Local News

Illinois Organ/Tissue Donor Program "Life Goes On" Represented at Clinton Farmers Market

The Clinton Farmers Market has welcomed a new table to Mr. Lincoln's Square as the Illinois Secretary of State is looking to shed light on one of its programs.
 
The "Life Goes On" program is the state's advocate for organ/tissue donation.  Regional Coordinator for the program Karen Kohnke explains why organ/tissue donation is so important.
 

 

 
Kohnke explains that getting out to spread information about organ/tissue donation and why people should join the registry can help to save lives.

 

 
A booth will be set up at the Clinton Farmers Market to learn more about how to register and become a part of the organ/tissue donation program. 

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22nd Annual Antique Car Exhibition at the David Davis Mansion Saturday

Beautiful, historic cars in a beautiful, historic setting is the promise of the 22nd Annual Antique Car Exhibition on Saturday, August 4 at the David Davis Mansion State Historic Site in Bloomington.
 
Jeff Saulsbery, site manager for the David Davis Mansion, indicates that the cars will be displayed from 10 am to 3pm with a "Parade of Progress" around the museum drive at about 2pm.
 

 

 
Saulsbery says the 33rd Illinois Volunteer Regiment Band will perform from 11am to 1pm on period instruments followed by the Illinois Country Music Association. Redbird Catering will have picnic foods and beverages for sale. 
 

 

 
The event is co-sponsored by the McLean County Antique Automobile Club and the David Davis Mansion Foundation. A donation of $5 per person is suggested.

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State Square and Round Dance Convention Held in Decatur

The State Council of Illinois Square Dance Associations held their 35th annual convention this past weekend in Decatur.
 
Hundreds of square dancers from across the state attended the event, as Convention Chairman Bobby Poyner explained the inception of the convention.
 

 

 
Convention goers experienced three nights of dancing, learning, laughter, and fun.
 

 

 
Benefits were also raised from a night of dancing for the Webster-Cantrell Hall of Decatur.  

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Governor Rauner Signs Legislation Launching Lottery Game for Fallen Officers

Gov. Bruce Rauner is feeling a little blue, meaning he has sacrifices of Illinois law enforcement officers on his mind. He has signed legislation creating a new Illinois Lottery scratch-off game honoring fallen and wounded officers. Rauner says proceeds will impact three causes in the law enforcement community...

 

The new law goes into effect New Years Day.

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Hepatitis Cases Are Increasing

In recognition of World Hepatitis Day, July 28, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is encouraging people to talk with a health care provider to see if they should be tested or vaccinated for hepatitis A, B, or C.  Viral hepatitis is caused by several different viruses that can infect the liver.  Each virus is transmitted differently, though in general, they are highly transmissible through bodily fluids, sexual contact, and contaminated water. 
 
Viral hepatitis affects millions of people worldwide, causing both acute (short-term) and chronic (long-term) liver disease.  The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates 325 million people worldwide are living with chronic hepatitis B or chronic hepatitis C.  Viral hepatitis causes more than one million deaths per year, a number comparable to deaths caused by tuberculosis and HIV combined.  While deaths from tuberculosis and HIV have been declining, deaths from hepatitis are increasing.  Annually, hepatitis C kills more Americans than any other infectious disease.
 
In Illinois, the number of reported cases of hepatitis C increased by 43 percent from 6,887 in 2006 to 9,838 in 2017.  Many of the cases in individuals younger than 35 years of age have been linked to injection drug use.  The rise in hepatitis C cases corresponds with the opioid epidemic in Illinois.
 
Various blood tests are available to diagnose cases of hepatitis.  Factors that increase risk of hepatitis A, B, and C infection include: use of injectable drugs, sexual contact with an infected partner, previous diagnosis of HIV, chronic liver disease, and clotting-factor disorders.  
 
Both hepatitis A and B are preventable with vaccination.  Direct treatment for hepatitis A is not currently available, but there is a highly effective vaccine that individuals with risk factors should get.  Hepatitis B, similar to hepatitis C, is treatable with prescription antiviral medications. 

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Durbin Pleased with Trump Postponed Invite to Putin

After meeting with Russia's Vladimir Putin, President Donald Trump planned to host the Russian leader sometime this fall at the White House. 
 
Trump has since decided to postpone that second summit meaning. Senator Dick Durbin expressed relief with the news...
 

 

 
Durbin appeared on CNN.

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Illinois EPA Investigating Alleged Diesel Fuel Leak at H&M Trucking

A Clinton trucking firm is being investigated by the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, for allegedly leaking 4,000 gallons of diesel fuel onto properties in that area.

The IEPA alleges that H&M Trucking in Clinton allowed the leak to occur.  IEPA spokeswoman Kim Biggs confirmed the diesel spill and told Regional Radio News that her agency has sent the case to the Illinois Attorney General's office for further action.

Stay tuned to Regional Radio News and dewittdailynews.com for further information.

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Warner Hospital Physical Therapy Undergoing Remodel

The Warner Hospital physical therapy team is a group of healthcare professionals who work to develop individualized programs suited to the specific needs and lifestyles of there patients.  
 
With a surplus of patients, the physical therapy team has received money to help enhance their equipment and space according to hospital CEO Paul Skowron.
 

 

 
The older equipment that is being replaced will be auctioned off and the remodel of the physical therapy department is expected to be finished by Labor Day.

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Children's Home & Aid Celebrating 135 Years of Service

Children’s Home & Aid has been a child and family service agency in Illinois for the past 135 years.  In celebrating the anniversary, agencies all over the state are doing special tributes to help honor the agency and those families it has served over the years according to Program Manager of Family Support Services Jamie Russell.
 

 

 
The state agency continues to help and serve more than 40,000 children and families each year in over 60 counties.

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Legion Family Cookout Planned for September

The American Legion Post 103 is constantly committed to mentoring youth and the sponsorship of wholesome programs in the community, advocating patriotism and honor, promoting strong national security, and continued devotion to fellow service members and veterans.
 
In an effort to show appreciation for all those within the Legion, Commander Josh Thielen says a special cookout is scheduled for early September.
 

 

 
The cookout is aimed specifically for the members of the Legion, Auxillary, and Sons of the Legion.  With the cookout, it will look to kick off the festivities for the 100 year anniversary of the organization.
 

 

 
For more information on the American Legion Post 103 in Clinton visit crangbennett.wixsite.com.

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Rauner Ends Donations to Chicago Mayoral Candidate Wilson

llinois Gov. Bruce Rauner says he has stopped providing money to the charitable foundation of Chicago mayoral candidate Willie WIlson. Rauner has given $200,000 in the last year alone. Wilson and the governor have been criticized since Wilson on Sunday doled more than $200,000 to people at a Chicago church to help them with their property tax bills. Rauner said he was at the church with Wilson to speak at the pastor’s request. Democratic Gubernatorial candidate J.B. Pritzker questioned Rauner's claims.....
 

 

 
State Board of Elections officials have said Wilson didn't break any campaign finance laws if the money came from his foundation, and not from his campaign. Pritzker wouldn't discuss whether he made similar donations to Chicago area pastors. 

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Jobs added in nine of the state's 14 metro areas last month

JOBS WERE ADDED IN MORE THAN HALF OF THE STATE’S 14 METRO AREAS LAST MONTH. 
 
NINE METRO AREAS SAW OVER-THE-YEAR JOB GAINS…INCLUDING CHICAGO AND THE SUBURBS…CHAMPAIGN-URBANA...KANKAKEE…THE QUAD CITIES AND EAST ST. LOUIS. THE UNEMPLOYMENT RATE FELL IN ONLY SIX OF THE METRO AREAS…BUT ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF EMPLOYMENT SECURITY SPOKESPERSON BOB GOUGH (goff) SAYS THAT ISN’T ALL BAD NEWS.
 
CUT: junemetro :20 
 
INDUSTRY SECTORS WITH THE MOST GROWTH INCLUDE TRANSPORTATION, WAREHOUSING AND UTILITIES, EDUCATION AND HEALTH SERVICES AND MANUFACTURING.

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This summer marks 25th anniversary of Great Flood of 93

This summer marks the 25th anniversary of the Great Flood of 1993. One of the hardest hit areas in Illinois was near Hull in Pike County where a levee breech flooded 40,000 acres of farmland in the Sny Island Levee Drainage District says past Pike County Farm Bureau President Jim Koeller.
 
 
The Mississippi River level reached a record 31.55 feet on that day. 
The Sny levee system runs a total of 54-miles and covers nearly 110,000 acres of which 66,000 remained protected during 1993. 

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Manar, Costello Call for State Worker Back Pay

Senator Andy Manar and State Representative Jerry Costello are teaming up to call on Governor Rauner to move ahead with payments to nearly 24,000 state workers who are owed back wages by the state. The Democrats sent a letter to Rauner this week, urging him to expedite the 63.25 million dollars payment for back wages, as ordered by the Illinois Supreme Court. So far, state agencies under the governor’s control have not submitted vouchers to the comptroller's office. The money has been owed since 2011.
 

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Illinois Controlled Pheasant Hunting Reservation Information Now Available Online

Controlled pheasant hunting opportunities will be available at 18 Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) sites during the 2018-19 hunting season.  Dates and permit reservation information are now available online. 
 
Sixteen of the sites are operated by the IDNR, while two other sites continue to be operated in a public/private partnership arrangement between the IDNR and concessionaire T. Miller, Inc.
 
The online permit reservation system for IDNR-operated sites opens on Monday, Aug. 6, and permit information, season dates, and other information are now available. Detailed information and permit reservations are available now for the two sites managed by T. Miller, Inc.  Hunters should always review the application instructions and season information accessible online prior to submitting an application.
 
For complete details, check the controlled pheasant hunting website at www.dnr.illinois.gov or the T. Miller, Inc. website at www.tmillerinc.com.

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National FFA Organization and Microsoft announce initiative to bring transformational innovation to more than 650,000 students nationwide

The National FFA Organization and Microsoft Corp., announced their collaboration to bring innovative technology, science, research and entrepreneurship to the classrooms of the more than 650,000 FFA student members nationwide through an initiative known as Blue 365.
 
FFA members are the future of the food industry, which is relying on this generation to meet unparalleled challenges to feed a growing world population. In a modern world where the food and agriculture industries are reliant on precision agriculture, big data, cloud technology, robotic systems, advanced communications and other sophisticated technologies, Blue 365 will serve as a catalyst for evolving sustainability, innovative efficiency and preparing the future leaders who will solve the world’s critical agricultural challenges. 
 
Blue 365 will be unveiled in Indianapolis, Ind., this October at the 91st National FFA Convention & Expo, the nation’s largest student convention. With the vision and commitment of title sponsors Microsoft and AgriNovus Indiana, The Blue Room, a 17,000-square-foot interactive space, will showcase the cutting-edge technology, research and innovation happening across the spectrum. Through experiential learning and specific focus on the most critical challenges facing our communities — from respecting the planet to the urgent matter of feeding the world — The Blue Room experience serves to inspire and equip students to activate their potential.

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More Than 1 in 3 Americans Plan to Spend Up to $250 per Child on Back-to-School Supplies

Back-to-School season has arrived and parents and students are projected to spend $82.8 billion this year, nearly as high as last year’s $83.6 billion, according to the National Retail Federation. 
 
TopCashback.com recently surveyed parents on their back-to-school shopping habits and found 35% of Americans plan to spend up to $250 per child while the most popular way to cut costs for class is shopping sales and deals (77%).
 
The survey polled a cross section of 1,366 adults, aged 18 and over.  Results showed that the most popular back-to-school purchases include school supplies (87%), clothes (84%), shoes (74%), backpacks (61%), and electronics (26%).  
 
The top-5 places to shop for back-to-school are Walmart (69%), Amazon (60%), Target (54%), online (36%), and clothing stores (29%).

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Billy Bob Thornton to perform in Springfield this weekend

Actor, Director and Academy Award winner Billy Bob Thornton is coming to Illinois. Thornton is the lead singer and writer behind the trio known as The Boxmasters and one of Thornton's favorite tour stops is in the Illinois capital... 
 

 

 
You can see Billy Bob's band The Boxmasters at the Boondocks Pub in Springfield tonight.

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When it comes to robbing Southern Illinois Banks, Age is Just a Number

When it comes to Southern Illinois Bank Robbers, Benton Police say 81 is the new 30. Arthur Bays of Marion is accused of finding the fountain of criminal youth and robbing the State Bank of Whittington branch in Benton. He is being held in the Williamson County Jail. Federal charges are pending.

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65% of Americans prefer to workout at home over the gym

To conduct the Schwinn Fitness Workout Habits Index, the data researchers at Schwinn Fitness asked 1,000 Americans about their exercising routines and preferences.  The survey revealed that 77% use stationalry bikes to watch more TV, 23% of those surveyed said they use the time exercising on their stationary bike to read more, and 18% said to play games on their phone.
 
41% use thier phone during a workout for music, 38% of those surveyed said they don't use their phone at all while exercising. Only 8% admit they take selfies, and 3% said they go on dating apps.
 
45% say gum memberships are too pricey, while membership fees keep people from going to the gym, 32% said getting there is too much of a hassle, and 24% said they don't like working out next to gym rats.
 
The survey also looked at the top-5 workouts to be done at home which included #1 Running (treadmill or outside), #2 Biking (stationary or regular), #3 Weight workouts (crunches, squats, push ups), #4 Yoga, and #5 Free weights.
 

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USDA Invests in 22 New Projects to Spur Innovation in Grazing Lands, Organic Systems and Soil Health

USDA will invest more than $10.6 million for 22 new projects that will drive public and private sector innovation in conserving natural resources in 27 states. The competitive Conservation Innovation Grants program helps spur development and adoption of new conservation approaches and technologies.
 
Through this grant program, public and private grantees — including non-governmental organizations, American Indian tribes, academic institutions and local government entities — leverage the federal investment by providing a match or cost share that is at least equal to the amount of federal funding requested.
 
This year’s projects focus on three priorities: grazing lands, organic agriculture systems and soil health. Since 2004, USDA has invested more than $297 million for 732 projects.
 
This year’s projects include plans to develop a system that uses field measurements and remote sensing data to assess the impacts of grazing. The results will be integrated into the web-based Climate Engine Rangeland Tool that ranchers and land managers use to analyze and visualize forage availability, utilization and grazing intensity.
 
Another proposal will seek to increase the use of no-till agriculture in organic systems by exploring which innovations in cover crop selection, planting dates, roller type, planter modifications and termination methods lead to the most successful organic no-till outcomes for soil health, corn and soybean yields and farm profitability.
 
One project will work to increase demand for small grains as animal feed and cover crop seed to provide crucial secondary markets needed for farmers to increase small grain acres in the Corn Belt. These innovations are expected to bring food, feed, and seed companies together to collaborate around multi-commodity rotations to increase soil health.

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Top-ranked hotel brands, and providing authentic local experiences

Across the board, hotels are making their customers happier than ever, according to the J.D. Power 2018 North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Index (NAGSI) Study.SM Driven by increased approval of guest rooms and hotel facilities, overall satisfaction for the industry increases 8 points to 825 (on a 1,000-point scale).
 
Service areas also are improving, but at a slower rate. In consideration of economic cycles, hotels should emphasize refining their service effort which represents greater opportunity for improvement and requires less investment than capital improvements.
 
Now in its 22nd year, the study is designed to help hoteliers add focus and clarity to product and service improvement efforts that matter most to their guests. The study measures overall guest satisfaction across eight hotel segments: luxury; upper upscale; upscale; upper midscale; midscale; economy; upper extended stay; and extended stay. Seven key factors are examined in each segment to determine overall satisfaction: reservation; check-in/check-out; guest room; food & beverage; hotel services; hotel facilities; and cost & fees.
 
The following hotel brands rank highest in guest satisfaction in their respective segments:
 
Luxury: The Ritz-Carlton (for fourth consecutive year)
Upper Upscale: Kimpton Hotels
Upscale: Hilton Garden Inn (for third consecutive year)
Upper Midscale: Drury Hotels (for 13th consecutive year)
Midscale: Wingate by Wyndham (for fourth consecutive year)
Economy: Microtel Inn & Suites by Wyndham
Upper Extended Stay: Staybridge Suites (for second consecutive year)
Extended Stay: Home2 Suites by Hilton

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Clinton Farmers Market Upcoming Schedule

The Clinton Farmers Market continues to roll on as the summer progresses, with the last July market date taking place tomorrow.  The final weekend of each month at the market marks an ice cream social.

 

 
Elizabeth Burns is a manager for the market, as she says the month of August will have the theme of outdoor eating as it will be National Picnic Month.
 

 

 
The remainder of the August market schedule will keep patrons occupied with plenty of themed days.
 

 

 
Information on the Clinton Farmers Market can be found on their Facebook page, ClintonILFarmersMarket.

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Logan County Fair Kicks Off this Weekend

The Logan County Fair will be celebrating its 82nd year and all the festivities get started with harness racing on Sunday.  Secretary at the Logan County Fair Mike Maske has been on the fair board for over 20 years and has been in his role as secretary since 2003.  He says each fair presents a new challenge and the fair seems to arrive quicker and quicker each year.
 

 

 
The fair runs seven days with a packed schedule as the grandstand events will get underway Tuesday night through the rest of the week.
 

 

 
Maske says its a team effort to make the fair happen from the effort of the members on the board, volunteers, and members in the community.
 

 

 
More information on the Logan County Fair can be found at www.logancountyfairil.com.
 

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President Touts Tariffs in Granite City

The President stopped in Granite City this afternoon and stood at the US Steel plant where a blast furnace has reopened because of the tariffs on steel and aluminum imports. Donald Trump says that it hasn’t been easy to restart the start the steel industry but his tariffs have had the intended effect and put people back to work
 

 

 
The President said that farmers won’t be forgotten in the process and recently announced funds will go their way to support them during the trade war.

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IFB president reaction to USDA aid package

Illinois Farm Bureau President Richard Guebert Jr. calling it a “good first step”. He’s referring to the $12-billion USDA aid package announced by the Trump administration this week for farmers facing retaliatory tariffs.
 

 

 
Guebert farms corn, soybeans and wheat in downstate Ellis Grove. 

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Become a Master Gardner with the University of Illinois Extension

For any adult with the passion or hobby of gardening, there is a program through the University of Illinois Extension that can make any home gardener a Master Gardener.
 
Candice Hart is a Horticulture Educator for DeWitt, Macon, and Piatt counties as she explains the purpose and progress of the program.
 

 

 
The training sessions for the program have taken a change for a more hands-on and in-depth learning experience.
 

 

 
Information on the Master Gardener Program can be found at web.extension.illinois.edu/dmp. 

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State Police highlights the dangers of speeding

THE ILLINOIS STATE POLICE IS WARNING THE PUBLIC ABOUT THE DANGERS OF SPEEDING. 
 

STATE POLICE MASTER SERGEANT MATT BOERWINKLE SAYS DRIVING WAY TOO FAST SERIOUSLY UPS YOUR CHANCES OF DISASTER.

 

 

 
THE PROBABILITY OF BEING SERIOUSLY INJURED OR KILLED IN A CRASH DOUBLES FOR EVERY 10 MILES PER HOUR ABOVE 50. BOERWINKLE ALSO REMINDS THAT SPEEDING DOESN’T REALLY SHAVE MUCH OFF YOUR DRIVE TIME AND CAN LOWER GAS MILEAGE BY AS MUCH AS 33 PERCENT.

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Capital Improvements at Warner Hospital & Health Services

The Warner Hospital & Health Services board held their monthly board meeting earlier this week, as the topic of capital improvements was a bullet point on the agenda.  CEO Paul Skowron says these improvements will help to enhance the safety and efficiency of the hospital.

 

 

 

 
 Another improvement in the near future involves the redoing of the elevator which is nearly 20 years old.
 

 

 
Skowron says the hospital is prepared for the elevator construction and accommodating patients accordingly.
 

 

 
The elevator construction is anticipated to last around 10 days.  

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C.H. Moore Homestead DeWitt County Museum Recognized by Smithsonian Magazine for Museum Day

Smithsonian Magazine is a monthly published in-depth analysis of varied topics ranging from history, science, art, and nature.  The magazine hosts their annual Museum Day and the C.H. Moore Homestead DeWitt County Museum will be one of the participating museums in the event.
 

 

 
Joey Woolridge is the Director at the museum and says they are hoping for added exposure by being involved in the state-wide event.
 

 

 
The Smithsonian Museum Day will take place Saturday, September 22, with Museum Day tickets available online at www.smithsonianmag.com/museumday.

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Gardening Tips from University of Illinois Extension

It's the time of year when some produce is ready to be harvested in family gardens, but some items have seen delayed growing due to warm weather according to Horticulture Educator Candice Hart.
 

 

 
Hart advises that with the warmer weather making sure to water frequently and monitor produce more in order to see adequate yield.
 

 

 
While many gardeners are starting to harvest summer produce, for those wanting to plant cooler growing vegetables it's almost time to prepare for seed planting.
 

 

 
More gardening tips for harvesting and fall produce planting can be found at web.extension.illinois.edu/dmp.

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Senator Minority Leader Brady Talks Term Limits

Senate Minority Leader Bill Brady is weighing in on the issue of term limits. He doesn't have a problem with what political attack ads call career politicians, he just has a problem with them staying in one spot....
 

 

 
The Bloomington Republican once opposed the concept of term limits. He thought Election day served as its own form of term limits.

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State looking for more nominations for the Honor 200 effort, honoring veterans as part of the Illinois Bicentennial Celebration

THE ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS’ AFFAIRS IS LOOKING FOR MORE NOMINATIONS FOR THE STATE’S “HONOR 200” EFFORT. 
 

THE PROJECT AIMS TO HIGHLIGHT THE SERVICE OF 200 EXCEPTIONAL VETERANS FROM ILLINOIS. VETERANS’ AFFAIRS SPOKESPERSON DAVE MACDONNA SAYS OVER 100 NOMINATIONS HAVE BEEN RECEIVED SO FAR…BUT THEY WANT MANY MORE.

 

 

 
NOMINATIONS WILL BE ACCEPTED THROUGH THE END OF AUGUST. VISIT ILLINOIS DOT GOV SLASH VETERANS AND CLICK ON “HONOR 200” FOR MORE DETAILS. THOSE CHOSEN WILL BE HONORED AT THE STATE’S BICENTENNIAL GALA IN DECEMBER.

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Canadian dry air keeping Illinois July weather 'like Wisconsin'

State Climatologist Jim Angel says the late July weather pattern in Illinois is more like Wisconsin. He says cool Canadian dry air is keeping temperatures below average and that will likely continue well into August.

 

 
Angel says areas of southeastern Illinois and the western part of the state are short of moisture and could use a good soaking.

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Bustos: Farmers need stability with trade, not government handout

Western Illinois Congresswoman Cheri Bustos not impressed with President Trump’s $12 billion proposal for federal agricultural programs. The money serves as a response to damage from an ongoing trade war with China. Bustos says hardworking farmers don’t want a government handout, they want stability with trading partners. 
 
 
Bustos is a member of the House Agriculture Committee and the only Midwesterner in Democratic Elected House Leadership.

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Former First Lady Blagojevich Delivers Op Ed on "Obama Era" Justice Department

Patti Blagojevich rips President Trump's enemies on Capitol Hill in a bid to win freedom for her husband, former Governor Rod Blagojevich. In an op-ed published by the Washington Examiner, the former first First Lady called the Obama era Justice Department and FBI corrupt. She even mentioned some targets of Trump criticism by name, special counsel Robert Mueller, who was FBI director when Rod Blagojevich was arrested, and former FBI Director James Comey. The op-ed may have one key flaw, Rod Blagojevich was arrested one month before former President Obama's inauguration. President Trump mentioned the possibility of commuting Rod Blagojevich's sentence in May but hasn't discussed the issue since.

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Family Makes $9,000 Donation to the Vespasian Warner Public Library District

A dedicated library couple has decided to give back to their local reading establishment by donating $9,000.  In memory of her husband Gerald "Jerry" Ryan, Mary Ann Ryan wanted to give back to the place the couple visited quite frequently.  Vespasian Warner Public Library Executive Director Bobbi Perryman says a donation like this is what helps to make the library a great space for the community.
 

 

 
Perryman says that the donation will be used to help install a permanent structure.
 

 

 
The installation of the digital sign is in the early planning phases with no time frame as to when it will be completed.  

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After School Care Offered at Clinton YMCA

The upcoming school year is right around the corner meaning registering kids for classes and getting signed up for school activities.  With that comes the option of after-school care which is offered by the Clinton YMCA according to Executive Director Rennie Cluver.
 

 

 
Cluver says that registration for the "Y-Zone" program can be done at any time throughout the school year.
 

 

 
Information on "Y-Zone" can be found on the Clinton YMCA website.

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National Trust for Historic Preservation Route 66 Tour

Route 66, or the Mother Road, has been one of the most enduring highways in the public eye.  In an effort to help and shine a light on the historic road, the National Trust for Historic Preservation is taking a road trip from Chicago to Los Angeles over a one month span.  
 
The one month trip has already gotten underway and made stops along the way across several areas in Central and Southern Illinois according to Assistant Director at the Illinois Route 66 Scenic Byway Geoff Ladd.
 

 

 
Ladd says this preservation effort is one of many ways to help and maintain the status of the roadway.
 

 

 
For more information on the national road trip visit savingplaces.org and more on the Illinois Route 66 Scenic Byway can be found at www.illinoisroute66.org.

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Governor says consolidating more units of local government would save taxpayers billions of dollars

GOVERNOR BRUCE RAUNER SIGNED A GOVERNMENT CONSOLIDATION LAW THIS WEEK…BUT SAYS ILLINOIS NEEDS MORE. 
 
THE LAW LETS SOME COUNTY CLERK OFFICES TAKE ON DUTIES OF THE LOCAL ELECTION COMMISSION. GOVERNOR RAUNER SAYS IT’S A STEP IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION BUT REMINDS THAT ILLINOIS STILL HAS MORE UNITS OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT THAN ANY OTHER STATE IN THE NATION.

 

 
RAUNER SAYS IF ALL THE RECOMMENDATIONS FROM THE STATE’S LOCAL GOVERNMENT CONSOLIDATION TASK FORCE WERE IMPLEMENTED…IT WOULD SAVE TAXPAYERS AN ESTIMATED THREE AND A HALF BILLION DOLLARS A YEAR.

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Four WWII classic planes in Springfield

Springfield has welcomed four legends who helped save the world. Four aircraft from World War II, the P51 Mustang fighter plane and the war’s primary bombers, the B17, B24 and B25 are on display. Rick Sharp flies the last airworthy B24 in the world. He says seeing the planes up close is worth the price of admission....
 

 

 
The planes remain at Abraham Lincoln Capital Airport through today.

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REO Speedwagon voted as #1 band from Illinois in the latest Illinois Top 200 poll

VOTERS ARE CHOOSING R-E-O- SPEEDWAGON AS ILLINOIS’ FAVORITE BAND IN THE LATEST ILLINOIS TOP 200 POLL. 
 
R-E-O SPEEDWAGON, THE TOP VOTE GETTER IN THE ILLINOIS MUSICIANS CATEGORY WAS FORMED IN 1967 IN CHAMPAIGN AND HAS SOLD MORE THAN 40 MILLION RECORDS SAYS ABRAHAM LINCOLN PRESIDENTIAL LIBRARY SPOKESPERSON CHRIS WILLS.
 

 

 
OTHER ARTISTS THAT MADE THE TOP 10 INCLUDE CHEAP TRICK, WHICH BEGAN IN ROCKFORD IN THE 70’S…MILES DAVIS…AND EARTH, WIND AND FIRE. VOTE NOW IN THE NEXT CATEGORY…TOP ARTISTS AND ARCHITECTS ONLINE AT: ILLINOIS TOP 200 DOT COM.

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Misleading Social Media Ads

One of the biggest scam trends is tied to the rise in shopping via social media. With the increasing use of the various platforms, scammers have found new ways to trick you into their traps, and the Better Business Bureau wants you to be aware of some red flags. When shopping online, and now especially on social media, the agency advises you to be wary of anything proclaiming to be a "limited time offer" as these often are tied to scams that enroll you in monthly billing agreements without the customer's knowledge. Better Business Bureau Investigator Don O'Brien says you should be wary of apps of unknown origin.
 

 

 
He says before making any purchase or downloading any app, Google the website or app name with the words “complaints”, “reviews”, and “scam” to see what other customers are saying.

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2018 Warner Hospital Foundation Scholarship Award Winners Announced

The Warner Hospital Foundation has been around since 1998 and the 12-member Board of Directors manages the business and affairs of the corporation. The Foundation is responsible for coordinating fundraising efforts and administering charitable gifts and donations given to the Foundation.  
 
One of the fundraising efforts helps to provide the Belinda Rittenhouse Scholarship Awards to students pursuing a medical career.  Funds for the scholarships are raised by the Foundation annual cookout and donations from members within the community.  This year's scholarship award winners are Haley Steward and Sarah Gehres according to Foundation President Dixie Walden.
 

 

 
Scholarship award winners fill out an application that is reviewed by a committee then brought forth among the Foundation Board of Directors.

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Window Arch Renovation and Garden Rejuvenation at C.H. Moore Homestead DeWitt County Museum

The C.H. Moore Homestead has been around well over 100 years and with age there comes a time when projects and enhancements to the property must be done.  
 
Two projects, in particular, are currently being undertaken which include a window arch renovation project and Minerva's garden rejuvenation.  The window arches have been an ongoing endeavor dating back to last year, as Museum Director Joey Woolridge explains why the arches need redoing.
 

 

 
Along with the window renovation, there is also an effort to rejuvenate the flower and herb gardens once monitored by Minerva Moore Bishop, the first lady to call the mansion "home."
 

 

 
A variety of heirloom perennials have been added to the collection and anyone wishing to become involved in the ongoing project is encouraged to contact the museum.  More information on the C.H. Moore Homestead DeWitt County Museum can be found at www.chmoorehomestead.org.

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I on Diabetes Program Provides Outlook on Improved Health

Diabetes is a pressing health concern across the country and in an effort to help fight off diabetes the University of Illinois Extension is offering a program to help those with or who are affected by the disease.
 
In Illinois, around 8-9% of people are diagnosed with diabetes, with people in DeWitt and Piatt Counties having people above the state average who are diagnosed with diabetes.  The I on Diabetes program is being offered to help and learn more about the disease according to Nutrition and Wellness Educator Caitlin Mellendorf.

 

 
Mellendorf says this is an initiative being driven throughout the state.

 

 
The I on Diabetes program will be offered in both DeWitt and Piatt counties starting in August.  More information on the program can be found at web.extension.illinois.edu/dmp.
 

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Dixon Rep. Tom Demmer named to Illinois House leadership post

Dixon State Representative Tom Demmer is now the number two man in the Illinois House Republican Caucus. House Minority Leader Jim Durkin named Demmer as Deputy House Minority Leader last week. Demmer is serving his third term in the Illinois House.

 

 
He wants to continue to push for property tax relief, worker's compensation reform, and to allow voters to consolidate local government to reduce their taxes. Demmer also signed Governor Rauner’s “People’s Pledge” to promote term limits and oppose longtime Democratic House Speaker Mike Madigan. When asked if he’d step down if no term limit law was enacted:
 

 

 
Demmer says he’s proud of the work done by the Republican House Caucus. He represents the 90th House District.

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Weekly Crop Report

CORN IS PROGRESSING MORE QUICKLY THAN IN RECENT YEARS ACCORDING TO THE LATEST ILLINOIS CROP REPORT. 
 
33 PERCENT OF THE CORN CROP IS IN THE DOUGH STAGE…THAT COMPARES TO SIX PERCENT AT THIS TIME LAST YEAR AND 14 PERCENT FOR THE FIVE-YEAR AVERAGE. 82 PERCENT OF CORN IS RATED IN GOOD TO EXCELLENT CONDITION…AN UPTICK FROM THE PREVIOUS WEEK. CROP STATISTICIAN MARK SCHLEUSENER SAYS 88 PERCENT OF SOYBEANS ARE BLOOMING.
 

 

 
49 PERCENT OF SORGHUM HAS HEADED AND THE THIRD CUTTING OF ALFALFA IS NOW 16 PERCENT COMPLETE. AVERAGE STATEWIDE TOPSOIL MOISTURE IMPROVED TO FOUR PERCENT VERY SHORT, 16 PERCENT SHORT, 77 PERCENT ADEQUATE AND THREE PERCENT SURPLUS.

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Duckworth, Durbin want stop to shackling of pregnant women

U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth is among senators introducing the Stop Shackling and Detaining Pregnant Women Act which would prohibit Homeland Security personnel from shackling pregnant women in its custody. Senator Dick Durbin agrees with the cause...

 

 
In May, the Illinois legislature passed a similar bill to keep pregnant women out of jail while awaiting trial for nonviolent offenses. 

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DeWitt County Board Expects Busy August, Wind Farms Likely on Agenda

With the DeWitt County Zoning Board of Appeals voted last week on zoning ordinances for the Commercial Wind Energy Conversion the County Board is expecting to receive recommendations from the ZBA next month.  
 
Chairman of the County Board David Newberg says it was a long week of discussion that will eventually move onto the County Board's shoulders.
 

 

 
Other proposed changes the ZBA is still considering include lowering the acceptable noise level limit from a turbine from 50 decibels to 37 decibels, setting a standard for shadow flicker caused when rotating blades cast moving shadows on the ground and mandating an analysis verifying turbines will not interfere with public communication.

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Security Upgrades Coming to some Clinton Unit Schools

School safety is always a priority, especially with an increase in school violence over the last several years.  The Clinton Community Unit School District is looking at their own security measures and figuring out what needs added improvement.  Superintendent Curt Nettles joined the WHOW Morning Show and explained several upgrades coming to the district.
 

 

 
Nettles says that its the goal of the district to be aware of the best practices and techniques for quality school safety.
 

 

 
The official start of school for the Clinton Community School District is August 22.

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2018 Farmer City Fair Queen and Little Miss Talk Winning Crown

Tuesday the Farmer City Fair Queen and Little Miss were crowned. Mia Brandenburg of Cerro Gordo and Presley Whisman of Farmer City are the 2018 Queen and Little Miss respectively.
 
Brandenburg has been competing in pageants since she was two and thought it was be fun to compete in the Farmer City Fair Pageant, but says she's most excited for what's to come.
 

 

 
Former queens advice the current Queen and Little Miss to soak it in now because it'll go by fast. Though, that doesn't change that winning is a surreal feeling.
 

 

 

 

 
The Fair had a packed schedule including a goat and horse show, children's games, facepainting, a fishing tournament, a chicken, chili and rib cookoff, and a tractor and truck pull on the Raceway.
 

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Governor signs law officially making the Illinois Department of Innovation and Technology a part of state government

GOVERNOR BRUCE RAUNER IS SIGNING A NEW LAW OFFICIALLY MAKING THE ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF INNOVATION AND TECHNOLOGY A STATE AGENCY. 
 
GOVERNOR RAUNER SAYS WHEN HE TOOK OFFICE, HE WAS SURPRISED AT THE LACK OF TECHNOLOGY BEING USED IN STATE GOVERNMENT. HE SAYS “DO-IT” IS MAKING BIG STRIDES IN MOVING ILLINOIS INTO THE DIGITAL AGE.
 

 

 
THE GOVERNOR SAYS SINCE DO-IT WAS CREATED TWO YEARS AGO…THE AGENCY HAS ENCRYPTED NEARLY SIX BILLION RECORDS TO PROTECT PERSONAL AND CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION AND HAS SET UP A ROUND THE CLOCK SECURITY OPERATIONS CENTER.

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U of I Extension Ewing Demonstration Center Celebrating 50 Years of Continuous No-Till Research

The University of Illinois Extension celebrating a special milestone this year in Southern Illinois. The Ewing Demonstration Center has reached 50 years of continuous no-till research. Marc Lamczyk (lamb-check) is an Agriculture Program Coordinator with the Extension. He says the variety of research conducted at the facility has made a big impact on southern Illinois farming.
 

 

 
Lamczyk says the Extension will celebrate the 50 year anniversary as part of its Agronomy Field Day at the Ewing Center on Thursday, July 26th. 
 

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Bill would add landowners to Illinois Endangered Species Protection Board

Environmental groups are opposing a piece of legislation that allows landowners from the Illinois Farm Bureau two spots on the nine-member Illinois Endangered Species Protection Board. The board decides what animals are considered endangered, and protected, in Illinois. Jim Herkert is President of the Illinois Audubon Society.
 

 

 
The bill also says that anyone with a federal permit for a project that could harm a protected species does not need one from Illinois. Herkert says that’s problematic because federal regulations aren’t always specific to endangered Illinois species. LaSalle County Farm Bureau President David Isermann says his group is for the bill. The Illinois Farm Bureau is interested in whether the Monarch Butterfly will be named endangered by the board.
 

 

 
There are 480 endangered or threatened plants and animals in Illinois right now. The legislation has been referred to the Illinois House rules committee.

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30th Anniversary of '88 drought

Thirty-years ago Illinois suffered through what was described as the worst drought since the Dust Bowl days of the Great Depression. Farmers and others baked through a hot, dry spring that continued well into summer. Kane County farmer John White believes the '88 drought was worse than the most recent one in 20-12;
 

 

 
White, former Illinois Governor Jim Thompson and others were onsite almost to-the-date three decades ago when former President Reagan toured a drought-damaged farm near DuQuoin. Reagan traded barbs with the White House press corps. And, he shared an example of why he considered farmers some of the bigggest gamblers when he addressed them on what he called, the "mashed potato circuit" in Las Vegas earlier in his political career:
 

 

 
In 1987 Illinois farmers havested an average 135-bushels per acre. In 1988 their corn crop was almost cut in half. Congress passed drought relief legislation by August which Reagan signed.

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Brady on McCann

When GOP State Senator Sam McCann leaves office this winter, don't expect any parting gifts from Minority Leader Bill Brady. Brady thinks McCann's Conservative Party run for Governor offers little promise....
 
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McCann took legal action against Republican officials after they booted him from the caucus. 

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NCGA Recognizes Senator Hoeven with President's Award

National Corn Growers Association President Kevin Skunes presented NCGA’s 2018 President’s Award to North Dakota Senator John Hoeven. The President’s Award is given annually at NCGA’s Corn Congress meeting in Washington to a leader who has worked to advance issues important to corn growers and agriculture..
 
Hoeven serves as Chairman of the Senate Committee on Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Subcommittee. He is also a member of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, playing a crucial role in crafting and passing a farm bill that provides farmers with the certainty they need to plan for the future, as well as new tools to manage risk with enhanced crop insurance. 

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Tourism to Macon County Contributing to Robust Economic Growth in Illinois

The Illinois Office of Tourism announced both international and domestic travel
expenditures reached $39.5 billion in 2017 which is a $1.1 billion boost to the state’s economy since 2016. Visitors to the state hit an all time high in 2017 with an additional 1.6 million travelers from 2016 contributing to an increase of visitor spending, tax revenue and local jobs.
 
Macon County played a role in the state’s added economic domestic growth, with $150.07 million in travel expenditures – a 5.6% increase, and $2.89 million in local tax revenue – a 5.8% increase. More than 6,000 jobs were created across the state as a result of visitor spending, with 4.3% of them in Macon County.

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Attorney General Lisa Madigan launches Operation Donate with Honor, cracking down on fraudulent charities for veterans

ILLINOIS ATTORNEY GENERAL LISA MADIGAN, THE F-T-C, AND HER COLLEAGUES ACROSS THE COUNTRY ARE CRACKING DOWN ON FRAUDULENT CHARITIES FOR VETERANS. 
 
THE EFFORT IS CALLED “OPERATION DONATE WITH HONOR” AND TARGETS CHARITIES THAT FALSELY CLAIM THEY ARE RAISING MONEY FOR VETERANS AND SERVICE MEMBERS. ATTORNEY GENERAL MADIGAN SAYS THERE ARE MANY GOOD GROUPS THAT DO HELP VETS…BUT YOU NEED TO DO YOUR HOMEWORK BEFORE DONATING. THAT INCLUDES FINDING THE NAME, ADDRESS AND WEBSITE OF THE CHARITY.
 
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MADIGAN IS ALSO ANNOUNCING A SETTLEMENT WITH OPERATION TROOP AID WHICH HAS AGREED TO CLOSE ITS DOORS AFTER FAILING TO PROPERLY OVERSEE DONATIONS.

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Illinois unemployment rate held steady in June, 18,000+ jobs gained

THE UNEMPLOYMENT RATE HELD STEADY BUT ILLINOIS ENJOYED SOME BIG JOB GAINS IN JUNE. 
 
STATE DEPARTMENT OF EMPLOYMENT SECURITY SPOKESPERSON BOB GOUGH (goff) SAYS JUNE’S PAYROLL GROWTH IS THE LARGEST ILLINOIS HAS SEEN IN THE PAST YEAR.
 
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THE ILLINOIS UNEMPLOYMENT RATE FOR JUNE REMAINED AT FOUR POINT THREE PERCENT. THE NATIONAL JOBLESS RATE CAME IN AT FOUR PERCENT.

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IDPH continues to look into increase of foodborne illness in Illinois

THE STATE DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC HEALTH IS CONTINUING ITS INVESTIGATION INTO A RISING NUMBER OF FOODBORNE ILLNESS IN ILLINOIS.
 
SINCE MID-MAY…THERE HAVE BEEN 243 PEOPLE IN ILLINOIS WHO HAVE FALLEN ILL DUE TO THE CYCLOSPORA PARASITE SAYS PUBLIC HEALTH SPOKESPERSON MELANEY ARNOLD.
 
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MORE THAN A THIRD OF THE PATIENTS GOT SICK AFTER EATING A SALAD FROM MCDONALD’S. ARNOLD SAYS THEY ARE WORKING WITH THE C-D-C TO DETERMINE OTHER SOURCES OF THE BUG. THAT INCLUDES FRESH IMPORTED PRODUCE LIKE RASPBERRIES AND LETTUCE

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Kidzeum Set to Open in Springfield

It's a big weekend in Downtown Springfield. The Kidzeum of Health and Science will open its doors tomorrow (Saturday), offering young visitors a chance to learn more about their health. The centerpiece of the museum is Active Alex, a three story tall larger than life replica of a child. Active Alex will give museum visitors many interactive ways of learning about health and the functions of the human body and its organs. Rachael Thomson, President of the Kidzeum Board, says the museum is designed to take on the issue of childhood obesity head on....
 

 

 

 
kids can learn that putting aside phones and tablets to play can pay off....
 

 

 
If your kids think gross is fun, they're in the right place. No bodily function is are off limits with exhibits that represent represent human waste and even a booger. 

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Illinois State Police 100th Anniversary Logo Design Contest Winners Announced

On behalf of the Illinois State Police Heritage Foundation (ISPHF), Illinois State Police (ISP) Director Leo P. Schmitz announces the winners of the ISP 100th Anniversary Logo Design Contest.  
 
Over 240 designs were submitted to the ISP Centennial Committee.  The top three logo designs were judged based on professionalism, theme, color, integrity, and nostalgia.  The Committee narrowed the selection down to three finalists, and the winner was voted on by ISP employees and retirees. 
 
The 100th Anniversary Logo will be used in making commemorative stars, patches, car decals, letterhead, challenge coins, yearbooks, apparel, web design, advertising, and collectible memorabilia.  
 
The ISP 100th Anniversary Logo Design Contest began on November 1, 2017, and ended March 1, 2018.  Along with recognition for their excellent work, the winners will also receive cash prizes for their efforts.  The ISPHF provided $500 for first place, $200 for second place, and $100 for third place.
 
The third place logo was submitted by Lynsey Hause from Alhambra, Illinois.  The second place logo was submitted by Jose L. Vallejo, Jr. from Channahon, Illinois.  The first place winner of the ISP 100th Anniversary Logo Contest is Aaron Rath from Springfield, Illinois.  The logos can be seen at www.isp.state.il.us. 
 

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Rural households spend much more of thier income on energy bills than others

Rural households across the United States spend a disproportionately high share of their income on energy bills — about 40% more than their metropolitan counterparts, according to a new report released today by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) and the Energy Efficiency for All (EEFA) coalition. The problem is most glaring in the East and Southeast, and among low-income households across all regions.
 
Overall, rural households have a median energy burden — the percentage of a household’s income spent on home energy bills for needs such as air conditioning, heating, lighting, appliances, and cooking — of 4.4%, which is one-third higher than the national burden. Those with low incomes have a median energy burden of 9%, which is almost three times that of higher-income counterparts. In several rural regions, this burden exceeds 15% for one of every four low-income households. In addition to income level, other factors may increase energy burdens, including a home’s physical condition, a household’s ability to invest in energy-efficient equipment and upgrades, and the availability of efficiency programs and incentives that put energy-saving technologies within reach.
 
Other rural residents hit particularly hard include elderly, nonwhite, and renting households, as well as those living in multifamily and manufactured homes. The East South Central, New England, and Mid-Atlantic regions have the highest median rural energy burdens, at 5.1%.

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Rauner Troubled by Trump Presser with Putin

Gov. Bruce Rauner says he was "deeply troubled" by President Donald Trump's handling of a joint press conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin...
 

 

 
Trump says he misspoke when said he didn't believe Russia interfered with the 2016 U.S. election.

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Birth Certificate Scam Warning

The Better Business Bureau wants to let you know about a scam involving birth certificates. Some sites purport to provide copies of your birth certificate for a fee. The only problem is they do not actually follow through with giving you one. Not all sites offering copies of the records are scams, but the BBB’s Dan O’Brien says your best bet is using a government website like your County Clerk's site. 
 

 

 
You can find out more about the scam by going to the Better Business Bureau website.

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AmVets Post 14 Receives State Grant

 
A State grant has finally been received at the AmVets Post 14 in Clinton after a long wait.  With the money that has been reappropriated from taxpayers the grant which began nearly 10 years ago will give $100,000 to the organization.  State Rep. Bill Mitchell says the grant is well deserved.
 

 

 
Marc Rogers is the Commander of the AmVets Post 14 as he explains the group never knew if the State would come through on their end to supply the grant.
 

 

 
Now with the grant money, the local AmVets organization will look to expand their building space along with several other areas.

 

 
Rep. Mitchell also added that new projects shouldn't be funded before other organizations who have been waiting for that same funding.
 

 

 
The AmVets Post 14 is located at 302 N. Monroe. 
 

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Mach1 Gas Station and Casey's General Store Update

With continued work on the Mach1 gas station, City Administrator Tim Followell says work is getting done and the fuel pumps have been labeled with the brand of gasoline.
 

 

 
As for the new Casey's site, demolition took place earlier this week at the new site of the general store.
 

 

 
Followell says he thinks the Casey's could begin construction by August 1.

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Lincoln's Festival on Route 66 to get underway in McLean County

The 10th annual Lincoln Festival begins today, with activities continuing throughout the entire weekend.  Lincoln’s Festival on Route 66 is part of the communities’ observance of the Illinois Bicentennial in 2018.  Lincoln-themed films, including one especially for children, a variety of concerts, theatrical and living-history performances, a car show, a Civil War encampment and battle reenactments, a historic bike show, and an exhibition of rare Lincoln artifacts are just a few of this year's festival highlights.
 
The McLean County Museum of History helps to host some of the events according to Director of Education Candace Summer.
 

 

 
Summer also dives into the festival schedule at the museum for Saturday and Sunday.

 

 
For a full schedule of all the happenings at this weekends Lincoln Festival visit www.lincolnfestival.net.

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Cultured Palate, How to Make Yogurt at Home

The University of Illinois Extension will be hosting classes titled Cultured Palate, part of their "do-it-yourself" movement in food.  Nutrition and Wellness Educator for DeWitt, Macon and Piatt counties Caitlin Mellendorf, says the program looks to get people excited about cooking while also being informative.
 

 

 
With a vast variety of yogurts on the market, this class looks to give yogurt lovers more authority as to what they're eating.

 

 
This is the first year of the Cultured Palate classes.  More information and registration for the classes can be found at web.extension.illinois.edu/dmp/.

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Rauner wants term limits

Gov. Bruce Rauner says Illinois needs term limits and a new House Speaker; his People’s Pledge calls for both. Rauner promoted it during a campaign stop in Ottawa Wednesday afternoon.
 

 

 
Streator Republican Jerry Long was with him. He says House Speaker Michael Madigan has been in charge, blocking bills in Springfield, for too long.
 

 

 
The longtime House Speaker has gotten in the way of term limits. When more than 600,000 people signed petitions for a statewide referendum on it, Madigan opposed it in court and won.
 
Rauner disagrees with critics of term limits who say good office holders have to leave just when they start getting good at their job. Also, staffers or others behind the scenes who aren't term limited might run the show. Rauner says they won't. And he says it takes just six months to a year to learn the job.

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Registration Open for Clinton Community Unit Schools

The school year is fastly approaching, and with that it means time for school registration.  The Clinton Community Unit School District opened its online registration earlier this week at www.cusd15.org.
 
Superintendent Curt Nettles says that is the easiest way to register kids for school, but there will also be an in-person session as well.
 

 

 
For more information on school, registration visit www.cusd15.org.

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Clinton Haunted House Members Attend Convention in St. Louis

The Clinton Haunted House has become a well-known fixture and does its best each year to scare the patrons who enter the scary corridors.  In an effort to keep the house entertaining and lively for guests, members of the haunted house attend a convention according to Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Marian Brisard.
 

 

 
Trying to imagine different ways to spook people in a fun way is the design of the Clinton Haunted House.
 

 

 
Brisard also says that work on the house has been already underway.

 

 
The Clinton Haunted House will be open throughout the month of October. 

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Zoo Keeper Olympics Returning to Miller Park Zoo

While many people enjoy a day at the zoo to look at animals and take in the sites, there are the people behind the scenes to make sure the animals and zoo itself are being maintained.
 
Zookeepers are the eyes and ears of all the animals at the zoo.  In an effort to show appreciation for all their hard work, the Miller Park Zoo will be hosting their Zoo Keeper Olympics event.
 

 

 
Jay Tetzloff is the Director of the Miller Park Zoo, as he explains while patrons can enjoy different activities and contests, there will be a more intense competition between other workers at the zoo.

 

It was the zookeepers who won the event last year, as the ZooKeeper Olympics will take place this Saturday from 12-3 p.m. at the Miller Park Zoo. 

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Governor signs two bills to speed up construction at the Quincy Veterans Home

GOVERNOR BRUCE RAUNER IS SIGNING TWO BILLS TO SPEED UP CONSTRUCTION AT THE QUINCY VETERANS HOME. 
 
THE FIRST NEW LAW BRINGS THE RECENTLY PURCHASED SYCAMORE NURSING HOME UNDER THE UMBRELLA OF THE QUINCY CAMPUS SAYS GOVERNOR RAUNER.
 
 
IT’S EXPECTED THAT THE CONVERTED NURSING HOME WILL BE READY FOR VETS BY THE END OF THE YEAR. THE OTHER LAW CUTS SOME OF THE RED TAPE IN RENOVATING AND REBUILDING NEW FACILITIES AND PLUMBING OVER THE NEXT FIVE YEARS.

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Jobs for youth focus of state hearing in Peoria this week

A panel discussion in Peoria this week aims to address the need for jobs among youth and young adults throughout Illinois. It’s the idea of State Senator Chuck Weaver. He says the first thing the state needs is a strong job structure... 

 

 
The Public Hearing of the State Task Force on Developing Opportunities for Youth & Young Adults Who are Jobless and Out-Of-School will take place Thursday. 

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Governor vetoes bill removing Illinois from the Crosscheck system

GOVERNOR BRUCE RAUNER IS VETOING A BILL THAT WOULD HAVE REMOVED THE STATE FROM THE CONTROVERSIAL INTERSTATE CROSSCHECK SYSTEM.
 
CROSSCHECK IS MEANT TO MAKE SURE PEOPLE ARE NOT VOTING IN MULTIPLE LOCATIONS BY COMPARING FIRST AND LAST NAMES AND BIRTHDATES TO VOTERS IN OTHER STATES. CRITICS WORRY ABOUT DISCRIMINATION AND DATA BREACHES BUT GOVERNOR RAUNER DISAGREES.
 
 
IN HIS VETO MESSAGE…GOVERNOR RAUNER SAYS THERE IS NO NEED TO HAMSTRING THE STATE’S EFFORTS TO COMBAT VOTER FRAUD BY LEAVING CROSSCHECK.

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Temperatures should stay below average for remainder of July in Illinois

Atmospheric conditions should keep temperatures below average for the remainder of July in Illinois. That assessment from agriculture meteorologist Eric Schmidt with EJS Weather in Newton. 
 

 

 
Schmidt anticipates temperatures to trend toward normal for much of August in Illinois. 

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Durbin Blasts Trump Comments from Press Conference with Putin

Senator Dick Durbin called on his Republican colleagues to express their dissatisfaction with President Donald Trump’s remarks at a joint press conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Durbin took issue with Trump comments he believes blamed America for strained relations with Russia and Durbin said he didn't acknowledge acts of cyber warfare by Russia. Durbin says that issue hits home in Illinois...

 

 
Durbin blasted Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, saying the Kentucky Republican refused to work with President Obama two years ago in a quest to condemn reports Putin meddled in the Presidential election.

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Clinton YMCA "Couch to 5k" Program Still Accepting Participants

The Clinton YMCA strives to provide programs that are dedicated to health and wellness for members of the community.  One program currently being offered is the "Couch to 5K," a class that is focused on any skill level to encourage activity and involvement according to Executive Director Rennie Cluver.

 

 
Cluver explains that the "Couch to 5K" program was started to encourage participation in other events happening in the future.
 

 

 
There is still time to participate in the "Couch to 5K" program, to find out more information visit the Clinton YMCA website at www.clintoncommymca.org. 
 

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As 4-H Members phase out, time to reflect on growth and success

For all members who participate in 4-H, there comes a time when being a member comes to a close.  That comes once a member reaches the age of 18, and that is the case this year for Reed Jostes of Maroa.
 
Jostes participated in the DeWitt County 4-H Fair over the weekend, dabbling in as many areas possible with the start of college only a month away.

 

 
The 4-H'er explained how several of the different older members used the week for a time of reflection during their 4-H career.
 

 

 
Jostes will be attending Southern Illinois University in Carbondale this coming fall.  He plans on studying agricultural education with a minor in a farm/ranch management with the hope of teaching high school agriculture and becoming an FFA advisor in the future.

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Community Action Partnership of Central Illinois Looks at Strategic Planning for the Future

Setting goals and reflecting on past achievements and failures helps to make businesses and organizations a well-functioning entity.
 
At Community Action Partnership of Central Illinois, they look to do these things in order to make their services successful for members of the community.  Executive Director Alison Rumler-Gomez explains how when she came to Community Action back in 2014 it was made clear by the board members to revisit the mission of the agency.

 

 
There were also plenty of changes made in years two and three.

 

 
Rumler-Gomez says that now in year four there are plans for a big overhaul to help strategically plan for the next three-year cycle.

 

 
For more information on the programs and services offered by Community Action visit www.capcil.info.

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Warrensburg-Lathem to Host Central Illinois Professional Development Institute

The Warrensburg-Lathem  Community Unit School District will be hosting a unique event for educators around the state to help learn and develop a new technique for teaching in the classroom.
 
The Central Illinois Professional Development Institute allows educators to come together for a two-day conference according to Warrensburg-Lathem Superintendent Dr. Kristen Kendrick-Weikle.
 

 

 
There will be national speakers as well as local educators who will give talks and presentations to the 120 institute attendees.
 

 

 
While there will be a variety of presenters and speakers, the main focus of the institute is to highlight educators throughout Central Illinois.
 

 

 
The PD Institute is set for August 6-7 at the Warrensburg-Lathem High School.

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Rauner pushes for school resource officers

Gov. Bruce Rauner is calling for lawmakers to give Illinois schools a path to boost security at schools. The Governor appeared in Dixon alongside School Resource Officer Mark Dallas, who stopped a school shooting in May....
 

 

 
Rauner says the concept is all about local input...
 

 

 
He has not decided if he should call for a special session in Springfield to look at the issue.

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State Fire Marshal announces $2.2 million in fire safety grants for departments around the state

100 FIRE DEPARTMENTS ACROSS THE STATE ARE SPLITTING MORE THAN TWO MILLION DOLLARS IN FIRE SAFETY GRANTS. 
 
STATE FIRE MARSHAL MATT PEREZ SAYS DEPARTMENTS WILL USE THE MONEY FOR THINGS LIKE SAFETY EQUIPMENT, PROTECTIVE CLOTHING AND BREATHING APPARATUSES. HE SAYS THESE SMALL EQUIPMENT GRANTS ARE A HUGE HELP.
 

 

 
A FEW NONPROFIT AMBULANCE SERVICES IN ILLINOIS RECEIVED GRANT MONEY AS WELL.

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DeWitt County 4-H Fair Recognizes Award Winners

The DeWitt County 4-H Fair wrapped up this past weekend, concluding with the awards night on Sunday.  Many different categories were recognized with 4-H members recieving their awards for the hard work they put in throughout the year and week.  WHOW was at the fair, as one 4-H member from Clinton Leah Mills talked about her week at the fair.
 

 

 
She also says with it being her first year in the Master Showmanship she didn't expect a first-place finish.
 

 

 
With the first-place finish, Mills says the one thing she'll work on for next year is not letting her sheep get loose.
 

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Chamber of Commerce Golf Outing Recap

Each summer the Clinton Chamber of Commerce hosted their annual golf outing as their second biggest fundraiser of the year.  The outing allows businesses and organizations to get out of the office and have a friendly competition against their fellow peers in the community.
 
Executive Director at the Chamber Marian Brisard stopped by the WHOW Morning Show and recapped the winning teams from the event.
 

 

 
Brisard explains with the help of many people it created a fun day for all the participants.
 

 

 
A total of 18 teams competed in the Chamber of Commerce golf outing.

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Local Business Holds Free Community Cookout for The Vault

The Vault, which is a 501(c)3 organization, is a unique teen center where students can have a fun and positive place to hang out with their friends while also being encouraged to reach their full potential through a variety of opportunities and services.  While The Vault continues to undergo construction in their three-phase opening process, the organization continues to host fundraiser events to source their operations.
 
Utterback Real Estate helped with that fundraising effort with a free community cookout over the weekend.  Broker Ryan Dalton explains why the company decided to help out the local organization.

 

 
Kate Umbra has been with The Vault over the last two years and is now in a PR/Marketing role as she says the support of the community is what helps make The Vault function.

 

 
The cookout was a drive-thru theme with community members able to drive up and grab a hot dog and chips through the Utterback Real Estate parking lot.  While the event was free donations were taken for The Vault and the fundraising event brought in close to $800.  
 
For more information on how to donate to The Vault visit thevaultcltinton.wixsite.com.

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Governor signs "red flag" order of protection bill into law

GOVERNOR BRUCE RAUNER IS SIGNING A NEW LAW TO HELP KEEP GUNS OUT OF THE HANDS OF THOSE THREATENING VIOLENCE. 
 
THE SO-CALLED “RED FLAG” LAW GIVES FAMILY MEMBERS OR POLICE WORRIED THAT A LOVED ONE MAY HURT THEMSELVES OR OTHERS A PLACE TO EXPRESS THEIR CONCERNS. THEY CAN PETITION THE COURT TO HAVE THAT PERSON’S GUNS TAKEN AWAY FOR SIX MONTHS, WHICH STATE POLICE DIRECTOR LEO SCHMITZ FULLY SUPPORTS.
 

 

 
SCHMITZ SAYS THE LAW ALSO PROTECTS THE RIGHTS OF THE INDIVIDUAL IN QUESTION…GIVING THEM A CHANCE TO APPEAL DURING THE SIX-MONTH PERIOD.

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State Board of Elections Officials Believe They are Identified in Justice Dept Hacker Indictment

Illinois State Board of Elections officials believe a Justice Department indictment likely cites the 2016 data breach that impacted 76,000 state voter records. Board spokesman Matt Dietrich believes all signs point to Illinois being the victim of Russian intelligence officers who were indicted...
 

 

 
Dietrich says state board officials have suspected Russians hacked the Illinois voter records in 2016. Dietrich says in the months since the breach, the board has conducted frequent cyber security checks and federal dollars are being put to use to ensure local election systems are secure as well.

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Governor signs 72 hour gun purchase waiting period into law, says he will veto gun shop regulation bill

GOVERNOR BRUCE RAUNER IS SIGNING ANOTHER NEW GUN LAW AND URGES LAWMAKERS TO ACT ON A FEW OTHERS.
 
THE GOVERNOR HAS SIGNED A NEW LAW REQUIRING A 72 HOUR WAITING PERIOD FOR THE PURCHASE OF ALL GUNS. PREVIOUSLY THE THREE-DAY WAIT ONLY APPLIED TO HAND GUNS. HE ALSO WANTS TO SEE A FEW OTHER MEASURES ON HIS DESK.
 

 

 
THE SECOND IS FUNDING FOR SCHOOLS TO HIRE RESOURCE OFFICERS OR MENTAL HEALTH PROFESSIONALS. HE SAYS HE WILL VETO LEGISLATION REGULATING GUN STORES.

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Durbin Says Trump Unprepared for Putin Meeting

President Donald Trump met with Russian President Vladimir Putin today. And after the meeting Trump says after a strong denial from the Putin over any potential Russian meddling in the 2016 election that he believes Putin over United States intelligence officials. US Senator Dick Durbin said that it’s clear that Trump was unprepared to go it alone in a meeting with Putin. 
 

 

 
Top Republican’s are breaking with the President over his comments. Speaker of the House Paul Ryan says there is no question that Russia interfered with our elections and continues to try and undermine democracy around the world.

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Bustos praises Trump regarding North Korea trip

Freshly returned from a trip to South Korea, Western Illinois Congresswoman Cheri Bustos offered tentative praise for President Trump regarding his trip to North Korea last month. 
 
 
Bustos was part of a congressional delegation that traveled to South Korea to meet with members of the military and visit the demilitarized zone as part of a follow-up to the President's historic meeting with Kim Jong Un.

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Illinois State Trooper talks about the importance of Scott's Law

Illinois State Trooper Lisa Osborne talks about the importance of Scott's Law and driving safety. Scott's Law was enacted after Lieutenant Scott Gillen of the Chicago Fire Department was killed by a driver on an expressway in 2000. The law requires motorist to move into the far lane when approaching stationary vehicles.
 
 
The law also requires drivers to move over when motorist are on the side of the road. Obsorne goes on to say the best way to remain safe on the road is to not violate the Fatal-4. The Fatal-4 is a list of moving violations that cause the most fatalities, including: speeding, driving under the influence, distracted driving, and seat belt compliance.
 
And if you get pulled over keep calm, pull over on the right hand shoulder, and put your hazzards on to let the police officer know your acknowledgment.

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Mahomet Man Dies in Vehicle Crash

Coroner Duane E. Northrup is releasing the name of a Mahomet, Illinois man who has died after being involved in a motor vehicle crash on July 14, 2018.
 
Michael P. Donahue, 32, was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash at 4:20 AM on July 14, 2018. Mr. Donahue was believed to be a passenger in a Chevrolet car that was traveling westbound on County Road 350 E. at the intersection of County Road 2500 N. near Mahomet. The vehicle lost control, left the roadway, and rolled at least once into a bean field on the south side of the road.
 
An autopsy will be performed on July 14, 2018 and an inquest may be held at a later date. This death is being investigated by the Champaign County Coroner’s Office and the Champaign County
Sheriff’s Office. 
 

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Safety Tips for Young Drivers

Obtaining a drivers license is always a big step in becoming an adult.  Making sure that young drivers are safe and feel safe on the roads is a focus for the Illinois State Police.  ISP Trooper Lisa Osborne says that young drivers shouldn't be afraid of officers and they should stay calm if ever pulled over.
 

 

 
Osborne says that sometimes it seems like young drivers get overexcited once they start driving and forget safe driving practices.
 

 

 
When pulling over if stopped by a police officer it's advised to take your time to find a safe space to pull over the car.  Putting on hazards to acknowledge the police officer helps them to know you are aware.  Officers also want to make aware the driving curfew for new motorists.
 

 

 
More driving tips for new time drivers can be found at www.isp.state.il.us.

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Richland Workforce Consortium Now Offering Students More Class Options and Locations

The Richland Community College Office of Adult Education and Workforce Investment Solutions have partnered to offer students more class options. The Richland Workforce Consortium offers free classes to Decatur area residents. Orientation and registration begins August 13 at all locations:  Richland Community College main campus, Decatur Public Library, Richland’s Fairview Park Plaza, and Richland’s Clinton Higher Education Center.
 
A few of the classes offered include HSE/GED Test preparation, English as a Second Language (ESL), Bridges to Manufacturing, Healthcare, & Hospitality, Tutoring Connections (one-on-one tutoring for math & reading), Career Planning Support Services via Workforce Investment Solutions.
 
The Richland Workforce Consortium class times vary throughout the day at each location. For more information or to sign up for an orientation visit www.richland.edu/adulted. Classes begin August 20.

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Serve Illinois Announces $35.7 Million For AmeriCorps

The Serve Illinois Commission on Volunteerism and Community Service (Serve Illinois) today announced $20 million in Corporation for National and Community Service federal grants to place 1,830 AmeriCorps Members in 46 programs to serve Illinois communities.  
This is an increase of $2.5 million over last year, allowing AmeriCorps Members to serve in seven additional programs.  
 
These awards include $7.4 million in education awards that AmeriCorps Members can use to pay for college after their term of service.  AmeriCorps programs will match these funds with an additional $15.7 million in local funding.  The total investment into Illinois communities will be $35.7 million.
 
 AmeriCorps Members dedicate up to one year to help communities with unmet economic, education, health, public safety, disaster preparedness, veteran services, and environmental needs.  Members may receive a modest living allowance, student loan deferment, health insurance, childcare, and professional development.  Members who successfully complete their service receive an educational award of up to $5,920 to help pay for college, graduate school, vocational training, or to pay off student loans.

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Summer safety tips from the State Fire Marshal's Office

THE ILLINOIS STATE FIRE MARSHAL IS OFFERING SOME TIPS TO MAKE SURE YOU HAVE A SAFE REST OF THE SUMMER. 
 
ONE OF THE BIGGEST HAZARDS GETS A LOT OF USE AT SUMMER COOKOUTS…YOUR GRILL. STATE FIRE MARSHALL MATT PEREZ SAYS YOU SHOULD KEEP THE GRILL CLEAN AND REMOVE ALL GREASE OR FAT BUILD UP. AS WELL AS:
 

 

 
PEREZ REMINDS THE GARAGE IS NOT A GOOD PLACE FOR GRILLING. ANOTHER SUMMER CONCERN IS CAMPFIRES. FIRES SHOULD BE AT LEAST 25 FEET AWAY FROM ANY STRUCTURE OR TREES THAT CAN BURN. PEREZ SAYS YOU SHOULD NEVER LEAVE A FIRE UNATTENDED SINCE IT TAKES ONLY A FEW MINUTES FOR IT TO SPREAD AND CAUSE DAMAGE.

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First Lady Diana Rauner is urging the public to come out tomorrow for the grand re-opening of the Governor's Mansion in Springfield

FIRST LADY DIANA RAUNER IS URGING THE PUBLIC TO COME OUT THIS WEEKEND FOR THE GRAND RE-OPENING OF THE GOVERNOR’S MANSION IN SPRINGFIELD. 
 
RESTORATION OF THE MANSION, WHICH WAS BUILT IN 1855, BEGAN A FEW YEARS AGO. THE BUILDING WAS CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC LAST YEAR FOR MAJOR REHAB WORK…ALL FUNDED WITH PRIVATE DOLLARS. MRS. RAUNER SAYS IT’S ALMOST READY.
 

 

 
THE MANSION WILL NOW BE FULLY A-D-A COMPLIANT, FEATURE A NEW VISITORS CENTER AND WORKS FROM ILLINOIS ARTISTS. TICKETS WILL BE HANDED OUT STARTING AT 9 A-M TODAY FOR TOURS OF THE MANSION. THERE IS A FIVE TICKET LIMIT PER PERSON.

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Hy-Vee and Illinois Department of Public Health Partner to Offer Naloxone Without a Prescription at Hy-Vee Pharmacies in Illinois

To assist in the national crisis concerning opioid overdoses, Hy-Vee, Inc. and the Illinois Department of Public Health announced today that naloxone is now available without a prescription at Hy-Vee pharmacies in Illinois.
 
In Illinois, pharmacists can dispense naloxone without a prescription through a physician-signed standing order with a designated pharmacy or pharmacy chain. In a joint effort to help prevent opioid-related deaths, the Illinois Department of Public Health provided the physician-signed standing order to Hy-Vee. Previously, the only way for individuals to obtain naloxone was through their doctor or other prescriber, followed by a trip to the pharmacy for the drug.
 
Naloxone is available upon request at Hy-Vee pharmacies in nasal spray and injection forms (upon request), although, nasal spray is the most commonly used form. The drug is stored behind the counter and cost varies, depending on the form and whether a customer goes through his or her insurance, or pays cash.
 
Hy-Vee pharmacists will also ensure that patients and their family members understand how to recognize signs of an opioid overdose and how to administer the medication. While naloxone is not a cure for an opioid overdose, it can assist an individual until emergency treatment is available and long-term treatment is provided.. The medication has no effect if opioids are absent.
 
Naloxone can be administered to any person who has overdosed on a wide range of opioids, including hydrocodone, oxycodone, morphine and codeine, as well as heroin. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, opioids killed more than 42,000 people in 2016, more than any year on record. Nearly half of all opioid overdose deaths involve a prescription opioid.

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Social Secutiry when you are self-employed

Most people who pay into Social Security work for an employer. Their employer deducts Social Security taxes from their paycheck, matches that contribution, sends taxes to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and reports wages to Social Security. However, self-employed people must report their earnings and pay their Social Security taxes directly to the IRS. These taxes will help determine your eligibility for benefits later.
 
You’re self-employed if you operate a trade, business, or profession, either by yourself or as a partner. You report your earnings for Social Security purposes when you file your federal income tax return. If your net earnings are $400 or more in a year, you must report your earnings on Schedule SE, in addition to the other tax forms you must file.
 
Net earnings for Social Security are your gross earnings from your trade or business, minus your allowable business deductions and depreciation. Some income doesn’t count for Social Security and shouldn’t be included in figuring your net earnings. 
 
You can read more about self-employment, paying your Social Security taxes and figuring and reporting your net earnings at www.socialsecurity.gov.

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Macon-Piatt County 4-H Youth Showcase Projects at Show, Open House and Awards Ceremony July 17-18

Celebrate the accomplishments and discover the talents of Macon and Piatt County 4-H members at the 2018 Macon-Piatt County 4-H Show, Open House and Awards Ceremony July 17-18 at Richland Community College. Participants will have an opportunity to peruse projects 4-H members created throughout the year.
 
On Tuesday, July 17, 4-H members will present their projects for judging starting at 9:30am. Project areas include foods, health, crops, tractor display, aerospace, technologies, clothing and textiles, intercultural, visual arts, communications and more. The fun continues at 9:30am on Wednesday with horticulture, animal science, photography, video, entomology, natural resources and more.
 
During the 4-H Open House and reception, hundreds of projects will be on display to enjoy. The Open House will be held from 4:30 until 5:45pm. The 4-H Awards Presentation will be from 6-7pm in the auditorium, doors open at 5:30pm. All events and activities take place in the Shilling Center at Richland Community College, One College Park, Decatur and are open and free to the public.

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First National Bank to host free luau themed family game night

First National Bank is hosting a free Family Game Night on Friday, July 20th, 2018 from 6-8 p.m. located 2 Kelli Ct, Clinton, IL 61727.
 
The luau themed event will feature booths with “bigger than life” games and Hawaiian Shaved Ice provided by Coconut Hut. There will also be a prize table for children that includes candy, small toys and books.
 
“The goal of Family Game Night is to bring the family units in our community together for a night of games, fun and entertainment that is free of charge. At the same time, it allows us to reach out and connect with our community members,” said Vice President of Personal Banking Rachel Costello.
 
 The event is free and open to the public. Look for the event on Facebook.

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Macon-Piatt County 4-H Youth Showcase Projects at Show, Open House and Awards Ceremony July 17-18

Celebrate the accomplishments and discover the talents of Macon and Piatt County 4-H members at the 2018 Macon-Piatt County 4-H Show, Open House and Awards Ceremony July 17-18 at Richland Community College. Participants will have an opportunity to peruse projects 4-H members created throughout the year.
 
On Tuesday, July 17, 4-H members will present their projects for judging starting at 9:30am. Project areas include foods, health, crops, tractor display, aerospace, technologies, clothing and textiles, intercultural, visual arts, communications and more. The fun continues at 9:30am on Wednesday with horticulture, animal science, photography, video, entomology, natural resources and more.
 
During the 4-H Open House and reception, hundreds of projects will be on display to enjoy. The Open House will be held from 4:30 until 5:45pm. The 4-H Awards Presentation will be from 6-7pm in the auditorium, doors open at 5:30pm. All events and activities take place in the Shilling Center at Richland Community College, One College Park, Decatur and are open and free to the public.

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Hy-Vee and Illinois Department of Public Health Partner to Offer Naloxone Without a Prescription at Hy-Vee Pharmacies in Illinois

To assist in the national crisis concerning opioid overdoses, Hy-Vee, Inc. and the Illinois Department of Public Health announced today that naloxone is now available without a prescription at Hy-Vee pharmacies in Illinois.
 
In Illinois, pharmacists can dispense naloxone without a prescription through a physician-signed standing order with a designated pharmacy or pharmacy chain. In a joint effort to help prevent opioid-related deaths, the Illinois Department of Public Health provided the physician-signed standing order to Hy-Vee. Previously, the only way for individuals to obtain naloxone was through their doctor or other prescriber, followed by a trip to the pharmacy for the drug.
 
Naloxone is available upon request at Hy-Vee pharmacies in nasal spray and injection forms (upon request), although, nasal spray is the most commonly used form. The drug is stored behind the counter and cost varies, depending on the form and whether a customer goes through his or her insurance, or pays cash.
 
Hy-Vee pharmacists will also ensure that patients and their family members understand how to recognize signs of an opioid overdose and how to administer the medication. While naloxone is not a cure for an opioid overdose, it can assist an individual until emergency treatment is available and long-term treatment is provided.. The medication has no effect if opioids are absent.
 
Naloxone can be administered to any person who has overdosed on a wide range of opioids, including hydrocodone, oxycodone, morphine and codeine, as well as heroin. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, opioids killed more than 42,000 people in 2016, more than any year on record. Nearly half of all opioid overdose deaths involve a prescription opioid. 

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First Lady Diana Rauner urging public to attend grand re-opening of the Governor's Mansion in Springfield

FIRST LADY DIANA RAUNER IS URGING THE PUBLIC TO COME OUT THIS WEEKEND FOR THE GRAND RE-OPENING OF THE GOVERNOR’S MANSION IN SPRINGFIELD. 
 
RESTORATION OF THE MANSION, WHICH WAS BUILT IN 1855, BEGAN A FEW YEARS AGO. THE BUILDING WAS CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC LAST YEAR FOR MAJOR REHAB WORK…ALL FUNDED WITH PRIVATE DOLLARS. MRS. RAUNER SAYS IT’S ALMOST READY.
 

 

 
THE MANSION WILL NOW BE FULLY A-D-A COMPLIANT, FEATURE A NEW VISITORS CENTER AND WORKS FROM ILLINOIS ARTISTS. TICKETS WILL BE HANDED OUT STARTING AT 9 A-M TODAY FOR TOURS OF THE MANSION. THERE IS A FIVE TICKET LIMIT PER PERSON.

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Summer safety tips from the State Fire Marshal's Office

THE ILLINOIS STATE FIRE MARSHAL IS OFFERING SOME TIPS TO MAKE SURE YOU HAVE A SAFE REST OF THE SUMMER. 
 
ONE OF THE BIGGEST HAZARDS GETS A LOT OF USE AT SUMMER COOKOUTS…YOUR GRILL. STATE FIRE MARSHALL MATT PEREZ SAYS YOU SHOULD KEEP THE GRILL CLEAN AND REMOVE ALL GREASE OR FAT BUILD UP. AS WELL AS:
 

 

 
PEREZ REMINDS THE GARAGE IS NOT A GOOD PLACE FOR GRILLING. ANOTHER SUMMER CONCERN IS CAMPFIRES. FIRES SHOULD BE AT LEAST 25 FEET AWAY FROM ANY STRUCTURE OR TREES THAT CAN BURN. PEREZ SAYS YOU SHOULD NEVER LEAVE A FIRE UNATTENDED SINCE IT TAKES ONLY A FEW MINUTES FOR IT TO SPREAD AND CAUSE DAMAGE.

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comments


Social Secutiry when you are self-employed

Most people who pay into Social Security work for an employer. Their employer deducts Social Security taxes from their paycheck, matches that contribution, sends taxes to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and reports wages to Social Security. However, self-employed people must report their earnings and pay their Social Security taxes directly to the IRS. These taxes will help determine your eligibility for benefits later.
 
You’re self-employed if you operate a trade, business, or profession, either by yourself or as a partner. You report your earnings for Social Security purposes when you file your federal income tax return. If your net earnings are $400 or more in a year, you must report your earnings on Schedule SE, in addition to the other tax forms you must file.
 
Net earnings for Social Security are your gross earnings from your trade or business, minus your allowable business deductions and depreciation. Some income doesn’t count for Social Security and shouldn’t be included in figuring your net earnings. 
 
You can read more about self-employment, paying your Social Security taxes and figuring and reporting your net earnings at www.socialsecurity.gov.

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Resurfacing of three main roads underway at Illinois State Fairgrounds

Three main roads at the Illinois State Fairgrounds will be receiving new resurfacing for the upcoming fair.  The Illinois Department of Agriculture is partnering with the Illinois Department of Transportation and The Capital Development Board to undergo the project, as Morgan Booth, a Public Information Officer for the Illinois State Fair, says the money is funded by the Capital Bill...
 

 

 
The roads being worked on are Main Street from the Main Gate to Illinois Avenue, Central Avenue from Main Street to 8th Street, and Illinois Avenue from East of Main Street to the Northwest side of the Grandstand... 

 

 
Work is already underway at the fairgrounds and is expected to be completed in four weeks.

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BLDD and Millikin University to host Idea-to-Incubator Open House

BLDD Architects and Millikin University's Center for Entrepreneurship have been working in tandem this summer to develop a dynamic ecosystem for entrepreneurs, explorers, scientists, innovators and contributors in downtown Decatur, Ill., called Idea-to-Incubator (i2i).
 
Idea-to-Incubator is a program designed to support Millikin University's entrepreneurial students through Performance Learning. An exciting collaboration, i2i couples BLDD's creative environment and innovative business practices with the Center for Entrepreneurship's mentoring and resources to provide student start-ups with the ideal support system to move ideas into reality.
 
BLDD and Millikin University's Center for Entrepreneurship will host an open house for guests to get an inside look at the Idea-to-Incubator program today from 2 – 4 p.m. at BLDD Architects, located at 100 N. Merchant St. in Decatur.
 
Guests will have an opportunity to check out the budding co-work space featuring Millikin University's Idea-to-Incubator student start-up businesses; explore virtual reality architecture demos; bring design challenges to the third-floor "IDEA BAR" for problem solving over a cold drink with BLDD's architects and designers; and sample food and drinks from Millikin's Blue Brew, Decatur Brew Works, Del's Popcorn Shop and Wildflour Artisan Bakery.

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IDPH investigating increase in food-borne illness with some cases linked to salads from McDonald's

THE ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC HEALTH IS REPORTING AN INCREASE IN FOODBORNE ILLNESS LINKED IN PART, TO SALADS FROM MCDONALD’S. 
 
ABOUT 90 CASES OF SICKNESS DUE TO THE CYCLOSPORA PARASITE HAVE BEEN CONFIRMED…AND AROUND A QUARTER OF THOSE PATIENTS SAY THEY BECAME ILL AFTER EATING A MCDONALD’S SALAD. PUBLIC HEALTH SPOKESPERSON MELANEY ARNOLD SAYS THEY ARE WORKING TO FIND OTHER CAUSES.
 
 
SYMPTOMS USUALLY BEGIN A WEEK AFTER EXPOSURE AND INCLUDE DIARRHEA, LOSS OF APPETITE, CRAMPING AND FATIGUE. ARNOLD SAYS MCDONALD’S IS PULLING ITS SALADS AND LOOKING TO OTHER SUPPLIERS.

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Massive Job Fair Set for today

The job market has been on a continued upswing in Illinois and an upcoming job fair is trying to connect people looking for work or for those searching for to a new opportunity to businesses ready to hire. The Illinois Department of Employment Security and the Department of Veteran’s Affairs is hosting a job fair with the American Legion in Springfield on Friday. IDES’s Bob Gough says that there will be at least 75 employers at the fair.
 

 

 
The job fair will be at the Bank of Springfield Center from 10 to 2 today, with the first hour set aside for veterans or active duty military. 

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"Fatal 4" Violations Lead to Unsafe Roadways

Making sure road conditions are safe at all times is the main focus for Illinois State Police, but in particular, with the warmer temperatures it brings about heightened traffic and increased motorists on the roads.  Illinois State Police District 8 Trooper Lisa Osborne explains what "Fatal 4" violations involve.
 

 

 
Osborne gives examples of each violation and why avoiding them will help keep yourself and other motorists safe.

 

 
For more information on the "Fatal 4" violations and how to avoid them while on the roadways visit www.isp.state.il.us.

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Weaver sizes up gubernatorial race

State Senator Chuck Weaver says that the race for Governor in Illinois between incumbent Bruce Rauner and Democrat challenger J.B Pritzker is a referendum on Speaker Michael Madigan and his longtime stranglehold on state politics in Springfield.
 
 
Weaver's district runs from his hometown of Peoria all the way west to Mercer County and the Mississippi River.

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IHSA looking for more officials

It’s not a crisis, but the Illinois High School Association is experiencing a shortage of officials throughout the state. Jim Taylor reports.
 

 

 

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Plane makes emergency landing on I-55 in Logan County

A plane makes an emergency landing on I-55 in Logan County, north of Lincoln. District 9 State Trooper Sean Ramsey describes the events.
 

 

 
Jeremy Kampwerth of O'Fallon and his 9-year-old son escaped injury, although the elder Kampwerth said it was an eerily close call.
 

 

 
The plane, which was being flown by 51-year-old William Farnsley of Austin, Indiana was trying to land at Logan County Airport when it lost power for unknown reasons.

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Motor Vehicle Accident in Ford County

Coroner Duane Northrup is releasing the name of a Loda, Illinois
woman who has died after being involved in a motor vehicle crash
in rural Ford County near Paxton, Illinois on July 11, 2018.
 
Lori Whitfield, 54, was pronounced dead at Carle Foundation
Hospital in Urbana at 12:57 PM on July 11, 2018. Ms. Whitfield
was in a vehicle traveling southbound on County Road 1600 East
near Paxton just before noon. Ms. Whitfield’s vehicle collided
with a Dodge Ram pickup truck when it entered the intersection of
County Road 100 N.
 
An autopsy is scheduled for July 12, 2018 and an inquest may be
held at a later date. This death is being investigated by the
Champaign County Coroner’s Office and the Ford County
Sheriff’s Office.

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Warrensburg-Latham Community Unit School District Discusses Strategic Planning at Board Meeting

 
 Many school districts around central Illinois continue with board meetings and plans during the summer months to help prepare themselves for the upcoming school year and success down the road.  The Warrensburg-Latham Community Unit School District is doing the same as they discussed strategic planning for the district.
 

 

 
Dr. Kristen Kendrick-Weikle is the superintendent of the Warrensburg-Latham district, as she explains there are many areas the board and administrators look to cover in the long and short-term.

 

 
Plans also include looking at financial records and maintaining a balanced financial outlook, building and facility improvements in both the upcoming months and several years down the road along with safety and community engagement.
 

 

 
With all of these items on the strategic plan for the district, the next step is sitting down to sort out what areas need to be accomplished before others.
 

 

 
For more information on the Warrensburg-Latham Community Unit School District visit www.wl.k12.il.us.

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Sugar Creek Arts Festival Celebrates 35 Years

The McLean County Arts Center has long been around in Central Illinois, serving the community with engaging entertainment.  Doug Johnson is the Executive Director at the Arts Center as he explains the history and purpose of center.

 

 
Arts festivals have been around for close to four decades, just about the amount of time the Sugar Creek Arts Festival has been in McLean County.
 

 

 
The two-day event offers everything from art displays, to live entertainment and competitions.  The free event is set to begin this Saturday and will run through Sunday in Uptown Normal.  For more information visit sugarcreekartsfestival.com.  

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Governor says he supports President Trump's Supreme Court nominee

GOVERNOR BRUCE RAUNER SAYS HE SUPPORTS PRESIDENT TRUMP’S NOMINATION TO THE U-S SUPREME COURT. 
 
THE GOVERNOR IS PRAISING THE CHOICE OF JUDGE BRETT KAVANAUGH, SAYING HE’S A GOOD PICK.
 

 

 
AND IN LIGHT OF THE NOMINATION OF A CONSERVATIVE TO THE BENCH…RAUNER IS REMINDING HE SIGNED A BILL LAST YEAR PROTECTING ABORTION RIGHTS IN ILLINOIS, REGARDLESS OF WHAT HAPPENS AT THE FEDERAL LEVEL.

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Durbin Critical of Trump, Senate Foreign Relations Committee

Senator Dick Durbin had harsh words for the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Ahead of President Trump’s upcoming meetings with NATO allies and Russian President Putin. ...
 

 

 
Durbin is concerned about President Trump's mindset and rhetoric when it comes to Nato..
 

 

 
In June, Durbin introduced a resolution that would reaffirm America’s commitment to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

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WHOW Signs On New Signal in Lincoln at 106.5 FM

The Miller Media Group's Kaskaskia Broadcasting, Incorporated, Wednesday afternoon signed on its new FM signal at 106-point-5 in Lincoln, to bring WHOW's news, agriculture, and talk programming to Logan County 24 hours a day.

The signal is being transmitted from a 140-foot tower on Keokuk Street in the center of Lincoln, and covers that city as well as Logan County.

WHOW continues to be heard on the radio full-time at 92-point-3 FM in DeWitt County, and THE BIG 1520 daytime across Central Illinois.  WHOW is also streamed 24/7 at dewittdailynews.com, on the WHOW app, and on Amazon Alexa.

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Fundraiser Event this Weekend for DeWitt County Friendship Center

The DeWitt County Friendship Center is a place for seniors in the community to gather and socialize in a fun space.  In order to help make the Friendship Center operate several different fundraisers are done throughout the year.  April Harvey explains that this weekend the Friendship Center will host their annual cookout.
 

 

 
For more information on the DeWitt County Friendship Center call (217) 935-9411.

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Ag teacher shortage continues in Illinois

There's still a shortage in ag teachers around the state, but gains are being made. 
 

 

 
That's former ag teacher Megan Coy of Champaign. She now serves as a program adviser for Facilitating Coordination in Agricultural Education or FCAE.

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Rain chances better next week in Illinois

There won’t be many rain chances in Illinois for the remainder of the week, but what about the 6-to-10 day and 8-to-14 day outlook? Meteorologist Dan Hicks with Freese-Notis Weather says things look better. 
 

 

 
72-percent of the Illinois soybean crop is rated as good to excellent in the latest crop report with 81-percent of the corn crop in good to excellent condition.

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Weekly Crop Report

WHEAT HARVESTING IS NEARLY COMPLETE AS WE HEAR IN THE WEEKLY CROP REPORT. 
 
92 PERCENT OF WINTER WHEAT HAS BEEN HARVESTED… ABOUT ON TRACK WITH LAST YEAR AND AHEAD OF THE FIVE-YEAR AVERAGE. CROP STATISTICIAN MARK SCHLEUSENER SAYS THE CORN CROP IS MOVING RIGHT ALONG.
 

 

 
64 PERCENT OF SOYBEANS ARE BLOOMING AND 21 PERCENT ARE SETTING PODS. 72 PERCENT OF THE CROP IS RATED IN GOOD TO EXCELLENT CONDITION…DOWN A BIT FROM THE PREVIOUS WEEK. AVERAGE STATEWIDE TOPSOIL MOISTURE STANDS AT ONE PERCENT VERY SHORT, 11 PERCENT SHORT, 80 PERCENT ADEQUATE AND EIGHT PERCENT SURPLUS.

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Treasurer's I-Cash program returned recording breaking $180 million this past fiscal year

IT WAS A RECORD BREAKING YEAR FOR TREASURER MIKE FRERICHS’ I-CASH PROGRAM. 
 
TREASURER FRERICHS SAYS HIS OFFICE RETURNED 180 MILLION DOLLARS TO INDIVIDUALS, EMPLOYERS AND NON-PROFITS IN THE PAST FISCAL YEAR. MORE THAN 116 THOUSAND CLAIMS WERE PAID OUT WITH AN AVERAGE VALUE OF MORE THAN 15-HUNDRED DOLLARS.
 

 

 
FRERICHS SAYS IT’S EASY TO SEARCH THE I-CASH DATABASE FOR ANY MONEY YOU ARE DUE AT: ILLINOIS TREASURER DOT COM.

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Attorney General Lisa Madigan launches investigation into "no-poach" agreements at fast food restaurants

ATTORNEY GENERAL LISA MADIGAN AND 10 OF HER COUNTERPARTS IN OTHER STATES ARE INVESTIGATING “NO-POACH” AGREEMENTS AT FAST FOOD CHAINS. 
 
THE GROUP IS ASKING EIGHT NATIONAL FAST FOOD COMPANIES INCLUDING BURGER KING, ARBY’S AND LITTLE CAESARS TO PROVIDE INFORMATION ABOUT THESE AGREEMENTS…WHICH PROHIBIT EMPLOYEES FROM WORKING AT ANOTHER STORE IN THE SAME CHAIN. ATTORNEY GENERAL MADIGAN SAYS IT’S A POLICY THAT’S BAD FOR WORKERS. 

 

 
MADIGAN IS ALSO ASKING ANYONE IMPACTED BY THESE NO-POACH CLAUSES TO CONTACT HER OFFICE.

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Social Security Payment Can Grow After Retirement

Social Security payments can grow after retirement due to three common ways.
 
Megan Forristall, Public Affairs Specialist for Social Security, indicates that one way benefits can increase is due to cost of living adjustments (COLA). COLAS for Social Security are tied to inflation by law and adjustments happen automatically.
 

 

 
Another way to see an increase is if you continue to work after retiring. Forristall reports that if earnings after retirement are higher than the indexed higher years used in the computation, a raise will occur automatically.
 

 

 
Forristall says that if you retire early and work in excess of the annual limit you may see an increase once you hit the full retirement age. If your benefits were reduced due to excess earnings, those will be removed automatically when you are the full retirement age.
 

 

 
For more information about Social Security visit www.socialsecurity.gov or follow on social media.

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Scovill Zoo Ice Cream Safari

The annual Ice Cream Safari will return this weekend at the Scovill Zoo in Decatur.  Zoo Director Ken Frye says hundreds of patrons are expected to attend the event.
 

 

 
Frye also says a reoccurring group will be in attendance to help serve ice cream.
 

 

 
For more information on the Ice Cream Safari and the Scovill Zoo visit scovillzoo.com.

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4-acre Museum Offering Displays and Antiques

With five different buildings, there is everything from old cars, fire trucks, trains, planes, farming equipment and everything in between.
 
The Wheels O' Time Museum just north of Peoria offers guests a sense of 20th Century Midwestern living.  Bobbie Rice is the Marketing Director at the museum as she explains the museum concept has been around for over four decades.

 

Rice explains along with all the displays and antiques there has been a new addition recently.
 

 

 
Many of the items seen within the museum are donations or stored there by original owners for museum-goers to admire.
 

 

 
For more information on the Wheels O' Time Museum visit www.wheelsotime.org.

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Construction season for Illinois livestock industry

It’s construction season on the roads….and it’s also construction season for the livestock industry. The numbers from Nic Anderson with the Illinois Livestock Development Group.
 

 

 
Anderson says the numbers are trending just a bit lower compared to last year at this time. 

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Pritzker campaign continues pursuit of graduated income

Democratic gubernatorial candidate J.B. Prizker has called for a graduated income tax in Illinois. His running mate, State Representative Juliana Stratton is carrying the torch for the Prizker on that issue...
 

 

 
Stratton notes there are no sacred cows that will be spared of the graduated tax.....
 

 

 

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President Lincoln's death leads the list of top heartbreaking moments in Illinois

PRESIDENT LINCOLN’S DEATH LEADS THE LIST OF HEARTBREAKING MOMENTS IN THE LATEST ILLINOIS TOP 200 POLL. (two stories, same lead).
 
LINCOLN WAS KILLED IN WASHINGTON D-C BUT THE LOSS HIT ILLINOIS HARD SAYS ABRAHAM LINCOLN PRESIDENTIAL LIBRARY SPOKESPERSON CHRIS WILLS. OTHER HEARTBREAKING MOMENTS INCLUDE THE CHICAGO FIRE IN 1871, THREE OF THE WORST MINING DISASTERS IN U-S HISTORY…AND THE 1993 FLOOD.
 

 

 
THE CHICAGO RIOTS, EFFINGHAM HOSPITAL FIRE AND THE TYLENOL MURDERS WERE ALSO ON THE LIST. VOTE NOW IN THE NEXT CATEGORY, TOP ILLINOIS MUSICIANS AT: ILLINOIS TOP 200 DOT COM.

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BBB Warning About Vehicle Shippers

The Better Business Bureau wants you to use caution if buying a vehicle online. At least a half-dozen people have lost between $2,800 and $9,500 by wiring money to purchase vehicles through fraudulent vehicle shipping companies. At least 18 claim to be based in Springfield, Missouri. Most seem to have at least some connection to a business called Springfield Shippers, according to BBB investigator Don O'Brien, who says when purchasing any vehicle, it's wise to take it for a test drive.
 

 

 
Red flags that you might be dealing with a scammer include: The seller shares a sad story and can’t meet face-to-face or let you inspect the vehicle. A third party handles the money and/or shipping. In an effort to appear legitimate, the seller tells you that the third party, whether eBay or an escrow service, will refund your money if you don't like the vehicle. And a big one is if the payment is by wire transfer. Scammers avoid payment by personal or cashier’s check, PayPal, credit card or any other traceable method.

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Eagles Auxillary to Hold Fundraising Event for HOOAH Deer Hunt For Heroes

The HOOAH organization and their Deer Hunt For Heroes program look to help create an outreach for disabled veterans. Vice President of the Eagles Auxillary in Clinton Jean Rogers explains how they got involved with HOOAH.
 

 

 
Rogers explains the fundraising strategy to help support Deer Hunt For Heroes.

 

Other activities include breakfast and lunch, a bounce house, dunk tank, raffles, and 50/50.  More information on the Eagles Auxillary fundraiser for HOOAH can be found on their event Facebook page.
 

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American Legion Hiring Event for Veteran Job Seekers

The American Legion is organizing a hiring event for veteran job seekers and military spouses.  Bob Gough is the Public Information Officer for the Illinois Department of Employment Security as he explains the vision of the event.
 

 

 
The hiring event is also open to non-veterans members.
 

 

 
For more information on the 2018 American Legion hiring event in Springfield visit www.legion.org.

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Applications now being accepted for the Governor's Hometown Awards program

THE STATE IS NOW ACCEPTING NOMINATIONS FOR THE GOVERNOR’S HOMETOWN AWARDS. .
 
THE HOMETOWN AWARDS RECOGNIZE COMMUNITIES THAT TAKE ON SERVICE PROJECTS AND ENHANCE THE QUALITY OF LIFE FOR RESIDENTS SAYS SERVE ILLINOIS EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR SCOTT MCFARLAND.
 

 

 
INTERESTED TOWNSHIPS, CITIES, VILLAGES AND COUNTIES CAN APPLY ONLINE AT SERVE DOT ILLINOIS DOT GOV. NOMINATIONS WILL BE ACCEPTED THROUGH AUGUST FIRST.

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Route 66 Centennial Commission Act Clears Committee

Taylorville Republican Rodney Davis was pleased that his bill, H.R. 66, the Route 66 Centennial Commission Act, was passed out of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee last week.
 
Rep. Davis says the historic road deserves to be recognized and have its history celebrated.
 

 

 
The bill created a 19 member Commission to recommend activities to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Route 66 in 2026, directs the Commission to host a conference on the U.S. Numbered Highway System, marking it's 100 year anniversary, and directs the Department of Transportation, in consultation with the governors of eight states through which 66 passes, to develop a plan on the preservation needs of Route 66.

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Tools to Help Students Plan for Financial Planning

Learning how to manage money and finances is part of growing up, but helping a younger generation better grasp financial planning can be done with the help of a new educator toolkit.
 
The Social Security Administration is offering a free tool to educators who are looking to incorporate practical knowledge about financial planning into their lesson plans.  Megan Forristall is a Public Affairs Specialist with Social Security as she explains the educator toolkit.
 

 

 
More information on the Social Security Educator Tool Kit can be found at www.socialsecurity.gov.

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Champaign County Coroner Seeking Information

Champaign County Coroner Duane Northrup is releasing the name
of an Armstrong, Illinois man who has died after being involved in
a motor vehicle crash near the town of Penfield, Illinois in rural
Champaign County on July 7, 2018.
 
Lorin A. Schluter, 59, was pronounced dead at the scene of the
two-vehicle crash at 2:06 PM on July 7, 2018. Mr. Schluter was
the driver of a Pontiac Grand Prix traveling westbound on 2500 N.
near Penfield, Illinois. Mr. Schluter’s vehicle was struck on the
driver’s side by a Dodge Ram truck when he entered the
intersection of 2500 N. and 2500 E.
 
An autopsy will be performed on Monday July 9, 2018 and an
inquest may be held at a later date. This death is being investigated
by the Champaign County Coroner’s Office and the Champaign
County Sheriff’s Office.

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Abraham Lincoln Memorial Hospital Foundation Awards $80,000 in Healthcare Career Scholarships

The Abraham Lincoln Memorial Hospital Foundation board has named four recipients of the 2018 Healthcare Career Scholarship. David Curry, Lindsey Goodwin, Katie Hunsley all of Lincoln and Hannah Freer of Mt. Pulaski were selected as recipients after a rigorous application process that included three rounds of interviews with members of the ALMH leadership team and foundation directors.  Each student will receive $20,000 to help fund their pursuit of a degree.  The award includes an agreement to work at Abraham Lincoln Memorial Hospital (ALMH) in Lincoln following graduation. 
 
Sarah Helm, executive director of the ALMH Foundation reports that the foundation has made a commitment to invest in the future workforce of ALMH through its healthcare career scholarship program.  Since 2013, the foundation board has awarded over $350,000 to students pursuing degrees in healthcare with intentions to work at ALMH after graduation.  Helm says the opportunity is possible thanks to the generosity of donors.
 
 

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Gina Bianchi named Vice President for Alumni and Development at Millikin University

Millikin University President Dr. Patrick White has appointed Gina Bianchi '93 vice president for alumni and development at Millikin. Her appointment is effective July 1, 2018. In this position, Bianchi will guide Millikin's fundraising and alumni relations efforts, and, as a member of the president's cabinet, will be a leader and advocate for the entire Millikin community.
 
Bianchi succeeds Charles Hahn, who served as vice president for alumni and development from February 2017 to June 2018. Hahn will remain with the Millikin Alumni and Development Office as a senior advisor for development.
 
Prior to her appointment as vice president, Gina Bianchi served as associate vice president for alumni and development from February 2017 to June 2018. She also served as interim vice president from August 2016 to February 2017.
 
Bianchi previously served as senior director of alumni and donor engagement at Millikin University starting in August 2013. During her tenure, she was responsible for the overall management of the University's alumni and donor engagement programs and events, which were designed to engage Millikin alumni and friends with the overall life of the University. Bianchi's leadership in strategizing and collaborating with others across campus to reach out to alumni and friends was instrumental in the success of the recent Transform MU Capital Campaign. Bianchi recently earned the credential of Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE).

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Free Food Challenge Competition for Teens

A group of area youth will be challenged to use their creativity to create a nutritious dish during the Cerro Gordo 4-H Food Challenge.
 
Youth, age 8-14, are eligible to participate in this fun and energetic program. During the five-day program, teams of two to four will strengthen their food nutrition and preparation skills and compete against each other during a final contest on July 27 when they are challenged to prepare a healthy food dish from an assortment of key ingredients.
 
In addition to preparing the food item, each team will give a short presentation and answer questions about the dish they created. Their final score will reflect the team’s comprehensive ratings on their nutrition knowledge, food preparation skills, food safety skills, serving size knowledge, as well as the food’s appearance, quality and presentation. Winning teams receive prizes and all participants receive 4-H Food Challenge aprons to keep.
 
The Cerro Gordo 4-H Food Challenge meets July 23-27 at 9:30-11am at the Cerro Gordo Civic Center, 304 E. North Street in Cerro Gordo. Participation in the program is free, however, registration by July 18 is required by visiting go.illinois.edu/dmp or
calling 217-762-2191. 

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Illinois Department of Insurance Becomes Nation's First Regulator to Address Opioid Crisis Through Benchmark Plan

Gov. Bruce Rauner and the Illinois Department of Insurance (DOI) announced today that the state is taking additional steps to curb the growing opioid crisis in Illinois. The DOI is asking the federal government to approve five critical changes to its Health Care Benchmark Plan, ensuring that people who struggle with substance use disorder have access to the most affective forms of treatment.
 
The Benchmark plan serves as a minimum scope of benefits that most health plans sold in Illinois must cover. The Illinois DOI hosted an electronic public notice and comment period to solicit recommendations from the public this past Spring. Based on the analysis of the comments and the expertise of the providers and researchers, DOI revised the Benchmark Plan with the aim of reducing addiction and overdose by covering alternative therapies for chronic pain, improving the way opioids are prescribed, and expanding access to mental health and substance use disorder treatment and services. 
 
DOI submitted its revisions to the Federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services on Sunday, July 1st, making Illinois the first state in the nation to address the opioid crisis through its Benchmark plan. 

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American Legion State Golf

The 4th annual American Legion State Golf Tournament will be held in Danville on August 4th and 5th (2018) at Harrison Park Golf Course and Turtle Run Golf Club.
 
Opening ceremonies will begin at 8 AM Saturday, Aug 4 at Harrison Park Golf Course.  The American Legion Riders will be present and there will be presentation of colors, fly over, and National Anthem.  The Marine Corps League and Post Honor Guards will present the colors.
 
The $125.00 entry fee includes Saturday and Sunday rounds, cart fees, a commemorative golf tin, Saturday meal, and prize money (in the form of Golf Shop credit).  Entry fees are due by July 15th, late entries accepted if availability.    Registration Forms may be obtained at participating golf courses or by calling Gregg Alpers, Tournament Chairman, at 217-443-3863.

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OSF PromptCare at College Avenue is Moving

OSF PromptCare at College Avenue is moving to its new location at 1765 Bradford Lane in Normal effective Monday, July 9. The hours of the new location will remain the same, 8 a.m.-7 p.m., Monday – Friday.The new location is part of OSF HealthCare’s ongoing investment in the Bloomington/Normal community. 
 
The new primary care and PromptCare office is a $5 million, 13,125 square foot medical office building that includes 24 exam rooms, with room for 10 providers. It also features laboratory and imaging services.

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Raphaella Prange named Millikin University's Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Student Development

Millikin University President Dr. Patrick White has appointed Raphaella Prange vice president for student affairs and dean of student development at Millikin effective July 1, 2018. Prange has served as dean of student development at Millikin since 2011.
 
Prange has over 20 years of experience in higher education. She has served Millikin University since 1999 beginning as the assistant director of student programs. Since her employment at Millikin, she has served in a number of capacities including positions in Student Programs, Greek Life, Residence Life and Student Development. She has also taught in the Millikin Program for Student Learning.
 
During her time at Millikin, Prange has led many initiatives including the development of the University's Retention Strategies, Student Conduct System, Trauma Informed Advising and Title IX compliance initiatives.

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Bikers Brave the Heat for Tour DeWitt

With temperatures well into the 90s that didn't stop bike riders from hitting the road to help raise money for children in need.
 
Tour DeWitt is a fundraiser bike ride throughout DeWitt County and helps to raise money for the Child Protection Network according to Steve Lobb.
 

 

 
Since the reestablishment of the tour, this year was the best number statistically in attracting riders.
 

 

 
Lobb explains that riders participation, sponsors, and volunteers all help to make the event run smoothly.
 

 

 
The event is, in the long run, a great benefit for charity while also allowing people from all over to observe the scenery in DeWitt County.
 

 

 
Tour DeWitt 2019 is scheduled for June 29th.  More information can be found at tourdewitt.weebly.com. 
 
 
 
 
 

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10-Year Facility Plan for Heyworth Community School District to be Announced this Month

Staying up to date and planning ahead is the initiative being taken by the Heyworth Community School District.
 
Superintendent Lisa Taylor joined the WHOW Morning Show and explained a new 10-year facility plan that has been in the works over the last six months.

 

 
The final plans for the facility upgrades are scheduled to be announced to the public this month and work is planned to get underway this fall. 

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Rock Springs Nature Center Outdoor Concert Series Continues this Weekend

Summer brings local concerts and local concerts series all over Central Illinois.  This weekend the Macon County Conservation District will continue with their outdoor concert at Rock Springs Nature Center according to manager Richie Wolf.
 

 

 
The series will continue to roll several weeks later during the month.
 

 

 
For more information on the Rock Springs Nature Center outdoor concert series visit maconcountyconservation.org.

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U of I entomology expert urges the public to watch out for ticks

A UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS ENTOMOLOGY EXPERT URGES THE PUBLIC TO WATCH OUT FOR TICKS THIS SUMMER. 
 
TICK-BORNE ILLNESSES ARE ON THE RISE…SO IT’S A GOOD IDEA TO TAKE PRECAUTIONS WHEN YOU’RE IN THE WOODS OR A GRASSY AREA. U OF I ENTOMOLOGY PROFESSOR BRIAN ALLEN SAYS SPRAYING YOUR CLOTHING WITH A REPELLANT CONTAINING PERMETHRIN CAN HELP KEEP THE BUGS FROM HITCHING A RIDE. HE RECOMMENDS DOING A “TICK CHECK” BEFORE ENTERING YOUR HOME AND NOTES THEY DON’T TYPICALLY ATTACH RIGHT AWAY.
 

 

 
 
ALLEN SAYS THE BEST WAY TO REMOVE A TICK THAT HAS LATCHED ON IS TO GRASP IT WITH TWEEZERS CLOSE TO YOUR SKIN AND SLOWLY PULL STRAIGHT UPWARDS.

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Rauner talks about ways to fund higher teacher salaries

Governor Bruce Rauner is weighing the impact of legislation that would require higher minimum teacher salaries. When it comes to the impact of legislation that would eventually require a starting salary of 40-thousand dollars, Rauner says size matters....
 

 

 
Rauner believes the state can help school districts fund the higher salaries without spending a dime...
 

 

 
The legislation was sent to the Governor last week.

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Bustos likes Senate version of Farm Bill

Western Illinois Congresswoman Cheri Bustos supporting the Farm Bill version in the U.S. Senate, but she says there are some items in the House version worth keeping.. 

 

Bustos serves on the U.S. House Ag Committee. Her district includes 14, mostly rural counties.

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USDA Tips for Food Safety

Food poisoning is a serious public health threat, as the Center for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that foodborne illness results in roughly 128,000 hospitalizations and 3,000 deaths in the United States annually.
 
To help eliminate the risk for these foodborne illnesses there are four key steps to food safety according to Technical Information Specialist for the USDA Janell Goodwin.  These steps include clean, separate, cook and chill.

 

 
Making sure to keep utensils and food separate is key to avoid cross-contamination.
 

 

 
While many people think they know the proper doneness of certain foods lots of the time that isn't the case.
 

 

 
The directed temperature for beef, pork, and lamb is 145 degrees, ground meats 160 degrees and poultry 165 degrees.  Lastly, Goodwin says keeping foods cold is just important even with the warmer outdoor temperatures.
 

 

 
For more information and tips on preventing foodborne illness visit FoodSafety.gov. 

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DeWitt, Macon, Piatt Counties 4-H Horse Show Underway This Weekend

A tricounty 4-H horse show is taking place this weekend at the DeWitt County 4-H Fairgrounds.
 
Kim Gibbons, DeWitt County 4-H Community Worker, indicates that the 4-H horse show is combined with Macon and Piatt counties as are the rest of the 4-H animal shows. The show kicks off Saturday, July 7,  at 9am with the horse classes.
 

 

 
The horse show continues Sunday, July 8, at 1pm and features the gaming classes.
 

 

 
The DeWitt, Macon, Piatt County 4-H Horse Show runs Saturday, July 7, from 9am to aprroximately 5pm and Sunday, July 8, from 1pm to approximately 6pm. Concessions will be available. 

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July Book Arrivals at Vespasian Warner Public Library

Each month the Vespasian Warner Public Library will receive new books to keep library patrons satisfied with new material.
 
Executive Director Bobbi Perryman explained the new additions being added to the shelves for July.
 

 

 
Perryman also says new movies and television additions are set for the month.
 

 

 
For more information on the Vespasian Warner Public Library visit www.vwarner.org.
 

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Sam McCann Calls for Debates After Official Entry to Gubernatorial Race

Conservative Party candidate Sam McCann and running mate Aaron Merreighn formally joined the race for Illinois Governor after the deadline for objections to his nominating petitions passed with no objections filed. McCann submitted more than 60,000 signatures, far surpassing the requirement of 25,000. He immediately called for debates to be scheduled with Gov. Bruce Rauner, J.B. Pritzker and Kash Jackson.  

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Manar says school funding reform is working

State Senator Andy Manar pushed hard for school funding reform before it became a reality. Now, with many schools seeing additional revenue, Manar says improvements can be seen in the classroom...
 

 

 
The Bunker Hill Democrat was also a driving force behind boosting teacher minimum salaries.

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Rural connections to state bicentennial exhibit

We may have celebrated our nation's birthday, but it's the state's too. 20-18 represents Illinois' bicentennial and a new exhibit that recently opened in Springfield recognizes the state's rural history. Erika Holst serves as curator of decorative arts at the Illinois State Museum;
 

 

 
Holst acknowledges many Illinoisans didn't even know Illinois had a state museum until a budget standoff between the governor and General Assembly forced its shutdown for a period of time in recent years;
 

 

 
The bicentennial exhibit at the Illinois State Museum will be on display through next February.

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Weekly Crop Report

Here is this weeks crop report...
 

 

 

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Community Action Partnership of Central Illinois' Offering Incentive for Head Start Program

The Head Start Program is offered by the Community Action Partnership of Central Illinois' to help both parents and young children succeed. 
 
George White is the recruitment coordinator for Head Start as he explains what the program entails.
 

 

 
White also explains what qualifications are needed to partake in the program and benefits of Head Start.
 

 

 
There is now an added benefit for those families who sign up for Head Start, as a chance to win six-day passes to Knight Action Park are up for grabs until July 24.
 

 

 
For more information on CAPCIL, Head Start, or the Knights Action Park day passes giveaway visit www.capcil.info. 

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Computer Lab Updates Scheduled in Heyworth School District

The Heyworth Community School District held their end of the year board meeting discussing plans and updates for the coming months.
 
Superintendent Lisa Taylor explained computer lab updates happening at some of the schools in the district.
 

 

 
Taylor says allowing students to have the best learning space and opportunities is the goal of her and those within the district.
 

 

 
The computer lab updates in both the junior high and high school are scheduled to be ready by the start of next school year.
 

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Tech-Go Technology Camp Returns to Richland Community College

Keeping young minds fresh during the summer months can be a challenge, but sometimes the use of 3-D printers and drones can help spark some creative thinking.
 
Richland Community College will host their Tech-GO Technology Camp for Creative Thinkers aimed at middle school students.  John Oliver is the Director of Workforce Development at Richland as he says this is the fourth year since the camp's inception.
 

 

 
Making sure the camp goers have a fun experience while also learning is the intention of Tech-Go camp.
 

 

 
Tech-Go Technology Camp will be offered July 16-19.  More information on the camp can be found at www.richland.edu

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Talk & Taste with ALMH Dietitian Jennifer DiPasquale

Community members are invited to join Abraham Lincoln Memorial Hospital dietitian Jennifer DiPasquale at The ALMH Market for a seasonal, local-foods discussion of tomatoes.
 
DiPasquale is a registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator.  ALMH Market bags and market tokens will be given away at the event along with free samples.  Although walk-ins are welcome, samples are limited. Individuals who are interested in the Talk and Taste are encouraged to sign up on the Facebook event page or call (217) 605-5701.
 
Talk & Taste will be this Saturday at 9:30 a.m.

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AHSCME & JANUS decision

Because of a U.S. Supreme Court decision last week, public employees who opt out of labor unions can also opt out of paying fair share fees.
American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees Council 31 Executive Director Roberta Lynch says that changes a rule that’s been in place since a high court decision in 1977. Some of those who’ve been paying the fair share fees say they object to paying for the union’s political activity. Lynch says they’re not being charged for it.
 

 

 
Since the employees who aren’t in unions get the same pay and benefits union members get, the unions have felt it’s fair to get some money for negotiating the deals. Gov. Rauner started the Mark Janus case that the court ruled on last week. He feels unions are too powerful and block changes Illinois needs to improve.

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Independence Day Celebration in Clinton

The Celebrate Clinton Association will host their annual Independence Day Celebration on Mr. Lincoln's Square in downtown Clinton July 4.  
 
Sissy Leggett is a board member with CCA as she explains how the day will get underway with an event at 6 a.m.

 

 
Free breakfast will then be served at 8:00 a.m. by the Clinton Fire and Police departments while supplies last.  
 

 

 
Other activities will take place throughout the morning and afternoon.

 

 
Fireworks will be held on July 5th around 9:15 p.m. off of Rt. 51 South and Kleemann Drive.  More information on the Independence Day Celebration in Clinton can be found at the Celebrate Clinton Association Facebook page.  
 

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Fourth of July Festivities Around Central Illinois

Monticello Freedom Fest
 
Time:Tuesday July 3rd 4:00-11:00 p.m.
 
Location: Lodge Park
 
Fireworks, food, and entertainment.  Free admission.
 
Heyworth Celebration
 
Time: 6 a.m.-dusk
 
Location: Centennial Park
 
fishing derby, games, food, live entertainment, fireworks
 
Lincoln Old-Fashioned Children's Walking Parade/Fireworks
 
Time: 10:00 a.m.-Noon; Fireworks at 9:00 p.m.
 
Location: Scully Park
 
Parade, games, live entertainment, concessions

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New Fitness Court coming to ALMH

The Abraham Lincoln Memorial Hospital is looking to give back to the city of Lincoln by purchasing a fitness court that will be the first of its kind in the state of Illinois.
 
The National Fitness Campaign has been launching outdoor fitness courts all around the country and is installing 100 by the end of 2018 according to Community Health Collarbrative director Angela Stoltzenburg.
 

 

 
The site of the new outdoor fitness court is planned to be located at the old location of ALMH.
 

 

 
The new outdoor fitness court is schedueld to be open in mid-August. 

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Fourth of July Food Safety Tips from IDPH

While the summer conditions bring warmer weather that also means there is an increase in foodborne illness or better known as food poisoning.  Illinois Department of Public Health spokesperson Melaney Arnold says there is something called the "Danger Zone," when food sits between 40 and 140 degrees, which is when bacteria grow most rapidly...

 

 
The same precautions hold true for the handling of cold foods...
 

 

 
It's also advised that food not sit out longer than two hours and less than one hour if the temperature is above 90 degrees.

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Another Illinois county to consider gun sanctuary status

 
Another Illinois county to consider gun sanctuary status this week. This time it's the Mercer County Board in western Illinois. It's the idea of Brian Anseeuw of New Windsor.

 

 
The resolution is on Thursday's agenda. 

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Follow-Up Samples from the Illinois River Show No Microcystins

Follow-up samples collected in the Illinois River last week showed no evidence of the algal toxin, microcystin, including samples collected near Hennepin and Marseilles (m-ar-say). Previous samples collected at these locations detected microcystins above the 4 parts per billion (ppb) draft health advisory established by U.S. EPA. It is likely that heavy rains received in northern Illinois contributed to the improved conditions in the river.
 
Illinois residents should continue to use caution while recreating in, on, or near Illinois rivers, lakes or streams and be advised to avoid contact with water that:
 
• looks like spilled, green or blue-green paint
• has surface scums, mats, or films
• is discolored or has green-colored streaks, or
• has greenish globs suspended in the water below the surface.
 
Do not let pets drink from water with any of the above characteristics.
 
Algal toxins sometimes produced by blue-green algae can cause sickness or other adverse health effects in people and pets, depending on the amount and type of exposure. The very young, elderly, and people with compromised immune systems are most at risk. Adverse health effects attributable to algal toxins can occur from direct skin contact, swallowing contaminated water, or inhaling water droplets in the air. Symptoms of exposure include rashes, hives, diarrhea, vomiting, coughing or wheezing. More severe symptoms may result from longer or greater amounts of exposure.
 
For additional information about harmful algal blooms visit www.dph.illinois.gov.

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Duckworth weighs in on Supreme Court nomination process

Senator Tammy Duckworth is back at work full time after giving birth to a daughter earlier this year. Just because she was away from the job, doesn't mean she doesn't have a lot to say about the process of finding a successor for retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy. She believes that President Trump should wait to pick a nominee until after the mid term elections. She told CNN's Jake Tapper she isn't ready to believe Justice John Roberts will stick with the precedent of Roe v Wade...
 

 

 
Duckworth says Roe V Wade will also impact those seeking fertility treatments....
 

 

 

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Fourth of July Celebration Includes Free Breakfast on Mr. Lincoln's Square

The Celebrate Clinton Association will host their annual Fourth of July celebration this Wednesday on Mr. Lincoln's Square.  A full slate of activities is on the agenda, but to kick off the day there will be a free breakfast to get the holiday juices flowing.
 
Clinton Police Chief Ben Lowers says two local first responder units will be in charge of the morning cooking.
 
            :31
 
More information on the Fourth of July events can be found on the Celebrate Clinton Facebook page.

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American Legion Searching for Son of the Legion

The American Legion has been around since 1919 and the Clinton American Legion Post #103 has also been around since the inception of the organization.
 
Tom Reddington is a past commander and helps to run the legion in Clinton, as he explains the Sons of the Legion program and what the role entitles
 
:34
 
There are also certain stipulations to join Sons of the Legion.
 
:29
 
The hope is by attracting sons to the Clinton post it will allow for even more service within the community.
 
:33
 
More information on the Clinton American Legion Post #103 can be found at crangbennett.wixsite.com. 

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Concern for Pets Around Fireworks

Although Independence Day can be a fun and festive time for humans, your pets may not feel the same way. While some may do fine, others may get spooked by the sound of explosions and the random flash of lights. One expert advises you to make plans ahead of time to avoid the potential for incidents in the coming days. Ric Jun is the Executive Director of the Alton Area Animal Aid Association. He says some pets will run and hide, or maybe disappear altogether.
 
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The board president has a dog that had been abused before it came to the shelter, and says even after nearly a decade in her home, the sounds of fireworks still cause the dog to “freak out.”

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Ameren update for Metro-East/Southern Illinois

Brian Bretsch – Ameren Illinois South
 
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Community Job Fair coming to Decatur

In today's society, it can be hard to know where to search when it comes to job hunting.  There are hundreds of job sites online which can make it tough landing a new position.  Perspective employees might find more success with face-to-face interactions, which is what State Representative Sue Scherer and Workforce Investment Solutions is providing with a Community Job Fair in mid-July.
 
Larry Peterson is a Special Project Consultant with Workforce as he explains what their goal is when it comes to the job search.
 
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Peterson says one thing that stands out at job fairs is whether or not perspective job seekers are prepared going into the search process.
 
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Career Planner Shelby Valladares explains how Workforce is helping prepare career fair attendees with pre-job fair assistance.
 
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There are also scheduled pre-fair workshops that focus on interviewing tips, how to dress, and strategies for making the best use of your time at the fair.
 
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The Community Job Fair is slated for July 18 from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. at the Knight of Columbus Hall in Decatur.  More information on the pre-fair assistance and workshops can be found at worknetdecatur.org.  

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