinke, Brewers Blank Cubs

(Milwaukee, WI)  --  Zack Greinke fanned nine through six-and-two-third scoreless innings as the Brewers blanked the Cubs, 2-0.  Greinke gave up just three hits and a trio of walks to improve to 8-and-4 on the season.  John Axford worked a 1-2-3 ninth to nail down his 29th save.  Prince Fielder clubbed a solo home run and Yuniesky Betancourt added a sac-fly for Milwaukee, which has won back-to-back games.  Rickie Weeks left the game in the second inning with an ankle injury.  Carlos Zambrano allowed the two runs through six-and-two-third frames of duty to absorb the tough-luck loss for Chicago.  The Northsiders have dropped two straight on the heels of their first three-game winning streak of the season.  The three-game set wraps up today with Randy Wells opposing Shaun Marcum.

MLB NL
------
San Francisco Giants 2, Philadelphia Phillies 1
Florida Marlins 7, Washington Nationals 5
New York Mets 8, Cincinnati Reds 2
Atlanta Braves 2, Pittsburgh Pirates 1 (10 inn) 
Arizona Diamondbacks 4, San Diego Padres 3
Colorado Rockies 3, Los Angeles Dodgers 1

MLB AL
------
LA Angels of Anaheim 3, Cleveland Indians 1
Seattle Mariners 9, New York Yankees 2
Toronto Blue Jays 3, Baltimore Orioles 0
Boston Red Sox 12, Kansas City Royals 5
Minnesota Twins 7, Texas Rangers 2
Oakland Athletics 13, Tampa Bay Rays 4

>>Cards Deal Rasmus To Jays

(St. Louis, MO)  --  The Cardinals got some pitching help for the stretch run, trading outfielder Colby Rasmus to the Blue Jays in an eight-player deal.  The Cards acquired Edwin Jackson, Octavio Dotel, Marc Rzepczynski [[ zep-CHIN-skee ]] and outfielder Corey Patterson for Rasmus and pitchers Trever Miller, P.J. Walters and Brian Tallet.  Rasmus had been in manager Tony La Russa's doghouse. It marks the second straight year Jackson has been traded just before the July 31st deadline.  Jackson, eligible for free agency after the season, is 7-and-7 with a 3.92 earned run average in 19 starts.  He became the odd-man out in a rotation for the White Sox that also includes Mark Buehrle, Jake Peavy, John Danks, Gavin Floyd and Philip Humber.

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Monticello School Updates

With kids out of school for the summer months, area school districts continue the process of making upgrades and regularly scheduled maintenance projects to their district facilities.

Monticello schools see the same sorts of projects this year. Dr. Vic Zimmerman is the Superintendent of Monticello schools, he says while he would love some down time for the summer, this is the busiest time of the year for school administrators.

[audio:monticelloschoolprojects1.mp3]A Word From Dr. Zimmerman[/audio]

One of the projects being taken care is a drainage fix in a rock parking lot behind the high school facility in Monticello. Dr. Zimmerman explains the parking sits in a low lying area so the water drains to the parking lot resulting in a lot of standing water. He says the long term hope for the parking lot is to be a hard surface, however he adds for now taking care of fixing the standing water problem is t he quick fix option.

[audio:monticelloschoolprojects2.mp3]A Word From Dr. Zimmerman[/audio]

While funding for a lot of area school projects come from a local sales tax, Dr. Zimmerman points to the fact that Monticello is in Piatt County, and they do not get a lot of people from out of the area coming in. He says bigger counties such as Macon or Champaign can afford to have those taxes in place because a lot of their sales tax comes from people outside of the county.

[audio:monticelloschoolprojects3.mp3]A Word From Dr. Zimmerman[/audio]

Dr. Zimmerman says while some of the projects going on this summer in Monticello may not be exciting or extravagant, he says they are necessary to meet the state regulations and keep the districts buildings current.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 7-28

 

July 28, 2011

 

Jail Population: 51

Summons Served: 0

Warrant Arrests: 0

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DeWitt County Animal Shelter Plans Slowly Progressing

The DeWitt County Animal Shelter project continues to make headway.

The DeWitt County Board heard presentations at their meeting June 23rd. The board heard from architects Jim Fouse from Architectural Expressions in Forsyth and Scott Calgary, who is a licensed architect in Illinois with a small firm. Fouse spoke as to his plans to work with the board and Public Safety Committee to come up with a concept that would be accepted by both the board and the public.

[audio:animalshelter1.mp3]A Word From Fouse[/audio]

Calgary came forward to introduce his proposal. He had a conceptual design and estimate for the board. Without a clear idea of what size of a shelter and budget for the building, it would be tough for him to say for sure the design and figures he presented would remain consistent, however, he felt confident they could be maintained.

[audio:animalshelter2.mp3]A Word From Calgary[/audio]

Both architects have designed animal shelters in the central Illinois area.

After both architects came forward to present, the board decided it was in the best interest to give Architectural Expressions a chance to come forward with a conceptual design and estimate.

DeWitt County board chair Melonie Tillie says the total cost for the new Animal Shelter is in the works for the county. She says part of the process of bringing in architects to present to the board is begin the process of gathering all the necessary information associated with receiving a total cost amount.

[audio:animalshelter3.mp3]A Word From Tillie[/audio]

Tillie also mentioned upon the board beginning the process of working on a budget, placing money aside for the new Animal Shelter will be a part of that process. Her hope is for the designs to be ready in the next few months, and then put those out for bid, and she hopes next spring to begin getting the shelter up.

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Clinton Schools Continue Moving Forward With Latest Technology

The Clinton School district's wave of the future movement continues this summer.

The Clinton Board of Education made a purchase of almost $166-thousand dollars to continue the upgrades of adding interactive boards into the Clinton school's classrooms.

With this summer's purchase of the 20 new interactive boards, the school's classrooms are now close the goal of having every classroom with an interactive board in them. Superintendent of Clinton Schools Dr. Jeff Holmes indicates he is excited to see this project continue on.

[audio:techagreement1.mp3]A Word From Dr. Holmes[/audio]

The interactive boards take the place of the traditional chalkboard in the classroom. They engage the students to interact in a way to better understand the material they are presented. Dr. Holmes says it is the always fun to see the kids of the district learning and understanding the material the teachers are presenting with the new interactive boards.

[audio:techagreement2.mp3]A Word From Dr. Holmes[/audio]

Dr. Holmes says teaching has gone to a media based style, and kids of this generation and future generations will be learning through technology. He says it his goal to give the students of the school district the opportunities to learn through the latest technology.

[audio:techagreement3.mp3]A Word  From Dr. Holmes[/audio]

Dr. Holmes notes the district takes part of the money from their tax levy and set it aside for technology purposes. He says technology encompasses anything from the telephones in offices to computers in the buildings.

The board made a lease agreement  for the purchase of school district technology with the First National Bank and Trust of Clinton at an amount of just over $165-thousand.

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Cards, Sox Win; Pujols Return Today?

>>Cards Blank Reds

(St. Louis, MO)  --  Mark Hamilton drove in a run on a pinch-hit infield single in the eighth to help the Cardinals nip the Reds, 1-0.  Each team had just six hits in the pitchers duel, which was won by Chris Carpenter who went eight innings to improve to 4-and-7.  Fernando Salas pitched a perfect ninth for his 15th save as the Cards stopped a two-game slide.  Johnny Cueto suffered the tough loss after pitching a full eight innings as the Reds fell for the third time in four contests.  Joey Votto managed three of the Cincinnati hits, going 3-for-4 in defeat.  Jaime Garcia will toe the rubber opposite Edinson Volquez in tonight's second installment.

>>Crow's Balk Gives Sox Win

(Chicago, IL)  --  After tying the game in the ninth, the Royals coughed up a chance at victory after Aaron Crow balked allowing Juan Pierre to score a walkoff victory of the White Sox, 5-4.  Adam Dunn drilled a two-run homer for Chicago to hand them a 4-3 lead in the eighth but Eric Hosmer hit a solo shot in the ninth to tie things up at four.  Ramon Castro also homered for the Sox and Sergio Santos earned the win out of the pen, Chicago's fifth victory in six games.  Jeff Francoeur drilled a two-run homer for Kansas City, which has lost six of seven.  Jake Peavy gets the nod against Felipe Paulino in tonight's second installment.

>>Walk-Off Wild Pitch In 10th Propels Nats Over Cubs

(Washington, DC)  --  Jayson Werth scored the game-winning run on a wild pitch by Carlos Marmol in the bottom of the 10th inning to give the Nationals a 5-4 win over the Cubs on Monday afternoon.  Werth along with Laynce Nix each plated two runs for Washington, which has alternated wins and losses in its last six contests.  Henry Rodriguez tossed a 1-2-3 top of the 10th to register the victory.  Marcos Mateo walked Werth before leaving and was saddled with the loss for Chicago.  Alfonso Soriano drove in a pair, while Marlon Byrd and Geovany Soto each knocked in one for the Cubs, who have dropped three-of-four.  Ramon Ortiz will be on the bump for Chicago, opposite Ross Detwiler in tonight's second installment from the nation's capital.

MLB American League
------
Toronto Blue Jays 9, Boston Red Sox 7
Minnesota Twins 7, Tampa Bay Rays 0
Seattle Mariners 2, Oakland Athletics 1
Cleveland Indians 6, New York Yankees 3
Texas Rangers 13, Baltimore Orioles 4
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 5, Detroit Tigers 1

MLB National League

Pittsburgh Pirates 5, Houston Astros 3
Arizona Diamondbacks 8, Milwaukee Brewers 6
San Diego Padres 5, San Francisco Giants 3
Philadelphia Phillies 1, Florida Marlins 0
Atlanta Braves 4, Colorado Rockies 1
New York Mets 5, Los Angeles Dodgers 2

>>Pujols To Return Today?

(St. Louis, MO)  --  It is possible that Albert Pujols [[ POO-holes ]] could return to the lineup today.  The St. Louis slugger, who has been on the 15-day disabled list since late June with a fractured wrist, said yesterday that he will visit the doctor today and could even return to the lineup tonight.  He is eligible to return from the DL today.  Pujols has reportedly been swinging a bat at full strength for almost a week and also taking ground balls.  Manager Tony La Russa has already stated that Pujols will not need to go on a rehab assignment before he makes his return to the lineup.

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CornBelters Finish Frustrating Road Trip With Win

A frustrating road trip ended on a positive note as the Normal CornBelters exploded offensively early and late, breaking a six-game losing streak and defeating the Joliet Slammers on Monday night at Silver Cross Field in Joliet.

The CornBelters got to work immediately with a two-run first inning.  With one out, Frank Martinez reached on an infield error and moved to second on a base hit by Daniel Cox.  Both moved up a base on a wild pitch, but Asif Shah was walked intentionally to load the bases.  Mike Mobbs then singled up the middle to score Martinez and Cox to stake the Belters to a 2-0 lead.

The Belters couldn't reach Joliet starter Jake Renshaw for a while as the Slammer hurler retired 14 straight hitters, but Normal blasted through in the seventh.  The CornBelters started the seventh with a Mike Mobbs double, a Jeff Dunbar single and a base hit by Tyler Keeble to score Mobbs and increase the Belters lead to 3-0.  Brad Agustin sacrifice the runners to second and third, and Alvaro Ramirez singled past the drawn-in infield to score Dunbar and build the lead to 4-0, and end the night for Renshaw.  A ground-out by Frank Martinez scored Keeble, then Daniel Cox served a 3-2 pitch to right field to plate Ramirez.  Steve Alexander then singled, and a wild pitch sent him and Cox to second and third, and Asif Shah drove in Cox with a base hit.  Mike Mobbs finished the scoring with his third RBI of the night with a hit to shallow center to score Alexander to give Normal an 8-0 lead going into the seventh-inning stretch.

Tyler Lavigne picked up the win to improve to 3-5, giving up just three hits in his seven-inning outing while walking four and striking out eight.  Jake Renshaw was tagged with the loss to fall to 4-3.

The CornBelters begin a six-game homestand on Tuesday night on the second annual Armed Forces Night against the Windy City ThunderBolts.  Right-handers are scheduled to start on the mound, with Bryant Cotton (3-2, 5.58) for the ThunderBolts and Bobby Pritchett (4-2, 4.50) for the CornBelters.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 7-5-11

 

July 1, 2011

Jail Population: 57

Summons Served: 0

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

July 2, 2011

Jail Population: 59

Summons Served: 9

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

July 3, 2011

Jail Population: 58

Summons Served: 1

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

July 4, 2011

Jail Population: 58

Summons Served: 0

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

Nancy Delgado, 34, Aurora, was issued a citation for speeding (82 mph in a 65 mph zone). Delgado posted her IL Drivers License and was released.

 

Melissa Desanty, 32, Bloomington, was issued a citation for speeding (73 mph in a 55 mph zone). Desanty posted her IL Drivers License and was released.

 

 

 

 

ALL SUSPECTS ARE PRESUMED INNOCENT UNTIL FOUND GUILTY IN A COURT OF LAW.

 

 

 

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Lawsuit Could Be Coming Over Canceled Raises

It could be a matter of days before AFSCME challenges some of Governor Pat Quinn's budget changes.  But if a judge doe not act, lawmakers almost certainly will.

Democrat Frank Mautino who helped write the new state budget, says Quinn may not be able to cancel raises for 30-thousand state workers.

[audio:070611Mautino1.mp3]A Word From Mautino[/audio]

The governor says the state doesn't have the money to pay the raises. AFSCME officials say they signed a contract and should be paid.

Republican Senator Matt Murphy said Governor Rod Blagojevich should never had promised the raises.

[audio:070611Murphy2.mp3]A Word From Murphy[/audio]

A lawsuit could come any day, according to AFSCME. Lawmakers are due back for the fall veto session in October.

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Japanese Beetles Back For Season

Farmers, gardeners, and just about anyone that spends some time around the yard has probably noticed that the now annual invasion of Japanese Beetles has begun in central Illinois.  Jared White has more...

 [audio:7-5-11 Japanese Beetles WRAP.mp3]Jared White With The Story[/audio]

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Local, State Parks Hiring Teens, Young Adults For Summer

An Illinois jobs program will employ more than 2,500 teenagers and young adults in state and local parks.

Gov. Pat Quinn promoted the Illinois Conservation Corps on Tuesday. The governor says the program involves more than 100 employers including park districts, state parks and nature centers.

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources is managing the program.

Local governments and nonprofits will receive grants to employ 16- to 19-year-olds in youth-focused educational, recreational and conservation programs.

And the Department of Natural Resources will employ 18- to 25-year-olds as seasonal conservation workers. Those workers will help clear brush, build trails and clean up litter in state parks.

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Dr. John Warner Hospital To Get New Sprinkler System

The Dr. John Warner Hospital will be seeing some major work being done on the inside of their building in the near future.

The hospital has announced they will be putting in a fire sprinkler system. The hospital announced O'Shea Builders in Springfield will be the contractors for the project. Earl Sheehy, CEO of the Dr. John Warner Hospital, says not only was O'Shea Builders the low bidder, but they also had the lowest estimated time of completion for the project.

[audio:sprinklersystem1.mp3]A Word From Sheehy[/audio]

Sheehy notes the sprinkler system project is part of a compliance project in conjunction with the Life and Safety Code. He adds the hospital needs to have a full sprinkler system and right now they are only at a partial sprinkler system.

Sheehy says the project is going to involve crews cutting through the walls and ceilings of the hospitals. He says with that work, the hospital has set aside money for a contingency fund should something unexpected come up through the course of the project. He believes this way the hospital is prepared to deal with those unexpected issues.

[audio:sprinklersystem2.mp3]A Word From Sheehy[/audio]

The hospital began funding the project several years ago. Sheehy says they are nearly exactly right with the amount of funds they had saved.

[audio:sprinklersystem3.mp3]A Word From Sheehy[/audio]

There is no exact start date determined at this time, however, Sheehy expects in the next month or so the project could get underway. He notes with the project a lot of the hospital will be blocked off. He also adds most of the construction work will be completed during the overnight hours.

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Clinton City Council Moving Forward Quickly With Sidewalk Project

The Clinton City Council is moving quickly to get a street project going.

The council sent out bids to get the project that will take place on East Main Street, and got two bids back. Steve Lobb, Public Works Director for the City of Clinton explains with a deadline of September 15, or the Apple and Pork Festival date, he recommended to the council Tuesday evening, to begin getting the project in motion.

[audio:mainstreetproject1.mp3]A Word From Lobb[/audio]

The project will take place within a couple of blocks of the downtown square in Clinton. Lobb notes the project will take place in front of several businesses on Main Street. He says part of the contract will be to allow for the businesses tenants to have complete access to their property. He says that will keep the project moving along and will not be a stop-and -go project.

[audio:mainstreetproject2.mp3]A Word From Lobb[/audio]

Lobb says the funds for this particular project will come out of the downtown TIF fund. He says there was $50-thousand for the project and the bids came in well below that.

[audio:mainstreetproject3.mp3]A Word From Lobb[/audio]

The council approved the motion to move forward ahead of schedule with the project. Lobb recommended going with Rogers Complete Concrete at a total cost of just under $40-thousand. Lobb notes approving the project doesn't mean it will begin within the next couple of weeks, however, he says it will get things going and will put the project into the contractors schedule and to get the project completed before the September 15 deadline for the Apple and Pork Festival.

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CornBelters Win Behind Pair of Steve Alexander Home Runs

After being swept by Windy City last week, the Normal CornBelters answered back against the ThunderBolts with a 10-2 win at the Corn Crib Tuesday night. Normal knocked out thirteen hits in the win and remains in third place in the Frontier League West Division.

Normal (24-19) jumped on Windy City (24-19) starter Bryant Cotton in the first, taking advantage of two errors and scoring six runs. Frank Martinez singled and stole second, followed by a dropped popup that allowed Daniel Cox to reach first base. Steve Alexander blooped a single to center, scoring Martinez. Asif Shah then doubled to right-center, bringing home Cox and Alexander for a 3-0 lead. The CornBelters kept the runs coming, as Tyler Keeble walked to set up a two-run double from Brad Agustin. A.J. Miller then singled to plate Agustin, scoring the sixth and final run of the inning.

The teams traded runs in the second inning, when Chris Wade singled and reached second on a throwing error, and later scored on an infield single from Chad Cregar. In the bottom half, the CornBelters went up 7-1 with a solo home run from Alexander, his league-leading fourteenth of the season.

Windy City cut the lead to 7-2 in the fourth courtesy of an RBI single from Larry Pempek that scored Wade. Shah picked up his second double of the evening in the fifth, and later scored on a Brad Agustin single, stretching Normal?s lead to 8-2.

Alexander wasn't done for the night, however, as he blasted his fifteenth homer in the sixth, a two-run shot that scored Cox. Both of Alexander's home runs were on the first pitch of his at-bat.

Normal's Jeremy Brewer relieved Pritchett to start the ninth, and was touched up by a two-run homer from Pempek that scored Cregar. After allowing two walks and a single to load the bases, Brewer was pulled in favor of Marshall Schuler with one out. Dale Swinford was forced home from third when a pitch hit Zach Aakhus, making it a 10-5 game. The ThunderBolts added another on an RBI groundout from Shepherd, but Schuler ended the game on the next batter for a 10-6 final score.

Pritchett (W, 5-2) worked eight innings, allowing eight hits and two runs while striking out four. Cotton (L, 3-3) pitched four innings and allowed seven runs, four of which were earned. Alexander finished 3 for 4 with the two home runs and three runs scored. Shah was 2 for 4 with two doubles and a pair of runs scored.

The CornBelters also signed former Illinois State Redbird Tyler McNeely on Tuesday. The outfielder led the 2011 Redbirds in batting average (.344), home runs (12), RBI (48), and on-base percentage (.485).

Normal released starting pitcher Jon Berger and outfielder Colin Moro from the team on Tuesday as well.

Game two of the series is scheduled for 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Corn Crib. Windy City's Dustin Williams (5-2, 3.98) starts against Brett Lester (4-2, 4.28) of the CornBelters.

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Cards Win; Cubs/Sox Lose

>>Cards Crush Reds

(St. Louis, MO)  --  Matt Holliday and Lance Berkman swatted back-to-back homers in the first inning and the Cardinals went on to trounce the Reds, 8-1.  Holliday added a three-run jack in the fifth inning to back a solid start from Jaime  Garcia.  Garcia tossed six frames of two-hit, one-run ball to run his record to 8-and-3 on the year.  Edinson Volquez took it on the chin for Cincinnati, allowing seven runs, six earned, on seven hits in five-and-a-third innings.  Scott Rolen drove in the Reds' lone run on a fourth-inning groundout.  The finale of the three-game series is tonight with Jake Westbrook opposing Bronson Arroyo.

>>Nats Knock Off Cubs

(Washington, DC)  --  The Nationals scored three runs in the first frame and held off the Cubs for a 3-2 victory on Tuesday in the nation's capital.  Roger Bernadina and Danny Espinosa both scored on a throwing error and Wilson Ramos added an RBI single for Washington, which has won three of its last four games.  Ross Detwiler gave up two runs through five-and-a-third frames to pick up his first win of the season and Drew Storen closed it out for his 21st save.  Aramis Ramirez' two-run homer in the sixth inning accounted for Chicago's only runs of the game.  Ramon Ortiz, whose contract was purchased before the game, allowed three runs, two earned, through six innings of duty to absorb the loss.  The Northsiders have dropped four-of-five.  Randy Wells will toe the rubber against former Cub Tom Gorzelanny in tonight's third installment.

>>Royals Flush Sox

(Chicago, IL)  --  Felipe Paulino kept the White Sox bats at bay as Kansas City earned a 5-3 win in Chicago on Tuesday night.  Paulino allowed three runs on nine hits while striking out nine over six innings to pick up his first win of the year.  Joakim Soria gave up a couple hits in the ninth but still managed the save, his 14th of the year.  Jake Peavy took the loss for Chicago after six frames of six-hit, five-run ball.  He falls to 4-and-2 on the season.  Paul Konerko continued his torrid year at the plate with his 22nd homer and a pair of RBI to give him 64 for the season.  Edwin Jackson gets the nod opposite Bruce Chen in this afternoon's series finale.

MLB National League
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Pittsburgh Pirates 5, Houston Astros 1 
Philadelphia Phillies 14, Florida Marlins 2
Atlanta Braves 5, Colorado Rockies 3
Arizona Diamondbacks 7, Milwaukee Brewers 3
New York Mets 6, Los Angeles Dodgers 0
San Diego Padres 5, San Francisco Giants 3

MLB American League
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New York Yankees 9, Cleveland Indians 2
Boston Red Sox 3, Toronto Blue Jays 2
Texas Rangers 4, Baltimore Orioles 2
Minnesota Twins 3, Tampa Bay Rays 2
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 1, Detroit Tigers 0
Seattle Mariners 4, Oakland Athletics 2 (10 inn)

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 7-6

 

July 5, 2011

Jail Population: 57

Summons Served: 0

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

 

Investigation into the scene of an accident, which occurred at approximately 2:47 p.m. on Monday, July 4, 2011, revealed that a vehicle driven by Diane Shea, 60, Decatur was southbound on US 51 approaching the stoplights at the intersection with IL Rt. 10. Darrin Cooper, 37, Bloomington was westbound proceeded through the intersection with the green light. Cooper crossed the northbound lanes of US 51 and began to enter the southbound lanes when he collided with Shea. Witnesses confirmed that Shea did not stop at the stoplight. Shea was extricated from her vehicle and transported to Decatur Memorial. The occupants of Cooper’s vehicle were unharmed. Shea was issued citations for Failure to reduce speed/accident and Disobey Traffic Control Signal. Shea was issued a notice to appear and was released.

 

Kristine McCall, 38, Farmer City was arrested and charged with DUI/Alcohol. McCall posted the necessary bond and was released.

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IDOT Pumps $23 Mil. Into U of I Research

 The Illinois Transportation Department plans to spend $23 million over the next five years to fund research at the University of Illinois' Center for Transportation.

The center announced Wednesday the deal is an extension of earlier agreements that have seen government money pumped into the university's transportation research since 2005.

Christine Reed is director of the IDOT's Division of Highways. She says the money should yield improvements in the state's highway system and longer-lasting and less expensive roads.

The center said past agreements with IDOT have led to research that created better pavement as well as more efficient construction. Center research has also focused on improving highway work zone safety, better bridge construction and energy efficiency in transportation.

The center conducts research on all three University of Illinois campuses.

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U of I President Say Money Available For Raises

University of Illinois President Michael Hogan says cost-cutting measures have helped create a pool of money to use for employee raises at the school's three campuses.

Hogan said in an e-mail sent Wednesday to campuses in Urbana-Champaign, Chicago and Springfield that the leaders of each campus can use up to 3% of their salary pools for merit raises. The money can go to administrators as well as faculty and staff.

The raises would be the first for university employees in almost three years.

The university has frozen salaries and hasn't filled most open jobs the past two years as it has tried to deal with dwindling state support.

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Gov. Quinn Wants To Pay Superintendents From Local Taxes

Gov. Pat Quinn wants to pay regional school superintendents with tax money that comes from business and goes to local government.

Quinn budget director David Vaught said Wednesday the 44 superintendents should be paid from the "personal property replacement tax." Corporations and business partnerships pay that instead of local property taxes.

In an Associated Press interview, Vaught said the regional superintendents largely perform local duties, so it makes sense to pay them from a local tax.

Quinn used his veto power to eliminate $11.3 million in state money for the superintendents before he signed the budget last week. That means there's no money for the superintendents' salaries.

Vaught says the officials may have to go without pay for several months until a deal can be worked out with lawmakers.

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5 Arrested in Decatur Dispute That Leaves 1 Man Dead

Police in Decatur say they have five people in custody in connection with a dispute that left one man shot to death and his father wounded by a machete.

4 of those arrested were booked on preliminary charges of murder. The fifth faces potential obstruction of justice charges.

The arrests follow the shooting death of Christopher Kraft of Decatur outside his home on Tuesday. Police say a 48-year-old man was also wounded by gunfire, while Kraft's 52-year-old father suffered machete wounds to both hands.

David Dickerson, of the Decatur Police Department, says a confrontation broke out between two rival groups. He says the situation remains under investigation.

All of those arrested are between the ages of 18 and 23.

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DeWitt County Sheriff Arrests 3 Men in Connection To Rural Burglaries

The DeWitt County Sheriff announced the arrest of 3 men on Wednesday in connection with 2 rural burglaries. According to Sheriff Jered Shofner, this was an instance where two separate investigations concluded on the same day.

Joseph Debauche, 35, of Wapella was arrested and charged with a residential burglary that was reported on June 30, 2011 near the 8000 block on Township Road, rural Wapella. Debauche is accused of taking over $5,000 worth of items from a home while the owner was away on vacation.

Skyler Hallowell, 18, of Chicago and Salar (NMI) Dean, 19, also of Chicago, were both arrested on July 6th and charged with a burglary that was reported at 4:50 A.M. in Kenney, IL. A resident of an apartment in the 100 block of Johnson Street was awaken when two men forced their way inside. When confronted, the men fled on foot.

Deputies responded and developed information that the offenders had fled to a home at 313 E. Benjamin Street in Kenney. Deputies executed a search warrant there at 8:45 A.M. and subsequently arrested Hallowell and Dean.

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Warner Public Library Summer Concert Series Returns

The Warner Public Library's Summer Concert Series makes its arrival back to the library.

The library has already hosted one concert in their series of concerts, however if you were not able to catch the first installment, you can catch their 2nd one tonight. The library will be hosting harpist Christina Marshall. Librarian Bobbi Perryman says something unique about Marshall is she makes her own harps.

[audio:harpist1.mp3]A Word From Perryman[/audio]

Perryman explains the concerts are suitable for all ages. She says the concerts draw all ages, and are an admission free event hosted by the library.

[audio:harpist2.mp3]A Word From Perryman[/audio]

Marshall is a return guest to the concert series from last year. Perryman says her music will include classical and celtic music. Those who saw her last year were very pleased with the concert.

[audio:harpist3.mp3]A Word From Perryman[/audio]

Again the free concert takes place at 7pm in the Revere Ware room in the library. For more information about the summer concert series and upcoming guests to the series, you can visit the Warner Public Library's Website at www.vwarner.org or you can give them a call at 935-5174.

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Important Clinton Lake Project Nearing Completion

An important project to help benefit the health of the Clinton Lake is nearing completion.

One mile of shoreline protection at the Clinton Lake is the focus of the project. The project has been in the works for nearly 4 years. Shelly Finfrock is the Resource Conservationist with the DeWitt County Soil and Water Conservation District. She notes the project is able to be completed because of a grant the lake received from EPA and then Exelon, the owner of Clinton Lake, matched the grant EPA gave. She explains the lake brought together experts to address the problems of Clinton Lake. One of the campgrounds keeps falling into the lake, she says this project will focus on fixing that.

[audio:clintonlakeproject1.mp3]A Word From Finfrock[/audio]

Finfrock says a lot of the project is to allow nature to do its thing and eventually the area will keep from eroding. She also notes the project will allow for cleaner water to run down the damn in the area and will allow for cleaner water on the lake as well.

[audio:clintonlakeproject2.mp3]A Word From Finfrock[/audio]

Finfrock explains the project has involved several organizations coming together to pitch in through various means and she says while it has taken a while for it to all come together, she has enjoyed the process.

[audio:clintonlakeproject3.mp3]A Word From Finfrock[/audio]

By the time the project is finished, almost three-quarters of a million dollars will have been invested into the Clinton Lake. Frinfrock says the rock placement in the lake should be complete by the end of July and hopefully by the end of the year the project will be complete.

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Clinton City Council To Consider Taking Stance on Clinton Landfill Issue

One area group of veterans is taking a stance on the Clinton Landfill issue.

At the Clinton City Council meeting Tuesday evening, Tom Reddington came forward representing the American Legion in Clinton. He says as an organization the American Legion is concerned about the idea of putting PCB's into the Clinton Landfill, which sits on top of the Mahomet Aquifer, and they are taking a public stand against it.

[audio:legionresolution1.mp3]A Word From Redington[/audio]

Reddington presented to the council the resolution members of the American Legion passed recently opposing the dumping of PCB's into the Clinton Landfill. The Legion also asked the City Council to take a stand as well.

[audio:legionresolution2.mp3]A Word From Redington[/audio]

After Reddington's presentation, Clinton Mayor Carolyn Peters made a point to put on file for next time the commissioner's to research, and think over the proposition to take a stance on the issue. She put it on file for next time for the council to discuss and take action on taking a stance.

[audio:legionresolution3.mp3]A Word From Mayor Peters[/audio]

The previous council did not take a stand on the Clinton Landfill issue. Reddington said while it may have been the right thing to do at the time, he says the council is not bound by what the previous council decided. The next meeting for th Clinton City Council is Monday July 18.

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CornBelters Lose

 The Normal CornBelters dropped game two against the Windy City ThunderBolts Wednesday night 5-3.

The CornBelters grabbed a pair of runs early in the game.  Asif Shah singled home Daniel Cox to put Normal on top 1-0 and two batters later, Tyler Keeble drew a walk with the bases loaded to force home Steven Alexander and give the Belters a 2-0 lead.  Daniel Cox tacked on another run an inning later as he drove home Alvaro Ramirez to put Normal ahead 3-0.

Windy City stormed ahead in the 4th, taking the lead and forcing starter Brett Lester out of the game.  Chris Wade doubled home Devin Shepherd to score the ThunderBolts first run and trim the CornBelters lead to 3-1.  Lester then walked three consecutive ThunderBolts to force Chris Wade home and cut the Normal lead in half.  After a nine-pitch at-bat, Mike Torres singled home Ryan Basham and Nick Kuroczko to give Windy City its first lead of the game 4-3.

Jacob Liedka pitched the CornBelters out of the fourth inning, and cruised until the seventh when Chad Cregar plated one more for the ThunderBolts. His single brought home Zach Aakhus and gave Windy City a 5-3 lead.

Williams earned the win and improved to 6-2 going eight innings, allowing three runs, nine hits, walking four, and striking out eleven.  Lester drops to 4-3 with the loss after allowing four runs on four hits in 3 2/3 innings.

The series will conclude Thursday at the Corn Crib at 7 P.M.  Michael Click (0-0, 5.75) will appear in his first start for the CornBelters as Matt Jernstad (3-5, 3.93) will take the mound for the ThunderBolts.

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Cubs, Cards, Sox All Lose

>>Reds Blow Lead, Recover To Clip Cards In 13

(St. Louis, MO)  --  Ramon Hernandez doubled in the go-ahead run in the top of the 13th to give the Reds a wild 9-8 win over the Cardinals.  Chris Heisey homered on the first pitch of the game for the Reds, who led 8-0 after five innings.  John Jay clubbed a game-tying solo shot in the bottom of the ninth for the Cards, who scored two runs in the sixth and five more in the seventh.  Albert Pujols started for the first time since June 19th and went 1-for-6 with an RBI single.  Jose Arredondo was credited with his first win.  Raul Valdes suffered his first loss.The Cardinals open a four-game home series tonight against the Diamondbacks.

>>Nats Clip Cubs

(Washington, DC)  --  Wilson Ramos' go-ahead seventh inning sacrifice scored Mike Morse as the Nationals clipped the Cubs, 5-4, on Wednesday night.  Danny Espinosa and Ryan Zimmerman each popped two-run homers for Washington, which has won the first three of a four-game set in the nation's capital.  Ryan Mattheus worked a scoreless inning of relief to notch the win and Drew Storen tossed a 1-2-3 ninth to nail down his 22nd save.  Carlos Pena and Aramis Ramirez both blasted two-run dingers for Chicago.  Kerry Wood was tagged with the loss.  The Northsiders have dropped five of their last six contests.  Matt Garza will be on the bump opposite Livan Hernandez in tonight's series finale.

>>Royals Take Rubber Match From White Sox

(Chicago, IL)  --  Jeff Francoeur drove in two runs and Eric Hosmer homered as the Royals topped the White Sox, 4-1, on Wednesday afternoon.  Francoeur had an RBI single and a sac-fly for Kansas City, which took the final two games of the three-game set at U.S. Cellular Field.  Bruce Chen pitched six innings of one-run ball for his fifth win.  Edwin Jackson allowed all four runs in seven frames to take the loss for Chicago.  The White Sox scored their lone run on a bases loaded walk to Adam Dunn in the sixth inning.  The Southsiders welcome in the Minnesota Twins for a four-game set starting this evening.  Philip Humber gets the nod against Carl Pavano in the opener.

MLB NL
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Milwaukee Brewers 3, Arizona Diamondbacks 1
Houston Astros 8, Pittsburgh Pirates 2
Florida Marlins 7, Philadelphia Phillies 6  (10 inn)
Atlanta Braves 9, Colorado Rockies 1
New York Mets 5, Los Angeles Dodgers 3
San Francisco Giants 6, San Diego Padres 5  (14 inn)

MLB AL
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Tampa Bay Rays 12, Minnesota Twins 5
Detroit Tigers 5, LA Angels of Anaheim 4
Oakland Athletics 2, Seattle Mariners 0
Cleveland Indians 5, New York Yankees 3
Boston Red Sox 6, Toronto Blue Jays 4
Texas Rangers 13, Baltimore Orioles 5

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 7-7

 

July 6, 2011

Jail Population: 52

Summons Served: 0

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

 

Skyler Hallowell, 18, Chicago, was arrested and charged with Burglary. Hallowell is housed in the DeWitt County Jail awaiting court appearance.

 

Salar Dean, 19, Chicago, was arrested and charged with Burglary. Dean is housed in the DeWitt County Jail awaiting court appearance.

 

Joseph Debauche, 35, Wapella, was arrested and charged with Residential Burglary. Debauche is housed in the DeWitt County Jail awaiting court appearance.

 

James Lucas, 43, Clinton, was issued a citation for speeding (75 mph in a 55 mph zone). Lucas posted his IL Drivers License and was released.

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Cornbelters Earn Their Three Game Series Win Streak Against Windy City

The Normal Cornbelters played game three of their three game series against the Windy City Thunderbolts tonight. The Belters looking to win the final game in an effort to take the series win after the Thunderbolts blitzed them for a win lastnight. It was a fairly close game throughtout the evening as it was tied 2-2 from the fourth inning all the way to the bottom of the ninth. The Cornbelters fought hard to keep the game even until they could score the tie breaking run. This worked in their favor as they scored the winning run in the bottom of the ninth taking the 3-2 lead. This gave the Belters their three series winning streak they hoped for. Tune in again tomorrow night at 7 PM as the Normal Cornbelters face off against Joliet. We'll bring you all the action play-by-play right here on 95.9, WEZC.

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Peoria City Council Looking To Attract Public University

Peoria is home to small, private Bradley University, but the City Council wants to find a way to lure a public university campus to the central Illinois city.

The council on Wednesday decided to make the pursuit of a public university a priority.

City manager Patrick Urich was at the meeting with council members. He said they plan to talk over the next six months with state lawmakers and other state-level officials about the idea. Council members see the addition of a public university as a key component in developing the city.

Urich said the city shouldn't expect a 4-year public university to come to Peoria any time soon.

And he said council members don't mean to diminish the importance of Bradley.

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Decomposed Body Found in Champaign Identified

Authorities now say that a decomposing body found in Champaign is a 50-year-old resident of the city.

Champaign County Coroner Duane Northrup said Thursday that he still isn't sure how Nathaniel Cater died or how long he had been dead.

The results of an autopsy aren't yet available.

Police Chief R.T. Finney says a man found Carter's body Wednesday in some knee-high weeds in Champaign.

Finney says the body was so decomposed that after Carter was found, officers couldn't even be sure of his race.

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Tax Hike Drives Growth in Budget

 The just-expired Illinois budget got a billion dollar shot in the arm from the recently approved tax increase. And at least one lawmaker says that's not a good sign.

The June report from the legislature's Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability shows a $1.1 billion dollar jump between the 2010 and 2011 budget. Most of that, $547 million dollars come from personal income taxes. But the that jump is exactly the same as the recent tax hike according Rockford Republican Dave Syverson.

[audio:070711Syverson1.mp3]A Word From Syverson[/audio]

Syverson says it would be better if Illinois was collecting more because of higher salaries or new jobs, not just higher taxes.

Kelly Kraft with Governor Pat Quinn's budget office says the state is adding jobs, and hope for more growth this year.

Syverson says unless Illinois hit a huge growth spurt, the promised temporary income tax increase will never be allowed to expire.

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Medicaid Payments Now Delayed 162 Days

Illinois hospitals didn't want to get less for treating Medicaid patients, so they accepted a longer wait for the same pay.

But that wait is getting longer. Governor Pat Quinn's decision to spend $276-million dollars less on medicaid is going to draw the payment cycle out to 162 day for most hospitals. The state's safety net hospitals, those with huge Medicaid populations, will be spared.

But that doesn't help Greg Pagliuzza with Trinity Regional health Systems in the Quad Cities.

[audio:070611GregPagliuzza2.mp3]A Word From Pagliuzza[/audio]

Quinn's administration said there's little choice. The delayed payments will push $1-point-4 billion dollars into the next budget.

Danny Chun with the Illinois Hospital Association said facilities in the state just could not handle lower payments.

[audio:070611Chun1.mp3]A Word From Chun[/audio]

Illinois is no stranger to late Medicaid payments. In 2008 the wait was six months or more form some hospitals.

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Illinois Sen. Kirk Keeping Close Eye on Illinois Agriculture

Illinois' freshman Senator may reside on the north side of Chicago, but he's doing what he can to keep in touch with the state's largest industry.  Jared White has more on how Mark Kirk is keeping tabs on Illinois agriculture...

[audio:7-5-11 Senator Kirk Ag Advisory WRAP.mp3]Jared White With the Story[/audio]

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Clinton Officials Remind Residents of Zoning Regulations

If you have been out in your yard working with loose brush and debris from trees, City of Clinton officials have a few reminders for how to handle the loose brush and debris.

Nan Crang is the Streets and Public Improvements commissioner for the City of Clinton reminds residents of some of the regulations regarding yard waste. She says pick up for tree limbs and yard waste is the third Monday of the month, and also those crews out cleaning up the streets will be out until they have gotten to all the streets. She says it can be up to a three or four day process.

[audio:brushreminder1.mp3]A Word From Commissioner Crang[/audio]

The weeks between the brush pick up dates, Crang encourages residents to keep the brush off the roads until the Monday of the pick up dates. She says it makes the job of the city street workers easier when they go through the city.

[audio:brushreminder2.mp3]A Word From Crang[/audio]

April through November the street sweeper runs through the town around two times a month. Crang says the goal of the city is to keep the streets well kept, especially prior to weekends and holiday weekends. She asks for residents to be aware of the street departments regulations and what they are trying to do.

[audio:brushreminder3.mp3]A Word From Crang[/audio]

City officials also encourages citizens to use the landscape waste facility. The hours of operation for that is 4-6om Tuesday and Thursday, and also Saturday all day from 8 am to 5 pm. They also remind residents putting tarps out in the streets is not acceptable either.

For further details on the regulations or street clean up dates you can contact City Hall at 935-9438 or visit clintonillinois.com.

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DeWitt County Fair Here

The DeWitt County 4-H Fair kicks off today and runs throughout the weekend.

Those involved in 4-H will be presenting their projects and animals and other items of interest throughout the weekend to be judged. Sherry Fulton, with the U of I Extension in DeWitt County explains things get started tonight at the 4-H fairgrounds with the Cat Show and the general projects get brought in as well.

[audio:dewittcountyfair1.mp3]A Word From Fulton[/audio]

Saturday is the biggest day of the fair. The livestock show takes place Saturday and the rest of the general projects get checked in as well. Fulton reminds those showing on Saturday to check their 4-H showbook because being late checking in will result in points being deducted from their scores. She adds part of the goal with 4-H is to teach responsibility.

[audio:dewittcountyfair2.mp3]A Word From Fulton[/audio]

Fulton believes 4-H is a good opportunity for young people to find out what they enjoy and develop their hobbies. She says 4-H is a family affair and it is not uncommon to see families working together and supporting one another in their 4-H endeavors.

[audio:dewittcountyfair3.mp3]A Word From Fulton[/audio]

Again things kick off Friday(Ton) with the cat show at 5 pm. Then things really get going Saturday with the livestock show and the general projects being  brought in as well. The awards ceremony will take place Sunday evening beginning at 7 pm.

WHOW will broadcast live from the DeWitt County 4H Fair Saturday morning from 9:30 to noon, and then again Sunday evening from 6 to 8pm!

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Contributions From Newcomers Lift CornBelters

The Normal CornBelters got a boost Thursday night from the two newest hitters in the lineup, as A.J. Miller hit a walk-off double to score Tyler McNeely for a 3-2 win over the ThunderBolts. With the win, Normal moves to 25-20 with three games to play before the All-Star break.

In a 2-2 tie, Windy City stranded the go-ahead run at third in the top of the ninth. In the bottom half, McNeely reached on a fielder's choice, and scored from first on Miller's double. Windy City reliever Greg Johnson (L, 3-1) recorded two outs before surrendering the winning run. Normal's Marshall Schuler (W, 1-0) and Donald Furrow combined for four scoreless innings of relief work.

Michael Click pitched five innings in his first start for Normal, allowing four hits and one earned run in a no-decision. Matt Jernstad struck out eight CornBelters over eight innings, also recording a no-decision.

The teams traded runs in the first inning, as Windy City jumped out to an early lead with a sac fly from Zach Aakhus that scored Brandon Anderson. Normal answered back with a ground rule double from Brad Agustin followed by an RBI single from Frank Martinez.

The CornBelters took the lead 2-1 in the third when Martinez picked up his second RBI of the night, a fielder's choice that brought home Alvaro Ramirez.

After allowing the sac fly to Aakhus in the first, Click cruised through the Windy City lineup, retiring nine of the next ten hitters. Aakhus ended Click's hot streak in the fourth, reaching on an error and scoring on a Chad Cregar groundout to tie the game 2-2.

Windy City threatened against Furrow in the seventh, when Ryan Basham and Larry Pempek reached on consecutive singles with one out. Dale Swinford then hit a soft line drive behind second base, but was robbed on a diving catch by Normal shortstop Tyler Keeble for the second out. After Anderson walked to load the bases, Furrow forced Mike Torres to ground out to Keeble to end the inning. Normal also put two runners aboard in its half of the seventh, but Jernstad was able to work around a hit batter and single to keep the game tied.

Click pitched five innings and recorded a no-decision, with four hits and one earned run allowed. Jernstad also picked up a no-decision, striking out eight CornBelters over eight innings.

Normal continues the homestand Friday with game one of a three-game set against the Joliet Slammers. The CornBelters will send Ryan Sheldon (5-3, 2.89) to the mound against Joliet?s Ryan Miller (0-3, 5.16) for a 7 p.m. start at the Corn Crib.

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Cubs Stun Nats; Sox & Cards Lose; Konerko Final Member of AL All-Star Team

>>Cubs Rally From Eight Down To Dump Nats

(Washington, DC)  --  The Cubs scored nine unanswered runs and Darwin Barney clubbed a go-ahead, RBI double in the top of the ninth en route to a 10-9 win over the Nationals on Thursday night.  Blake DeWitt smacked a three-run homer and Carlos Pena added a two-run shot for the Northsiders, who rallied from an 8-0 deficit to salvage the finale of a four-game set from the nation's capital.  Sean Marshall was credited with the win and Carlos Marmol closed it out to nail down his 18th save.  The Cubs head to PNC Park this evening to open up a three-game series against the Pittsburgh Pirates.  Rodrigo Lopez will get the nod opposite James McDonald in the opener.

>>Twins Trounce White Sox

(Chicago, IL)  --  Joe Mauer went 3-for-5 with two RBI in his debut at first base as the Twins trounced the White Sox, 6-2, on Thursday night at The Cell.  Ben Revere also went 3-for-5 with two RBI and two runs scored for the Twins, who have beaten the Sox eight straight times.  Carl Pavano tossed seven innings of two-run ball to improve to 6-and-6.  Mark Teahen hit a two-run homer for the White Sox, who have lost 26 of their last 32 meetings with Minnesota.  Phil Humber was lit up for six runs and 11 hits in only three-and-two-thirds innings to fall to 8-and-5.  Gavin Floyd will toe the rubber opposite Nick Blackburn in tonight's second installment.

>>D'Backs Dodge Rain, Dump Cards

(St. Louis, MO)  --  Justin Upton clubbed a two-run homer in the top of the sixth inning after a second rain delay as the Diamondbacks dumped the Cardinals, 4-1.  The game was initially delayed a little over an hour due to rain.  Sean Burroughs and Ryan Roberts each plated a run for Arizona, which has won four of its last six games.  Joe Saunders tossed five frames of one-hit ball to pick up the win.  David Hernandez worked a 1-2-3 ninth to nail down his sixth save.  Matt Holliday's RBI double in the sixth inning accounted for St. Louis' lone run of the game.  Kyle McClellan was tagged with the loss after allowing four runs, three earned, through seven innings of duty.  Albert Pujols is now just 1-for-9 with an RBI in two games since returning from the disabled list.  The second of the four-game series is tonight as Kyle Lohse opposes Ian Kennedy.

MLB NL
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Atlanta Braves 6, Colorado Rockies 3
Chicago Cubs 10, Washington Nationals 9
Florida Marlins 5, Houston Astros 0
Milwaukee Brewers 5, Cincinnati Reds 4
Arizona Diamondbacks 4, St. Louis Cardinals 1
Los Angeles Dodgers 6, New York Mets 0
San Francisco Giants 2, San Diego Padres 1

MLB AL
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Cleveland Indians 5, Toronto Blue Jays 4
Tampa Bay Rays 5, New York Yankees 1
Boston Red Sox 10, Baltimore Orioles 4
Texas Rangers 6, Oakland Athletics 0
Detroit Tigers 3, Kansas City Royals 1
Minnesota Twins 6, Chicago White Sox 2
LA Angels of Anaheim 5, Seattle Mariners 1

>>Konerko, Victorino Selected To ASG In Final Vote

(Phoenix, AZ)  --  The All-Star Game rosters are now complete.  White Sox first baseman Paul Konerko and Philadelphia Phillies outfielder Shane Victorino took the final spots after being voted in by fans via the All-Star Game Final Vote.  Victorino led all candidates with 9.2-million votes to become the first two-time winner of the Final Vote after also being elected in 2009.  He beat out the Dodgers' Andre Ethier, Rockies' Todd Helton, Nationals' Mike Morse and Diamondbacks' Ian Kennedy.  The "Flyin' Hawaiian" sprained his thumb on Sunday and may be placed on the disabled list.  If that is the case, he would be replaced on the National League roster.  Konerko received 8.4-million votes to beat out the Royals' Alex Gordon, Tigers' Victor Martinez, Orioles' Adam Jones and Rays' Ben Zobrist.  It's the fifth All-Star nod for Konerko.  The 82nd All-Star Game is Tuesday in Phoenix, Arizona.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 7-8

July 7, 2011

Jail Population: 54

Summons Served: 3

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

 

Marjorie Kotlicky, 41, Carpentersville, was issued a citation for No Valid Driver’s License. Kotlicky was issued a notice to appear and was released.

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Officers Kept Busy Over Holiday Weekend

 The Fourth of July holiday weekend kept officers from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources busy. They wrote more than 1,200 citations and warnings while on patrol of state parks and recreation areas.

Conservation police officers arrested 25 boaters for operating under the influence. Another five motorists were arrested for DUI.

They also investigated 14 boating accidents and performed routine safety inspections of more than 2,000 vessels.

Officers reported illegal activities such as possession of drugs and drug paraphernalia, underage drinking and disorderly conduct. They also cited people for illegal fishing and a variety of boat safety and boating law violations.

Conservation Police Chief Rafael Gutierrez says most boaters enjoyed the holiday responsibly and safely.

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Foodborne Illness Awareness

Summer is the time for outdoor picnics and barbeques, but unless precautions are taken, foodborne illness can occur, says a dietitian at SIU School of Medicine.

Foodborne infections increase in the summer months because of the warmer temperatures. And more people are cooking and eating outside where food can spoil faster. Eating contaminated food may cause symptoms such as fever, vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal cramps. Sybil Cox, registered dietitian at SIU medical school in Springfield, offers some tips to keep food safe.

[audio:siufood1.mp3]Tips on food safety...[/audio]

To help prevent food from spoiling, she recommends putting food that needs to be chilled in a cooler with ice and keeping it in the cooler until it’s time to cook or serve it. She says people need to be aware of the length of time the food is sitting out in hot weather. Also, Cox says foods need to be cooked to the proper temperatures.

[audio:siufood2.mp3]Food temperatures[/audio]

Cox says children, the elderly, pregnant women and individuals with a weakened immune system are at most risk of getting a foodborne illness.

If someone does get sick from food, they should drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration and see their personal physician as soon as possible.

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Ryan's Release Appeal Denied

Former Governor George Ryan is not getting out of prison any time soon.  A federal appeals court has denied an appeal aimed at releasing him.  Matthew Carter, one of Ryan's attorneys, says they thought a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling on "honest services" laws would make way for his release.

[audio:rddRyan1.mp3]...a crime...[/audio]

Carter says they'll keep fighting for his release.

[audio:rddRyan2.mp3]Press on for his release...[/audio]

The 77-year-old Ryan has about three years left on a six-and-a-half-year sentence.  Ryan's legal team has vowed to pursue the case to the U.S. Supreme Court if necessary.

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Schools Do Away With Standardized Writing Test

Illinois school children are no longer required to take a writing assessment test in the 11th grade.  Matt Vanover, with the Illinois State Board of Education, says ISBE would like to keep the program but doesn't have the money.

[audio:rddWrite1.mp3]Not enough money...[/audio]

Vanover adds grading students' writing is different than other standardized testing.

[audio:rddWrite2.mp3]Cuts must be made...[/audio]

ISBE is expected to save two-point-four million dollars a year by cutting the writing assessment.  Unlike reading, math and science, writing is not mandated by federal law.  Writing assessment for third through eighth graders was eliminated last year at a savings of around three-point-five million dollars.

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Tours Through Old Bank Offered

Visitors to the Illinois State Capitol will soon get the chance to walk through an old bank vault.

Illinois State Treasurer Dan Rutherford is offering tours later this month. He says it's a good chance to show it off.

The vault is used to store items of unclaimed property, like baseball cards or Elvis Presley tickets.

The 30-minute public tours are July 11 to 15.

Other than the vault, visitors will get to see the first Illinois treasurer's money box dating to 1818.

Ruther plans to limit each tour to 25 people.

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Bradley Finishes $20 Million Dorms

A $20 million upscale student housing complex is on track to be finished before classes start at Bradley University.

So far, students have signed up for 170 of the 194 beds in the Main Street Commons' private suites in Peoria.

Each suite has its own washer and dryer and each suite has its own private bathroom. The commons area has 52-inch televisions, a fitness room, a hot tub and tanning beds.

Monthly rent will be $659 per bedroom.

University officials say much of exterior work is done, but there's still work going on indoors.

Developers say with projected occupancy rates they expect to move forward with second phase of construction which includes another building.

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Dr. John Warner Hospital Receives Grants For Several Areas of Needs

The Dr. John Warner Hospital has received some good news in the area of their financial state.

The DJWH has been awarded several grants that will allow them to continue training staff members and extend services they provide. Sandy Rice is the Director of Business Development at the Clinton hospital explains there were seven grants to apply for, and the Dr. John Warner Hospital applied for and received three of those grants. She says the grants are very important to the continued services of the hospital.

[audio:hospitalgrants1.mp3]A Word From Rice[/audio]

Rice notes the grants will allow for the hospital to put on a health fair that will promote chronic disease prevention, which will also go to training for the staff in preparation of the hospital becoming a stroke ready hospital. The grants will also go towards equipment upgrades and staff recruitment and retention efforts as well.

[audio:hospitalgrants1.mp3]A Word From Rice[/audio]

Part of those equipment upgrades the hospital would see would be the automated CPR machines in the ambulances. Rice says one of the hospital's ambulances has had one of the machines as a loaner unit, and it has already saved a life. She says the advantages of the automated CPR unit will be consistency and it will not tire out, two disadvantages to a human element when performing CPR. She says larger area hospitals such as Peoria and Bloomington already have the vest-like unit.

[audio:hospitalgrants3.mp3]A Word From Rice[/audio]

Rice says the grants will also expand on the services the hospital can provide. She says the community could see the effects of some of the grants the hospital received in the near future.

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Logan County's Mill Project Moving Forward

The Logan County Tourism Bureau's Route 66 attraction "The Mill" being transitioned into a museum continues to make headway.

In May the Abe Lincoln Tourism Bureau held a community wide garage sale to raise funds to help continue on with the project. Executive Director of the Abe Lincoln Tourism Bureau in Logan County Geoff Ladd notes the garage sale was a big success.

[audio:themillproject1.mp3]A Word From Ladd[/audio]

In the past, The Mill has struggled to stay ahead financially, however, according Ladd, right now The Mill is ahead in its finances, and now the plans can begin for the museum that will be put in it

[audio:themillproject2.mp3]A Word From Ladd[/audio]

Ladd explains the general history of Lincoln will continue to be displayed at the Lincoln Heritage Museum at Lincoln College museum. However, he says The Mill will feature the history of Route 66 and a little more of a history of Logan County that would not be found anywhere else.

Ladd says Route 66 is still a unique and well traveled road. He says businesses still continue to locate to the historic road. Ladd believes part of the uniqueness of traveling Route 66 is seeing the odd things along the road.

[audio:themillproject3.mp3]A Word From Ladd[/audio]

With the finances seemingly in order for The Mill, there is still no concrete time table for its debut. Ladd hopes however, by the end of the year to have select special feature days where The Mill can be opened and put on display.

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Clinton Chamber's Visitor Center Being Well Received

The DeWitt County Visitors Center has been open a little over a month and a half now.

New attractions on the inside include a wall of the Center which was turned into a museum that will show off some the area's unique railroad history. The exhibit  also features local stories about the railroads and a lot of interesting content. Executive Director of the Chamber of  Commerce Marian Brisard encourages locals and visitors to come out see the new display.

[audio:visitorcenter1.mp3]A Word From Brisard[/audio]

Brisard says it is a good opportunity for local businesses to bring their information out and put it on display for those stopping in to see. She encourages those businesses that have not yet gotten their information to the Visitors Center to do so, as the Center has been well received by the public so far.

[audio:visitorcenter2.mp3]A Word From Brisard[/audio]

Brisard says the numbers of people that come in and visit the Center helps the Chamber decide whether they will continue to keep it open. The Visitors Center has been open since the Memorial Day weekend. For more information, contact the Clinton Chamber of Commerce and Tourism Bureau at 935-3364. 

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Pekin Woman Killed By Fire Started By Cigarette

A woman who ignited a fire at a central Illinois nursing home when she fell asleep while smoking has died.

68-year-old Barbara Harris of Pekin died Wednesday at a Springfield hospital due to injuries suffered in the June 25 fire. Harris was badly burned in the blaze.

Fire officials say Harris fell asleep while smoking in a chair in her room at the UAW Senior Citizens Center. She was using an oxygen tank at the time, and the oxygen accelerated the flames.

An overhead sprinkler doused the fire.

Pekin is just south of Peoria.

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Court To Decide Legality of Illinois Public Works Plan

The Illinois Supreme Court is close to deciding a case that has thrown liquor taxes, gambling and thousands of jobs into the air.

The case involves a $31 billion public works program that lawmakers approved in 2009. They decided to pay for the construction by raising taxes on liquor and candy, as well as legalizing video gambling at bars and truck.

The projects have created construction jobs across Illinois.

Chicago Blackhawks owner Rocky Wirtz, a liquor distributor, challenged the law. An appeals court agreed with him that it violated a requirement that laws must be limited to just one topic.

The state Supreme Court is scheduled to rule Monday on whether the law followed the rules or must be thrown out.

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Arrests Made in Connection with July 4th Fireworks Attack

 Police officials in Peoria have arrested two juveniles as suspects in a July 4th fireworks attack on firefighters and police.

The two were arrested on preliminary charges of aggravated battery on police, two counts of aggravated battery on fire personnel and mob action. Both are being held at the Peoria County Juvenile Detention Facility.

Police say firefighters and a small number of officers were called to the Taft Homes complex near downtown Peoria over a trash bin fire Monday night. A crowd that police said was in the hundreds was gathered to watch fireworks and blocked their way.

Police say someone started firing commercial-grade fireworks at firefighters as they worked to douse the flames. Several officers and firefighters were burned.

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Comptroller's Website Promoting Pet Adoption

The Illinois comptroller is using her state website to help find new owners for homeless dogs and cats.

Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka says the initiative can save tax money in the long run by reducing local government costs for controlling and euthanizing unwanted animals.

The program dubbed "Comptroller's Critters" allows animal shelters across Illinois to post information on the state website. Topinka says 50 shelters have signed up so far.

Topinka often travels with her dogs and brings them to the office. She has three: Bella, Jack and Nora.

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Illinois Money Manager Says Fraud Sentence Too Long

A former Decatur resident sent to prison last year for defrauding central Illinois investors out of more than $20 million is appealing the length of his sentence.

William Huber recently filed paperwork claiming that prosecutors overstated the amount of money his investors lost.

He believes his sentence is too long.

Huber, who is now 62, was sentenced last December to 20 years in federal prison after pleading guilty to mail fraud, money laundering and other charges.

Huber claims dozens of clients actually lost less than $20 million.

He lived in La Jolla, Calif, at the time of his sentencing and is serving his time in California.

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Records Show Champaign County Auditor Rarely in Office

Champaign County Auditor Tony Fabri (FAB'-ree) used his office phone just 18 times in the last year, while other officials were making hundreds of calls.

Reviewed records show he last made a call from the office six months ago.

Other officials say Fabri rarely shows up for work. County board member Alan Nudo says Fabri is "absolutely stealing" from the taxpayers by not doing his job.

Fabri, a Democrat, says the phone records don't give the full picture of what he does. He said he is often performing his duties while not at the office.

He didn't explain his absences or scarce use of the office phone.

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New Stink Bug Species Could Affect Farmers

A new species of stink bug has been spotted in Wisconsin, Minnesota and Illinois and researchers say it's a matter of time before breeding populations start moving in.

Phil Pellitteri, an insect expert at the University of Wisconsin Extension, says the new species called the brown marmorated stink bug is coming from the East Coast and they will eventually affect farmers' profits.

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Man Suspected In Kidnapping Commits Suicide

Authorities in East Peoria say a man suspected of kidnapping his ex-girlfriend and driving her through a number of Illinois counties killed himself in Champaign hours later.

Alex Cobb shot himself outside his son's house Friday afternoon, several hours after he spotted Michelle Fearson outside her East Peoria home, and forced her into her vehicle.

A neighbor who heard Fearson call for help, telephoned police. A few hours later, police determined that the 64-year-old Cobb had a son in Champaign. Police went to the house and found Cobb had already shot himself. He was pronounced dead a short time later at Carle Foundation Hospital in Urbana. Fearson was not injured.

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Dog Suspects Burglars; Barks For Help

Don't tell two suspected burglars that dogs are a man's best friend.

A dog belonging to a resident of the Country Clubs Estates subdivision foiled an alleged attempt by two teenagers to burglarize his vehicle.

The resident says before going to bed late Thursday night he let his German shepherd out into his yard. When the dog started barking, the man looked out the window and saw two teens running across the street. He called police, and a short time later an officer spotted two teens, sweating profusely, near a convenience store. The resident identified the two, who were subsequently taken into custody.

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CornBelters Swept Before All-Star Break

The Normal CornBelters (25-23), presented by the Illinois Corn Farmers could not avoid the sweep to the Joliet Slammers (27-20), as they fell 8-6 Sunday night at the Corn Crib.  Normal starter Bobby Pritchett (L 5-3) was touched up by two Joliet home runs in the final game before the All-Star break.

The Slammers started the scoring early as they tacked on a pair of runs in the first.  Josh Flores tripled home Trey Manz who reached on a walk to give Joliet a 1-0 lead.  Erik Lis then singled home Flores to put Joliet ahead 2-0.

An inning later, the CornBelters battled back to even the score.  With two on and two out, A.J. Miller and Alvaro Ramirez connected for back-to-back singles, driving home Mike Mobbs and Jeff Dunbar to tie the game 2-2.

Joliet took those runs back and more in the 3rd thanks to a Kyle Maunus home run.  After Prtichett allowed Flores and Lis to reach base, Maunus lined a shot over Mobbs' head and the left field wall for a three-run homer giving Joliet a 5-2 lead.

The offense sparked for Normal in the 4th as Jeff Dunbar and Tyler Keeble reached on a single and double to lead off the inning.  An infield single by Miller and an errant throw by Joliet's John Wagle allowed both Dunbar and Keeble to score.  The Belters threatened to plate more with the bases loaded and none out, but the heart of the order failed to produce as Daniel Cox struck out and Steven Alexander grounded into a double play securing the Slammers lead 5-4.

The Slammers struck again in the 5th when Flores drew a leadoff walk and Lis blasted a two-run shot giving Joliet a 7-4 lead and forcing Prtichett out of the game.  One-half inning later, Asif Shah drove a 1-2 pitch out of the park, a solo blast to cut the Joliet lead to 7-5.

Neither team would score again until the bottom of the 8th when Alexander's bloop single scored Cox to bring the Belters within one at 7-6.

Normal's bullpen held the Slammers scoreless for 3  2/3 innings until Liam Ohlmann surrendered a two-out single to David Fox scoring Flores and providing Joliet an 8-6 lead in the 9th. Frontier League save leader Ryan Quigley retired Normal in order in the ninth inning to pick up his 16th save of the year.

Prtichett went 4 1/3 innings giving up seven earned runs, two walks, and striking out three.  Petrick (W 4-6) worked five frames, giving up as many earned runs, and allowed one walk.

Normal will send five players to the 2011 Frontier League All-Star game in Lake Erie on Wednesday, July 13.  Asif Shah, Alvaro Ramirez, Steven Alexander, Tyler Keeble, and Ryan Sheldon will represent the CornBelters at All Pro Freight Stadium.  The team will reunite Friday in Evansville to take on the Otters.

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Cards Beat D'Backs; Sox & Cubs Lose

>>Cards Double Up D'Backs

(St. Louis, MO)  --  David Freese clubbed a two-run homer to lift the St. Louis Cardinals to a 4-2 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks in the finale of a four-game series on Sunday at Busch Stadium.  Freese added a sacrifice fly for the Cardinals, who salvaged a split after dropping the first two games of this set.  Jaime Garcia gave up a two-run homer to Arizona's Ryan Roberts among seven hits over six innings to register the victory.  Lance Lynn tossed two innings of relief before Fernando Salas closed the door in the ninth for his 16th save of the season.  The Cards are now off for the All-Star break.  They return to the diamond on Friday to kick off a three-game series against the Cincinnati Reds at the Great American Ball Park.

>>Bucs Blast Cubs

(Pittsburgh, PA)  --  The Pirates wrapped up their best first half in 19 years with a 9-1 victory over the Cubs on Sunday at PNC Park.  Andrew McCutchen, who was named to the NL All-Star team on Saturday, hit a three-run homer and knocked in five as Pittsburgh won two of three in the weekend series.  Paul Maholm worked into the eighth inning for the win, striking out eight and allowing just four hits and a run to improve to 9-and-2 in 16 career starts against the Cubs.  Ramon Ortiz lost his second straight start since being called up from the minors after giving up six runs and seven hits in four-plus innings.  Darwin Barney had two of Chicago's four hits and the Cubs finished the first half by losing seven of their last 10 games.  They head to the break with a record of 37-and-55.  The Northsiders are now off for the All-Star break.  They will kick off the second half of the season on Thursday with the opener of a four-game series against the Florida Marlins at Wrigley Field.

>>Twins Double Up White Sox

(Chicago, IL)  --  Anthony Swarzak pitched well, giving up one run over six frames while striking out five as the Twins closed out the first half with a 6-3 win over the White Sox on Sunday at The Cell.  Alexi Casilla scored twice for Minnesota, which sits seven games back of the AL Central-leading Tigers.  Matt Capps secured his 15th save of the season.  Jake Peavy took the loss, allowing five runs in four-and-a-third innings.  A.J. Pierzynski scored and drove in a run for the Southsiders, who are four-and-a-half games back of Detroit.  The Southsiders are off for the All-Star break.  They return to action on Friday with the opener of a three-game set against the Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park.

MLB NL
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Florida Marlins 5, Houston Astros 4
Philadelphia Phillies 14, Atlanta Braves 1
Washington Nationals 2, Colorado Rockies 0
Milwaukee Brewers 4, Cincinnati Reds 3
Los Angeles Dodgers 4, San Diego Padres 1
San Francisco Giants 4, New York Mets 2

MLB AL
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Toronto Blue Jays 7, Cleveland Indians 1
New York Yankees 1, Tampa Bay Rays 0
Boston Red Sox 8, Baltimore Orioles 6
Detroit Tigers 2, Kansas City Royals 1
Texas Rangers 2, Oakland Athletics 0
LA Angels of Anaheim 4, Seattle Mariners 2

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Cardinals Holiday To Compete in HR Derby Tonight; New Twist To Competition

>>AL & NL Battle In HR Derby

(Phoenix, AZ)  --  There's a new format in place tonight when the sluggers take the diamond at Chase Field in Phoenix, Arizona for the annual Home Run Derby.  The past two champions of the event, Boston's David Ortiz and Milwaukee's Prince Fielder, were named league captains and allowed to choose three players from their respective dugouts to compete as a team.  2010 Champion Ortiz selected Red Sox teammate Adrian Gonzalez, the Yankees' Robinson Cano and Toronto's Jose Bautista, who leads all of baseball with 31 homers at the break.  2009 champ Fielder selected teammate Rickie Weeks, Dodgers slugger Matt Kemp and Cardinals thumper Matt Holliday.  The "gold" baseballs thrown when players are down to their last out have a panel infused with 24-karat gold and are worth an estimated $150-dollars.  Each "Golden Ball" that is hit for a home run will bring a donation of $18-thousand-dollars from State Farm and MLB to The Boys And Girls Clubs of America.

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Clinton Police Report for 7-11

 

CITATIONS

7/9/11

JENNIFER L. BASOLA 39, MT ZION, SPEEDING 80 MPH IN A 55 MPH ZONE. NOTICE TO APPEAR ISSUED

 

7/10/11

ZACHERY M. VINCENT 23, PLAINFIELD, SPEEDING 72 MPH IN A 55 MPH ZONE. BOND POSTED

 

ON 7/8/11 CLINTON POLICE ARRESTED LATANYA L. WISE 45, DEWITT ON A DEWITT COUNTY WARRANT. WISE WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE DEWITT COUNTY JAIL AND RELEASED TO CORRECTIONS.

 

ON 7/9/11 CLINTON POLICE TOOK INTO CUSTODY A 15 YEAR OLD JUVENILE FOR ILLEGAL CONSUMPTION OF ALCOHOL BY A MINOR. THE JUVENILE WAS TRANSPORTED TO CLINTON POLICE DEPT AND RELEASED TO THEIR PARENT PENDING FORMAL CHARGES IN COURT.

 

ON 7/10/11 CLINTON POLICE ARRESTED JUSTIN P. WILSON 34,CLINTON FOR THEFT. WILSON WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE DEWITT COUNTY JAIL AND RELEASED TO CORRECTIONS.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 7-11

 

July 8, 2011

Jail Population: 51

Summons Served: 2

Warrant Arrests: 1

 

July 9, 2011

Jail Population: 50

Summons Served: 2

Warrant Arrests: 1

 

July 10, 2011

Jail Population: 50

Summons Served: 2

Warrant Arrests: 2

 

Nicholas Parsons, 29, Joplin, MO was issued a citation for no valid registration. Parsons was issued a promise to comply and was released.

 

Zachary Fulmer, 26, Latham was issued a citation for speeding (73 mph in a 55 mph zone). Fulmer was issued a notice to appear and was released.

 

Nathan Simmons, 24, Stanford was issued a citation for operating an uninsured vehicle. Simmons posted his Illinois Drivers License as bond and was released.

 

Admundo Sotillo, 48, Cary NC was issued a citation for speeding (84 mph in a 65 mph zone). Sotillo was issued a promise to comply and was released.

 

Derrick Peifer, 31 McLean was issued a citation for failure to properly secure a chiled under the age of 8 in appropriate child restraint system. Peifer posted his Illinois Drivers license as bond and was released.

 

Scott Armstrong, 19, Bloomington was issued a citation for speeding (83 mph in a 65 mph zone). Armstrong was issued a notice to appear and was released.

 

Zachariah Wikoff, 32, Weldon, was arrested on a Sangamon County Warrant charging him with Failure to Appear. Wikoff posted the necessary bond and was released.

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Catholic Charities Files Lawsuit Against Illinois

Religious freedom is at the core of at recent lawsuit filed against the state.  Catholic Charities diocese in Springfield, Peoria and Joliet filed the suit claiming they should have the right to deny foster care and adoption licenses to same sex couples.  Governor Quinn says the organization isn't going to get preferential treatment. 

[audio:rddfoster.mp3]Gov. Quinn[/audio]

Under the new Civil Unions law in Illinois, the religious group must provide licenses to same sex couples.  But Catholic Charities says that's a violation of their religious freedom.  The organization receives 30-million dollars a year for its services to the state.

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ISU Giving Most Employees Raises

Illinois State University President Al Bowman says about 2,200 of the school's employees will get merit-based raises that average 3%.

Bowman said Monday that the $78.8 million the state will provide the university for the coming school year is down slightly from last year. But Bowman says the decrease is slight enough to allow modest raises.

Bowman says finances at the university in Normal are stable even given the state's struggles to pay its bills. State money for universities and a range of other agencies, programs and institutions has been running months behind as lawmakers struggle to deal with a multibillion-dollar budget deficit.

Illinois State spokesman Jay Groves says another 1,050 union-covered employees won't get the raises. Their pay is covered by their contracts with the university.

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Decatur Man Killed By Possible Stray Bullet

Police in Decatur believe a stray bullet fired from a back yard killed a man as he sat in his apartment.

Decatur Police Chief Todd Walker says 30-year-old Joseph Charles Wells died early Saturday of a head wound.

Walker says Wells and Jeffrey Lynn Mason Jr. were watching television in their apartment about 4 a.m. when the bullet shattered an apartment window and hit Wells.

The chief says the bullet was fired from about 100 yards away. Two people are being held on preliminary charges of involuntary manslaughter and other counts.

Walker wouldn't say why the gun was fired.

Wells and Mason entered into a civil union last month, but Walker doesn't believe they were targeted for their sexual orientation.

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Local Reaction to Capital Bill Being Upheld

In a major victory for thousands of construction workers around Illinois, the state Supreme Court has upheld the controversial funding mechanism for the state's $31 billion capital construction plan.  The unanimous decision clears the way for the continuation of road building, rebuilding and resurfacing projects already underway around the state.

Chicago liquor distributor and Chicago Blackhawk owner, Rocky Wirtz, claims the collection of fees, gambling income and new taxes that are funding the projects—including liquor taxes—aren't all part of the same subject, and so shouldn't have been approved in one omnibus package two years ago. Illinois' state constitution requires that each law the Legislature passes must encompass just one subject.

Illinois Representative Chapin Rose says while he did not support one of the three bills that was passed, he says the process and the relation of the bills was done Constitutionally.

[audio:capitalbillruling1.mp3]A Word From Rep. Rose[/audio]

Rep. Rose explains the bills were segregated to avoid the single subject problem. He was surprised because of that the process has made it as far as it has.

[audio:capitalbillruling2.mp3]A Word From Rep. Rose[/audio]

Governor Pat Quinn said it's best news the state could get.

Rep. Dan Brady says he is pleased the bill was upheld. He says this will keep construction projects moving forward, but most importantly, it will keep people employed.

[audio:capitalbillruling3.mp3]A Word From Rep. Brady[/audio]

Rep. Adam Brown says the bill was aimed to get people back to work, and the decision to uphold the bill will keep the Illinois infrastructure strong.

[audio:7-11-11 Brown - Capital decision.MP3]A Word From Rep. Brown[/audio]

Rep. Bill Mitchell says the issue goes beyond being a Republican or Democrat. He says unemployment in Illinois would have gone up even farther, so this was a good decision by the Illinois Supreme Court.

[audio:7-11-11 Mitchell - Capital decision.MP3]A Word From Rep. Mitchell[/audio]

Lawyers for Wirtz had argued that the legislation was classic "logrolling," with provisions addressing such different topics as legalization of slot-machine gambling, taxes on liquor, and vehicle fees.

But the court found in the ruling that all those topics were related to the funding of the capital improvement plan, and so don't violate the single-subject rule.

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Clinton Library Experiences Another Successful Year

Fiscal Year 2011 was another great year at Clinton's Warner Public Library.

According to library officials, the recently concluded fiscal year saw more than 100-thousand articles checked out at the local library.  Paula Lopatic, Children's Librarian, explains the Clinton library saw over 100-thousand items checked out between July 1st, 2010 and June 30th, 2011.

Lopatic believes the recent economic downturn has been a major factor in the
library's increased usage.  She notes the library offers a multitude of free services
even during tough financial times, which give local residents access to items and
services they may not otherwise have.

[audio:libraryyear1.mp3]A Word From Lopatic[/audio]

Librarian Bobbi Perryman believes the great turn out once again this year is in
a large part due to the unique collection of books and movies the library has to
offer to the public. She also notes, if you do not find what you are looking for at
the Library to seek out one of the librarians to help. Perryman says she enjoys a
challenge in finding a book for an individual looking for something specific.

[audio:libraryyear2.mp3]A Word From Perryman[/audio]

While officials hoped to top the 110-thousand circulation mark, which would
have broken last year's record setting year, the Library could not make it,
however, they do appreciate the continued support from the community.

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DeWitt County 4-H Fair Recap

The DeWitt County 4-H Fair has come and gone for the season.

The  width=fair ran this past weekend at the DeWitt County 4-H fairgrounds.

According to organizers, the weather was traditional fair weather, very hot with lots of sunshine. The fair featured people of all ages presenting visual art projects, baked goods, home grown produce, and of course livestock.

Kim Gibbons with the U of I extension in DeWitt County says this years fair was a huge success. She says this year there were approximately 200 4-H members. Something new to the events this year were shooting sports. Gibbons says the shotgun competition took place Thursday evening and by all indications, the kids thoroughly enjoyed the event. She notes as well the shooting sports are available to everyone, even those outside of 4-H.

[audio:4hfair.mp3]A Word From Gibbons[/audio]

Being in 4-H for some means the opportunity to take on leadership roles. One of those leadership roles is being a Junior Assistant. Denae Spencer is a Junior Assistant, she says being a Junior Associate is a good opportunity, and part of the responsibility is shadowing a Superintendent.

[audio:4hfair2.mp3]A Word From Spencer[/audio]

Billy Blue is a 17-year old 4-H member. He says 4-H is a great opportunity to learn different skills that will get utilized throughout your life.

[audio:4hfair3.mp3]A Word From Blue[/audio]

Sherry Fulton with the U of I extension in DeWitt County says 4-H is a great opportunity to learn hands on skills away from a school setting but to learn the skills that interest each individual.

[audio:4hfair4.mp3]A Word From Fulton[/audio]

The new 4-H year begins again September 1. Organizers encourage anyone interested in learning more about 4-H to stop by the U of I Extension offices at 8425 Katie Road, just outside of Clinton. Or you can call them at 935-5764.

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Yankees' Robinson Cano Claims HR Derby Title; All-Star Lineups Set; Cubs Ramirez Declines All-Star Game invitation

>>Cano Claims Home Run Derby Title

(Phoenix, AZ)  --  New York Yankees second baseman Robinson Cano captured the 2011 Home Run Derby, beating Boston first baseman Adrian Gonzalez.  Cano, who was in the derby for the first time in his career, smacked a final round-record 12 long balls to beat Gonzalez.  Cano's father, Jose, pitched to him in the derby.  Cano tied Gonzalez with a 472-foot blast to right-center field and then paused for a moment to grab a sports drink and converse with his American League teammates.  Jose then delivered a ball that ended up 408 feet over the wall in right-center to clinch the title.  Cardinals outfielder Matt Holliday was knocked out in the first round.  David Ortiz and Prince Fielder advanced to round two by beating Holliday in a swing-off after all three had five homers in the first round.

>>All-Star Game Lineups Announced

(Phoenix, AZ)  --  The lineups for tonight's 2011 All-Star Game at Chase Field in Phoenix have been set.  National League skipper Bruce Bochy and American League manager Ron Washington announced their respective lineups at a press conference prior to the midsummer classic's annual media day.  Along with the position players, Phillies' Roy Halladay and Angels' Jered Weaver were tabbed as the game's starting pitchers.  For the NL, Brewers' Rickie Weeks will lead off and play second base, followed by Mets' Carlos Beltran at designated hitter, Dodgers' Matt Kemp in center field, Brewers' Prince Fielder playing first base, Braves' Brian McCann behind the plate, Cardinals outfielders Lance Berkman and Matt Holliday in right and left, respectively, Rockies' Troy Tulowitzki at shortstop and Reds' Scott Rolen at the hot corner.

Yankees center fielder Curtis Granderson will be starting it off for the AL roster, followed by Indians shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera, Red Sox first baseman Adrian Gonzalez, Blue Jays right fielder Jose Bautista and Rangers left fielder Josh Hamilton.  Texas' Adrian Beltre with hit fifth and play third base, while Boston's David Ortiz will DH, New York's Robinson Cano gets the nod at second base and Tigers' Alex Avila starts at catcher.

>>Ramirez Declines Invite To All-Star Game

(Phoenix, AZ)  --  Chicago Cubs third baseman Aramis Ramirez declined an opportunity to be an All-Star.  National League manager Bruce Bochy asked Ramirez to be the replacement for Phillies' Placido Polanco, however, A-Ram opted to spend the break with his family in the Dominican Republic.  Ramirez, who was an All-Star in 2005 and 2008, is batting .300 with 15 homers and 51 RBI.

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NFL Lockout Could Be Coming To End

>>Report: NFL Lockout Could Be Coming To An End

(Undated)  --  The NFL lockout might be in its final weeks.  According to a report published Monday on ESPN, there could be a collective bargaining agreement in place between the NFL and its players in time for the deal to be ratified during league meetings on July 21st.  Citing people familiar with the ongoing negotiations, the report said a "handshake deal" could be in place within 7-to-10 days and would be up for ratification by both sides.  The ESPN report said both sides appear comfortable with a deal that would split all revenue so that the players would receive about 48 percent of the money at first and not less than around 46.5-percent during a new CBA that would last for 7-to-10 years.  Almost all preseason games would be played if a deal is reached by July 21st, according to the report.  The lockout began on March 12th after the NFL and players' union failed to reach an agreement on how to split about $9-billion in revenue, among other sticking points.

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Bulls Noah To Play For France

>>Report: Noah To Play For France

(Undated)  --  Chicago Bulls center Joakim Noah is reportedly on his way to France to begin preparation for a stint with Team France in the European Championships in Lithuania.  Noah, who has dual U.S. and French citizenship, is expected to be overseas for the next two months as the NBA lockout continues.  The 26-year-old Noah averaged 11.7 points and 10.4 rebounds in 48 regular season games for the Bulls last season.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 7-12

 

July 12, 2011

 

Jail Population: 53

Summons Served: 2

Warrant Arrests: 1

 

 

Clarissa Adams, 29, Decatur, was issued a citation for Speeding (85 mph in a 65 mph zone). Adams was issued a notice to appear and was released.

 

Timothy Wright, 48, Farmer City, was arrested on a Peoria County Warrant charging him with Unlawful Possession of a Controlled Substance, DUI/Alcohol, and DUI/Cannabis. Wright posted the necessary bond and was released.

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Wind Farm Could Be In Central Illinois' Future

>>A Wind Farm Could Be In Central Illinois' Future

(Champaign, IL)  --  A wind farm is in the works for Central Illinois.   A Chicago-based company has applied for a permit to put 30 turbines up in Champaign and Vermillion counties.   The project would create more than 100 jobs and generate money for schools, roads, and even farmers.  If the Champaign County Board approves the farm, construction will begin in 2012.

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Building Collapse Briefly Traps Bloomington Women

A Bloomington bridge that was closed after the collapse of a nearby century-old building has been reopened.

The Illinois Department of Transportation inspected the Center Street bridge in Bloomington's warehouse district on Tuesday and found it undamaged.

A pedestrian walkway on one side of the bridge, however, was damaged and will remain closed for now.

The three-story brick building collapsed Monday evening. Rubble fell on adjacent buildings that included a business where 22-year-old Jessica Sandoval was working. She was freed after more than an hour and taken to a local hospital. There's no word on her condition Tuesday.

Surrounding buildings were damaged and some will have to be demolished.

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Springfield Mother Sentenced In Child Burning

A 25-year-old Springfield woman convicted of burning her 16-month-old son has been sentenced to seven years in prison.

Cara Geckles was convicted in May of aggravated battery to a child causing great bodily harm and aggravated battery to a child causing disfigurement.

Prosecutors say the child suffered burns to the right side of his back and forehead, some of them were second-degree burns.

Geckles told investigators the child suffered sunburns, but doctors at the trial testified that the injuries were not consistent with a sunburn.

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Court Rules State Must Maintain Contract With Catholic Charities

Is Governor Quinn playing a political game with Catholic Charities?  Peter Breen, Legal Counsel for the religious organization, says that's what a state judge has implied.

[audio:rddBreenCC1.mp3]A Word From Breen[/audio]

Breen says a judge's decision to keep contracts in tact between Catholic Charities and the state gives him a bit of relief.  He says it proves just how important the work of Catholic Charities is.  Quinn's office sent letters to the religious group late last Friday letting them know their contracts had been terminated. Governor Quinn is not allowed to terminate the state's contract with Catholic Charities. Breen calls it a victory for the kids.

[audio:rddBreenCC2.mp3]A Word From Breen[/audio]

The root of the issue lies in the fact that Catholic Charities doesn't want to issue foster care and adoption licenses to same sex couples.  A lawsuit is pending so yesterday's ruling is temporary.  An official hearing is scheduled for August 17th.

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Illinois Comptroller Wants To Eliminate Small Amount Paper Checks

It costs Illinois Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka 40-cents every time she mails a check to a state vendor.

It doesn't matter if the check is for $3 million dollars or 30-cents. And it doesn't matter if that vendor gets one check a year, or one check week.

But that could soon change. Topinka is touting recently passed legislation that would incentivize anyone doing business with the state to sign-up for direct deposit.

Anyone who gets more than 30 checks a year would have to sign-up for direct deposit, or pay a $2.50/per check fee.

Topinka is also going to stop sending checks that are less than $5 dollars. If someone asks for a check, then her office will send it without charging the check fee.

Topinka says the changes will save a million dollars a year in paper and postage alone.

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Wet Weather Hampering Specialty Growers

You've heard how the wet and cool spring effected corn and soybean growers across Illinois, but the wet conditions have also hampered specialty growers this year.  Jared White has more...

[audio:7-11-11 Wet Produce WRAP.mp3]Jared White With Story[/audio]

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Friendship Center Fan Drive Results

The DeWitt County Friendship Center's Fan Drive through the month of June was yet again, a success.

The yearly Fan Drive aims to donate fans to the elderly and disabled citizens of DeWitt County, and Sissy Leggett, Executive Director of the Friendship Center says this years drive saw nearly 30 fans get donated. She notes there are still fans available, so if you did not get one to let the Friendship Center know and they will get a fan to you.

[audio:fandriveresults1.mp3]A Word From Leggett[/audio]

With the heat of July here, Leggett says keeping cool is vital to the health of the seniors of the community. She believes having a fan through the summer heat is a good way to maintain good health.

[audio:fandriveresults2.mp3]A Word From Leggett[/audio]

The yearly Fan Drive would not be possible without the contributions from the community. Leggett estimates in the past three years over 150 fans have been given out thanks to the generous donations of those in the community.

[audio:fandriveresults3.mp3]A Word From Leggett[/audio]

Leggett encourages anyone resident of DeWitt County who is older than the age off 55 or disable to get a hold of the Friendship Center to still receive a fan. She notes anyone who received a fan from last years drive is ineligible to receive a fan this year unless it is no longer in working condition. To receive your free fan, you can contact the DeWitt County Friendship Center at 935-9411.

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Clinton Chamber Golf Outing Recap

Close to 30 business people recently took to the Clinton Country Club for the Annual Chamber Golf Outing.

The Clinton Area Chamber of Commerce and Tourism Bureau recently held its annual golf outing. Despite a perfect afternoon provided by mother nature, the numbers this year were a bit down. However, Executive Director of the Chamber, Marion Brisard says this years event was a success.

[audio:golfouting1.mp3]A Word From Brisard[/audio]

The 7 teams of 4 players took to the links to compete for several prizes. The highlight of the prizes was the $10,000 hole-in-one prize sponsored by Peterson Insurance, and while no one was able to get the elusive hole-in-one, president of the Clinton Chamber, Scott Williamson says there were plenty of exciting donated prizes at this years event.

[audio:golfouting2.mp3]A Word From Williamson[/audio]

Dexter Peterson was one of the organizers of this years event, says while numbers were a little down at this year's event, he says organizers were anticipating not having as good of a turn out like in years past. He adds the golf outing is a good networking opportunity for the local businesses.

[audio:golfouting3.mp3]A WordFrom Peterson[/audio]

The winner of this years event was the State Bank of Lincoln. Dustin Peterson was the winner of the raffle that gave away the air travel vouchers.

The Chamber of Commerce thanks those who participated in the outing, as well as those local businesses that sponsored the event.  Plans for next year's Golf Outing will get underway later this year.

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NL Beats AL in ASG; Fielder MVP; Brewers Trade For K-Rod

>>National League Downs American League In ASG

(Phoenix, AZ)  --  Brewers slugger Prince Fielder clubbed a three-run homer in the fourth inning to power the National League to a 5-1 win over the American League in the 2011 MLB All-Star Game.  Pablo Sandoval of the Giants doubled in a run, while Dodgers outfielder Andre Ethier added an RBI single for the National League, which earned homefield advantage in this year's World Series with the win.  NL starter and Phillies ace Roy Halladay tossed two scoreless innings.  Nationals reliever Tyler Clippard got one out in the fourth to earn the win.  Giants closer Brian Wilson got the final two outs to get the save.  After going winless in 13 straight Midsummer Classics, the NL has won the last two.

Red Sox first baseman Adrian Gonzalez belted a solo homer in the fourth for the American League.  Rangers pitcher C.J. Wilson allowed three runs in his only inning of work to take the loss.  Red Sox pitcher Josh Beckett was slated to start the second inning, but he was pulled back after experiencing soreness in his left knee.

Meantime, Cardinals outfielder Lance Berkman went 1-for-1, but he was caught stealing second when teammate Matt Holliday struck out in his only at-bat.  Cards catcher Yadier Molina went 1-for-1 with a double. Meanwhile, Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro went 0-for-1 with a throwing error.  From the Southside, Paul Konerko was 0-for-1, while Carlos Quentin was 0-for-2.

>>Brewers' Fielder Named MVP Of ASG

(Phoenix, AZ)  --  Milwaukee Brewers first baseman Prince Fielder was named the Most Valuable Player of the 2011 MLB All-Star Game on Tuesday.  Fielder belted a go-ahead three-run homer in the fourth inning as the National League defeated the American League 5-1 at Chase Field.  Fielder is the first member of the Brewers to ever win MVP honors.  Fielder was also the first Brewer to ever hit a home run in the All-Star Game.  With the victory, the National League secured homefield advantage in this year's World Series.  After going winless in 13 straight Midsummer Classics, the NL has won the last two.

>>Mets Ship K-Rod To Brewers

(Flushing, NY)  --  The New York Mets have traded closer Francisco Rodriguez to the Milwaukee Brewers.  The Mets will receive two players to be named later in the deal.  Rodriguez is 2-and-2 with 23 saves and a 3.16 ERA this season.  The 29-year-old Rodriguez compiled a single-season record 62 saves while with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in 2008.  K-Rod has gone 32-and-27 with 291 saves and a 2.54 ERA in 10 big league seasons.

>>Biffle Gets New Crew Chief

(Concord, NC)  --  Greg Biffle has a new crew chief.  Roush Fenway Racing has named Matt Puccia the new crew chief for Biffle's number-16 Ford.  Puccia, who is replacing Greg Erwin, has been with Roush Fenway Racing since 2004 and was most recently assigned to the research and development program.  He was also the crew chief of the number-98 Paul Menard entry throughout the 2010 Nationwide Series season.  Biffle is currently 14th in the Sprint Cup standings.

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Clinton Police Report for 7-13

CITATIONS 7/12/11 SARA L. LARSON 49, CLINTON SPEEDING 47 MPH IN A 30 MPH ZONE, OPERATING UNINSURED MOTOR VEHICLE. BOND POSTED

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 7-13

July 13, 2011

 

Jail Population: 52

Summons Served: 0

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

 

Investigation into the scene of an accident, which occurred at approximately 2:50 p.m. on Tuesday, July 12, 2011, revealed that a vehicle driven by Mark Kanavos, 51, Ottawa was northbound on Power Rd and William Smith, 38, Farmer City was traveling west on IL Rt 54. Kanavos stopped at marked stop sign and preceded though intersection and failed to yield right of way traffic. Smith then collided with Kanavos. Kanavos had no visible signs of injuries. Smith was taken to Dr. John Warner Hospital by ambulance. Kanavos was issued citations for Failure to Yield – Stop or Yield Intersection. Kanavos was issued a notice to appear and was released.

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Remodeling Continues at State Bank of Lincoln downtown Clinton branch

 width=Remodeling at the State Bank of Lincoln downtown Clinton branch continues. Branch manager Kim Hoyt tells Regional Radio News that phase one, which are several new offices for officers and staff members, are in the process of being completed.

 

[audio:HoytaudioJul1311.mp3] Listen to Kim's comments here.[/audio] 

 width=Hoyt adds that all 3 phases are expected to be completed sometime in August or September.

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Wapella Water Main Breaks; Under Boil Order

The Village of Wapella is under a boil order until further notice.  A broken water pipe caused the boil order. 

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Democratic Strategy Sets Them Up For Reelection

Despite continued budget battles and AFSCME pay freezes, one political expert says some lawmakers are in a good place.  Political Scientist Kent Redfield says House Democrats are using recent policy changes to set themselves up for reelection.

[audio:rddRedElect.mp3]A Word From Redfield[/audio]

And with that strategy, Redfield says he says he doesn't foresee Democrats supporting any plan for additional spending.  He says they've set themselves up to run as quote, "responsible officials capable of making the tough decisions."  Redfield says it's too soon to say how the changes will effect Quinn in 2014.

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Judge Sets Bond for 3 In Galesburg Shooting Death

A Knox County judge has ordered bond amounts to stand for three suspects arrested in connection with the shooting death of a man in a crowded park in the western Illinois community of Galesburg.

The three face charges in the June 30 death of 21-year-old Jemell Ware, who died not long after the shooting near a playground in Kiwanis Park.

Bond for 46-year-old Overton Fisher is set at $3 million. Bond for 18-year old Michael Fisher and 21-year old Kareem Dixon is set at $1 million each.

The three made initial court appearances Wednesday.

An unnamed 16-year-old and 18-year-old Michael Garrett also face charges in the case

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Mich. Senate Approves Cap on Welfare

Michigan may soon have one of the strictest welfare laws in the Midwest.  The state Senate passed legislation yesterday that puts a lifetime cap on recipients of 48 months.  If the measure is signed into law, it would immediately impact more than 12-thousand families statewide.  Ohio, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa and Missouri all have five-year limits.  Governor Rick Snyder is expected to sign the legislation into law.

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Eastern Illinois County OKs First Wind Farm

The Vermilion County board has given its OK for a developer to begin building the first wind-energy farm in the eastern Illinois county.

Board members voted 21-1 Tuesday night to give Chicago-based Invenergy a building permit for its California Ridge wind project.

The company says it plans 104 wind turbines in Vermilion County on the Indiana state line and 30 more in neighboring Champaign County. They would produce up to 214 megawatts of electricity. That's enough power for 50,000 or more homes.

Some local residents opposed the permit. Kim Cambron of nearby Rankin complained to board members that she will feel like she lives inside a power plant if the project is built.

The company says construction could start later this year.

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Decatur Says Asian Carp Kill is By Design

The city of Decatur says low water is what killed up to 10,000 Asian carp and other fish below the dam between Lake Decatur and the Sangamon River.

Keith Alexander is Decatur's water management director. He says the city lowered the water in part as a measure recommended by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources to help keep the carp out of the lake.

Alexander says high heat and the presence of so many fish in so little water is killing the invasive fish.

Alexander says 90% of the fish in the low-water area are carp. The city has never before noticed so many near the lake.

The fish have spread throughout the Mississippi, Illinois and Ohio river basins. They're heavy eaters that out-compete native fish for food.

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Richland Community College Offering Trio Program Again

One local school has brought back a program to allow their students to reach their goals.

Richland Community College's Student Support Services Trio Program aims to assist students of all ages in going from Richland to a 4-year school upon their graduation from RCC. Students involved in the program must be first generational students, or students who's parents do not have a 4-year college degree, they must meet a low income requirement, or they must be disabled. Meredeth Johnson-Palmer with Richland Community College says the program tries to provided students support to graduate and move on to a 4-year university.

[audio:trioprogram1.mp3]A Word From Johnson-Palmer[/audio]

Along with the academic assistance the program can provide, Debbie Hayes with the Trio Program at Richland says they can also assist students who are making a career adjustment. She says given the state of the economy, there are some students are trying to transition from one career to another, and Trio can help them do that.

[audio:trioprogram2.mp3]A Word From Hayes[/audio]

The Trio Program is funded through a federal grant which provides students with items such as laptops and calculators, items they may not other be able to afford. Because the program is federally funded, the students must fill out an application to show they meet the guidelines.

[audio:trioprogram3.mp3]A Word About The Application[/audio]

Applications are available year round, and are available by calling Richland Community College at 875-7211 Ext. 440. Or you can stop in at the campus offices in Room C.

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Kenney Church VBS Raises Money For Joplin

One local church's Vacation Bible School program raised funds to help the victims of the Joplin, MO tornadoes.

Kenney Christian Church teamed up with the Texas Christian Church to support Heights Christian Church in Joplin Missouri. Director for VBS at Kenney Christian Church, Linda Coleman explains there are 70 children under the age of 10 that have homes that are either completely destroyed or unable to be fixed due to the recent tornadoes that ripped through the Missouri city.

[audio:vbs1.mp3]A Word From Coleman[/audio]

Coleman explains this was the first year Texas Christian Church joined with Kenney Christian Church in VBS. She says they were approached last year in perhaps joining the two churches together for this years VBS program. Coleman says things worked out very well joining the two together.

[audio:vbs2.mp3]A Word From Coleman[/audio]

Approximately 50 kids were able to raise $740, which then was matched by Kenney Christian Church for a total donation of almost $15-hundred to the families of the 79 children of Heights Christian Church in Joplin.

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Cards Ink Garcia; 2nd Half Preview

>>Cards Ink Garcia To Four-Year Deal

(St. Louis, MO)  --  The St. Louis Cardinals have signed pitcher Jaime Garcia to a four-year contract with two club options.  Financial terms of the deal were not announced, but multiple media outlets have reported the contract will pay Garcia $27.5-million for the four guaranteed years.  The 25-year-old Garcia has developed into one of the best young pitchers in baseball.  He made 10 appearances for St. Louis in 2008 but truly blossomed in 2010, when he went 13-and-8 with a 2.70 earned run average in 28 starts.  Through 19 starts this season, he is 9-and-3 with a 3.22 ERA and two shutouts.  He has also struck out 100 batters and walked 32 in 117-and-a-third innings.  Garcia is playing this season on a one-year deal worth $437-thousand.

>>MLB's Second Half Kicks Off

(Undated)  --  The second half of the Major League Baseball season kicks off this evening.  A trio of National League games and four American League contests open up tonight's second half action.  Prince Fielder's three-run blast propeled the NL to a 5-1 win over the AL in Tuesday night's 82nd annual Midsummer Classic from Chase Field in Phoenix to give the Senior Circuit home-field advantage in this year's World Series.  The NL has won back-to-back All-Star Game's after losing the previous 13 in-a-row.  The Philadelphia Phillies hold an MLB-best mark of 57-and-34 through the first half of the season, while the Boston Red Sox have the second best record and tops in the AL at 55-and-35.  The New York Yankees are just one game back of their rivals at 53-and-35.  Boston's Adrian Gonzalez and Mets' Jose Reyes each have a batting average of .354 to lead their respective league's.  Gonzalez has also knocked in 77 runs to lead the AL and Fielder's 72 RBI are tops in the NL.  Toronto's Jose Bautista has 31 bombs to lead all hitters going into the break.

>>Brewers' Fielder Named MVP Of ASG

(Phoenix, AZ)  --  Milwaukee Brewers first baseman Prince Fielder was named the Most Valuable Player of the 2011 MLB All-Star Game on Tuesday.  Fielder belted a go-ahead three-run homer in the fourth inning as the National League defeated the American League 5-1 at Chase Field.  Fielder is the first member of the Brewers to ever win MVP honors.  Fielder was also the first Brewer to ever hit a home run in the All-Star Game.  With the victory, the National League secured homefield advantage in this year's World Series.  After going winless in 13 straight Midsummer Classics, the NL has won the last two.

MLB NL
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  7:05 p.m. - Florida Marlins at Chicago Cubs
  7:40 p.m. - Milwaukee Brewers at Colorado Rockies
  9:05 p.m. - San Francisco Giants at San Diego Padres

MLB AL
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  6:05 p.m. - Cleveland Indians at Baltimore Orioles
  6:07 p.m. - New York Yankees at Toronto Blue Jays
  7:10 p.m. - Kansas City Royals at Minnesota Twins
  9:10 p.m. - Texas Rangers at Seattle Mariners

>>Mets Ship K-Rod To Brewers

(Flushing, NY)  --  The New York Mets have traded closer Francisco Rodriguez to the Milwaukee Brewers.  The Mets will receive two players to be named later in the deal.  Rodriguez is 2-and-2 with 23 saves and a 3.16 ERA this season.  The 29-year-old Rodriguez compiled a single-season record 62 saves while with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in 2008.  K-Rod has gone 32-and-27 with 291 saves and a 2.54 ERA in 10 big league seasons. Milwaukee Brewers general manager Doug Melvin says acquiring pitcher K-Rod was a move he could not pass up.

>>Sprint Cup Series Heads To Loudon

(Loudon, NH)  --  NASCAR's Sprint Cup Series is at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway this weekend for Sunday's Lenox Industrial Tools 301.  The driver to beat this week is certainly Kyle Busch, as he is riding high into New Hampshire Motor Speedway this weekend after winning two of the three NASCAR national touring series races this past week at Kentucky.  Busch claimed NASCAR win number-98 in last Thursday's Camping World Truck Series event and then number-99 in Saturday's Sprint Cup Series race.  His next win will make him just the third NASCAR driver with 100 or more victories to his credit.  Richard Petty holds the record with 200 wins.  Last season, Jimmie Johnson won the Lenox Industrial Tools 301 after taking the lead from Kurt Busch with less than two laps remaining.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 7-14

 

July 13, 2011

 

Jail Population: 52

Summons Served: 1

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

 

Charlene Guldbrandsen, 52, Bement, was issued a citation for Speeding (75 mph in a 55 mph zone). Guldbrandsen posted the necessary bond and was released.

 

Eldon Berg, 52, Decatur, was arrested and charged with Disorderly Conduct. Berg posted the necessary bond and was released.

 

Investigation into the scene of an accident, which occurred at approximately 9:28 a.m. on Monday, July 11, 2011, revealed that a vehicle driven by Samantha Knackmush, 30, Decatur was northbound on US Highway 51 in the driving lane. Thomas Followell, 66, Clinton, a marked slow-moving vehicle was also northbound in the driving lane and partly on the shoulder. According to a witness, Knackmush approached Followell from behind, striking the rear of Followell. Both vehicles continued rolling into the center median of US Highway 52. Kanckmush was transported by ambulance to Decatur Memorial and Followell was transported by ambulance to Dr. John Warner Hospital. Knackmush was issued a citation for Failure to Reduce Speed/Accident. Knackmush was issued a notice to appear and was released.

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Man Arrested for Child Pornography at Christian County Fair

A Christian County man is facing child pornography charges.  Roy Ginger allegedly snapped photos of adolescent girls under the bleachers at the Christian County Fair.  He was arrested last night after someone reported him to police.  Sheriff Bruce Kettlekamp wants to remind people that the fair is still a safe and friendly environment.

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Gaming Bill Believed To Fold

The plan to increase gambling across the state is going to fold.  That's according to Gaming Board Chairman Aaron Jaffe who says he doubts Governor Quinn will sign the bill in its present form.

[audio:rddJaffe.mp3]A Word on The Gaming Bill[/audio]

Jaffe says the bill is 409 pages of garbage. If the governor does approve the measure, the state would get five new casinos.  It would also allow slot machines at racetracks and at Chicago airports. The legislature is expected to send the bill to the governor sometime this fall.

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Social Security Recipients Seeing Changes

Social Security recipients should be planning for some changes in the near future.

Social Security for a while now has been promoting going to a direct deposit form of receiving monetary payments. As of May 1, new recipients of Social Security are already receiving their money via direct deposit. However, Social Security is just a couple year away from going to 100% direct deposit, and Social Security Spokesman Jack Meyers says those who are still receiving checks in the mail should not wait to make the transition. He explains receiving direct deposit payments is a convenient, quick and worry-free way to receiving benefits.

[audio:directdeposit1.mp3]A Word From Meyers[/audio]

When receiving Social Security benefits, being responsible in keeping the Social Security offices informed is very important. Meyers says if an individual has been on disability and they attempt to return to work, he says Social Security needs to be informed of that. He says some consequences of not informing Social Security of an individual returning to work is having to pay back over-compensated money.

[audio:directdeposit2.mp3]A Word From Meyers[/audio]

Meyers says it is the responsibility of the individual receiving benefits to notify Social Security of their return to the workforce. Because Social Security does not get a monthly total of each individual's earnings who is receiving benefits, Meyers says it may take them a while to find out, but he says they will find out. He encourages those who have or are planning to return to work to contact Social Security to get that information to them.

[audio:directdeposit3.mp3]A Word From Meyers[/audio]

Social Security officials encourage anyone with questions or concerns to visit their website at www.socialsecurity.gov. You can also reach them at 877-326-0108.

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Local Health Officials Give Tips To Stay Cool Through Summer Heat

The recent and upcoming heat wave can be a hazard to the health of all citizens.

The heat has local health officials concerned about residents keeping cool through the warm days, especially the elderly. Clinton Police Chief Mike Reidy encourages neighbors and friends of the older residents to keep an eye on them and check on them every couple of days.

[audio:heatcheck1.mp3]A Word From The Chief[/audio]

Staying hydrated through the heat is a key part in keeping the body temperature at a normal state. Dr. David Gregory of the Dr. John Warner Hospital encourages folks to keep themselves hydrated. He says while water is probably the best option, he says for the average person sports drinks are effective as well.

[audio:heatcheck2.mp3]A Word From Dr. Gregory[/audio]

In Illinois heat can feel even hotter with the humidity. Dr. Gregory encourages those who are recovering from surgeries or have weak immune systems to stay well hydrated. He also encourages folks to find access to air condition. Whether that be through cooling centers or finding family, he says the best thing to do during the heat is stay cool.

[audio:heatcheck3.mp3]A Word From Dr. Gregory[/audio]

For temporary cooling help, Dr. Gregory says a fan is a good tool to utilize. He explains it won't bring the temperature down, however, the circulation of the air will help in cooling the body down.

Officials say the best place to go during the day to get cooled down would be the Friendship Center. They also encourage residents to contact their local churches as well to find out if they are offering times to come in and sit in the air conditioning.

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Clinton Police Bike Auction This Saturday

Area residents in need of a good set of wheels have the chance to pick up an affordable bicycle Saturday, and help out the Clinton Police Department at the same time.

Each year the Clinton Police Department becomes the home for a wide variety of unclaimed bicycles that are either lost or stolen from around the city.  Police Chief Mike Reidy indicates the department currently has on hand about 70 bicycles that have gone unclaimed. He says the bikes come from all over the City of Clinton and they are looking to find them a home.

[audio:auction1.mp3]A Word With The Chief[/audio]

This year the auction features something new. The Police Department will be auctioning off tools that have not been claimed. Chief Reidy explains the tools originally come from thefts and become unclaimed tools.

[audio:auction2.mp3]A Word From Chief Reidy[/audio]

According to Reidy, the police department is using the auction as a fund raiser.  He explains they've invested in a full service K-9 unit into the department and Saturday's bike auction will help fund dog food and vet bills and other expenses associated with the dog.

[audio:auction3.mp3]A Word From The Chief[/audio]

According to Cheif Reidy, Clinton Auto Auction has been the site of the auction since it was held downtown where the Chief himself would play the role of auctioneer. Chief Reidy says he is very grateful for Clinton Auto Auction opening up their services to the department.

Again the auction takes place Saturday at 1pm at the Clinton Auto Auction, and there will be bikes and tools up for grabs this year.

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Cubs Lose Late; NFL Could Be Close To Agreement; Former Illini Star McCamey To Play in Turkey

>>Six-Run Ninth Lifts Marlins Over Cubs

(Chicago, IL)  --  Carlos Marmol walked the bases loaded before Greg Dobbs clubbed a three-run double in part of a six-run ninth inning as the Marlins rallied to crush the Cubs, 6-3, on Thursday night at Wrigley Field.  Gaby Sanchez, Hanley Ramirez and Mike Cameron each plated a run during the decision frame for Florida, which has won six games in-a-row.  Edward Mujica was credited with the win.  Marlon Byrd blasted a solo home run and Geovany Soto went 4-for-4 for the Northsiders, who went into the ninth inning leading 2-0.  Matt Garza struck out six through seven scoreless frames in a no-decision.  Marmol finished with four walks and five earned runs on one hit without recording an out to absorb the loss.  Ryan Dempster will toe the rubber opposite Ricky Nolasco in this afternoon's second installment.

>>THURSDAY'S SCOREBOARD

MLB NL
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Colorado Rockies 12, Milwaukee Brewers 3
San Francisco Giants 6, San Diego Padres 2 (12 inn)

MLB AL
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Cleveland Indians 8, Baltimore Orioles 4
Toronto Blue Jays 16, New York Yankees 7
Minnesota Twins 8, Kansas City Royals 4
Texas Rangers 5, Seattle Mariners 0

>>White Sox Kick Off Second Half

(Detroit, MI)  --  The Chicago White Sox kick off the second half of their season tonight as they square off against the Detroit Tigers in a three-game set at Comerica Park.  Gavin Floyd will be on the bump opposite Justin Verlander in the opener.  The Southsiders dropped five of their last six games heading into the All-Star break to sit at 44-and-48 on the season.  Chicago is five games back of the Tigers atop the AL Central standings.

>>Cardinals At Reds Tonight

(Cincinnati, OH)  --  The Cardinals return from the All-Star break to begin the second half of the season tonight against the Reds in Cincinnati.  St. Louis sends Jake Westbrook to the mound, while Cincinnati counters with Johnny Cueto [[ KWAY-toh ]].  The Cards won their final two games before the break and are tied with the Brewers atop the NL Central with identical 49-and-43 records.

>>Cards Could Seek Pitching Help

(Cincinnati, OH)  --  As baseball begins its second half and the pennant races heat up, the focus will shift to the non-waiver trade deadline at the end of the month.  With the NL Central battle very tight between the Cards, Brewers, Pirates and Reds, St. Louis could look to make a move.  GM John Mozeliak [[ mo-ZAY-lack ]] says they are most interested in a starting pitcher or bullpen arm.

>>Owners, Players Reportedly Agree On Rookie Wage Scale

(New York, NY)  --  The NFL may be a step closer to ending the lockout.  ESPN reports owners and players have agreed in principle to a rookie wage scale.  That item has been a major hurdle in the ongoing labor negotiations.  The NFL Network reports owners have made concessions regarding the fifth-year compensation for rookies.  League owners are scheduled to meet in Atlanta next Thursday with the hopes of having a new collective bargaining agreement proposal to vote on.  Training camps are slated to open later this month, with the NFL Hall of Fame Game scheduled for August 7th.

>>Former Fighting Illini Guard To Play In Turkey

(Undated)  --  Former Illinois point guard Demetri McCamey signed a one-year deal with Mersin in Turkey on Thursday.  The 6-foot-3 guard was projected as a second-round pick in the recent NBA Draft but was not selected.  McCamey could face another former Illini player and current New Jersey Nets point guard Deron Williams, who recently signed with Besiktas in Turkey.

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Clinton Police Report for 7-15

CITATIONS 7/14/11

CHRISTOPHER A. ASHMUS 18, ODELL SPEEDING 45 MPH IN A 30 MPH ZONE. BOND POSTED

ANDREW B. CORRAL 26, LOMBARD OPERATING VEHICLE WITH EXPIRED REGISTRATION. BOND POSTED

LACEY J. LORD 19, CLINTON OPERATING VEHICLE WITH SUSPENDED REGISTRATION FOR NON INSURANCE. BOND POSTED

MORGAN F. WEST 28, CLINTON SPEEDING 45 MPH IN A 30 MPH ZONE. BOND POSTED

 

ON 7/14/11 CLINTON POLICE ARRESTED THOMAS F. HUNTER 18, CLINTON ON A NEBRASKA WARRANT. HUNTER WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE DEWITT COUNTY JAIL AND RELEASED TO CORRECTIONS.

ALL SUSPECTS ARE PRESUMED INNOCENT UNTIL FOUND GUILTY IN A COURT OF LAW

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 7-15

July 14, 2011

 

Jail Population: 52

Summons Served: 1

Warrant Arrests: 3

 

 

Dane Shannon, 22, Bloomington, was issued a citation for Speeding (78 mph in a 55 mph zone). Shannon was issued a notice to appear and was released.

 

Yvonne Franklin, 39, Decatur, was issued a citation for Speeding (66 mph in a 45 mph zone). Franklin was issued a notice to appear and was released.

 

Carl Hawkins, 41, Clinton, was arrested on a Peoria County warrant charging him with Failure to Appear. Hawkins un-able to post bond remains lodged in the DeWitt County Jail.

 

Phong Huynh, 41, Lincoln, was arrested on a Tazwell County warrant charging him with Failure to Appear. Huynh un-able to post bond remains lodged in the DeWitt County Jail.

 

Daniel Ladew, 19, Waynesville, was arrested on a DeWitt County warrant charging him with Failure to Appear. Ladew un-able to post bond remains lodged in the DeWitt County Jail.

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Lottery Scratch-Off Ticket Funds Breast Cancer Research

It's an investment that could lead to a cure for breast cancer and now you can contribute to the cause.  By purchasing a two dollar "Carolyn Adams Ticket for the Cure" lottery scratch-off, you'll help educate people, promote awareness, and fund research projects.  State Senator Mattie Hunter says both public and private institutions can qualify for grants from the monies raised and some are already making a huge impact.

The Ticket for the Cure scratch-off hit stands in 2006 and has already brought in nine-million dollars.  One-hundred percent of the net proceeds go toward the cause.  The fund is overseen by an advisory committee which is comprised of medical professionals, researchers, and breast cancer survivors.

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Seniors are Reminded to Take Precautions to Avoid Overheating

Senior citizens need to take special precautions to avoid overheating in hot weather.

The hot, humid weather is hard on everyone, but it is especially hard on senior citizens. Dr. Amber Barnhart, professor of family and community medicine at SIU School of Medicine in Springfield, explains why hot weather can be harmful to the elderly.

[audio:siuhotsenior1.mp3]Dr. Barnhart on Heat[/audio]

Dr. Barnhart says to stay cool, seniors can apply cold wash cloths on their forehead and neck, stay in the shade, and use fans and air conditioning. If their home is not air conditioned, they should go to a mall, a cooling center, or a friend or family member’s home that has air conditioning. She says some health conditions cause even more concern in the hot weather.

[audio:siuhotsenior2.mp3]Heat and prior conditions[/audio]

Dr. Barnhart reminds family members and friends to check on seniors several times a day during heat waves to make sure they are okay. If someone has symptoms of overheating such as dizziness, a feeling that their heart is racing, or shortness of breath, they should be taken quickly to a primary care physician or hospital emergency department.

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Clinton Police Bike Auction

Area residents in need of a good set of wheels have the chance to pick up an affordable bicycle Saturday, and help out the Clinton Police Department at the same time.

Each year the Clinton Police Department becomes the home for a wide variety of unclaimed bicycles that are either lost or stolen from around the city.  Police Chief Mike Reidy indicates the department currently has on hand about 70 bicycles that have gone unclaimed. He says the bikes come from all over the City of Clinton and they are looking to find them a home.

[audio:auction1.mp3]Reidy 1[/audio]

This year the auction features something new. The Police Department will be auctioning off tools that have not been claimed. Chief Reidy explains the tools originally come from thefts and become unclaimed tools.

[audio:auction2.mp3]Reidy 2[/audio]

According to Reidy, the police department is using the auction as a fund raiser.  He explains they've invested in a full service K-9 unit into the department and Saturday's bike auction will

[audio:auction3.mp3]Reidy 3[/audio]

According to Cheif Reidy, Clinton Auto Auction has been the site of the auction since it was held downtown where the Chief himself would play the role of auctioneer. Chief Reidy says he is very grateful for Clinton Auto Auction opening up their services to the department.

Again the auction takes place Saturday at 1pm at the Clinton Auto Auction, and there will be bikes and tools up for grabs this year.

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Warner Library Closed Saturday

The Vespasian Warner Public Library will close at 11am on Saturday, July 16, 2011 due to a mechanical problem. The library will reopen on Monday.

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Vote Expected on Future of U of I Aviation Program

The head of the University of Illinois' Urbana-Champaign campus says school trustees will vote next week on whether to close the school's aviation program.

Interim Chancellor Robert Easter oversees the campus. He says trustees will vote at their meeting next Thursday in Chicago. The vote isn't yet on the agenda for the meeting.

Easter recommended earlier this year that the program close to save $750,000 a year. The faculty-student Senate voted narrowly in April to keep the program open. While that move was only advisory, it appeared to at least temporarily stop the process.

Easter now says the school has to make a decision on the program.

Karen Koenig of the aviation institute's alumni panel say the university is rushing toward a decision.

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Cost of Driver Education Could Be On The Way Up in Illinois

The cost of driver education could be on the way up in Illinois.

A new law gives school districts permission to charge up to $250 in fees for driver education courses. Until now, the fees have been limited to $50.

Districts will have to hold public hearings before the fees can be increased. They're also required to skip the fee for students who can't afford it.

Many schools have already been charging higher fees, thanks to state waivers letting them ignore the $50 limit. Supporters say the higher limit will eliminate the time and red tape involved in getting those waivers.

Gov. Quinn signed the bill into law Thursday.

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Gov. Quinn in Utah Talking With Nations Other Governors

Gov. Pat Quinn was in Utah this past weekend for a meeting of the National Governors Association.

Quinn says he plans to share Illinois innovations like data.illinois.gov, the new website for sharing detailed information about government operations. Quinn says he hopes to learn about new ideas in other states, too.

Former Gov. Rod Blagojevich rarely took part in this kind of national event, but Quinn has taken a different approach.

In addition to the bipartisan governors' group, he's also active in the Democratic Governors Association. He even serves as the DGA national fundraising chairman.

After this weekend's meeting in Salt Lake City, Quinn is heading to Israel.

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Heat Wave in Central US Shows No Signs of Ending

Forecasters say the heat wave gripping the central U.S. is "unrelenting" and sweaty residents shouldn't expect any relief soon.

Heat advisories and warnings are in place in 17 states, from Texas to Michigan, as temperatures and humidity combine to make being outside uncomfortable for millions.

In Oklahoma City, forecasters expected another day of 100-degree heat Sunday, which would be the 27th day this year the city has reached 100 or above. The city's record is 50 such days, set in 1980, and it's on pace to break it this year.

National Weather Service forecaster Daryl Williams in Norman, Okla., says much of the central U.S. is under a so-called "heat dome" that isn't moving much. He describes the heat as "unrelenting" and says the trend is for more hot weather.

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Catholic Charities Asks Judge for Clarification

Catholic Charities units across Illinois are asking a Springfield judge to clarify whether the state can stop referring new foster care cases to them.

Dioceses in Springfield, Peoria and Joliet filed an emergency motion Friday seeking clarification of an order issued Tuesday.

The state sought to immediately end contracts with Catholic Charities because the not-for-profit agency refused to recognize the new civil union law. A Sangamon County judge ruled the abrupt termination of the contracts could affect foster kids' well-being, and he put the move on hold.

The state said a day later it wouldn't cut off funding to Catholic Charities, but would halt referring them new foster care cases.

Attorney general spokeswoman Robyn Ziegler says the office is reviewing the motion and will respond in court next week.

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Sen. Kirk Believes Illinois Could Become Economic Drag for US

Illinois' debt and unpaid bills are already causing economic troubles within the state.

Illinois' junior US Senator says he wants to make sure Illinois doesn't cause trouble for the rest of the nation as well. Kirk on Thursday pressed federal reserve chairman Ben Bernanke for answers about the potential threat of Illinois' debt.

[audio:071511Kirk1.mp3]A Word From Kirk[/audio]

Bernanke said, on Capitol Hill, that Illinois and California are not as troubled a Greece…yet.

[audio:071511Bernanke2.mp3]A Word From Bernanke[/audio]

Kirk said Illinois needs to cut spending and stop borrowing. He said Illinois' economy is suffering because of Illinois' debts, the rest of the nation should not suffer as well.

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Clinton Police Report for 7-18

 

CITATIONS

7/15/11

JEFFREY D. DUHAIME 17, CLINTON UNLAWFUL NUMBER OF PASSENGERS/GDL. NOTICE TO APPEAR ISSUED

 

7/16/11

AMANDA N. KREMER 25, DECATUR SPEEDING 78 MPH IN A 55 MPH ZONE. BOND POSTED

 

7/17/11

KENNETH L. LEITZEN 66, CLINTON ILLEGAL TRANSPORTATION OF ALCOHOL BOND POSTED

SUDHAKAR K. SHETH 61, FORSYTH SPEEDING 72 MPH IN A 55 MPH ZONE. BOND POSTED

THOMAS W. ORENDORF 23, BLOOMINGTON SPEEDING 74 MPH IN A 45 MPH ZONE. BOND POSTED

MICHAEL K. FRICK 21, CLINTON SPEEDING 61 MPH IN A 45 MPH ZONE. NOTICE TO APPEAR ISSUED

 

ON 7/16/11 CLINTON POLICE ARRESTED ERIC C. SMITH 26, CLINTON FOR DRIVING WHILE REVOKED, DRIVING WITHOUT LIGHTED LAMP, NO EYEWEAR PROTECTION. SMITH WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE DEWITT COUNTY JAIL AND RELEASED TO CORRECTIONS.

 

ON 7/16/11 CLINTON POLICE ARRESTED PATRICK D. MILLER 33, CLINTON FOR DRIVING WHILE LICENSE REVOKED. MILLER WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE DEWITT COUNTY JAIL AND RELEASED TO CORRECTIONS.

 

ON 7/17/11 CLINTON POLICE ARRESTED MICHAEL L. EDGE 47, CLINTON FOR BATTERY. EDGE WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE DEWITT COUNTY JAIL AND RELEASED TO CORRECTIONS.

 

ON 7/17/11 CLINTON POLICE ARRESTED LUCAS J. SPRAGUE 21, CLINTON FOR BATTERY. SPRAGUE WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE DEWITT COUNTY JAIL AND RELEASED TO CORRECTIONS.

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Community Action Replacing LIHEAP With Fan Drive

One local agency earlier this year saw one of its bigger programs eliminated because of the financial rut, however, that is not slowing them down from continuing assisting those in need this summer.

Community Action of Central Illinois saw its LIHEAP program get shut down for the summer months, which provided low income families assistance paying for their cooling bills. Ashley Doyle of Community Action says they are partnering with local communities to provide fans for residents in need of assistance keeping themselves cool through the summer heat.

[audio:capcil11.mp3]A Word From Doyle[/audio]

Community Action is doing the fan donations as an alternative to their usual Summer LIHEAP program, which means they are not getting  funds from the government. However, Doyle says they are asking those who are applying for fans meet the same requirements as those who would apply for assistance with LIHEAP.

[audio:capcil21.mp3]A Word From Doyle[/audio]

Despite the funds getting cut for the summer from LIHEAP, Doyle says they have received great support in the form of donations of funds and fans for Community Action. Doyle stresses while LIHEAP assistance is not available, they have plenty of fans they are very willing to get to anyone needing assistance.

[audio:capcil31.mp3]A Word From Doyle[/audio]

Community Action serves DeWitt, Logan, Macon and Piatt County's. The process of getting a fan begins by filling out an application. To get more information about receiving a fan or donating money or fans to Community Action, you can call 217-732-2159.

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Clinton City Council Meeting Preview

The Clinton City council will convene for their second meeting of the month this evening.

Some topics on discussion for tonights meeting include entering into a 2-year contract with Dr. John Warner Hospital CEO Earl Sheehy. Clinton Mayor Carolyn Peters explains the Mr. Sheehy can only get longer than a 1-year contract if approved by the City Council.

[audio:councilpreview11.mp3]A Word From The Mayor[/audio]

The Police Department has applied for a grant to get a new car. Mayor Peters explains the grant is for $20-thousand, and the projected costs of the vehicle is just over $21-thousand, which will be purchased from Baum Chevrolet in Clinton. The department has to spend $26-thousand or part of the grant money gets returned.

[audio:councilpreview21.mp3]A Word From The Mayor[/audio]

The City Council will also consider taking a stance on the Clinton Landfill issue. At their last meeting July 5, Tom Redington came forward representing the American Legion in Clinton. They recently passed a resolution opposing the dumping of PCB's into the Clinton Landfill, the Legion asked the City Council to take a stand on the issue, and Clinton Mayor Carolyn Peters put it on file for tonight's meeting.

[audio:councilpreview31.mp3]A Word From The Mayor[/audio]

Other items on tonight's agenda include approving the replacement of tires on one of the Fire Department's fire trucks. The current tires have been on it for over 10 years. The council will also approve the the Plumbers and Pipefitters contract, officials note there are no major changes in the contract and there will be no pay increase as well.

The Clinton City Council will convene this evening at 7 pm at City Hall.

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Clinton Police Department Encourages Bikers To Register Bikes

If you purchased a bike from the bike auction over the weekend, the Clinton Police Department has a program you should be aware of to keep from having that bike return to the auction again.

Like a lot of items throughout houses and garages, bicycles have serial numbers. Clinton Police Chief Mike Reidy says that serial number can be registered at the Police Department. He says if the bike should end up lost or stolen, having the serial number on the bike will make retrieving it and returning it to the owner much easier.

[audio:bikeregistration1.mp3]A Word From The Chief[/audio]

Chief Reidy explains the serial number should be on the bike. He says bringing the bike to the Police Department to get some assistance finding the serial number and getting registered is not a problem for them.

[audio:bikeregistration21.mp3]A Word From The Chief[/audio]

Chief Reidy says bike thefts more often than not are a crime of opportunity. He suggests to those who frequently are on their bikes to lock them up in the garage or put them somewhere safe other than laying out in their front yard.

[audio:bikeregistration31.mp3]A Word From The Chief[/audio]

Chief Reidy says taking a picture of the bike and writing down the serial number on the back of that picture come in very handy should the bike get stolen. He recommends doing that to more than just bikes as well. He says any valuables within a home, such as laptops, guns, and cameras just to name a few.

To learn more about the bike registration program, contact the Clinton Police Department at 935-9441.

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Cybercrime Expert To Head FBI Springfield Office

The FBI's named a cybercrime and terrorism expert to head its operations in central and southern Illinois.

A Monday statement says FBI Director Robert Mueller appointed David A. Ford as special agent in charge of the Springfield office. It oversees operations everywhere in the state except Chicago and northern Illinois.

Ford most recently served as chief of the agency's cyber intelligence section, where he organized the analysis of cyber terrorism, Internet fraud and other high-tech crimes.

During his nearly 20-year FBI career, Ford's held posts in the United States and overseas. While based in East Africa and South Asia, he took part in multiple terrorism investigations.

The acting special agent in charge of the Springfield office has been Emmerson Buie. The FBI didn't say when Ford officially takes over.

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Several Illinois Hospitals Make 'Most Wired' List

A magazine has named several Illinois medical centers among the "Most Wired Hospitals" nationwide.

The designation honors hospitals that use information technology to streamline business, cut down on medical errors and improve clinical outcomes.

Those honored include the University of Illinois Medical Center in Chicago, Children's Memorial Hospital in Chicago, Loyola University Medical Center in Maywood and Methodist Medical Center of Illinois in Peoria.

The designation comes from Hospitals & Health Networks magazine.

John DeNardo is the chief executive officer of the UIC Healthcare System. He says it's a prestigious award. It's the fifth year that the University of Illinois Medical Center has made the list.

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Midwest Heat Wave To Persist

 The high temperatures gripping much of the Midwest are nearly certain to persist through the week, and forecasters say the extreme discomfort will soon spread to the East Coast.

The misery was widespread Monday, with the worst conditions blanketing a broad band from Texas to Minnesota and Dakotas. Seventeen states issued heat watches, warnings or advisories.

The heat index easily surpassed 100 degrees in many places, including 126 in Newton, Iowa; 120 in Mitchell, S.D.; and 119 in Madison, Minn.

But few people are hit as hard as the poor.

In Oklahoma, for example, applications from elderly and low-income residents are pouring in for help to pay utility bills. And Chicago officials have opened six cooling centers, many of them in lower-income neighborhoods, along with hundreds of air-conditioned public buildings.

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Farmer City Food Pantry Taking Donations

While some food pantries help folks through holidays, one local food pantry is helping folks year round.

With the economic times the way they are, the Salt Creek Resource Center in Farmer City has a food pantry open year round to meet the needs of residents who are in need of some assistance putting food on their tables. Hope Castle is the Chairperson for the Resource Center, she says the goal of the food pantry is to be there for families when they do not have anywhere else to turn.

[audio:foodpantry1.mp3]A Word From Castle[/audio]

The Farmer City Food Pantry will sell fresh produce depending on the season. Castle says this is something unique the food pantry does for those who need it, and she says the folks that utilize the food pantry's services are very grateful to them for providing fresh produce.

[audio:foodpantry2.mp3]A Word From Castle[/audio]

Like most food pantry's, the Farmer City Food Pantry would not be functional without the support of the community. Castle says the community and organizations in it have been extremely generous in their donating of food. She also gives credit to her volunteers that come in and make sure everything is organized for those that come for food.

[audio:foodpantry3.mp3]A Word From Castle[/audio]

The summer months see almost 80 families utilizing the food pantry. Castle says during the winter months they will help almost 100 families. There are no requirement to take advantage of the food pantry. Castle says if a family feels they need assistance, the Food Pantry is there to help.

For more information on how you can donate items to the food pantry, volunteer, or take advantage of the Food Pantry's services, you can contact them at 309-928-2530 or visit their new facility at 701 East Clinton Avenue in Farmer City.

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DeWitt County's Human Resource Center Sees Elimination of Teen Reach Program

One of DeWitt County's programs that aims to assist teens is going to be eliminated due to the budget woes of the state.

The DeWitt County Human Resource Center's Teen Reach program is going to be eliminated. Teen Reach is a year round program aimed at the teens of DeWitt County to teach them social skills and study skills as well. HRC Executive Director Roger Larson says the elimination of this program is a big blow to the teens of the county.

[audio:teenreach1.mp3]A Word From Larson[/audio]

The regular turn out for the program would vary from day to day, however Larson says getting a large number of kids would take away from the amount of attention each teen would get. Larson notes the regular turn out is very good for DeWitt County.

[audio:teenreach2.mp3]A Word From Larson[/audio]

HRC has been dealing with budget issues the past few months in relation to the funding of their other programs, which is why the Teen Reach program has been eliminated. Larson says HRC will continue to receive a couple of grants they receive annually, which will allow for their other programs to continue on.

[audio:teenreach3.mp3]A Word From Larson[/audio]

Larson says other areas of HRC have seen an increase in the utilization of programs, he says with the community taking advantage of the programs they offer, the more likely those programs are to remain in place. August 5th will be the last day for the Teen Reach programs operations, he says funding was cut off July 1, however, they will continue on with the program until August 5th.

For more information about the elimination of Teen Reach you can contact the DeWitt County Human Resource Center at 935-9496.

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Clinton City Council Discusses Moving Forward With Kleeman Drive Project

The Clinton City Council had a full agenda awaiting them last night. Of the many things the City had on tap, the most discussion of the night came from the issue regarding the project on Kleeman Drive.

The Council faced the dilemma of moving forward with the project or losing the 1.5 million-dollars the state has allowed for the project. Clinton City Administrator Tim Followell explains the project was in the very preliminary stages just a few years ago and now the projects funds are available in this years fiscal budget, which began July 1. He says a decision needs to be made regarding the future of the project, or the funds may be forfeited back to the state.

[audio:councilreview1.mp3]A Word From Followell[/audio]

Clinton Mayor Carolyn Peters' biggest concern with moving forward was not receiving the 1.5-million dollars from the state. Commissioner Jerry Milton spoke in support of moving forward with the project, he said with the Douglass Second Addition going in out there right now, he felt the project would appeal to those driving by on US Highway 51 and also to potential businesses wanting to come to the area.

[audio:councilreview2.mp3]A Word From Commissioner Milton[/audio]

Commissioner Nan Crang gave input on the issue. She felt moving forward with the project would bring interest to the city of Clinton. She said making that part of the town nice would peak the improve the reputation of the city.

[audio:councilreview3.mp3]A Word From Commissioner Crang[/audio]

Commissioner John Wise was absent from the meeting last night, due to his absence, the Council put the issue off until next meeting to allow Wise to give his input on the situation as well.

In other business from Monday's meeting...

>The Council approved the 2-year contract with Dr. John Warner Hospital CEO Earl Sheehy.

> They approved the CBA for the Plumber and Pipefitters contract.

> They approved the purchase a 2011 Chevy Impala From Baum Chrevolet at a cost of just over $21-thousand for the Police Department.

> They also approved the purchase of new tires for Engine 8 of the Fire Department's Fire Engine which are almost 20 years old.

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Cubs, Sox Roll; NFL & Players Closer To Deal

>>Cubs Crush Halladay, Phillies

(Chicago, IL)  --  Carlos Pena went 3-for-3 with a solo homer and two RBI as the Cubs beat Roy Halladay and the Phillies 6-1.  Halladay left in the fifth inning after tossing only 63 pitches.  Halladay appeared to be struggling with the heat and humidity.  Aramis Ramirez hit a solo homer and drove in two for the Cubs, who won for only the second time in six games.  Rodrigo Lopez tossed six-and-two-thirds innings of one-run ball to improve to 1-and-3.  Jimmy Rollins hit a solo homer in the fourth for Philadelphia.  Halladay allowed three runs and seven hits to fall to 11-and-4.  Matt Garza gets the nod opposite Cliff Lee in tonight's second installment.

>>White Sox Roll Royals

(Kansas City, MO)  --  Mark Buehrle tossed seven innings of two-run ball to lead the White Sox past the Royals, 5-2.  Buehrle improved to 7-and-5 with the win, the third in four games for Chicago.  Juan Pierre, Alexei Ramirez, and Paul Konerko each plated a run in the victory.  Kyle Davies surrendered four runs, two earned, in his five-and-a-third innings pitched to fall to 1-and-9 on the season.  Melky Cabrera and Billy Butler drove in a run apiece as Kansas City lost for the fourth time in five contests.  Jake Peavy is slated to get the start for tonight's second installment against Danny Duffy.

>>MONDAY'S SCOREBOARD

MLB NL
------
Florida Marlins 4, New York Mets 1
Washington Nationals 5, Houston Astros 2
Chicago Cubs 6, Philadelphia Phillies 1
Pittsburgh Pirates 2, Cincinnati Reds 0
Atlanta Braves 7, Colorado Rockies 4
Arizona Diamondbacks 3, Milwaukee Brewers 0
San Francisco Giants 5, Los Angeles Dodgers 0

MLB AL
------
Cleveland Indians 5, Minnesota Twins 2 (Gm.1)
Boston Red Sox 15, Baltimore Orioles 10
New York Yankees 5, Tampa Bay Rays 4
Chicago White Sox 5, Kansas City Royals 2
Cleveland Indians 6, Minnesota Twins 3 (Gm.2)

>>NFL Lockout Lawyers Meet In New York

(New York, NY)  --  Lawyers from both sides of the NFL labor dispute met on Monday in New York to continue working on some unresolved issues.  ESPN is reporting that the two sides are trying to roll all of the remaining issues that are most problematic into a global settlement.  The issues include the settlement of the Brady versus NFL antitrust lawsuit and the television "lockout insurance" damages case along with the retired players' lawsuit.  A global settlement would mean all of those issues would be dropped if the players ratify a new collective bargaining agreement, which is expected to cover the next 10 seasons. 

Also on Monday, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell sent out a memo to all 32 teams, which instructed all key executives to attend Thursday's owners meeting in Atlanta.  If the owners ratify a new CBA at Thursday's meetings, players can begin to arrive at team facilities on Friday and team activities can begin as early as Monday, while free agency is going on.

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CornBelters Comeback Falls Short

Despite erasing a four-run deficit, the Normal CornBelters fell 6-5 to the River City Rascals Monday night at the Corn Crib. Normal drops to 27-25 following the loss, as the division-leading Rascals move to 36-15 on the season.

An eighth-inning home run by River City right fielder Jason Patton proved to be the difference in Normal's first home game since the All-Star break. With two outs, Patton drove a 2-2 pitch from Liam Ohlmann (L, 2-2) over the wall in right-center to break a 5-5 deadlock. The Rascals added three insurance runs in the ninth with an RBI single from Doug Sanders and a two-run single from Joash Brodin.

Both starting pitchers picked up a no-decision, as Tyler Lavigne went six innings for Normal, allowing five runs and four hits. Don Lisi worked 4.2 innings, giving up three hits and five earned runs. Kirkland Rivers (W, 5-1) pitched a scoreless seventh inning for the win out of the bullpen.

Steve Alexander got the scoring going in the second inning, drilling a solo home run to left field, his 16th of the year.
River City quickly tied the score with a leadoff homer in the top of the third off the bat of Bobby Burk. A walk to Williams and an infield single by Chris McClendon then put Rascals on the corners with nobody out. Sanders put River City out front 2-1 with an RBI single that scored Williams, then Stephen Holdren made it 3-1 with a ground rule double that plated McClendon. The Rascals would score one more in the inning on a Chad Maddox sacrifice fly that brought Sanders home.


Williams scored an unearned run for River City in the fourth, after he singled and eventually reached third on a wild pitch and throwing error. Sanders grounded out, but it was enough to bring the run home for a 5-1 Rascals lead.

The CornBelters got to work in the fifth inning, scoring four runs to tie the game. After loading the bases on three consecutive singles, Brandon Newton grounded out but scored Mike Mobbs. Now trailing 5-2, Frank Martinez doubled down the third base line, allowing Tyler Keeble to score. River City went to the bullpen following the double, bringing in Brandon Cunniff. With two runners in scoring position and two outs, Steve Alexander drew a walk, but ball four got away allowing both Newton and Martinez to score, but River City would put the game away in the eighth and ninth.


Normal and River City square off Tuesday night at 7 P.M. in game two of the series at the Corn Crib. Michael Click (0-0, 4.36) gets the start for the CornBelters against Erick Carillo (0-2, 10.29) of River City.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 7-19

 

July 18, 2011

 

Jail Population: 53

Summons Served: 0

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

 

Investigation into the scene of an accident, which occurred at approximately 9:15 a.m. on Sunday, July 17, 2011, revealed that a vehicle driven by Hannah Long, 17, Clinton was eastbound on Thorps, west of Burr Oak Road. Long drove off the road to the right, drove back onto the road and lost control skidding sideways striking a sign post and concrete pillar. Long was transported by Ambulance to OSF St. Joseph Hospital. No citations were issued.

 

Investigation into the scene of an accident, which occurred at approximately 5:49 p.m. on Monday, July 18, 2011, revealed that a vehicle driven by Kalob Followell, 18, DeWitt was westbound on Rt. 10 east of Hampshire Rd when he traveled into the eastbound land and off the south side of the road. The driver said he abruptly turned the steering wheel to the right, causing the vehicle to skid out of control. The vehicle turned sideways on the roadway causing it to overturn on its driver’s side. Followell was uninjured. No citations were issued.

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Illinois Gives Nearly $270 Million in Preschool Grants

The Illinois State Board of Education has awarded nearly $270 million in preschool grants to programs around the state.

The board announced Tuesday that the grants will help fund about 936 programs serving more than 77,000 children in fiscal year 2012.

Of the programs that will receive funding, 478 were selected by Chicago Public Schools. CPS gets 37% of the state's Early Childhood Block Grant.

The other 458 programs are around the rest of the state.

The education board says reviewers who selected the programs took into account their performance on previous grants and student demographics.

Priority was given to sites that serve a largely low-income student body and those that have a high percentage of African American and Hispanic children.

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Businesses Complain About Taxes in Illinois

Business groups are complaining to lawmakers about taxes in Illinois.

The first in a series of hearings on the state's tax structure was held Tuesday in Chicago.

Senate President John Cullerton and House Speaker Michael Madigan called for the hearings after major companies, including Caterpillar and the CME Group, said they might consider leaving the state over taxes and the business climate.

Business groups say they're optimistic something will come out of the hearings, which will be held around the state.

One outcome they're looking for is a reduction in the state's corporate tax rate, which was recently raised to 7%.

Business groups also say they want other tax credits and incentives expanded.

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7-Year Old Boy Drowns in Club Swimming Pool

Authorities say a 7-year-old has drowned in a swimming pool of a swim and golf club in Decatur

Macon County Coroner Michael E. Day says the boy, whose name was withheld pending notification of relatives, was found unresponsive at the bottom of the pool by lifeguards.

The Rev. Robert Mrosko says the boy was on a field trip to the Sun 'n Fun Swim & Golf Club with other children from the St. Paul's Lutheran Church day care center when the incident occurred.

Decatur Police Sgt. Steve Chabak says police and fire department emergency medical technicians were dispatched to the club early Tuesday. Chabak says when they arrived, swim club employees were trying to resuscitate the boy.

The victim was taken to Decatur Memorial Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

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Heat Advisories In Effect For Most of Illinois

EXCESSIVE HEAT ADVISORIES ARE IN EFFECT FOR MOST OF ILLINOIS.

IT’S SUMMER…MID-JULY…AND YEAH IT’S HOT. BUT TEMPERATURES HAVE BEEN ABOVE NORMAL SAYS STATE CLIMATOLOGIST JIM ANGEL.

USUALLY THIS TIME OF YEAR TEMPS ARE IN THE MID TO UPPER 80’S. HE SAYS THE HUMIDITY ISN’T HELPING.

[audio:hot1.mp3]A Word From Angel[/audio]

AND ANGEL SAYS WHILE THE HEAT INDEX…WHICH IS THE “FEELS LIKE” TEMPERATURE, IS SOARING. IN FACT…ANGEL SAYS WORKING OUT IN THE SUN CAN INCREASE THE HEAT INDEX FOR A PERSON BY AS MUCH AS 15 DEGREES.

[audio:hot2.mp3]A Word From Angel[/audio]

MOST RECORDS FOR HIGH TEMPS IN ILLINOIS ARE ABOVE 100 DEGREES.

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School Health Exam Reminders

With August nearly upon us, getting kids ready for school becomes a priority for parents and health care officials.

Local health officials want to remind parents of the requirements their kids have to meet to begin the school year. Dave Remmert is the Public Health Administrator for the DeWitt/Piatt Bi-County Health Department, he says children entering kindergarten need to have their eyes checked. He says the Health Department does not provide the opportunity for that to get done, however, local providers gladly will do that exam.

[audio:schoolhealth1.mp3]A Word From Remmert[/audio]

When one thinks of getting ready for going back to school and seeing a doctor, the automatic response is the school physical. Remmert says there are a variety of places to get those taken care of. He says anyone entering kindergarten, fifth and ninth grade are required to get those.

[audio:schoolhealth2.mp3]A Word From Remmert[/audio]

One newer requirement students have to meet is a dental exam. Remmert says this has come out in the past 5 years. He says any student entering kindergarten, 2nd and 6th grade need to have a dental exam. Remmert notes students have the whole school year to comply with this requirement. The dental exams can be taken care of at the health department thanks to the new dental clinic the health department offers now.

[audio:schoolhealth3.mp3]A Word From Remmert[/audio]

Remmert says some school districts will not allow for students who do not have the requirements met to come to school until the requirements are met. If parents have kids needing any of these exams to begin the process of getting them taken care of now.

For more information about the health exam requirements, you can contact the DeWitt/Piatt Bi-County Health Department at 935-3427 in Clinton or at 762-7911 in Monticello.

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Clinton Police Department Receives Grant for New Vehicle

The Clinton City Council recently approved the purchase of a new squad car for the Clinton Police Department.

The car was able to be purchased thanks in part to a grant the Department received. Clinton Police Chief Mike Reidy says with the way the budget has been, there was not room to purchase another car. The grant is worth $20-thousand, and Chief Reidy says part of the grant is there is a 25% match from the city, but he feels like that is a good deal for the department.

[audio:squadcargrant1.mp3]A Word From Chief Reidy[/audio]

The cost of the vehicle itself is under the $20-thousand covered by the grant, however, Chief Reidy explains by the time the upgrades are made to the cars, the cost will exceed the $25-thousand needed to spend for the grant.

[audio:squadcargrant2.mp3]A Word From Chief Reidy[/audio]

According to Chief Reidy, the police department tries to recycle their cars every five years. He says as of now, the department has two vehicles with over 100-thousand miles, however, with budgets being tightened, he says right now, those vehicles are going to have to wait to be recycled.

[audio:squadcargrant3.mp3]A Word From Chief Reidy[/audio]

The City Council approved the purchase of the squad car with the grant the department received. Also at the Council meeting Monday evening, the Police Department gave a check to the council in the amount of just over $1600 from the departments bike auction this past Saturday at Clinton Auto Auction.

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Clinton School's Projects Update

The Clinton Board of Education met for their regular monthly meeting Tuesday evening. The board was briefed on the status of the many summer projects taking place at the school.

The bleachers in the high school's gymnasium has seen the addition of four foot wide walk ways with handrails installed. Clinton Superintendent Dr. Jeff Holmes has been concerned for those attending basketball and football games walking up and down the bleachers. He says the football bleachers will simply just be getting railings, those railings on the football bleachers is on hold due to the difficulty of getting aluminum. He says once the aluminum has arrived, the project will be a one day installment.

[audio:boardreview1.mp3]A Word From Dr. Holmes[/audio]

The Jr. High School's Gymnasium has received new lights. The Jr. High was host to basketball tournaments through the year, but because of poor lighting the district was denied being able to host those tournaments, so the board made the decision to upgrade their lights in the gym in hopes of those tournaments returning to the Jr. High School. Dr. Holmes says going in the gym and seeing the lights, the upgrades are a tremendous improvement to the gym.

[audio:boardreview2.mp3]A Word From Dr. Holmes[/audio]

The new Jr. High School building has seen some leakage in the big windows on the east side of the library. Dr. Holmes explains when the windows were put in, they were not installed correctly, so the board is now having to go and have it fixed to keep the water from coming in.

[audio:boardreview3.mp3]A Word From Dr. Holmes[/audio]

The new tectum panels which are being put up in Lincoln Elementary School's gym are nearly complete as well.

The Board of Education also received good news in the form of a grant from for just over $200-thousand for their Pre-K program, which will now allow for the district to add Pre-K staff and also bring in almost 100 kids to their classes, instead of the close to 40 they currently have.

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Cubs; Cards; Sox Lose

>>Gee, Mets Clip Cards

(Flushing, NY)  --  Daniel Murphy and Angel Pagan each had two-run doubles to back seven strong innings from Dillon Gee as the Mets doubled up the Cardinals, 4-2.  Gee, who carried a no-hitter into the fifth frame, allowed both runs on three hits with a pair of strikeouts to improve to 9-and-3 on the season.  Jason Isringhausen worked a 1-2-3 ninth to nail down his first save for the Mets, who snapped a two-game slide.  Kyle Lohse had an RBI single and Lance Berkman added a solo home run to account for St. Louis' only runs of the game.  On the mound, Lohse gave up all four runs through five-and-two-thirds frames to absorb the loss.  The Cards have dropped three-of-four.  Kyle McClellan will toe the rubber opposite R.A. Dickey in tonight's second installment.

>>Phillies Double Up Cubs

(Chicago, IL)  --  Michael Martinez' two-run double in the top of the ninth led the Phillies to a 4-2 win over the Cubs on Tuesday evening at Wrigley Field.  Chase Utley added an RBI double for Philadelphia, which has alternated wins and losses in all five of their games since the All-Star break.  Michael Stutes was credited with the win and Antonio Bastardo fanned the side in the ninth to register his seventh save of the season.  Starlin Castro's two-run homer in the first frame accounted for Chicago's only runs of the game.  Sean Marshall was tagged with the loss.  The Northsiders have dropped three of their last four contests.  Ryan Dempster will toe the rubber opposite Vance Worley in this afternoon's series finale.

>>Royals Rally To Clip ChiSox

(Kansas City, MO)  --  Matt Treanor had a go-ahead RBI single in the sixth and Melky Cabrera added a solo homer in the seventh as the Royals doubled up the White Sox, 4-2, on Tuesday evening at Kauffman Stadium.  Danny Duffy struck out six through seven innings of two-run ball to pick up his second win of the season and Joakim Soria worked a one-hit ninth to notch his 17th save.  The Royals snapped a three-game skid.  Carlos Quentin and Alex Rios each plated a run for Chicago.  Jake Peavy gave up three runs through six innings of duty to absorb the loss for the White Sox.  John Danks gets the nod against Bruce Chen in tonight's series finale.

MLB NL
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Pittsburgh Pirates 1, Cincinnati Reds 0
San Diego Padres 4, Florida Marlins 0 
Houston Astros 7, Washington Nationals 6
Colorado Rockies 12, Atlanta Braves 3
Milwaukee Brewers 11, Arizona Diamondbacks 3
San Francisco Giants 5, Los Angeles Dodgers 3

MLB AL
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Baltimore Orioles 6, Boston Red Sox 2
Detroit Tigers 8, Oakland Athletics 3
Toronto Blue Jays 6, Seattle Mariners 5 (14 inn)
Tampa Bay Rays 3, New York Yankees 2 
Minnesota Twins 2, Cleveland Indians 1
Texas Rangers 7, LA Angels of Anaheim 0

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Former Bears Quarterback Jim McMahon Injured in Accident

>>Former Bears Quarterback Jim McMahon Injured In Accident

(Reno, NV)  --  Former NFL quarterback Jim McMahon is recovering after he and his girlfriend were injured in a car accident on Monday night in Reno.  McMahon and Lori Navon of Scottsdale, Arizona were riding in a limousine when they crashed through a fence south of Reno.  Nevada Highway Patrol officials say the limo went through the fence, over a culvert and into a pasture.  The limo was headed to Reno-Tahoe International Airport at the time of the accident.  McMahon, Navon and the driver all have non-life threatening injuries.  Authorities say alcohol was not involved in the accident.  McMahon spent 15 years in the NFL and played for seven different teams, most notably the Chicago Bears with whom he won a Super Bowl title in 1985.

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NBA Unveils 2011-2012 Schedule

>>NBA Unveils 2011-12 Schedule

(New York, NY)  --  The NBA may be in the midst of a lockout, but the 2011-12 regular season schedule has been released.  The league is slated to tip off its 66th campaign with a doubleheader on Tuesday, November 1st.  The opening night matchups feature the NBA champion Dallas Mavericks hosting the Chicago Bulls and the Los Angeles Lakers hosting the Oklahoma City Thunder.  The Mavericks and Miami Heat will meet in a rematch of the NBA Finals on Christmas Day in Texas.  They'll play again March 29th in Miami.  The All-Star Game is slated for February 26th in Orlando.

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CornBelters Lose to First Place River City Rascals

The Normal CornBelters dropped its second straight to the River City Rascals Tuesday night 11-3.  Despite an early lead, Rascal pitching and offense dominated Normal throughout the night, driving the Belters 10.5 games out of first place.

The CornBelters wasted no time scoring as Brandon Newton and Frank Martinez connected for back-to-back doubles, putting Normal ahead 1-0 in the 1st.  Two batters later Asif Shah plated Martinez with a single giving the Belters a 2-0 lead.
River City (37-15) cut down the lead in the 3rd without recording a hit.  Eric Williams was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning, stole second, and reached third on a sac fly.  Doug Sanders then grounded out to score Williams and bring the Rascals closer 2-1.

A bases-loaded single by Chris McClendon drove home Chad Maddox to put River City ahead 3-2 for its first lead of the night.  On that same play, Landis Wilson was tagged out as he attempted to reach home, ending the top of the 6th.

A three-run shot by Maddox gave River City a 6-2 lead in the 7th.  CornBelter reliever Benjamin Paxton walked both Jason Patton and Joash Brodin to put two on with two out for Maddox.  With a 1-2 count, the Rascal left fielder sent Paxton?s pitch over Mike Mobbs and the left field wall to give River City the biggest lead of the night.

Daniel Cox tacked on the CornBelters first run since the beginning frame as he singled home Martinez to cut River City?s lead 6-3.

An explosive 9th inning by River City gained that run back and more against Normal reliever Wade Morrison.  Stephen Holdren singled home Patton to increase the Rascal lead to 7-3. Josh Lowey came in as a pinch runner, and scored on a wild pitch for an 8-3 score. McClendon cleared the bases later on with a three-run double to score the final runs and make it 11-3.

CornBelter starter Michael Click picked up a no-decision after working five innings of two-run baseball, walking one and striking out two.  River City's Erick Carillo (1-2) earned the win with 6.1 innings and two earned runs allowed. Ben Paxton (L, 0-1) threw two innings in relief of Click, surrendering three hits and four earned runs.

The series between the CornBelters and Rascals will conclude Wednesday. Brett Lester (4-4, 4.42) will take the mound for Normal as River City sends right-hander Josh Lowey (5-2, 2.55).  First pitch is at 7 p.m. at the Corn Crib.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 7-20

 

July 19, 2011

 

Jail Population: 51

Summons Served: 1

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

 

Jeremy Underwood, 33, W, was arrested and charged with Domestic Battery. Underwood is currently housed in the DeWitt County Jail.

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Indiana Fugitive Caught In Champaign

An Indiana man on the run is behind bars in Central Illinois.  Cody Maple is being held at the Champaign County Jail.  He allegedly escaped through a recreational fence at Indiana's Vermillion County Jail on Monday.  He's been in jail since June on several charges including possession of a firearm and possession of a controlled substance.  An additional felony charge for escape will be added to his record once he is extradited back to the Hoosier State.

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Lutheran Split Could Shake Up Social Service Networks

One of the largest social service networks in the U.S. faces a shakeup over the Bible and homosexuality.

The theologically conservative Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod says it has become "difficult if not impossible" to continue working with the more liberal Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Last year, the latter abolished barriers to ordaining gays and lesbians.

Together, the two Lutheran denominations run social service programs ranging from adoption to disaster relief in the United States.

Neither denomination would discuss the financial impact Wednesday. However, just 1 of their joint agencies, Lutheran Services in America, has an annual budget of more than $16 billion.

The conservative Lutherans announced this week they will no longer train military chaplains with their liberal brethren. More such breaks are expected in the coming months.

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Reaction To GOP Lawsuit Over New Legislative Map

Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn's office is defending the state's new Democratic-drawn legislative district map after top Republican lawmakers sued to invalidate it.

Quinn's office said Wednesday the map for state House and Senate districts "represents our diverse state and protects the voting rights of minorities." Quinn is out of the country on a trip to Israel.

Earlier Wednesday, top Republican lawmakers sued the state in federal court contending the new map shortchanges blacks and Latinos and dilutes the voting strength of Republicans.

Democrats drew the map that Quinn signed into law last month because they control the General Assembly and the governor's office.

The Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund says it's still studying the state map and the Republicans' lawsuit before it decides what action to take.

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State Republicans File Lawsuit Against Democrat Drawn Legislative Lines

A redistricting battle is brewing in Illinois.  Republicans say the latest version of the legislative map violates the U.S. Constitution, the Illinois Constitution and the Federal Voting Rights Act of 1965.  Republican leaders in both the House and Senate filed a lawsuit today, asking that a new, more fair map be drawn.  Senate GOP Leader Christine Radogno says this lawsuit could've been avoided if Democratic leaders had given voters a chance to decide who drew the map.  She says a constitutional amendment would have taken the process out of the hands of politicians and into those of an independent body.  Now, she says, citizens must depend on the courts to protect their voting power.

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Statewide School Transportation Cuts Cause Unique Transportation Ideas

State funding for student transportation was slashed in half for the upcoming school year and at least one district is proposing a quote, "walking school bus."  It's where students carpool or walk to school together.  Bob Perica [[ pear-eeka ]], school board member for Edwardsville School District number seven, says they're identifying students who don't need bus service.

[audio:rddSTrans1.mp3]A Word From Perica[/audio]

As a direct result of the funding cut, 650 bus stops will no longer be served.  On top of funding issues for the upcoming year, Perica says they're still waiting to be reimbursed for a large portion of last year's transportation costs.

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Fire At Local Baseball Diamond Destroys Dugout; Under Investigation

On Wednesday morning just before 1 am, the Clinton Fire Department was called to the 800 block of West Webster where a dugout at one of the baseball fields at Moore Park was set on fire. By the time firefighters arrived on the scene, the dugout was fully involved. Two trucks were sent out and it took firefighters approximately 30 minutes to handle the situation. The dugout at the park was completely destroyed. The Illinois Fire Marshall has been called in to investigate the fire. Officials do not have a concrete time frame on when the investigation may conclude.

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DeWitt County Farm Bureau Hosts Golf Outing For Fund Raiser in August

Golf enthusiasts have the opportunity to support a good cause coming up in August.

The DeWitt County Farm Bureau will be hosting their annual golf outing Friday morning August 5. The day kicks off with a shot gun start at 8 am. Ken Bjelland is the Manager of the DeWitt County Farm Bureau explains the event includes breakfast and lunch provided along with a morning of golf at the Clinton Country Club.

[audio:berueafundraiser1.mp3]A Word From Bjelland[/audio]

The Golf Outing serves as a fund raiser for the Farm Bureau Foundation. The foundation provides scholarships for kids in college or going to college. Bjelland says since the foundations conception in 1995, they have been able to provide students with 50 scholarships.

[audio:berueafundraiser2.mp3]A Word From Bjelland[/audio]

 The Farm Bureau Foundation also helps equip leaders for the next generation. The Farm Bureau has a program called Ag Leaders for Tomorrow, and kids that take part in that program go to different classes and seminars to learn leadership skills and partake in leadership training. The Foundation helps pay for some of the costs associated with those classes.

[audio:berueafundraiser3.mp3]A Word From Bjelland[/audio]

Things kick off at 8 am with a shot gun start at Clinton Country Club. The cost of the event is $75 per golfer, or $300 for a team. The cost of the event covers donuts and coffee prior to the golfing, and the lunch at Clinton Country Club. Registration for the event is going on now, however, organizers encourage those interested to get them in as soon as possible. The last day to register will be July 29. For more information you can contact the Farm Bureau at 935-2126.

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Blue Ridge's Mansfield Facility Update

The Blue Ridge School District continues their preliminary steps towards updating the school's aging facility.

Early in the year, the Blue Ridge Board of Education took the first step towards replacing the Mansfield facility by transferring 1.4-million dollars into the district's Capital fund.  Superintendent Susan Wilson explains the next step is to propose to the public the plans for the facility.

[audio:mansfieldupdate1.mp3]A Word From Wilson[/audio]

The project has not received much feedback from community members. Wilson is optimistic to take that silence as a good thing, however, she says feedback from the public is very vital to the future of the project.

[audio:mansfieldupdate2.mp3]A Word From Wilson[/audio]

The Mansfield Elementary building has been something the school district has been looking into for a number of years. According to Wilson, the building is very old and out of date. The ultimate goal is to eliminate the grade school and add on to the Jr. High School, and she feels now is the time to move forward with the project.

[audio:mansfieldupdate3.mp3]A Word From Wilson[/audio]

Wilson says school board is aiming to complete the project without effecting the tax rate within the district. The district has been saving money for the project to keep from having to raise taxes. Again the district stresses public input is very important to the future of the process.

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Farmer City Fair Going On This Week

The 81st Farmer City/DeWitt County Fair is taking place this week.

Wednesday morning the sheep judging took place. Numbers this year were down compared to the past several years. Pat Toohill is a 4-H Superintendent who helped with the sheep judging process, he believes the lack of funding for the fairs has caused those who would normally bring their sheep out to stay away this year. According to Toohill, despite the lack of numbers, it was still a good show this year.

[audio:farmercityfair1.mp3]A Word From Toohill[/audio]

John Coors is a 4-H leader in New Holland and has children currently in 4-H and they brought sheep out to show at this years fair. Coors says going through the 4-H program and taking part in all the activities goes beyond the fair weeks and the shows the kids do, he says its a good opportunity for kids meet people from all over.

[audio:farmercityfair2.mp3]A Word From Coors[/audio]

Lance Speiker the Chairman of the Raceway committee, he explains the fair this year is going to have a special new event. The Bobcat Rodeo is a new event to the fair. He explains it is basically bobcats going through an obstacle course while being timed.

[audio:farmercityfair3.mp3]A Word From Speaker[/audio]

The 81st Farmer City/DeWitt County Fair continues on until Saturday. For a full judging schedule and fair schedule, you can visit the Fair's webpage at farmercityfair.com.

You can hear live coverage from the Fair from 1-2pm on The Big 1520 AM/92.3 FM WHOW today and Friday, and from 9:30-11am Saturday as well.

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Cards, Cubs & Sox All Lose; NFL Lockout Could Be Coming To End Today

>>Pagan, Mets Walk Off On Cards

(Flushing, NY)  --  Angel Pagan clubbed a walk-off, solo home run in the bottom of the 10th inning to give the Mets a 6-5 win over the Cardinals.  Jason Isringhausen worked the final two innings to register the win.  Matt Holliday finished 3-for-4 with two RBI and two runs scored for St. Louis.  Fernando Salas was tagged with the loss for the Cards, who have dropped four-of-five since the All-Star break.  The teams wrap up the three-game set this afternoon as Jake Westbrook opposes Jon Niese.

>>Phillies Pound Cubs

(Chicago, IL)  --  Jimmy Rollins homered from both sides of the plate for the second time in his career as the Phillies flogged the Cubs, 9-1, on Wednesday afternoon at Wrigley Field.  Rollins finished 3-for-5 with three RBI and four runs scored as Philadelphia took the rubber match of a three-game set at Wrigley Field.  Chase Utley doubled twice and drove in two for the Phils, who posted their major league-leading 61st win.  Vance Worley fanned seven over eight innings of one-run ball to move to 6-and-1.  Ryan Dempster gave up six runs in three frames to take the loss.  Geovany Soto drove in the lone run for Chicago with a groundout.  The Northsiders are off today.  They kick off a three-game series against the Houston Astros starting tomorrow afternoon at the Friendly Confines.  Carlos Zambrano will be on the bump opposite Bud Norris in the opener.

>>Royals Top ChiSox In Extras

(Kansas City, MO)  --  Alex Gordon scored on Sergio Santos' wild pitch in the bottom of the 11th as the Royals dropped the White Sox, 2-1, on Wednesday at Kauffman Stadium.  Gordon also scored the other run for KC, which won its second straight game.  Aaron Crow got the win out of the bullpen.  Carlos Quentin blasted a solo shot for Chicago's lone run.  Chris Sale took the loss in relief.  The ChiSox have lost three-of-four overall.  The Southsiders are off today.  They wrap up a nine-game road swing with a three-game series against the Cleveland Indians starting tomorrow night at Progressive Field.

MLB NL
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Cincinnati Reds 3, Pittsburgh Pirates 1
Houston Astros 3, Washington Nationals 2 (11 inn)
Philadelphia Phillies 9, Chicago Cubs 1
Los Angeles Dodgers 1, San Francisco Giants 0
San Diego Padres 14, Florida Marlins 3
New York Mets 6, St. Louis Cardinals 5 (10 inn)
Colorado Rockies 3, Atlanta Braves 2
Milwaukee Brewers 5, Arizona Diamondbacks 2 (10 inn)

MLB AL
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Boston Red Sox 4, Baltimore Orioles 0
Minnesota Twins 7, Cleveland Indians 5
Oakland Athletics 7, Detroit Tigers 5
Toronto Blue Jays 11, Seattle Mariners 6
New York Yankees 4, Tampa Bay Rays 0
Kansas City Royals 2, Chicago White Sox 1 (11 inn)
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 9, Texas Rangers 8

>>NFL CBA Could Be Voted On Today

(Washington, DC)  --  Today could be the day the NFL finally has a new collective bargaining agreement in place.  Lead players negotiator Jeff Pash says he expects both players and owners to have a final deal to vote on today.  An expected player vote yesterday was delayed with some parts of the CBA still unresolved.  League owners are gathered in Atlanta this morning and are expected to ratify the deal once the players have signed off.  They will still meet even if the players haven't voted by then.  ESPN reports additional items of the CBA that have been agreed upon include an enhanced injury protection benefit, players allowed to remain in the league-sponsored medical plan for life, and an annual increase in the league minimum player salary.

>>NFL Hall Of Fame Game Could Be In Jeopardy

(Canton, OH)  --  Even if a new collective bargaining agreement is approved this week, the NFL's August 7th Hall of Fame Game between the Rams and Bears could be in jeopardy.  ESPN cites a league source as saying the status of the game would depend on how quickly the union is able to recertify.  The union decertified after the lockout in order to file an antitrust lawsuit against the NFL.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 7-21

 

July 20, 2011

 

Jail Population: 52

Summons Served: 1

Warrant Arrests: 2

 

 

Kurt Price, 44, Clinton, was arrested on a DeWitt County warrant charging him with Domestic Battery/Bodily Harm. Price posted the necessary bond and was released.

 

Ronald McCoy, 50, Springfield, was arrested on a DeWitt County warrant charging him with Failure to Appear. McCoy posted the necessary bond and was released.

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Hot Nights Can Compound Problems During Heat Waves

The killer lurking in the shadows of the current heat wave may be hot nights.

Illinois state climatologist Jim Angel says people get fixated on how hot it gets, but he says the nighttime temperatures can be just as important.

For folks without air conditioning, a nighttime respite from the worst of the heat gives the body a vital chance to recover from the stresses of the day.

But while the current heat wave has recorded 12 all-time daily highs so far this month, it also has registered 98 all-time overnight highs.

That's according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

And that's just all-time highs.

More than 1,200 locations have tied or broken daytime records this month while 3,128 night time highs have been tied or broken.

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EPA Gives Illinois $5 Million For Cleaner Water

Several Illinois communities will get nearly $5 million in grants to reduce the amount of pollution running into the state's waterways.

They're called Green Infrastructure Grants and entities apply in 1 of 3 categories - combined sewer overflow, storm retention and infiltration, and small projects.

The money was announced Thursday by the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency.

More than a dozen communities and entities will get the grants.

They include the city of Joliet, which is getting $820,000 for footing tile separation program, and the city of Danville, which will receive $750,000 for a high school campus improvement project.

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Illinois Lacks Money To Help Low Income Keep Cool

Facing a big drop in federal money to help poor people keep their power on, the state of Illinois decided earlier this year to use the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program only in winter this year.

That's leaving potentially tens of thousands of people without extra money to keep their power on or get it reconnected during a devastating heat wave.

Spokeswoman Marcelyn Love says the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity had little choice. Otherwise it might have run out of money during a brutal Illinois winter.

That doesn't comfort people like Cynthia Littlefield of Paxton. She's unemployed and her family has a $198 electricity bill from Ameren it can't pay.

Ameren spokesman Leigh Morris says the utility won't turn off power for non-payment during heat advisories.

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Experts Advise Producers To Be On The Lookout For Pests

Corn crops across central Illinois are showing good progress after a tough planting season, however experts are reminding producers to be on the lookout for potential pest problems.  Jared White has more...

[audio:7-18-11 Corn Pests WRAP.mp3]Jared White With The Story[/audio]

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Farmer City Cattle Show Recap

The Farmer City Fair's Breeding Cattle Show was Thursday morning. Kids of all ages and from all over central Illinois brought their cattle out to show this weekend.

Alec Murphy showed a couple of calves at the fair this year. Murphy had a lot of success this year, he had the reserve Champion Female Angus group and also the summer yearly bull group. Murphy explains keeping the calves cool yet dry is a key part in showing cattle at the fairs.

[audio:farmercitycattle1.mp3]A Word From Murphy[/audio]

Chris Chestnut shows cattle every year at the fair. He says every year the Farmer City Fair is one of the most competitive fields to enter. Numbers this year for the cattle show were down, he believes the heat played a factor in the drop in attendance this year.

[audio:farmercitycattle2.mp3]A Word From Chestnut[/audio]

Chet McClure came to the Farmer City Fair this year representing the farm he works for and showing off the cattle they had. He says the key to having good cattle is making sure they are structurally sound and that they have good size when you show them.

[audio:farmercitycattle3.mp3]A Word From McClure[/audio]

The 81st Farmer City/DeWitt County Fair continues on today and concludes tomorrow. You can hear live coverage of the fair from 1-2 pm today and 9:30-11 am tomorrow morning on The Big 1520 AM/92.3 FM WHOW. Also, upon the conclusion of the fair, you can read the results from the fair at dewittdailynews.com.

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County Board Members Directly Questioned on Landfill Issue

The ongoing Chemical Waste permit application at Clinton Landfill was once again at the center of discussion Thursday night at the DeWitt County Board's regular monthly meeting.

 width=Resident Terry Hoffman spoke before the board, and asked some pointed questions of members who have continually refused to take a position either for or against the proposed dumping of higher concentrations of polychlorinated biphenyls, or PCBs, into the Clinton Landfill. Hoffman specifically questioned the board on the language of the most recent local siting hearing of the landfill, which was held in 2002.

[audio:072111landfill1.mp3] A Word From Hoffman [/audio]

Board member Denny Rich listed off the acceptable materials at the Clinton Landfill as set forth by the hearing, which did not include chemical waste.

[audio:072111landfill2.mp3]A Word From Rich[/audio]

County Land Use Chair Terry Ferguson acknowledged that the 2002 hearing did not specifically list chemical wastes.  However, he went on to say a recent conversation with top legal officials with the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency seemed to conclude that the local siting of the landfill doesn't override state and federal agencies.

[audio:072111landfill3.mp3]A Word From Ferguson[/audio]

Hoffman went on to claim that several County Board members have told him that they are against the Chemical Waste Landfill, and none of the members named denied the claim.  Hoffman feels it's time for the majority to take a stand.

[audio:072111landfill4.mp3]A Word From Hoffman[/audio]

Despite repeated appeals from the public, the DeWitt County Board as a whole has not voiced an opinion either in favor or against the Chemical Waste permit.  A clause in a 2008 contract with the landfill states the board will remain neutral on the issue.  Representatives from Peoria Disposal, the landfill's owner, have threatened a breach of contract lawsuit should the county violate the clause.

The I-EPA has already approved the company's plans to institute a Chemical Waste operation.  The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency continues to take public comment on the proposal through August 14th.  Citizen groups and governments from across central Illinois have voiced their opposition to the plan due the landfill's location over the Mahomet Aquifer, which supplies drinking water to nearly a million residents.

In other business Thursday night, the DeWitt County Board...
> voted 7 to 5 in favor of a proposal from Architectural Expressions for architect and engineering services on a proposed new county animal shelter.  The cost of the proposal is not to exceed 65-thousand dollars.

> unanimously approved a motion to increase county zoning fees as of September 1st.  The fee rates will be published.

> approved the county's new updated Emergency Operation Plan.

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Cards Salvage Series Finale Against Mets

>>Cardinals Take Finale From Mets

(Flushing, NY)  --  The Cardinals salvaged the finale of their three-game series with a 6-2 win over the Mets in New York.  Albert Pujolsclubbed a two-run homer in the first inning and Jon Jay went 2-for-4 with an RBI for St. Louis.  Skip Schumaker also drove in a run.  Jake Westbrook allowed just four hits and two runs over eight innings for the win.  Jon Niese suffered the loss.

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Spring Cup Series Has Busy Weekend on Tap

>>Sprint Cup Series Takes Week Off

(Lebanon, TN)  --  While the Sprint Cup Series takes a break this weekend, the Nationwide and Camping World Truck Series compete at Nashville Superspeedway.  The IZOD IndyCar Series is in Canada for its second race in a row with the Honda Indy Edmonton, and Formula One heads to the Nurburgring for the German Grand Prix.  Last Saturday, Kyle Busch became just the third driver to win 100 NASCAR races by taking the checkered flag for the Nationwide event at New Hampshire.  He joined Richard Petty and David Pearson as the only drivers with 100 or more wins in NASCAR.  The Sprint Cup Series returns next weekend at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the Brickyard 400.

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CornBelters Fall in Extras

The Normal CornBelters, were pushed to extra innings for the second consecutive night but fell 8-6 to the Evansville Otters Thursday night in ten frames. Normal falls to 27-28 with the loss while Evansville moves to 19-36 on the season.

Evansville trailed 6-4 and was one strike away from a loss, but the Otters evened the score with a late rally.  Joe Spiers singled home Greg Fontenot with one out to cut Normal's lead 6-5.  CornBelter reliever Liam Ohlmann then allowed a single to Greg Alexander which plated Ryan Still and tied the game 6-6.

Despite getting Frank Martinez to third in the bottom of the ninth, the CornBelters were unable to push the winning run across in regulation.

The Otters tacked on two more in the 10th to gain their first lead of the evening.  Mike Durant walked to start the extra frame and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Steve Caseres.  Troy Frazier then plated Durant with a single off CornBelter reliever Donald Furrow.  Frazier would score on a throwing error later in the inning to give Evansville an 8-6 lead.

Starters Ryan Sheldon and Kyle Barry received no-decisions, Josh Cephas (W, 3-2) worked two innings walking three and striking out three.  Donald Furrow (L, 0-1) went one inning, giving up two runs on two walks and one hit.

The CornBelters grabbed a pair of runs early in the game.  With Steve Alexander and Martinez both in scoring position, Asif Shah doubled into left-center field to put Normal on top 2-0 in the 1st.

Evansville did not get on the board until Greg Alexander led of the 4th inning with a solo blast to cut Normal's lead 2-1.
Normal wasted no time getting the run back in bottom of the frame.  Alexander reached second on a throwing error by Spiers and moved to third on a wild pitch by Otters starter Kyle Barry.  Daniel Cox's sac fly allowed Alexander to cross home and gave Normal a 3-1 lead.

The Otters came within one again in the next inning as Frazier came aboard thanks to an error by Martinez.  Fontenot's sac bunt and a Still single moved Frazier over to third base.  Spiers then hit a potential double-play groundball, but beat the throw at first, allowing Frazier to score bringing Evansville closer 3-2.

Mike Mobbs sparked the offense in the 5th, leading off with a double to right field.  Brandon Newton's groundout transitioned Mobbs to third and a similar groundball by Martinez pushed another run across for the Belters leading 4-2.

The Otters touched on Ryan Sheldon again in the 6th, this time to tie the game.  With two on and one out, Sheldon's wild pitch moved Alexander and Frazier to both second and third base.  Caseres then doubled into left-center field evening the score 4-4.

Normal regained the lead in the seventh at the expense of Evansville's bullpen.  One hit, one error, and one walk loaded the bases for Shah.  A walk to Shah forced home Mobbs, followed by another walk to Cox plating Martinez and giving the CornBelters a 6-4 lead.

The CornBelters and Otters will meet again Friday night at 7 p.m. at the Corn Crib.  Normal sends Matt Mossey (1-0, 3.60) against Evansville's Kyle Eastham (0-3, 5.32).

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 7-22

 

July 21, 2011

 

Jail Population: 52

Summons Served: 2

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

 

Investigation into the scene of an accident, which occurred at approximately 2:23 a.m. on Thursday, July 21, 2011, revealed that a vehicle driven by Larry Foster, 54, Jacksonville was northbound on US Highway 51 when a cow entered the right lane of travel. Foster struck the cow with the driver’s side of his vehicle which caused him to lose control. The semi-truck then spun around and rolled over in the median. Foster was transported by ambulance to Decatur Memorial Hospital. No citations were issued.

 

Investigation into the scene of an accident, which occurred at approximately 3:22 a.m. on Friday, July 22, 2011, revealed that a vehicle driven by Larry Jones Jr., 28, Lincoln was westbound on Ill. Rt 10 just west of Clinton when the vehicle left the roadway striking the ditch causing damage to the vehicle. Jones was not injured. No citations were issued.

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American Red Cross Offers Incentive To Stave Off Critical Blood Donation Shortage

(Springfield, IL)  --  Donating your blood could land you a trip to Disney World, courtesy of the American Red Cross.  The organization is experiencing its lowest levels of summer blood donations in 12 years.  Theresa Kuhlmann, spokesperson for the Heart of America Blood Services Region, says summer donations don't usually dip this low. 

[audio:rddBlood1.mp3]...that list...[/audio]

Anyone who gives blood is automatically entered into a drawing to win a trip for four to Orlando.  The Red Cross hopes this will provide some incentive for people to help rebuild the blood supply.  To find a blood donation center near you go to redcrossblood.org.

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IRS Warns Taxpayers About Tax Refund Scams

(Springfield, IL)  --  The IRS is warning Illinois residents to be on the lookout for scammers who are targeting taxpayers.  Sue Hales, Illinois' IRS spokesperson, says tax scammers appeal to victims by promising larger rebates and increased tax credits.

[audio:rddTScam1.mp3]...bad advice...[/audio]

 Hales says everyone should check out tax preparer offers with the IRS to make sure they are real.

[audio:rddTScam2.mp3]...amended return...[/audio]

Hales says the tax preparation scams are on the rise and may result in fraudulent tax returns and in even some cases of identity theft.  The tax scams are mostly advertised by flyer and e-mail, but scams have also been known to spread by word of mouth in tight-knit communities such as churches.

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Keeping Kids Safe in Summer

Summer is a great time for children to enjoy playing out of doors, but precautions should be taken so some serious injuries don’t occur.

About 25 million children and teens suffer injuries each year that require medical treatment at the emergency department. Many of the injuries can be prevented if parents are careful and plan ahead. Dr. Ted Clark, assistant professor of emergency medicine at SIU School of Medicine in Springfield, explains some injuries that are seen most often in hospital emergency rooms.

[audio:siusafekids1.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Dr. Clark says other injuries include those resulting from swimming, bicycle and ATV accidents as well as from dehydration, sunburn and heat exhaustion. He says it might be tempting for parents to want to protect children from possible injuries by keeping them inside playing video games and watching TV, but he advises against that.

[audio:siusafekids2.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Dr. Clark advises parents to be vigilant in watching their children on the playground and around swimming pools. If a child is injured they should be taken to their primary care physician or hospital emergency department as quickly as possible.

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Hot Nights Compound Heat Wave Danger

The killer lurking in the shadows of the current heat wave may be hot nights.

Illinois state climatologist Jim Angel says people get fixated on how hot it gets, but he says the nighttime temperatures can be just as important.

For folks without air conditioning, a nighttime respite from the worst of the heat gives the body a vital chance to recover from the stresses of the day.

But while the current heat wave has recorded 12 all-time daily highs so far this month, it also has registered 98 all-time overnight highs.

That's according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

And that's just all-time highs.

More than 1,200 locations have tied or broken daytime records this month while 3,128 night time highs have been tied or broken.

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Stepping Up the Fight Against Child Pornography

Attorney General Lisa Madigan is stepping up the effort to combat child pornography by promoting a program created to track illegal images on the Internet. Madigan says the new technology should get at the heart of the problem.

[audio:rddCPorn1.mp3]...they belong...[/audio]

PhotoDNA was developed by Microsoft and donated to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children for purpose of tracking child pornography. Madigan will meet with some of the nations biggest Internet companies, such as Yahoo and Comcast, later this week to ask them to adopt the photo identification technology.

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Illinois Budget Cuts Lead to Reduced Senior Benefits

About 20% of seniors and people with disabilities will lose prescription drug coverage because of cuts in the Illinois state budget.

State officials are sending letters to 43,000 participants saying they won't qualify for "Illinois Cares Rx" as of Sept. 1. Those who are still enrolled will pay more out of pocket for their prescriptions.

Mike Claffey is spokesman for the Department of Healthcare and Family Services. He says the program had to be trimmed because of budget cuts. But he says the program still offers "significant help" to participants.

A single person cannot make more than $21,780 a year to qualify. That's down from $27,610.

Generic drug co-pays will rise to $5, from $2.50, and brand-name drugs go to $15, from $6.30.

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Peoria Man Convicted of 2009 Killing

A 31-year-old Peoria man could be sentenced to life in prison after a jury found him guilty of shooting another man to death in 2009.

David Brown was found guilty of murder Thursday in the death of Johnnie Whitehead of Peoria.

Brown's conviction carries a possible life sentence. He will be sentenced Sept. 8.

Whitehead was 35 years old when he was killed in his mother's apartment in December 2009.

Brown was shot in the arm and jaw by police after officers said he fired at them through a door.

Police say Brown and another man, 27-year-old Yohni Brown, were robbing Whitehead when he was shot. Yohni Brown pleaded guilty in March to armed robbery.

The Browns aren't related.

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UPS Clerk Pleads Guilty To Stealing Drugs

 A former parcel delivery service worker in central Illinois has pleaded guilty to stealing drugs headed to military veterans.

Sean Locke of Mackinaw admitted that he stole drugs including methadone, oxycodone and fentanyl patches while working as a United Parcel Service clerk in East Peoria.

The medications were being mailed to Department of Veterans Affairs patients.

UPS and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency launched the investigation that led to Locke's arrest after several VA patients reported that their medication wasn't arriving.

U.S. attorney's office spokeswoman Sharon Paul says most of the stolen drugs have been recovered.

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Nursing Home Closes Over Late Payments From State

The administrator of a west-central Illinois nursing home says the facility will close next week because of late payments from the state.

Steve Axelbaum says Astoria Gardens and Rehab Center has had to wait six months to receive its payments.

He says "nothing can survive in this environment."

Axelbaum says arrangements are being made to move the home's 35 residents to other facilities in the area. But he says the move is hard on residents, many of them in their 80s and 90s.

The home, which has been in business for about a decade, employs about 40 people.

Illinois has a multibillion-dollar budget deficit. The state has dealt with the fiscal crisis, in part, by delaying payments to agencies.

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Decatur Ready For Farm Progress Show

 Organizers say the heat that's hit central Illinois is good news in one way for the Farm Progress Show.

Show manager Matt Jungmann says the warmth should help late-planted demonstration crops get ready in time for the event, which starts on Aug. 30.

But Jungmann admits the people getting ready for the show aren't as happy about the heat as the corn is.

Crews are working to prepare the site this year to give exhibitors time to get ready. Those preparations include putting up new buildings.

Organizers say the additions will nearly triple the amount of available indoor space at the event.

Jungmann says the exhibit field for the Farm Progress Show is full, with 25 to 30 companies on a waiting list.

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Three People Are Dead After A Plane Crash In Central Illinois

Three people are dead after a plane crash in Central Illinois this morning.  According to the Federal Aviation Administration, the single engine plane was taking off from the Rantoul Airport when it crashed and then erupted in flames.  The exact cause of the incident hasn't been determined yet but weather is believed to have been a factor.

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Springfield Considers Waiting Period For Copper

Copper thefts are on the rise, and officials in Springfield are considering a 2-day waiting period to deter thieves looking to cash in their ill-gotten goods.

Springfield Police Chief Robert Williams says he supports requiring a waiting period before people can get cash in exchange for precious metals.

Officials received 64 reports of stolen copper in 2009. That number increased to 172 last year. And so far this year, 268 thefts have been reported.

Williams told Springfield aldermen that a rise in the price of precious metals brought on the increase. Thieves often tear copper tubing off air-conditioning units, causing significant damage.

Williams says the waiting-period idea is still in the preliminary stages.

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Miller Park Zoo Sees Busy Year With New Animals

Miller Park Zoo in Bloomington has seen a a busy year with their animals giving birth.

The Zoo so far this summer has seen several animals give birth to babies, and zoo officials are glad to see it. Jay Tetzloff is the Miller Park Zoo Superintendent, he says some of the more rare animals the zoo has have given birth this summer.

[audio:zoobirths1.mp3]A Word From Tetzloff[/audio]

Many of the newborns are starting to get out on their own now. Tetzloff says along with the new born animals, the zoo is also been adding to their exhibits throughout the summer. Continuing to add to their exhibits is a goal of the zoo's right now.

[audio:zoobirths2.mp3]AWord From Tetzloff[/audio]

The zoo recently saw their Red Wolf pair "Bruser" and "Kai" give birth to pups, and some of those pups were released into the wild. Tetzloff says the pups that are still at the zoo are doing well. As for the pups that were released into the wild, they may never hear how they are doing. He says the area they are released into is such a large area, keeping tabs on all of them is very tough.

[audio:zoobirths3.mp3]A Word From Tetzloff[/audio]

Tetzloff says the zoo has pictures of the babies on their website and it is updated several times a week. The zoo is open 7-days a week from 9:30-4:30 throughout the year.

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Blue Ridge Receives Grant To Expand Pre-K Program

The Blue Ridge School District received good news that will allow them to reach younger students.

The district was recently received a grant that will go to their Pre-K program. The grant is annual grant that in the past has been handed out by the state, and each district had no input into the process of distribution. However, this year the grant was competitive and school's across the state were able to apply for the grant. Susan Wilson is the Superintendent of Blue Ridge Schools, she believes this year the state tried to focus more on those districts with at risk kids who were in the most need of the grant. According Wilson, about 40% of Blue Ridges students would qualify for at risk students, which is a lot of the reason the district received the grant.

[audio:blueridgeprekgrant1.mp3]A Word From Wilson[/audio]

Blue Ridge currently serves both Pre-K students and also Pre-K students with special needs. The grant the district received will also allow Blue Ridge to expand on serving those students with special needs. Wilson says the grant could potentially allow the number of Pre-K students the district has to double.

[audio:blueridgeprekgrant2.mp3]A Word From Wilson[/audio]

The state has promised those recipients of the grant they will be receiving the money for their programs. Wilson says with the track record of the state, nothing is for sure. She feels the state needs to be honest with school districts about the money they will be giving them instead of making half-empty promises.

[audio:blueridgeprekgrant3.mp3]A Word From Wilson[/audio]

The Blue Ridge Board of Education will discuss the expansion of staff members with the news of the district receiving this grant. Wilson believes if the board approves it, the district could see the hiring an addition of a Pre-K and a Pre-K teaching assistant.

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Clinton City Council Could Move Soon On Demolition Of Property

The Clinton City Council could be moving soon on demolishing a couple dated buildings on city property.

On the 200 block of East Washington, the city has acquired the building on the corner, The Hot Spot, and the city will be looking to demolish that. However, there is another property the city owns that required some discussion Monday evening. City Administrator Tim Followell explains should the city decide to bring down the neighboring structure, the wall exposed will be a wall that was intended to be an interior wall.

[audio:buildingdemolishion1.mp3]A Word From Followell[/audio]

The City Council discussed taking some precautions before making the decision to simply tear the building down. The first discussion was whether to bring in a structural engineer to look over the building and decide if the building could make it through another winter, and if it could be tore down without harming the building next to it. Clinton Mayor Carolyn Peters says it is a tough decision the city has to act on very soon.

[audio:buildingdemolishion3.mp3]A Word From Mayor Peters[/audio]

The council is in negotiations to acquire the building next to the Wishbone, however, to this point those negotiations have not worked out for the city, so for now the city only has the building next to it. Followell recommended at the very least moving forward by bringing in a structural engineer and inspect the structural integrity of the building, as well as look for any other issues it may have before they tear it down.

[audio:buildingdemolishion2.mp3]A Word From Followell[/audio]

The City council authorized Followell to gather bids for the demolition of both buildings, and also to inspect the building to find if they can bring it down without effecting the Wishbone. The goal of the City Council is to eventually have the Wishbone acquired and to bring both buildings there down.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 6-17

 

June 17, 2011

Jail Population: 55

Summons Served: 2

Warrant Arrests: 1

 

 

Beau Evans, 29, Bloomington, was issued a citation for operating an uninsured vehicle. Evans was issued a notice to appear and was released.

 

Michael Tedrick, 35, Lincoln, was issued citations for Improper Lane Usage, Violation of Classification – No Class M License and Operating Uninsured Vehicle. Investigation into the scene of the accident which occurred at approximately 1752 on Thursday June 16, 2011, revealed that the vehicle driven by Tedrick turned south onto Johnston Street from Howard Street in Kenney. Tedrick accelerated too hard, left the roadway into some gravel causing him to lose control. Seeing he was going to hit a tree and was entering the grass, Tedrick laid the motorcycle on its side and struck the tree. Tedrick refused treatment. Tedrick posted his IL Drivers License as bond and was released.

 

Dennis Jackson, 45, Jacksonville, was arrested on a DeWitt County Warrant and a Cass County Warrant charging with Failure to Appear. Jackson being un-able to post the necessary bond remains lodged in the DeWitt County jail.

 

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Cubs, Cards, Sox Win; NFL Lockout Over

>>Bucs Clip Cards In Extras

(Pittsburgh, PA)  --  Chase d'Arnaud scored Xavier Paul with a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the 10th, as the Pittsburgh Pirates avoided a three-game sweep with a dramatic 4-3 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals.  Jason Motte was saddled with the loss for St. Louis.  Colby Rasmus went 2-for-4 with a solo homer and two runs scored but the Cardinals couldn't extend their win streak to four games.  St. Louis returns home tonight to start a four-game series with the Houston Astros.  Kyle McClellan will take on J.A. Happ in the opener from Busch Stadium.

>>Cubs Sweep 'Stros

(Chicago, IL)  --  Jeff Baker singled with the bases loaded in the bottom of the 10th, as the Chicago Cubs downed the Houston Astros 5-4 to record their first three-game winning streak and sweep of the season.  Marlon Byrd scored the winning run after leading off with a high fly ball to right, which Hunter Pence lost in the sun, allowing Byrd to reach with a triple.  John Grabow worked a scoreless top of the 10th to register the victory, while David Carpenter surrendered the decisive run to take the loss for the Astros, who had won two straight prior to their series with the Cubs.  After a day off today, Chicago returns to action tomorrow night in Milwaukee when Ryan Dempster takes the ball against Chris Narveson and the Brewers.

>>White Sox Take Down Tribe

(Cleveland, OH)  --  The Chicago White Sox took advantage of a shaky Indians defense, scoring three unearned runs, to claim a 4-2 win on Sunday in the finale of a rain shortened two-game series at Progressive field.  Mark Teahen had an RBI single and Juan Pierre chipped in with a double for the White Sox, who have won back-to-back games after dropping three of their previous four.  Edwin Jackson worked six solid innings to earn the win, giving up a pair of runs on five hits while walking three and striking out three.  Sergio Santos worked around a walk to record the final two outs of the game and earn his 20th save of the season.  The Southsiders return to The Cell this eveing to start a three-game series against the Detroit Tigers.  Philip Humber gets the nod against Duane Below in the opener.

MLB NL
------
Florida Marlins 5, New York Mets 4
Philadelphia Phillies 5, San Diego Padres 3 
San Francisco Giants 2, Milwaukee Brewers 1
Los Angeles Dodgers 3, Washington Nationals 1
Arizona Diamondbacks 7, Colorado Rockies 0
Cincinnati Reds 4, Atlanta Braves 3

MLB AL
------
New York Yankees 7, Oakland Athletics 5
LA Angels of Anaheim 9, Baltimore Orioles 3
Boston Red Sox 12, Seattle Mariners 8
Tampa Bay Rays 5, Kansas City Royals 0
Detroit Tigers 5, Minnesota Twins 2
Toronto Blue Jays 3, Texas Rangers 0

>>Deal Reached To End Lockout

(Undated)  --  A deal has been reached to end the NFL lockout.  ESPN is reporting that the NFL Players Association and the league's owners have reached an agreement on the remaining issues needed in their 10-year labor deal.  The new agreement will require a majority vote from the players, which is slated to take place today in Washington, DC.  The NFLPA is reportedly making plans to hold a major press conference after the vote.  The owners voted unanimously to the new collective bargaining agreement on Thursday.  After seeing the Hall of Fame Game against the Bears cancelled, the Rams look to August 13th when they are scheduled to host the Indianapolis Colts in their first preseason game.

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Clinton Board of Education Approves Purchase of New Buses

The Clinton Board of Education met for their monthly meeting Tuesday evening.

 width= The board extensively discussed the approval of the Bus Lease Agreement for the purchase of eight school buses and one mini handicapped accessible bus. Upgrading the buses is an every other year issue for the board. This year happens to be a year the Transportation Committee would take action on upgrading the buses.

Superintendent of Clinton Schools Dr. Jeff Holmes explains this is the seventh year Clinton Schools will take part in the program of recycling buses every five years for upgrades. According to Dr. Holmes, the district has cut down one of the routes, and therefore the opportunity presents itself for the district to trade some of their current buses in and get a good trade in value for those current buses.

[audio:boardeducationmeeting1.mp3]Dr. Holmes Explains Process[/audio]

Dr. Holmes recommended to the board to make a down payment of $100-thousand dollars. The financing for the buses will go through the First National Bank and Trust of Clinton for a total financing amount of just over $220-thousand. The board received some good news yesterday, the board received a 100-thousand dollar check from the state for their transportation fund. Dr. Holmes says the check received from the state will be the down payment.

[audio:boardeducationmeeting2.mp3]Dr. Holmes on State Payment[/audio]

Dr. Holmes expressed concern they would not receive their transportation funds, but he says the transportation funds as of right now are in good shape.

Tim Doolin with Ponder from Litchfield, he says the buses Clinton has returned this year are in excellent condition and low mileage, which is why the trade-in value on those is so high. He also says mentions that Clinton is one of approximately 15 schools that take part in the recycling of buses program.

[audio:boardeducationmeeting3.mp3]Doolin on Bus Conditions[/audio]

The board approved the purchase of the trade-in of 11 buses for the eight new school buses and one mini handicapped bus with financing going through the First National Bank and Trust of Clinton at a cost of just over $220-thousand.

Other items the Board of Education discussed and/or took action on several other items including in the area of building projects...

>A maintenance agreement regarding the Jr. High with Ruyle Mechanical .

> The board voted to replace the Lincoln Elementary gym ceiling at a cost of just over $19-thousand.

> The board approved the upgrade of the Jr. High School gym's light replacement at a cost of just over $23-thousand.

> The board approved the project of hand rail installation at the football field at a cost of just over $11-thousand, much like what is being done to the high school gym bleachers.

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CornBelters Drop 7th Straight

The Normal CornBelters began a six-game road trip on a sour note, losing 5-3 to the Florence Freedom in Florence, Kentucky on Sunday evening.  The loss was the seventh straight for the CornBelters.

The CornBelters scratched out the game's first run in the opening inning.  Brandon Newton chopped a double into the right field corner, and scored when a ground ball from Frank Martinez was thrown away by Freedom pitcher Steve MacFarland.

The Freedom quickly answered in the bottom of the first, as Juan Valdes led off with a single, moved to third on a base hit by Jarred Frierson and scored on a ground out by Chris Curley to tie the game at 1-1.

The Belters punched back in the second thanks to four free passes.  Daniel Cox was hit by a pitch to lead off, followed by a walk to Mike Mobbs.  Jeff Dunbar sacrificed them to second and third, and a walk to Tyler McNeely loaded the bases.  A ground ball retired Cox at home for the second out, but Brandon Newton drew the inning's third walk to score a run to give the Belters a 2-1 lead.

Normal got a rare bit of power from Alvaro Ramirez to increase the lead to 3-1 in the fourth with his first home run of the season over the left-center field wall.

Florence got to CornBelters starter Michael Click in the fifth to take the lead.  A leadoff walk to Jonathan Cisneros was followed by a double by Jonathan Smith, then Cisneros scored on wild pitch.  Junior Arrojo was hit by a pitch, then Jarred Frierson cleared the bases with a three-run homer to right to put the Freedom up 5-3 after five innings.

In the ninth, the CornBelters led off with a single from Brandon Newton, who moved to second on a liner off the leg of reliever Brandon Mathes by Frank Martinez, although Mathes was able to recover to retire Martinez.  Newton stayed at second, however, as reliever Zeb Engle came in and struck out Steve Alexander and Asif Shah to end the game.

The CornBelters mustered only three hits on the game and stranded 11 baserunners.  Newton recorded two of the hits in addition to the homer by Ramirez.

MacFarland earned his first decision with the win, and Click (0-1) received the loss.  Engle recorded his first save.

The series continues with a late-morning contest in suburban Cincinnati at the Home of the Florence Freedom with an 10:05 a.m. Central first pitch.  Brett Lester (4-4, 4.43) is the expected starting pitcher for the CornBelters.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 6-22

 

June 22, 2011

Jail Population: 59

Summons Served: 0

Warrant Arrests: 1

 

 

Denise Overlin, 43, Mt. Zion, was issued a citation for speeding (74 mph in a 55 mph zone). Overlin posted her IL Drivers License and was released.

 

Travez Curtis, 27, Decatur, was arrested on a DeWitt County Warrant for Failure to Appear. Curtis un-able to post the necessary bond, remains lodged in the DeWitt County Jail.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Weekend Report 7-25

 

July 22, 2011

 

Jail Population: 49

Summons Served: 1

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

July 23, 2011

 

Jail Population: 52

Summons Served: 2

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

July 24, 2011

 

Jail Population: 51

Summons Served: 0

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

 

 

Joseph Robillard, 23, Decatur, was arrested and charged with Speeding >40 (102 MPH in a 55 MPH Zone) Over. Robillard was issued a citation and posted the necessary bond and was released.

 

Richard Berry, 48, Clinton, was arrested and charged for Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol, Driving While License Revoked, and Theft over $300. Price remains lodged in the DeWitt County Jail.

 

Shanae Ritter, 17, Clinton, was issued a citation for Speeding (76 mph in a 55 mph zone). Ritter posted her Illinois Drivers License as bond and was released.

 

Investigation into the scene of an accident, which occurred at approximately 6:42 p.m. on Monday, July 18, 2011, revealed that a vehicle driven by Caleb Davis, 20, Mansfield was southbound on Sunnyland Rd. south of Kennedy Rd when it lost control, skidded off the roadway and rolling over. Davis was un-injured. No citations were issued.

 

 

ALL SUSPECTS ARE PRESUMED INNOCENT UNTIL FOUND GUILTY IN A COURT OF LAW.

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Local Legislators Pushing Conceal Carry Laws Locally

 

Representatives Bill Mitchell, Adam Brown and Chapin Rose were co-sponsors of House Bill 148, which would have created the Family and Personal Protection Act and established a statewide standard for the issuance of licenses to carry concealed firearms in Illinois. However, the bill failed needing a three-fifths majority to pass.

Representative Mitchell says it is frustrating that there was a House majority and yet the bill still did not pass. He says they will now try for a local option. Where local county governments can decide whether they want their citizens to be allowed to carry concealed weapons.

[audio:concealcarry2.mp3]A Word From Rep. Mitchell[/audio]

While Gov. Quinn cites public safety as his reason for not allowing Illinois to grant the citizens the rights to carry a concealed weapon, supporters cite the same reason to allow it.

Adam Brown says it is about time Illinois joins the rest of the United States, as the last state to allow concealed carry laws. He adds Chicago legislators should not dictate the rest of the state's laws. He believes the bill can and will be passed.

[audio:concealcarry3.mp3]Adam Brown[/audio]

While Chicago democrats blocked the measure to allow statewide conceal carry laws, Rep. Mitchell believes this is not a partisan issue. He has received support from Macon County Sheriff Tom Snyder who is a democrat. He believes he can rally the support of his downstate democratic constituents.

[audio:concealcarry4.mp3]Mitchell On Bill Support[/audio]

Supporters probably will not see anything happen with Mitchell, Brown and Rose's proposed bill happen before next. Rep. Brown notes the statewide conceal carry bill that was voted down was headed by a Southern Illinois democrat. He believes downstate Republicans and Democrats can and will come together to get their bill passed.

Tune in to Regional Radio News tomorrow for more on this story!

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Illinoisan Runs Negro Leagues Grave Marker Project

An organization that provides headstones on the unmarked graves of Negro Leagues baseball players has focused most of its efforts at a suburban Chicago cemetery that's been making headlines for a gruesome scandal over burial plots.

Jeremy Krock of Peoria launched The Negro Leagues Grave Marker Project years ago. The group has added headstones for 22 players. Fourteen are in the Chicago area, including 12 at Burr Oak Cemetery.

Krock says he regularly goes to the cemetery to maintain gravestones. That includes those of John Donaldson and Jimmie Crutchfield.

But he's run into some difficulties especially after the scandal became public.

Former employees of the historic black cemetery have pleaded guilty to stacking bodies and digging up remains in a money-making scheme uncovered in 2009.

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Dr. John Warner Hospital Introduces New Doctors

The Dr. John Warner Hospital introduced Dr. Parveen Vora of the Rural Health Center to the community Monday afternoon.

The DJWH hosted an open house to introduce Dr. Vora in the lobby of their new Rural Health Center.

 width=Dr. Vora went to medical school at Rush Medical College in Chicago and completed her residency at the University of Illinois at Peoria. She has moved here from Peoria and says that the smaller setting of a small town is what is attractive about DJWH. She believes not having access to all of the latest technology like she did in Chicago will help her rely on her clinical skills more than technology.

[audio:6-28-11 drvora2.MP3]A Word From Dr. Vora[/audio]

Dr. Vora says so far her time spent in Clinton has been enjoyable. She enjoys the broad demographic she has seen in her patients so far. She has been in Clinton almost 2 months and she is enjoying the small town feel.

[audio:6-28-11 drvora1.MP3]A Word From Dr. Vora[/audio]

Dr. Vora feels having a primary care physician is the backbone to keeping up good health. She says getting checked once a year and getting health issues addressed is better than letting those issues linger and end up costing you more in the long run.

[audio:6-28-11 drvora3.MP3]A Word From Dr. Vora[/audio]

One of Dr. Vora's focused interests is women's health. She hopes that she can raise an awareness among women to get their exams yearly and lead a healthy lifestyle and be a healthy individual. She also notes that womens health can be a variety of areas, from basic exams to diabetes.

Dr. Michelle Evans is the new nurse practitioner at the Rural Health Center. She was the other doctor to be featured at the open house Monday afternoon. However, she could not make it.

The DJWH is accepting new patients for the Rural Health Center. To contact the Dr. John Warner Hospital, you call them at 937-5284.

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Illinois Teen Dies in ATV Accident

A teenager from Illinois has died after the all-terrain vehicle she was on struck a deer.

9-year-old Alexis Pillsbury of Petersburg, Ill., died following the accident at 12 a.m. Sunday in Shelby County, Mo., near Bethel.

The Missouri State Highway Patrol says the accident happened on Route J when an ATV driven by 16-year-old Denton Bichsel of Leonard, Mo., struck a deer in the roadway. Both Denton and Pillsbury were ejected.

Pillsbury was pronounced dead a short time later at a hospital in Quincy, Ill.

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Recent Burglaries Has Authorities Reminding Residents To Be Aware

Local authorities are reminding citizens to keep a watch out for an suspicious activity in relationship to the recent burglaries that have taken place in DeWitt County.

3 rural DeWitt County homes were burglarized on Monday June 20th. DeWitt County Sheriff Jared Shofner believes the crimes are related, and are asking residents to report any suspicious vehicles seen in rural areas.

[audio:6-28-11 burglaries1.mp3]A Word From The Sheriff[/audio]

The burglaries took place north of Clinton Lake and east of Highway 51 in DeWitt County. The burglaries took place during the day hours when the homes were empty. Authorities believe the burglars were after money, jewelry and electronic items.

[audio:6-28-11 burglaries2.mp3]A Word From The Sheriff[/audio]

Authorities believe the burglaries in DeWitt County may be connected to some recent burglaries in McLean County. While the burglaries in DeWitt County were all in one afternoon, the McLean County burglaries took place over a longer period of time. Shofner says the DeWitt County Sheriff's Office is working with the McLean County Sheriff's Office to see if they can get any leads on these burglaries.

[audio:6-28-11 burglaries3.mp3]A Word From The Sheriff[/audio]

Shofner is appealing rural residents to keep a watch out for any suspicious vehicles or anything that is not normal. He says even if you suspect something is wrong to give the Sheriff's Department a call. He says keeping an eye out for yourself and your neighbor is a good way to keep crime from happening.

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Lawmakers Say Quinn Needs to Manage Budget Before Asking For More

Illinois lawmakers say they knew the 2012 state budget didn't have enough money for pay raises, or much else, when the legislature wrote the spending plan in May.

Governor Pat Quinn says not only can the state not afford $75 million dollars for the pay raises for 30-thousand state workers. The budget doesn't provide enough to pay the rest of the state workforce for a full year.

Democrat Frank Mautino says lawmakers knew that, and they expected Quinn would "manage" the money.

[audio:072511Mautino2.mp3]A Word From Mautino[/audio]

Republican David Harris says Quinn needs to show lawmakers that he wants to get serious about cutting spending, before the General Assembly will give him more to spend.

[audio:072511DavidHarris2.mp3]A Word From Mautino[/audio]

The governor says he's willing to work with lawmakers. But wants to "improve" the budget during the fall veto session.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Department Report for 6-29

 

June 28, 2011

Jail Population: 56

Summons Served: 0

Warrant Arrests: 0

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Rain Provides Relief From Scorching Heat For Corn Crop

Corn crops got some relief from the heat wave after rain fell over much of the state over the weekend.  Illinois Farm Bureau spokesperson John Hawkins says the rain came just in time.

[audio:rddCorn11.mp3]A Word From Hawkins[/audio]

Hawkins says the rain may have saved some of the crop.

[audio:rddCorn21.mp3]A Word From Hawkins[/audio]

Heavy spring rains delayed about 40-percent of the state's corn planting this year.  Hawkins says the late planted crop will likely see a lower yield because of the extreme weather, but the state's overall harvest is still expected to be average.

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Blagojevich Conviction Reaction

Monday afternoon, a federal jury convicted Rod Blagojevich of 17 of 20 charges of corruption against him, including that he tried to sell or trade President Barack Obama's old Senate seat.

While Blagojevich was 'stunned' by the verdict, not many local legislators were surprised by the outcome of his trial. Illinois Senator Bill Brady says Blagojevich went wrong when he started to use his political office for his own gain. He believes the state will get stronger because of this.

[audio:blagoconviction.mp3]A Word From Sen. Brady[/audio]

Illinois State Secretary Dan Rutherford was a member of the Senate when Blagojevich was in the Governor's office. Rutherford says he knew even back then Blagojevich was guilty. He adds Blagojevich deserves everything he is going to get.

[audio:blagoconviction3.mp3]A Word From The Treasurer[/audio]

Blagojevich is now the second former Illinois governor to be convicted on corruption charges. Representative Bill Mitchell does not take any satisfaction in the conviction of now a Republican and Democrat Governor to be convicted, however, he says the common denominator for the two former Governor's are their success in Chicago and Cook County on election days.

[audio:blagoconviction2.mp3]A Word From Rep. Mitchell[/audio]

Rep. Mitchell believes voter integrity is the key to prevent scandals in the future.

[audio:blagoconviction4.mp3]A Word From Rep. Mitchell[/audio]

The new convictions against the ousted Illinois Governor will add 300 years to the maximum prison sentence he faces, however, legal experts say he's more likely to get closer to 10 years.

When he sentences Blagojevich later, Judge James Zagel will take into account a variety of factors. One variable federal judges can consider is whether a defendant took the stand and lied. Prosecutors say that's what Blagojevich did at his retrial. If Zagel agrees, he could point to that testimony to justify a longer term. He was convicted of lying to the FBI last year, that carries a 5-year maximum sentence.

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Local Food Movement Continues To Take Off

The local food movement continues to take off around Illinois, and now some producers are reaching out to the community to help ensure they remain a viable option for locally grown produce.  Jared White has more...

[audio:6-20-11 Zack Metzger On CSA Produce.mp3]Jared White With The Story[/audio]

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CornBelters Take Nightcap of Double-Header

The Normal CornBelters came from behind in a Sunday doubleheader nightcap with a 5-3 win over the Florence Freedom. Steve Alexander crushed a walk-off two-run homer in the seventh, after Normal dropped the first game 8-4.

With the game tied 3-3, Daniel Cox led off the seventh inning with a walk against Florence closer Corey Martin. Alexander then took the first pitch he saw over the left field fence, a towering shot that stayed just fair. The home run was Alexander's second of the day, after hitting a grand slam in the first game. Normal stays in third place with the win.

The CornBelters wasted no time scoring in the scheduled 7-inning nightcap. Normal loaded the bases courtesy of a fielder's choice and two walks, and jumped in front 1-0 with an RBI groundout from Asif Shah.

Florence took the lead back in the second, as Jonathan Cisneros recorded an RBI single that scored Stephen Shults. Later in the inning, an infield single by John Malloy brought home Drew Rundle to put the Freedom on top 2-1.

Kevin Haas scored the third run for Florence two innings later. His leadoff triple was followed by a Cisneros single to give the Freedom a 3-1 lead. Normal then loaded the bases on three consecutive singles in the fifth, and tied the score with an RBI single from Daniel Cox along with another RBI groundout from Shah.

Berger worked six innings, allowing seven hits and three earned runs. Liam Ohlmann (2-1) earned the win after striking out the side in the seventh inning. Martin (2-1) picked up the loss, after relieving Florence starter Anthony Bello in the seventh.

Normal (22-13) and Florence (17-17) wrap up the series Monday at 7 p.m. Andy Clark (4-1, 6.28) starts against Ryan Sheldon (5-1, 1.86) of the CornBelters.

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Scams Back On The Rise In Community

Identity theft and scams seem to be a trend coming back around to local communities and local authorities have some tips to help yourself be aware of fraud before you become a victim. 

Scam artists can come at a person from a variety of directions, including e-mail, phone calls and even door-to-door encounters. Clinton Police Chief Mike Reidy says many times, these people target the elderly. Chief Reidy says it is not because the elderly are naive, but rather they are very trusting.

[audio:scams1.mp3]A Word From The Chief[/audio]

Scam artists will use any means necessary to get information or money out of a person. Chief Reidy stresses those people are very good and will use an individuals emotions to get information or money they want. He also says you may be giving these people information about yourself without even knowing it.

[audio:scams2.mp3]A Word From The Chief[/audio]

Chief Reidy recommends to anyone who gets a soliciting phone call or email to verify the information. He says any legitimate organization will mail the information they have to you to look over. He says taking the time to verify information is a good tool to verify whether an individual may be getting involved in a scam and protecting themselves from major trouble down the road.

[audio:scams3.mp3]A Word From The Chief[/audio]

Chief Reidy encourages anyone who thinks they may be getting involved in a scam to also contact authorities. He says it is better to be safe and cover your bases than get involved in something that will end up hurting you. He says while banks and others may keep an eye out for those folks that are making unusual activity, there will not always be someone watching to make sure everything is legitimate.

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Jays Complete Sweep Of Cardinals; Sox & Cubs Lose; Danks On DL

>>Romero, Jays Blank Cards

(St. Louis, MO)  --  Ricky Romero essentially beat the Cardinals single-handedly with a four-hit shutout and a two-run single, as the Toronto Blue Jays completed a sweep of St. Louis with a 5-0 victory.  Romero retired the first 10 batters he faced and allowed only one runner to get past first base.  The left-hander walked two, struck out five, and his a two-run hit highlighted a four-run sixth inning.  St. Louis dropped to 3-and-12 in its last 15 games.  Kyle McClellan gave up all five runs over five-and-a-third innings to take the loss.  The Cards send Kyle Lohse [[ Lowsh ]] to the bump tomorrow as they begin a three-game set with the Orioles.

>>Royals Double Up Cubs

(Kansas City, MO)  --  Alex Gordon led a balanced attack, going 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI, as the Royals downed the Cubs, 6-3.  Kansas City won the final two games in the three-game interleague set.  Geovany Soto belted his second home run in as many games and added an RBI double, but it wasn't enough, as the Cubs dropped their seventh consecutive interleague series.  Randy Wells was knocked around for six runs and 10 hits over six-plus innings to take the loss.  Chicago has lost six of its last eight games.  The Cubs are making up a game against the Rockies tonight with Matt Garza on the hill.

>>Nats Nip White Sox

(Chicago, IL)  --  Danny Espinosa belted a two-run homer in the seventh to lift the Nationals to a 2-1 win over the White Sox.  Jerry Hairston Jr. had two hits for Washington, which took two-of-three in the series and has won 13-of-15 overall.  Livan Hernandez struck out nine over six-and-two-thirds innings of one-run ball to improve to 5-and-8.  Drew Storen earned his 19th save.  The Nats picked up the win in their last game under interim manager John McLaren, who will be replaced by Davey Johnson on Monday.  Philip Humber took a no-hitter into the sixth, but allowed the two-run blast in his six-and-two-thirds innings of work to fall to 7-and-4.  Chicago has dropped six-of-11 overall.  The White sox open a three-game set in Colorado Tuesday with Gavin Floyd on the hill opposite Jason Hammel.

MLB NL
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San Diego Padres 4, Atlanta Braves 1

MLB Interleague
------
Detroit Tigers 8, Arizona Diamondbacks 3
Baltimore Orioles 7, Cincinnati Reds 5
Boston Red Sox 4, Pittsburgh Pirates 2
Philadelphia Phillies 3, Oakland Athletics 1
New York Yankees 6, Colorado Rockies 4
Tampa Bay Rays 14, Houston Astros 10 
Milwaukee Brewers 6, Minnesota Twins 2
New York Mets 8, Texas Rangers 5
Los Angeles Dodgers 3, LA Angels of Anaheim 2
San Francisco Giants 3, Cleveland Indians 1
Seattle Mariners 2, Florida Marlins 1 (10 INN)

>>Danks Lands On DL

(Chicago, IL)  --  White Sox starter John Danks was placed on the 15-day disabled list Sunday, one day after he left his start in the second inning with a strained right oblique.  In 15 starts this season, Danks is 3-and-8 with a 4.21 earned run average, 65 strikeouts and 28 walks.  To fill the roster spot, the White Sox recalled pitcher Hector Santiago from Double-A Birmingham.  Santiago split time this season between Birmingham and Single-A Winston-Salem, going a combined 6-and-5 with a 4.08 ERA and 73 strikeouts in 14 starts.

NASCAR
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Toyota/Save Mart 350 (at Sonoma, CA)
1. Kurt Busch
2. Jeff Gordon
3. Carl Edwards

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Clinton School District Receives Pre-K Grant From State

Clinton Washington School should see a boost in their Pre-Kindergarten numbers this year. That is because the district was one of the recipients of the Pre-K grant given out by the state of Illinois.

The grant the district received will well over double the number or Pre-K students the district currently is able to serve. Superintendent of Clinton Schools Dr. Jeff Holmes says this may be some of the best news the district has received in some time.

[audio:clintonprekgrant1.mp3]A Word From Dr. Holmes[/audio]

In the past, the grant has been distributed by the state of Illinois, however, this year the grant was distributed based off of districts who applied for the grant and were determined to be in the most need of the grant. Dr. Holmes says this is good for the schools, he believes they need to continue to offer Pre-K to the families of the district.

[audio:clintonprekgrant2.mp3]A Word From Dr. Holmes[/audio]

Dr. Holmes explains, the state making the process competitive is because of the tight budget they are on. While he is hesitant to believe in the state's guarantee to make the payments on the program, he says money for the program has been budgeted by legislators in Springfield to make the payments to the schools receiving the grant money.

[audio:clintonprekgrant3.mp3]A Word From Dr. Holmes[/audio]

With the grant, the district will be able to hire four staff members, one full time teacher, a part time teacher and an aid for each one. The grant amount the district received was almost $216-thousand dollars.

Dr. Holmes encourages anyone on the waiting list to get into the Pre-K program to contact Washington School to get more information by calling 935-6383.

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CornBelters Lose Series Finale

The Normal CornBelters allowed six first-inning runs Monday night in a 7-2 loss to the Florence Freedom. The CornBelters lost two out of three games in the series, the first time the team has lost a series since June 2 to Lake Erie.

The Freedom put an early beating on CornBelter starter Ryan Sheldon, plating half a dozen in the 1st.  Drew Rundle drove in the first run doubling home Cole Miles and giving Florence the first lead of the game 1-0.  Jonathon Cisneros then singled to bring home Juan Valdes and a batter later Jimmy Butler flied out to right, deep enough to sacrifice home Rundle putting the Freedom up 3-0.  Stephen Shults took the second pitch he saw over the left field wall, a blast that hit off the top of the fence stationed on the left field hill, almost clearing the Corn Crib. That put Florence out front 5-0, as Justin Holloway followed with a solo homer giving the Freedom a 6-0 lead.

Sheldon was pulled after the first inning, as Michael Click went on to pitch three perfect innings in relief. Florence scored again in the 5th against reliever Jacob Liedka, as Rundle hit a sac fly to right field scoring Valdes, giving the team a 7-0 advantage.

The CornBelters finally got on the board in the sixth as Steve Alexander homered to cut the Freedom lead to 7-1.  Alexander's shot was his third in as many games, and thirteenth on the season, best in the Frontier League. Normal added its final run in the ninth, as Asif Shah scored on a Colin Moro groundout.

Andy Clark pitched seven innings and recorded the win for Florence, improving to 5-1. Sheldon picks up the loss for Normal and falls to 5-2 this season. Normal's bullpen combined for six hits and one run allowed over eight innings of work.

The CornBelters take the day off Tuesday, and begin a six-game road trip on Wednesday against the Windy City ThunderBolts. Tyler Lavigne (2-4, 2.87) will start for Normal against Todd Privett (4-2, 2.75) of Windy City.

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DeWitt County Board Appoints New Vice-Chair

The DeWitt County Board has a new Vice-Chair.

The Board had a special meeting Monday evening to nominate and vote in a new Vice-Chair. Prior to the meeting, DeWitt County Board Chair Melonie Tillie did not make any nominations to the appointment of Vice-Chair. Tillie explains the process would be very simple, she would simply open the floor for nominations.

[audio:boardchair1.mp3]A Word From Tillie[/audio]

Upon the floor being opened for nominations, two candidates were nominated. The first nomination was made by Dennis Rich, who nominated Camille Redman. The second nomination came from Terry Ferguson, who nominated Pete Daughetry (door-tree).

[audio:boardchair2.mp3]The Nominations[/audio]

Ed Young was not in attendance for the meeting, and after a 5-5 split vote, the vote came down to Board Chair Tillie. Before making her vote, she said had she known it was going to be an even split, she would have nominated a third candidate. In the end, Tillie placed her vote with Redman.

[audio:boardchair3.mp3]Tillie's Vote[/audio]

Redman says her plans as the new Vice-Chair of the DeWitt County Board are to do her best and to do what is best for the county.

[audio:boardchair4.mp3]A Word From Redman[/audio]

The Vice-Chair vacancy has been open since June 1, when David Taylor stepped down from the position. Taylor left his post due to a transition in his professional career. With the new appointment of the Vice-Chair, no committee assignments will be effected.

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Cubs Blast Rockies & More

>>Ramirez, Pena Power Cubs Past Rockies

(Chicago, IL)  --  Aramis Ramirez and Carlos Pena each homered twice to power the Cubs to a 7-3 win over the Rockies on Monday afternoon at Wrigley Field.  Each hit a two-run and a solo shot, with Ramirez finishing 3-for-4.  Matt Garza pitched seven-and-a-third innings of three-run ball for his fourth win.  The Cubs had lost four-of-five.  The Northsiders kick off a four-game series against the reigning World Series champion San Francisco Giants starting this afternoon with the opener of a day-night doubleheader.  Doug Davis will be on the bump in the opener and Rodrigo Lopez will toe the rubber in the nightcap.

MLB NL
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Chicago Cubs 7, Colorado Rockies 3

MLB AL
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Detroit Tigers 4, Toronto Blue Jays 2

MLB Interleague
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Cincinnati Reds 5, Tampa Bay Rays 0
Los Angeles Dodgers 15, Minnesota Twins 0
Cleveland Indians 5, Arizona Diamondbacks 4
LA Angels of Anaheim 4, Washington Nationals 3  (10 INN)
San Diego Padres 4, Kansas City Royals 3
Atlanta Braves 3, Seattle Mariners 1

>>White Sox In Denver

(Denver, CO)  --  The Chicago White Sox head to the Mile High City to open up a three-game series against the Colorado Rockies starting this evening at Coors Field.  Gavin Floyd gets the nod against Jason Hammel in the opener.  The Southsiders dropped two-of-three to Washington over the weekend, capped with a 2-1 setback on Sunday, to fall to 38-and-41 on the season.

>>Cardinals At Orioles

(St. Louis, MO)  --  After an off day Monday, the Cardinals will look to get well on the road as they open a three-game Interleague series at Baltimore.  The reeling Redbirds got swept at home by the Blue Jays over the weekend and have lost five of their last six games overall.  Kyle Lohse will oppose Zach Britton tonight.  St. Louis will play three games at Tampa Bay later this week.

>>Punto, Freese Activated Off DL

(St. Louis, MO)  --  The Cardinals' infield should get a boost with the return of Nick Punto and David Freese.  They have been activated off the 15-day disabled list.  Punto had been out since May 18th with a strained right forearm.  Freese had been sidelined since May 2nd with a broken bone in his left hand.  Infielder Pete Kozma and outfielder Andrew Brown were sent to Triple-A Memphis.

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Sox, Cubs Win; Rasmus On Move To ChiSox?

>>White Sox Double Up Detroit

(Chicago, IL)  --  Chicago fell into an early two-run hole, but climbed out on the way to a 6-3 victory over the Tigers on Monday at The Cell.  A.J. Pierzynski drilled a solo homer and Paul Konerko added one of his own to go with a pair of RBI as the White Sox won their third straight.  Mark Buehrle put in six frames of work and gave up just two unearned runs for the victory.  Miguel Cabrera bashed a solo homer in the seventh in Detroit's failed comeback attempt.  Duane Below surrendered four runs in four-and-two-thirds innings as the Tigers lost their second game in three contests.  Jake Peavy will toe the rubber opposite Justin Verlander in tonight's second installment.

>>Cards Double Down On Astros

(St. Louis, MO)  --  Yadier Molina finished 3-for-4 with three runs and two RBI, including a solo shot, as the Cardinals dropped the Astros, 10-5.  Colby Rasmus added a two-run homer and totalled three RBI for St. Louis, which has won four-of-five overall.  Kyle McClellan earned the win, going seven innings of one-run ball.  Mitchell Boggs notched his fourth save of the season.  Carlos Lee blasted a grand slam in the eighth for Houston, which has lost four consecutive contests.  The second of the four-game series is tonight with Jake Westbrook opposing Brett Myers.

MLB NL
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San Diego Padres 5, Philadelphia Phillies 4
New York Mets 4, Cincinnati Reds 2
Pittsburgh Pirates 3, Atlanta Braves 1
Los Angeles Dodgers 8, Colorado Rockies 5

MLB AL
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Cleveland Indians 3, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 2
New York Yankees 10, Seattle Mariners 3
Kansas City Royals 3, Boston Red Sox 1 (14 inn)
Texas Rangers 20, Minnesota Twins 6 
Oakland Athletics 7, Tampa Bay Rays 5

>>Cards Dealing Rasmus To White Sox?

(St. Louis, MO)  --  With baseball's non-waiver trade deadline approaching, Colby Rasmus could be seeing his final days in a Cardinals uniform.  The "Post-Dispatch" cites sources as saying the Redbirds are in talks with the White Sox about a possible trade.  St. Louis could net starter Edwin Jackson or reliever Matt Thornton in return.  Rasmus is batting .245 with 11 home runs and 40 RBI.

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Cards Win; Cubs Swept In Double-Header; Sox Lose On Walk-Off

>>Cards Better Of The Birds

(Baltimore, MD)  --  Matt Holliday and Colby Rasmus each clubbed solo homers as the Cardinals flew past the Orioles, 6-2.  Kyle Lohse went five innings and scattered four hits to earn the victory, improving his mark to 8-and-4 and helping St. Louis to snap a three-game slide.  The game was delayed for 27 minutes in the top of the sixth due to rain.  Nick Markakis went 2-for-4 to extend his hitting streak to 17 games and J.J. Hardy blasted his 11th home run for the O's, who have won just two of their last eight contests.  Zach Britton fell to 6-and-6 after surrendering four runs over five-and-two-thirds innings.  The series continues tonight as Chris Carpenter opposes Chris Jakubauskas.

>>Giants Sweep Northsiders In Day-Night Doubleheader

Chicago, IL)  --  Pat Burrell clubbed a two-run homer and Aaron Rowand added a bases-clearing double as the Giants cruised to a 13-7 victory over the Cubs in the opener of a day-night doubleheader.  San Francisco, which equaled its longest win streak of the season with a sixth straight victory, set season highs for runs and hits in a game.  Ryan Vogelsong labored through five innings in his start for the Giants, allowing a season-worst six runs, three earned, to improve to 6-and-1.  Carlos Pena belted a two-run homer and Koyie Hill smashed a solo shot for the Cubs, who have dropped five of seven.  Doug Davis was tagged with the loss.

(Chicago, IL)  --  Nate Schierholtz and Brandon Crawford each plated a pair to back seven strong innings from Barry Zito as the Giants swept a day-night doubleheader against the Cubs with a 6-3 win in the nightcap.  Zito, who was just lifted from the disabled list, gave up just two runs on four hits to pick up his first win of the season.  Brian Wilson worked a 1-2-3 ninth to nail down his 24th save.  Lou Montanez clubbed a two-run homer and Aramis Ramirez added a solo shot for Chicago.  Rodrigo Lopez was tagged with the loss.  In the opener, Pat Burrell clubbed a two-run homer and Aaron Rowand added a bases-clearing double as the Giants cruised to a 13-7 victory.

>>Rockies Walk Off On White Sox In Extras

(Denver, CO)  --  Ty Wigginton had a walk-off RBI single in the bottom of the 13th inning to give the Rockies a 3-2 win over the White Sox on Tuesday night at Coors Field.  Seth Smith plated the other two runs for Colorado, which snapped a three-game slide.  Rex Brothers worked a scoreless frame to register the victory.  Alexei Ramirez clubbed a solo home run and Juan Pierre added an RBI double for Chicago, which has dropped three of its last four contests.  Will Ohman was saddled with the loss.  Mark Buehrle gets the nod against Ubaldo Jimenez in tonight's second installment.

MLB Interleague
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New York Mets 14, Detroit Tigers 3 
Philadelphia Phillies 5, Boston Red Sox 0
New York Yankees 12, Milwaukee Brewers 2
Pittsburgh Pirates 7, Toronto Blue Jays 6
Tampa Bay Rays 4, Cincinnati Reds 3
Texas Rangers 7, Houston Astros 3
Minnesota Twins 6, Los Angeles Dodgers 4
Arizona Diamondbacks 6, Cleveland Indians 4
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 11, Washington Nationals 5
Oakland Athletics 1, Florida Marlins 0
San Diego Padres 4, Kansas City Royals 2
Atlanta Braves 5, Seattle Mariners 4

>>NFL Labor Negotiations Resume

(Minneapolis, MN)  --  NFL labor negotiations continued on Tuesday in Minneapolis.  Numerous reports have indicated that progress has been made in recent weeks, but both sides have been quiet about specific details.  The work stoppage, which began in early March, is threatening the scheduled start of training camp next month.

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CornBelters End Losing Streak

Down to their final strike, the Normal CornBelters rallied for four runs in the ninth and held on to break a seven-game losing streak and beat the Florence Freedom 7-4 on Monday afternoon in Florence, Kentucky.

For the second straight game, the CornBelters struck first in the opening inning.  Alvaro Ramirez was hit by a pitch, followed by a base hit from Frank Martinez and a walk to Daniel Cox to load the bases..  Ramirez scored on a ground ball to the left side by Asif Shah.

The Freedom grabbed a 2-1 lead in the third inning.  Normal pitcher Brett Lester hit Junior Arroyo, who stole second and scored on a base hit by Jarrod Frierson.  Chris Curley then doubled to score Frierson with two outs.

Florence added two more runs in the fourth after two were out.  Lester hit Jonathan Cisneros and walked Kevin Haas to start the inning.  With two outs, Juan Valdes walked to load the bases, and Jarred Frierson looped a shallow fly ball down the left field line to score two runs and give the Freedom a 4-1 lead.

The CornBelters scored in the fifth when Tyler McNeely led off with a walk and moved to third on Andrew Barbaro's second hit of the day.  Alvaro Ramirez singled home McNeely to cut the Belters deficit to 4-2, but Normal stranded the remaining two runners.

The Belters got one run back in the fifth, thanks to a double by Mike Mobbs with one out, followed by an RBI single by Tyler McNeely.  A following single by Andrew Barbaro put runners on first and second with two outs, but the Belters couldn't score again in the frame and trailed 4-3.

The Freedom threatened in the seventh, but two runners were cut down at the plate with outfield assists from Alvaro Ramirez and Tyler McNeely to Andrew Barbaro to hold Florence scoreless and keep their advantage at just one run at 4-3.

Normal kept the game alive with a two-out rally in the ninth.  Frank Martinez and Daniel Cox walked, and Martinez came home with a single up the middle by Asif Shah to tie the game 4-4.  That chased reliever Chad Robinson from the game, but Mike Mobbs welcome Freedom pitcher Zeb Engle with a double to the left field corner to score two more runs, then Tyler Keeble scored Mobbs with a base hit to right to give the CornBelters a 7-4 lead.

Andy Mee (0-1) picked up the win as Marshall Schuler pitched a scoreless bottom of the ninth for his fourth save.  Chad Robinson took the loss to fall to 2-2.

The series concludes at 6 p.m. Central on Tuesday at the Home of the Florence Freedom as Ryan Sheldon (6-4, 3.04) starts on the mound for the CornBelters against Andy Clark (7-2, 4.15) for the Freedom.

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Farm Progress Show Preview

The "Super Bowl" of agriculture is only two months away from returning to central Illinois, and crews are already hard at work getting Progress City USA in Decatur ready for late August.  Jared White has more...

[audio:6-27-11 Farm Progress Show Preview WRAP.mp3]Jared White[/audio]

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Clinton Police Report for 7-26

ON 7/25/11 CLINTON POLICE ARRESTED SAMUEL A. QUICK 30, CLINTON ON A DEWITT COUNTY WARRANT AND OBSTRUCTING JUSTICE. QUICK WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE DEWITT COUNTY JAIL AND RELEASED TO CORRECTIONS.

 

ON 7/25/11 CLINTON POLICE ARRESTED NICHOLAS J. CUMMINGS 32, CLINTON FOR CRIMINAL DAMAGE TO PROPERTY. CUMMINGS WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE DEWITT COUNTY JAIL AND RELEASED TO CORRECTIONS.

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DeWitt County's RSVP Program Looking For Summer Volunteers

Residents interested in volunteer opportunities will have numerous chances to help out over the summer months.

DeWitt County's Retired and Senior Volunteer Program, or RSVP, has a variety of opportunities for local residents to help out. Silvia Comfort, Volunteer Coordinator of RSVP says the program is state and federally funded, and it is designed to take residents 55-years or older and put them into areas of need and help out in the community.

[audio:rsvp1.mp3]Silvia Comfort[/audio]

Weldon Springs and helping in preparation for the Apple and Pork Festival are among the many opportunities for help from the local community. Comfort says that anyone interested should contact RSVP  because they are always in need in volunteers, and there are many opportunities to lend a helping hand.

[audio:rsvp2.mp3]Silvia Comfort[/audio]

Comfort notes the Reading Buddies Program saw a significant spike in volunteers needed. She says its a good opportunity to help the youth with their reading skills and continue to sharpen those reading skills through the summer months away from school.

[audio:rsvp3 (2).mp3]Silvia Comfort[/audio]

Comfort believes the spike in volunteers needed for the Reading Buddies program is due to the fact the current society is realizing how important good reading skills are and how important they are to the future of kids.

Along with helping the reading skills, there is also math tutors. Comfort says there are a few students this summer in need of math help, so the program will extend to help with mathematics.

If you would like more information on RSVP or any of the volunteer opportunities they have, feel free to contact Silvia Comfort at, (217)935-2241 or e-mail at scomfort@doveinc.org.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 7-26

 

July 26, 2011

 

Jail Population: 52

Summons Served: 1

Warrant Arrests: 0

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Blue Ridge Schools Going To Online Registration

One local school district recently launched online registration.

Blue Ridge Schools have launched a program that allows students to register for classes and pay their fees online as well. Superintendent of Blue Ridge Schools Susan Wilson explains this is something the school district has wanted to pursue for some time, and this year it finally came about for them. She says students and parents can log-in to the same program they use to check grades and go to the registration tab and get signed up for classes.

[audio:onlineregistration1.mp3]Wilson on Online Registration[/audio]

Wilson believes being able to register online should make things very convenient for folks that cannot make the regularly scheduled registration dates. She notes and suggestions or comments about making the site more user friendly are welcome, she says the school wants to make the site as convenient as possible.

[audio:onlineregistration2.mp3]Wilson on Online Registration[/audio]

Online registration is a trial run this year for Blue Ridge schools. Wilson notes the district will be shrinking the amount of walk-in registration days from 2 and a half to 1 and a half. She says they will see how things go with the online registration and how many people come in to registration and take a wait-and-see approach for next year.

[audio:onlineregistration3.mp3]Wilson on Online Registration[/audio]

Walk-in registration will start August 8 from 2-8 pm. Wilson notes this registration takes place only at the high school, however it is open to all students of any school. And then August 9, registration will return to the individual school buildings.

If students are entering Kindergarten or are new to the school district, they cannot register online. Wilson says there is too much paperwork needed for those students. Otherwise, anyone student entering any grade can register online.

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Southern Illinois Catholics Want To Join Foster Care Suit

Catholic Social Services of Southern Illinois is asking to join a lawsuit against the state over foster placements to gay couples.

The organization is affiliated with the Belleville diocese.

The Department of Children and Family Services ended its foster-care and adoption services with Catholic Charities July 1 because it says the group discriminates by not allowing gay couples to take kids.

Catholic Charities sued, representing dioceses in Springfield, Peoria and Joliet. The lawsuit says the state's civil unions law does not require it to place children with unmarried couples.

The civil union law took effect June 1.

Sangamon County Judge John Schmidt has ruled that the foster-care contracts must stay in place until an August hearing.

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NBA Headed For Lockout

>>NBA Appears Headed For Lockout

(New York, NY)  --  The NBA appears headed for a lockout.  The current collective bargaining agreement between the basketball league and its players' union is set to expire at midnight Eastern time.  A deal was still a long way off as of late Wednesday.  The biggest dispute is over player salaries.  Most team owners claim they are losing too much money.  To stop the bleeding, they say they need a new agreement that lowers the pay cap, shortens the length of contracts and slashes overall player salaries by a third.  NBA owners and players will get together one more time in New York today to try to work out a deal.  If they can't, the NBA would follow the NFL's lead and lock out its players for the first time since 1998.  That would delay July free agency moves and could endanger training camps and regular-season games this fall.

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State Universities Join Forces To Find More Ag Teachers

Several state universities are joining forces to find more ag teachers.  The University of Illinois, Western Illinois University, Illinois State, and Southern Illinois University are all on the lookout.  Dr. Andy Baker is with WIU's ag education program.

[audio:rddAgteacher.mp3]A Word From Baker[/audio]

Dr. Baker says more students are graduating out of the university ag programs.  He's been able to help a number of WIU alumni attend the National Association of Agricultural Educators regional conference, which provides required professional development hours for ag teachers.

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Bulls Pick Up Option on Taj Gibson's Contract

>>Bulls Exercise Option On Gibson

(Chicago, IL)  --  The Chicago Bulls have exercised the fourth-year option of forward Taj Gibson's contract.  Gibson has played in 162 games over two years with the Bulls, averaging eight points and 6.6 rebounds per game.  The 26th overall pick in the 2009 draft, Gibson has shot .485 from the field and .659 from the free throw line over his career.

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Police Discover Meth Lab In Decatur Garage

A Decatur man is behind bars for allegedly operating a meth lab out of his garage.  Justin Gulick is accused of manufacturing meth after police discovered more than 600 grams of the drug in his backyard garage.  He was arrested and charged for the crime but he says police have the wrong man.  Gulick says he knew what was going on but he isn't the person responsible for cooking up the meth.  Despite his claim of innocence, his bail has been set at 100-thousand dollars.

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Cardinals Release Ryan Franklin; Cubs Activate Darwin Barney, Release Doug Davis

>>Cubs Activate Barney, Release Davis

(Chicago, IL)  --  The Chicago Cubs activated infielder Darwin Barney from the 15-day disabled list and granted pitcher Doug Davis his unconditional release Wednesday.  Barney was placed on the disabled list with a left knee sprain he suffered June 13th against Milwaukee.  Despite missing the past 15 days, the 25-year-old still ranks first among rookies in batting average and multi-hit games, and is tied for first in hits.  Davis had his contract selected by Chicago on May 14th and went 1-and-7 with a 6.50 ERA in nine starts this season.

>>Cardinals Release Franklin

(Baltimore, MD)  --  The Cardinals have parted ways with pitcher Ryan Franklin.  The 38-year-old right-hander struggled much of the season, getting demoted from the closer's role.  He was just 1-and-4 with one save and a gaudy 8.46 ERA.  Franklin blew four saves in 21 appearances and surrendered nine home runs.  Last year, he was 6-and-2 with a 3.46 ERA and saved 27-of-29 opportunities.

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Wapella Community Park Vandalized For 3rd Time Since March

The Village of Wapella has seen vandalism hit one of their public parks over the past several months and the vandals just recently struck again.

 width=Wapella community park has been hit vandalized three times since March. Damage in the attacks includes spray painting, broken lights and glass and damage to light poles. The most recent attack came July 23 when 3 metal light poles were deliberately pushed over. The poles cost up to $1-thousand dollars a piece. DeWitt County Sheriff Jered Shofner says these vandals are attacking the community and they need to be held accountable.

[audio:wapellavandalism1.mp3]A Word From The Sheriff[/audio]

Sheriff Shofner encourages anyone with any information to get a hold of local authorities. He says any information is always valuable. He say it doesn't have to be anything big, he says many times small leads can make the biggest difference.

[audio:wapellavandalism2.mp3]A Word From The Sheriff[/audio]

Sheriff Shofner encourages anyone with any information to contact Clinton Crime Stoppers at 935-3333 or the DeWitt County Sheriff's Office at 935-3196.

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Cubs/Sox Win in Last At-Bats; Carpenter Goes Distance As Cards Win

>>Cubs Walk Off On Giants

(Chicago, IL)  --  Aramis Ramirez had a pinch-hit, walk-off RBI single in the bottom of the ninth inning to give the Cubs a 2-1 win over the Giants on Wednesday night in the Windy City.  Blake DeWitt got the Northsiders on the board with a run-scoring single in the seventh.  Ryan Dempster tossed eight-plus innings of one-run, three-hit ball with six strikeouts in a no-decision.  Carlos Marmol blew the save, but was credited with the win.  Chicago snapped a two-game slide in the third installment of a four-game set at the Friendly Confines.  Carlos Zambrano is on the bump against Matt Cain in this afternoon's series finale.

>>White Sox Nip Rockies

(Denver, CO)  --  A.J. Pierzynski's sac-fly RBI in the top of the ninth was the difference as the White Sox nipped the Rockies, 3-2, on Wednesday night at Coors Field.  Pierzynski also doubled in a run during a two-run fourth for Chicago, which stopped a two-game skid with the win.  Mark Buehrle lasted seven innings in a no-decision.  Brian Bruney picked up his first win.  Sergio Santos tossed a perfect ninth to notch his 16th save.  Jason Giambi and Ty Wigginton hit solo homers for Colorado, which was a 3-2 winner in the opener of the three-game set on Tuesday.  Ubaldo Jimenez also went seven innings in a no-decision.  Huston Street was saddled with his second loss.  Jake Peavy will toe the rubber opposite Aaron Cook in this afternoon's series finale.

>>Carpenter Pitches Cards Past O's

(Baltimore, MD)  --  Chris Carpenter went the distance as the Cardinals cruised past the Orioles 5-1.  Carpenter allowed a run and seven hits while striking out five and walking one to improve to 3-and-7.  Colby Rasmus belted a two-run homer for St. Louis, which will go for a sweep in the three-game set on Thursday.  Skip Schumaker knocked in a run and scored twice in the victory.  Nick Markakis doubled in a run in the third for Baltimore.  Chris Jakubauskas allowed all five runs in five innings to fall to 2-and-1.  The three-game series concludes tonight as Jake Westbrook opposes Brian Matusz.

MLB Interleague
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Cincinnati Reds 4, Tampa Bay Rays 3
Minnesota Twins 1, Los Angeles Dodgers 0
San Diego Padres 4, Kansas City Royals 1
Atlanta Braves 5, Seattle Mariners 3
Cleveland Indians 6, Arizona Diamondbacks 2
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 1, Washington Nationals 0
New York Mets 16, Detroit Tigers 9 
Philadelphia Phillies 2, Boston Red Sox 1
New York Yankees 5, Milwaukee Brewers 2
Toronto Blue Jays 2, Pittsburgh Pirates 1
Texas Rangers 3, Houston Astros 2
Florida Marlins 3, Oakland Athletics 0

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Dr. John Warner Hospital Introduces Automated CPR Machine

 width=The Dr. John Warner Hospital recently purchased an automated CPR machine. After having a loaner unit on hand for a short time, the hospital received the funds that enabled them to make the purchase of the unit.

Ernest Thorp is the donor who made the purchase possible. He says he's had many family members go through the hospital. Thorp saw the need for the unit and wanted to help.

[audio:djwhcprunit1.mp3]A Word From Thorp[/audio]

The purchase of the Automated CPR Unit would not have been possible without the assistance of Dr. John Warner Foundation. Dixie Walden and Kim Davenport are Co-Chairs of the Foundation, they explain the goal of the Foundation is to provide the hospital assistance with things they need that are not in their yearly budget.

[audio:djwhcprunit2.mp3]A Word From Walden & Devenport[/audio]

Sandy Rice is the Director of Business Development at the Clinton hospital, she says when one of the hospital's ambulances had the machine as a loaner unit, it saved a life in the short time the hospital had it. She says the advantages of the automated CPR unit will be consistency and it will not tire out, two disadvantages to a human element when performing CPR. She says larger area hospitals such as Peoria and Bloomington already have the vest-like unit.

[audio:djwhcprunit3.mp3]A Word From Rice[/audio]

The Foundation will be looking to purchase two more Auto-Pulse units for the hospital in the future. Plans are already in the works for fund raisers coming up to raise money for the purpose of the purchase of two more units.

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Route 54 To Be Reduced To One Lane For Construction

The Illinois Department of Transportation announced that weather permitting; Illinois Route 54 will be reduced to one lane of traffic for box culvert replacement beginning the week of July 5, 2011.  During this time, Township Road 148 (1230E) will be closed immediately north of the jobsite.  Traffic on Illinois 54 will be controlled by use of temporary traffic signals and a run-around detour located immediately south of Illinois 54.

The overall project is scheduled to be completed by early October, weather permitting.  The contractor for the project is Stark Excavating, Inc. at a cost of just over $988-thousand.

Motorists are advised to slow down and drive carefully through this and all work zones

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Clinton School's Budgets in Good Shape

School districts across the state transitioned from previous fiscal year to the current fiscal year earlier this month.

While a lot of schools are experiencing financial issues because of the budget woes of the state, Clinton schools administrators feel like they are in good shape financially. Clinton Superintendent Dr. Jeff Holmes explains if the state was able to live up to their obligations, the district's budget would be in the black in their fiscal year budget 2011.

[audio:clintonbudget1.mp3]A Word From Dr. Holmes[/audio]

Dr. Holmes says the district is planning on not receiving some of their payments in order to balance their budget and see where they are. His hope is to get the extra payments, however, they are not going to hold out hope after experiencing the lack of dependability from Illinois.

[audio:clintonbudget2.mp3]A Word From Dr. Holmes[/audio]

Dr. Holmes is optimistic the state will start to be more consistent in their efforts to make payments to the agencies and groups that are dependent on them for funding. The recently passed budget legislators put together sets aside money for payments to be made and the beginning of past due debts getting paid.

[audio:clintonbudget3.mp3]A Word From Dr. Holmes[/audio]

The new fiscal year budget for the Clinton school district began July 1. Dr. Holmes stresses Clinton schools are not as reliant on the state as many other districts. He also stresses, the goal of the Board of Education is to continue to function and provide to the students of the district without raising the taxes of its citizens.

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Mt. Pulaski's 175th Anniversary Celebration This Weekend

Mt. Pulaski's 175th Anniversary gets underway today for the weekend. A weekend full of activities and food and music await those attending.

Things kick off with the golf outing at the Lincoln Elks Golf Course in Lincoln at 8 am.

There will be a carnival at the East Park in Mt. Pulaski throughout the weekend.

There will also be musical performances going on throughout the weekend. The music gets underway this afternoon with some Blue Grass music at the courtyard bandstand at 1:30. There will also be various bands performing all through the weekend.

There will be a wine tasting going on throughout the afternoon hours each day of the event.

There will be a fish fry from 4-8 pm Friday . The city also has former classes returning for the weekend to be a part of the celebration.

A pancake breakfast kicks off Saturday at 7 am at the General Food Tent. The musical performances will continue on as well as continued carnival and children's activities. Saturday also features an Abraham Lincoln impersonator walking around. Other activities on Saturday include a gun shoot, a magician, and a comedian performing as well.

Sunday a community potluck will take place at 12:30. Zion Lutheran will be hosting a pork chop dinner from 4-8pm and music will continue through the day once again.

The 4-day celebration wrap up Monday, and getting things started will be a flea market at 8am and will run through the morning and afternoon hours. The VFW will be putting on a chicken dinner at 11 am and things wrap up with the annual 4th of July fireworks display beginning at 9 pm.

For the full schedule of all the weekends activities, you can visit Mt. Pulaski's 175th Anniversary Celebration website at www.mtpulaski175th.com/foundersdayactivities.

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Clinton City Council Puts Consideration of Stance on Clinton Landfill Issue on Hold

The issue of the Clinton Landfill has been addressed and opposed by several local governments and organizations in the past several months, however, the Clinton City Council is not among those who have take a stand.

The current Council has not taken a stand for the simple reason: they have not been approached about it. Over two years ago, the previous Council took a neutral stance on the issue. Until July 5 of this year, the current Council, which features new members, including a new Mayor, has yet to address or be addressed on taking a stance on the issue.

Chris Coulture, owner of AREA Disposal addressed the Clinton City Council at their meeting last Monday evening. He explained to the Council the reason behind the proposed dumping of higher concentrations of polychlorinated biphenyls (bi-fee-nul), or PCBs, into the Clinton Landfill. He says AREA is looking to help the environment and the Great Lakes, which is where most of the PCB's come from.

[audio:councillandfill1.mp3]A Word From Coulture[/audio]

The DeWitt County Board as a whole has not voiced an opinion either in favor or against the Chemical Waste permit.  A clause in a 2008 contract with the landfill states the board will remain neutral on the issue. Coulture asked the City Council to not get involved and leave the decision up to the experts.

[audio:councillandfill2.mp3]A Word From Coulture[/audio]

In a letter written in April of 2009, the previous Council wrote the US-Environmental Protection Agency stating they left the decision up to them in hopes of the EPA using their best judgment. However, the current Council has recently been approached about changing their stance on the Landfill issue. Clinton Mayor Carolyn Peters said she would honor the request for the Council to consider a change in their stance.

The Council was to discuss the issue at their meeting last Monday evening, however, due to the absence of Commissioner John Wise, the discussion was tabled to their next meeting August 1. Mayor Peters made the decision because she wanted to have each member of the Council give input before a decision was made.

[audio:councillandfill3.mp3]A Word From The Mayor[/audio]

The I-EPA has already approved the company's plans to institute a Chemical Waste operation.  The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency continues to take public comment on the proposal through August 14th.  Citizen groups and governments from across central Illinois have voiced their opposition to the plan due the landfill's location over the Mahomet Aquifer, which supplies drinking water to nearly a million residents.

With all the information and opinions published and available right now, Mayor Peters acknowledged it would be a tough decision to make.

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DeWitt County Remembers Welby Cyrulik

DeWitt County lost a longtime member of its County Board earlier this week.

Welby Cyrulik passed away Tuesday at the age of 75. Welby served on the DeWitt County Board for many years and the past 35 years was the supervisor of the Texas Township.

Community members that lived and served along side him recall him as a very task oriented individual. Craig Fink is DeWitt County's engineer, he recalls Cyrulik was very supportive and understanding. Cyrulik worked in the concrete business, and so he had a good understanding of the projects Fink took on. Fink recalls Cyrulik simply got things done.

[audio:welbypassing.mp3]A Word From Craig Fink[/audio]

Current DeWitt County Board Chair, Melonie Tillie, recalls the same things about him. She also knew him personally and said he was a very family oriented person.

[audio:welbypassing2.mp3]A Word From Melonie Tillie[/audio]

Ed Young served on the board with Cyrulik as well. He remembers Cyrulik as one that could not be swayed, and would always do the right thing.

[audio:welbypassing3.mp3]A Word From Ed Young[/audio]

Cyrulik's visitation was Thursday and the funeral service will be Friday at 1 pm at Calvert Funeral Home in Clinton. The burial will be at the Texas Township Cemetary.

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Cards Win; Sox & Cubs Lose

>>Cards Drop Astros

(St. Louis, MO)  --  Albert Pujols lifted a two-run homer in the first inning to help give the Cardinals a 3-1 victory over the Astros.  David Freese also went yard with a solo shot for St. Louis, which has won two in-a-row and five-of-six overall.  Jake Westbrook gave up one run in six innings for the win while Fernando Salas notched his 19th save.  Carlos Lee drove in the lone run for Houston, which has lost four straight.  Brett Myers pitched a complete game, going eight innings while taking the loss.  The third of the four-game series is tonight as Chris Carpenter opposes Houston's Bud Norris.

>>Crew Clips Cubs

(Milwaukee, WI)  --  Chris Narveson tossed five frames of two-run ball and the Brewers scored a trio of runs in the opening inning en route to a 3-2 win over the Cubs on Tuesday evening at Miller Park.  Narveson picked up his seventh win of the season and John Axford closed it out to nail down his 28th save.  Ryan Braun had an RBI single and Casey McGehee added an RBI triple for Milwaukee, which snapped a two-game slide.  Aramis Ramirez' two-run homer in the first frame accounted for the Northsiders' only runs of the game.  Ryan Dempster gave up three runs through six innings of work to absorb the loss for Chicago, which was coming off its first three-game sweep of the season.  Carlos Zambrano will be on the bump opposite Zack Grienke in tonight's second installment.

>>Tigers Top White Sox

(Chicago, IL)  --  Wilson Betemit's RBI single in the eighth inning gave the Detroit Tigers a 5-4 victory over the Chicago White Sox in the middle contest of a three-game set at The Cell on Tuesday evening.  Justin Verlander earned the win despite allowing four runs on seven hits and a walk through eight innings.  He also struck out seven in Detroit's sixth win in nine games.  Jose Valverde tossed a scoreless ninth to earn his 27th save of the year.  Will Ohman took the loss for Chicago.  Adam Dunn and Paul Konerko each had two-run homers for the Southsiders, which had its three-game win streak come to an end.  John Danks will toe the rubber against Max Scherzer in this afternoon's series finale.

MLB NL
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Philadelphia Phillies 7, San Francisco Giants 2
Florida Marlins 11, Washington Nationals 2
New York Mets 8, Cincinnati Reds 6
Atlanta Braves 4, Pittsburgh Pirates 3 (19 inn)
Arizona Diamondbacks 6, San Diego Padres 1
Los Angeles Dodgers 3, Colorado Rockies 2

MLB AL
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Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 2, Cleveland Indians 1
New York Yankees 4, Seattle Mariners 1
Baltimore Orioles 12, Toronto Blue Jays 4
Boston Red Sox 13, Kansas City Royals 9
Minnesota Twins 9, Texas Rangers 8
Oakland Athletics 6, Tampa Bay Rays 1

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DNR Conservation Police To Monitor Parks in Full Force Over Holiday Weekend

The 4th of July weekend is here, and if you're headed out to enjoy it at one of the area's state parks, then authorities are reminding you to do so responsibly.

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources Conservation Police plan to be out in force this weekend ensuring the local parks and waterways are as safe as possible.  Officer Ray Wichus indicates the holiday weekends are always hectic times at the local parks and campgrounds...so much so that Conservation Officers will be putting in extra hours this weekend to crackdown on several offenses, especially alcohol related violations.

[audio:dnrcrackdown1.mp3]Officers Wichus[/audio]

The crackdown on operating under the influence is not only taking place on land.  With beautiful weather predicted this weekend, local waterways will be a popular holiday destination, and Officer Wichus notes that officers will also be on the lookout for alcohol-related boating offenses.  He says the same rules involving driving under the influence are in place for boaters.

[audio:dnrcrackdown2.mp3]Officer Wichus[/audio]

Wichus stresses the primary goal of the increased patrols is to ensure a safe holiday weekend.  With that in mind, he also encourages anyone heading out on the water to be sure to have enough life jackets on board, and to give your equipment a good once over before hitting the water. Wichus stresses anyone under the age of 13 must be wearing a life jacket.

[audio:dnrcrackdown3.mp3]Officer Wichus[/audio]

Conservation Police are also reminding the public that fireworks are not allowed in the state parks.  They encourage everyone to have a safe and responsible weekend.

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NFL Frenzy Update

>>Colts' Polian: Start Of NFL Season "Organized Chaos"

(Indianapolis, IN)  --  Indianapolis Colts general manager Chris Polian described Tuesday afternoon's resumption of football operations as "organized chaos."  The NFL's four-and-a-half month lockout ended on Monday.  Chris Polian has succeeded his father, Bill, in handling the vast majority of day-to-day activities with the Colts.  Bill, now vice chairman, remains active with the team but more in larger, league-related matters.

>>Bears Release Punter Brad Maynard

(Chicago, IL)  --  The Chicago Bears have released punter Brad Maynard.  Maynard was told by the coaching staff in late January after their NFC Championship Game loss that his chances of returning were slim.  Maynard, who signed with the Bears as a free agent before the 2001 season, was the second-longest tenured Bear behind long nsapper Patrick Mannelly.  He placed 24 punts inside the 20-yard line last season.  In February, Chicago signed punter Richmond McGee and are also considered to be in the market for a veteran free agent punter.

>>Rams Sign Rookie Free Agents

(St. Louis, MO)  --  The Rams began signing the first of what could be up to 20 rookie free agents yesterday morning.  The first players to ink contracts were defensive tackle Arthur Thomas of Arkansas-Pine Bluff, offensive tackle Tyler Donahue of Bowling Green, cornerback Travon Bellamy of Illinois and running back Eddie Wide of Utah.  More signings are expected today.

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Celebrate Clinton Hosts First Ever Independence Day Celebration Sunday

Sunday is Celebrate Clinton's Independence Day celebration. This will be the first of what is hoped by organizers as many installments of the Independence Day celebration put on by Celebrate Clinton.

A wide variety of activities are scheduled throughout the day. The day kicks off with the Tour DeWitt Bicycle ride. Registration begins at 6 am and the scheduled start is 7:30, however, Sissy Leggett with Celebrate Clinton explains upon registration, bikers have the option to begin on one of the three routes they have available.

[audio:independencedayclinton1.mp3]A Word From Leggett[/audio]

The festivities kick off at 11 am and activities throughout the day include balloon artists, face painting, live music and several food vendors. There will also be traditional Independence Day activities such as a pie eating contest, which begins and 1 and a watermelon eating contest which takes place at 2:30. And something unique this year will be a bike decorating contest which will take place at 12:30.

One unique historical aspect to previous Independence Day celebrations in Clinton is a Bed Racing contest. Patrice Brotherton of Celebrate Clinton says the hopes is to organize to bring back the Bed Racing by introducing it once again this year.

[audio:independencedayclinton2.mp3]A Word From Brotherton[/audio]

Organizers encourage anyone to come out and see what the event is all about, admission is free, they believe it will be worth the while for the community to stop by for just a little while.

While they recognize the festival will probably start small, they hope the celebration will grow and become an annual event, attended by everyone in the community and looked forward to on a yearly basis.

[audio:independencedayclinton3.mp3]A Word From Organizers[/audio]

Perhaps one of the bigger attractions organizers believe will bring people out is the Dunk Tank. It is $1 for 3 shots to get local public figures drenched in a pool of water. Noteable figures to be up on the platform include Principal Ron Connor, DeWitt County Sheriff Jered Shofner and YMCA Executive Direct Jann Martin.

Again things kick off at 11 am Sunday and all the activities will be taking place on Mr. Lincoln Square in downtown Clinton. Anyone interested in the bike ride, registration begins at 6 am and the mass start is at 7:30. For more information about the Independence Day celebration and day of activities, you can find Celebrate Clinton on Facebook, or you can contact Sissy Leggett at the DeWitt County Friendship Center at 935-9411 or you can contact Patrice Brotherton at 935-4798.

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CornBelters Fall In Pitchers Duel

A solo home run in the sixth inning was the only tally, as the Normal CornBelters fell in a pitchers' duel on Tuesday night in Florence, Kentucky, 1-0 to the host Florence Freedom.

The Belters threatened in the third, but two singles from Tyler Keeble and Andrew Barbaro to lead off the inning plus a two-out walk to Frank Martinez to load the bases were stranded after a strikeout and two foul-outs.

CornBelters starter Ryan Sheldon pitched three innings of no-hit ball, and didn't surrender a baserunner until he walked Jonathan Smith with one out in the third inning, but Smith was caught stealing followed by a fly ball out to end the frame with Florence continuing to send only the minimum number of hitters to the plate against Sheldon.  The first baserunner and first hit for the Freedom was Juan Valdes, who led off the fourth with single to left.  Jarred Frierson and Chris Curley followed with singles to load the bases.  A ground ball by Drew Rundle was sent home to retire Curley, and Sheldon was able to coax fly outs from Justin Holloway and Jonathan Cisneros to escape the threat and leave the bases loaded..

The Freedom finally broke through on the scoreboard in the sixth inning, when Chris Curley hit his 11th home run of the season, a solo drive to left, his 12th long ball of the season.

The CornBelters scratched just six hits and stranded nine runners on base.  Andy Clark improved to 8-2 with his seven-inning start, and Corey Martin set the CornBelters down in order in the ninth for his tenth save.  Ryan Sheldon went the distance for the CornBelters and falls to 6-5, giving up four Freedom hits while walking two and striking out six.

The CornBelters continue on to the second half of the six-game road trip in Marion, Illinois to face the second-place Southern Illinois Miners.  Tyler Lavigne (3-7, 3.40) is the expected starting pitcher for third-place Normal, while the Miners plan to counter with Ryan Zink (3-4, 5.01) in a matchup of right-handers.  First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.

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Local Authorities Ask Citizens To Practice Safe 4th of July Habits

With the 4th of July here, local officials are asking citizens to practice safe habits throughout the holiday weekend.

The biggest concern is the issue of fireworks safety. Jerry Milton with the public health and safety department for the city of Clinton says the 4th of July is a fun time, but he reminds parents to keep a watch on kids who are handling fireworks.

[audio:fireworkssafety1.mp3]A Word from Commisssioner Milton[/audio]

DeWitt County Sheriff Jered Shofner reminds residents to use common sense when enjoying the Independence Day holiday. He also reminds folks fireworks are explosives, and need to be handled carefully. 

[audio:fireworkssafety2.mp3]A Word From Sheriff Shofner[/audio]

The fireworks of the illegal variety will almost definitely get shot off throughout the weekend. Clinton Fire Chief Shawn Milton says if you are going to handle those, observing the city regulations of distance from buildings and objects. He also suggest using a punk instead of a lighter or matches to light those fireworks off.

[audio:fireworkssafety3.mp3]A Word From Chief Milton[/audio]

Clinton Police Chief Mike Reidy gives parents a tip on how to tell if their children's fireworks are legal or not. He says if they say "Caution", they are legal in Illinois, however, if they are labeled "Warning", then they are illegal. Chief Reidy also notes possession of illegal fireworks is a criminal offense.

[audio:fireworkssafety4.mp3]A Word From Chief Reidy[/audio]

Authorities also ask to practice safe drinking habits. If you have been drinking, do not get behind the wheel of a vehicle, appoint a designated driver, alcohol is involved in over 40 percent of fatal crashes in Illinois.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 7-27

July 27, 2011

 

Jail Population: 51

Summons Served: 1

Warrant Arrests: 0

Andrew Sloat, 25, Decatur, was arrested and issued a citation for Driving While License Suspended. Sloat posted the necessary bond and was released.

 

Bonita Brannan, 45, Clinton, was issued a citation for Speeding (80 mph in a 65 mph zone). Brannan posted her Illinois Drivers License as bond and was released.

 

Jennifer Buchanan, 28, Clinton, was issued a citation for Speeding (75 mph in a 55 mph zone). Buchanan posted her Illinois Drivers License as bond and was released.

 

Jason North, 33, Wapella, was issued a citation for Disobeying Traffic Control Device. North posted his Illinois Drivers License as bond and was released.

ALL SUSPECTS ARE PRESUMED INNOCENT UNTIL FOUND GUILTY IN A COURT OF LAW.

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CornBelters Lose Storm-Shortened Game

Thunderbolts and ThunderBolts did in the Normal CornBelters on Thursday night, as Windy City captured a weather-shortened 6-1 win in six innings on Thursday night at Standard Bank Stadium in Crestwood, Illinois.  The loss was the third consecutive defeat for Normal, which has also dropped four of the last five games.  Windy City's leadoff man reached base and scored in five of the six innings.
 
The ThunderBolts struck first in the their first time up for the second straight night, as CornBelters starter Bobby Pritchett walked leadoff man Brandon Anderson.  Another walk and a single loaded the bases, and Anderson scored on a sacrifice fly to right by Devin Shepherd to give the Bolts a 1-0 lead after one inning.
 
Windy City added another run in the second.  Chad Cregar led off with a base hit and moved to third on a single and a fielder's choice, then scored on a base hit to left by Mike Torres to increase the lead to 2-0.
 
A pair of ThunderBolts scored in the third inning.  Devin Shepherd led off with a single and stole second, and with one out, Ryan Basham walked..  Both scored when Larry Pempek's single to center was misplayed to build the lead to 4-0. 
 
For the fourth straight inning, Windy City's leadoff man reached base and scored when Brandon Anderson reached via error, was sacrificed to second and scored on two wild pitches to put the Bolts up 5-0.
 
The CornBelters finally answered in the fifth with leadoff walks to Jeff Dunbar and Tyler Keeble followed by a single by Colin Moro to load the bases with nobody out, but only one run would score.  Mike Mobbs walked to score Dunbar, but a ground-out and two pop-ups stranded the bases loaded and kept the CornBelters behind 5-1.
 
In the Windy City sixth, Larry Pempek led off with a triple and scored one batter later on a base hit by Nick Kuroczko to give the Bolts a 6-1 lead.  Umpires suspended play at the end of the sixth inning, minutes before a thundershower arrived and power was lost to Standard Bank Stadium.  The game was called less than an hour later as the rain was passing out of the area, but power remained out at the park, and Frontier League rules list light failure as a reason to end the game rather than suspend the contest.
 
The starters went the entire six innings and took the decisions, as Windy City's Bryant Cotton captured the win to improve to 3-2 and Normal's Bobby Pritchett suffered the loss to fall to 4-2.
 
The series concludes on Friday night as right-handers are scheduled to start on the mound, Brett Lester for the CornBelters (4-1, 3.09) and Dustin Williams for the ThunderBolts (5-2, 3.21).  First pitch in southern Cook County is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.

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Quinn Calls McCormick Place Stakeholders Back To Negotiating Table

Governor Pat Quinn is calling McCormick Place union leaders and contractors back to the negotiating table.  Lawmakers made changes to work-rules at the facility last year, which allowed exhibitors to cut costs by doing more of the work on their own.  But a federal judge says that's a violation of collective bargaining rights.   Quinn says the state can't afford to wait for a federal judge to rule on the matter. 

[audio:rddconvention1.mp3]A Word From The Governor[/audio]

He's summoned lawmakers back to Springfield on September 13th to deal with the issue.  Lawmakers would like to see their changes stick but Quinn says there are a few more things he'd like to see.  He says an "exhibitors' bill of rights" should be implemented in the law to protect customers.  He'd also like to see a cost auditing system put in place at the facility.

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Cubs, Cards, Sox All Winners

>>Cards Complete Sweep Of O's

(Baltimore, MD)  --  Lance Berkman homered twice and knocked in three as the Cardinals outslugged the Orioles 9-6.  John Jay clubbed a three-run homer to help the Cards complete a three-game sweep.  Jaime Garcia allowed five runs and 10 hits over five-and-a-third innings, but still improved to 7-and-3 with the win.  Fernando Salas notched his 13th save.  Nolan Reimold smacked a three-run homer and finished with four RBI for Baltimore.  Mark Reynolds launched a two-run shot in defeat.  Brian Matusz was shelled for eight runs and nine hits over three-and-a-third innings to fall to 1-and-4.

>>Cubs Outlast Giants In 13 On Soto Walk-Off HR

(Chicago, IL)  --  Geovany Soto delivered a pinch-hit, three-run homer to cap a four-run bottom of the 13th as the Cubs rallied to beat the Giants, 5-2.  Darwin Barney's RBI single tied the game at two for Chicago, which earned a split of the four-game series at Wrigley Field.  Aramis Ramirez hit a solo homer in the ninth to tie the game at one and force extra innings for the Cubs.  John Grabow gave up a solo homer to Pablo Sandoval in the top of the 13th, but got credit for the win.  Ramon Ramirez took the loss.  Brian Wilson blew the save in the ninth for the Giants after Matt Cain pitched seven shutout frames.  Cubs starter Carlos Zambrano left in the second with back spasms.  The Cubs open a three-game set with the White Sox this afternoon at Wrigley Field.

>>White Sox Top Rockies In 10 Innings

(Denver, CO)  --  Juan Pierre's two-run single in the top of the 10th inning lifted the White Sox to a 6-4 win over the Rockies.  Pierre's sac-fly in the eighth tied the game at four for Chicago, which overcame a 4-1 deficit to win the rubber match of the three-game set at Coors Field.  Gordon Beckham went 3-for-3 with a home run and two RBI for the Sox.  Jesse Crain got the win and Sergio Santos his 17th save.  Clayton Mortensen took the loss.  Troy Tulowitzki hit a three-run homer for the Rockies.

MLB Interleague
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Detroit Tigers 5, New York Mets 2
Boston Red Sox 5, Philadelphia Phillies 2
New York Yankees 5, Milwaukee Brewers 0
Florida Marlins 5, Oakland Athletics 4
Pittsburgh Pirates 6, Toronto Blue Jays 2
Houston Astros 7, Texas Rangers 0

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DeWitt Sheriff's Report For 7-1

 

June 30, 2011

Jail Population: 57

Summons Served: 0

Warrant Arrests: 1

 

 

 

Levi Lamothe, 34, Clinton, was arrested and charged with Criminal Trespass to Property and Theft <$300. Lamothe being un-able to post bond remains lodged in the DeWitt County Jail.

 

Leslie Evans, 42, Moroa, was issued citations for Operating Uninsured Vehicle, Illegal Transportation of Alcohol and Driving Under the Influence. Evans was arrested for Driving Under the Influence and on a DeWitt County Warrant charging her with Theft. Evans being un-able to post bond remains lodged in the DeWitt County Jail.

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Catch of the Day

 width=Randy and Margie Black of Clinton, and their family, including their grandchildren, just returned from a vacation in North Carolina.  Part of their time was spent fishing.  Ethan Black caught a 20-pound blue catfish.  In the picture, grandfather Randy Black is holding Ethan's catch, which we're told is also coming back to Illinois...for eating!
 
If you think your catches at Clinton Lake or Weldon Springs Lake or anywhere else, are worthy of our "Catch of the Day", send us a picture of your fish and a brief discription: name; date; location; & type of fish to whownews@randyradio.com.

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Boil Order Issued for Portions of Maroa

The City of Maroa has issued a boil order for all residents east of Wood Street until further notice due to a water main break.

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