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  • US Congressman Rodney Davis says he will continue his track record of attending the Presidential inauguration tomorrow when he will be in Washington, DC for the swearing in of President-elect Donald Trump.
     
    The central Illinois Congressman says he shows up no matter who is being sworn in as a gesture of supporting those in the military to show his support for their Commander in Chief.
     
     
    In his speech to the nation tomorrow, Congressman David hopes to hear Trump discuss working together. He is optimistic that Trump is addressing issues important to the country.
     
     
    Davis hopes his colleagues on the other side of the isle will reconsider their stances to boycott the inauguration but doesn't feel optimistic they will.
     
    Hear the President-elect's address to the nation tomorrow morning just after 10 am on The Big 1520 AM/92.3 FM WHOW and online at dewittdailynews.com.

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  • If you're starting to struggle keeping your new year's resolution to get in shape, a local non-profit might have a solution for you.
     
    Many individuals set a goal of getting in shape or exercising more for their new year's resolutions, but after a couple of weeks, that can sometimes be hard to stay up with. Rennie Cluver is the Executive Director of the Clinton YMCA and believes the Y can be a great support network for any individual of any fitness level.
     
     
    Some of the titles of the fitness classes might sound intimidating, but Cluver says most classes are very friendly to the beginners, while also catering to the more fit individuals. He also believes the classes themselves are very uplifting to anyone in them.
     
     
    Cluver says Zumba has gained in popularity in recent years and that is a class available at the YMCA. He says it is based on dancing and the fun of the class makes it feel less like a workout.
     
     
    Sometimes getting in shape in front of friends or peers can be somewhat intimidating but Cluver says a lot of people have taken the leap of faith and started the classes and came out the other side grateful they did so.
     
     
    Cluver indicates the Y also offers spin classes, individual workout areas and their gym is available throughout the day to come in and exercise at your own pace.
     
    To learn more about the Clinton YMCA, contact Cluver or anyone on staff by calling 217-935-8307 or stop in for a tour and more information at 417 South Alexander Street. 

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  • A local school district is seeking out graduates to come back and tell their stories.
     
    Warrensburg-Latham Schools are hoping to reach alumni that have gone on to bigger better things since high school. Superintendent Dr. Kristen Kendrick-Weikle explains they'd really like to highlight their graduates who have gone on to serve in the military.
     
     
    Dr. Kendrick-Weikle indicates graduates don't necessarily have to have gone on to own Fortune 500 companies or be professional athletes, though the school does have some graduates that have experienced high levels of success.
     
     
    Graduates who have persued careers of all types are encouraged to get in touch with district officials. Dr. Kendrick-Weikle says they are hoping some graduates would be willing to come back and discuss with their students what they have studied or what their careers involve.
     
     
    If you're an alum of Warrensburg-Latham and you'd like to tell your story, contact Dr. Kendrick-Weikle by phone at 217-672-3514 or email her kendrickk@wl.k12.il.us. 

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  • Will Eastern Illinois University trim down the number of majors it offers? 
     
    David Glassman President of EIU says that may be the case, and it isn’t tied to the lack of state funding. It is tied to declining enrollment at the campus – which indirectly might be tied to concerns about state funding. 
     
    The school is considering doing away with the bachelor’s in Africana studies, philosophy, adult and community education and career and technical education. 
     
    A master’s in Special Education is also up for being cut. 
     
    The EIU Board of Trustees will make the final decision – possibly in April. 

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  • On Tuesday we saw a run up in commodity prices, especially in soybeans. 
     
    This time of year news out of South America often drives bean prices, and Jim Bower of Bower trading says heavy rains, and flooding, in soybean growing areas did help drive the markets higher.
     
     
    But flooding in South America is only part of the story, Bower says 2017 may bring increased volatility and perhaps increased prices as the stock market seems to have topped out, interest rates remain low, and economic growth lingers at around 2%. 
     
    Recognizing that demand remains strong and we can’t assume a repeat of excellent growing conditions in 2017, commodities have the potential for price gains this year, and that’s starting to attract a lot of investment money.
     
     
    While we could have another bumper crop that puts a lid on prices, the big investment funds are starting see more upside potential than downside risk and an inflow of funds can push prices higher.

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  • Is the grand compromise dead? The combined effort of the Illinois Senate Democrats and Republicans was cooled off Wednesday by Governor Bruce Rauner’s administration. 
     
    His office of Management and Budget estimated that the Senate spending plan and tax hike would leave the state $4.3 billion short. Rauner was quick to sidestep any direct comment on the findings, preferring to take the stance that he’s staying out of the negations.
     
     
    The Senate still has to have their compromise bills to that need to be heard in committee. They say that will take all the analysis and review it to see if changes need to be made.

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  • With a seat on the U-S Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, U-S Senator Tammy Duckworth peppered President-elect Trump's nominee to head the federal E-P-A with questions about his resolve to uphold the federal renewable fuels standard. 
     
    Duckworth says she's not convinced Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt will do so;
     
    The so-called R-F-S requires certain percentages of fuel to be blended with ethanol made mostly from corn and diesel with biodiesel made largely from soybean oil. 
     
    On the controversial E-P-A waters of the U-S rule, Pruitt gained some praise from committee members for opposing what some say regulates ditches and ponds;
     
     
    Pruitt vowed to restore what he called "...a rule of law mentality" at the federal agency if he's confirmed.

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