A recent study that compared concussions suffered by athletes to those suffered by victims of domestic abuse is being praised by local domestic abuse advocates.
The study showed domestic abuse victims suffer concussions in line with what those of athletes, mostly professional athletes suffer. Megan Neville with DeWitt Count DOVE indicates the study really sheds light into the traumatic experience that is domestic violence.
Neville says the study brings to the discussion of domestic abuse to a new level and feels it was a very revealing study, even though she sees the impacts of domestic abuse every day.
Locally, Neville says she sees cases where the abuse is so physically damaging but it is not as frequent as other areas. She hopes the study gives the public a better sense of what domestic violence might look like to someone living it.
Neville hopes the article and it's information will implore the public to talk about domestic violence and take more of a stand.
Organizers are expecting another big turnout for the Super Bowl of Agiculture.
The event in Boone, Iowa this year is expected to be a full show site which is somewhat unexpected according to Events Manager for Penton Farm Progress, Matt Jungmann. He says it won't be as big as 2014, but it will be a full show.
Jungmann indicates there will be more production introductions than the typical year. Companies from Case IH to Kinze to Challenger will be unveiling products.
The live demonstrations are a big part of the Farm Progress Show experience and while getting those demo fields prepped and ready before the show is stressful, Jungmann says everything is coming together nicely.
Jungmann says this year's show includes just short of 5-hundred acres of show space including the annexed area and then 150 acres of parking space with 360-acres of field demonstrations.
He adds Decatur's show is a little bigger after last year's expansion.
The show runs Tuesaday through Thursday this week. Be sure to tune in to The Big 1520 AM/92.3 FM WHOW and online at dewittdailynews.com for live coverage from the event from 12:20 to 2 pm each day of the show.
The start of the scheduled trails restoration at Weldon Springs State Park is going to be delayed by a few weeks.
Due to scheduling with the volunteers with the organization that has planned the restorations, the project is delayed until early September. Steve Buchtel, with Trails for Illinois says it was his plan to spend most of his summer in Clinton but this has changed that.
According to Buchtel, Weldon Springs' trails are like many across the state and weren't properly put together originally. It's their goal to go in and make those sustainable trails long term.
Trails for Illinois are in need of two things. Buchtel notes those interested in supporting the effort financially are encouraged to seek out the Weldon Springs Foundation but they also need volunteers come mid-October.
To get more information about volunteer opportunities at Weldon Springs, visit trailsforillinois.org and find the 'Make Trails Fun' tab. Buchtel indicates you can sign up there and get all the details about the upcoming volunteer days at Weldon Springs.
With the growing interest in controlling nutrient loss, and improving water quality, cover crops have been getting a lot of attention by farmers recently.
Cover crops, usually planted after harvest, left as a winter cover, then taken off before spring planting hold erodible soils in place, help lock in nutrients and actually help organic matter in the soil.
John Pike with Council on Best Management Practices says improving productivity and holding nutrients in the soil is driving the interest in cover crops
Pike, a former U of I research agronomist at the Dixon Springs Research center, says cover crops can improve the soil and improve the bottom line. What’s the easiest way to find out more about the latest research results on the use of cover crops?
Agronomist John Pike
New statistics say that the state’s graduating high school seniors are doing a little better on their ACTs.
The Illinois State Board of Education says that seniors averaged 20.8 out of 36 points. It’s a marginal increase of a tenth of a percent. ISBE Division of Student Assessment Administrator Angela Foxall says that they still want to see scores increase.
The state’s students also did as well or better than the national average on the english, math and science portions of the exam.
Regional Radio News has learned that A-H-W, a John Deere retailer with 13 stores across Illinois and Indiana, has purchased the 3 John Deere stores owned by the Cross family in Clinton, Mount Pulaski, and New Holland.
The sale was announced on Monday on the A-H-W web site. A-H-W Chief Operating Officer Chad Braden said the plan to combine the three stores into AHW LLC has been finalized, and was approved by John Deere on Friday, August 19th.
A-H-W says the anticipated closing date is September 19th. A-H-W has indicated that due to timing of the busy fall season, it will be “business as usual” at the three locations. Braden says the biggest difference customers will notice will be the new A-H-W sign. He added more changes will come in the winter of 2017.
With the addition of these three stores, A-H-W will have a total of sixteen locations serving central and eastern Illinois, along with western Indiana.
The Clinton Dairy Queen across from Clinton High School is getting a new look. The old facade has been torn off, with a new outside to be installed.
The restaurant continues to be open during its remodeling.
Construction progress continues at the new location of the Clinton Save-A-Lot at Washington and Monroe Streets. Owner Dave Jackson tells Regional Radio News the building is on track to be completed, and the new 19,000 square foot store opened this fall replacing their present building on North Center Street.
July and August have been on the wet side this year, capped off the first weekend of this years State Fair when State Climatologist Jim Angel says the same system that caused the massive flooding in Louisiana inundated the fairgrounds and brought up to ten inches of rain to parts of Southern Illinois.
And the rest of August also looks warm and wet.
Angel says September looks to be an the warm side, but it’s too early to predict September precipitation. The National Weather service is calling for above normal temperatures to last at least into November.
A NEW STATE LAW ADDRESSES SEXUAL ASSAULTS ON ILLINOIS COLLEGE AND UNIVERSITY CAMPUSES.
THE LAW REQUIRES SCHOOLS TO DEVELOP A COMPREHENSIVE POLICY FOR HOW SEXUAL VIOLENCE SHOULD BE REPORTED AND PROTOCOLS FOR HOW THE COLLEGE WILL RESPOND SAYS ATTORNEY GENERAL LISA MADIGAN.
THE LAW ALSO REQUIRES COLLEGES TO ADOPT A FAIR PROCESS FOR HANDLING SEXUAL ASSAULT ALLEGATIONS AND PROVIDE A CONFIDENTIAL ADVISOR TO VICTIMS SO THEY UNDERSTAND THEIR RIGHTS. SENATOR BILL CUNNINGHAM OF CHICAGO SPONSORED THE LEGISLATION.
As gun violence continues to plague the city of Chicago the Governor signs new legislation that will be tougher on the trafficking of weapons into Illinois.
Authorities say that a large percentage of the guns used in crimes in Chicago are brought in from Indiana where there are very few hurdles to purchasing them.
House Minority Leader Republican Jim Durkin says that it’s clear what’s being done with many of the guns brought to Illinois.
The new law will allow for prosecutors to seek up to 20 years of prison for a first time offense and 30 for a second offense. The law is squarely aimed at efforts to cut the number of illegal guns in Chicago and their impact on the cities’ murder count.
Senator Mark Kirk is making waves with his comment that President Barack Obama was "acting like the drug dealer in chief" when his administration delivered $400 million in cash to Iran contingent on the release of American prisoners.
Governor Bruce Rauner wasn't ready to sign on to that comment, but he does believe in much of the reasoning behind it.
A spokesman for Kirk opponent, Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth says Kirk was "disgracefully insulting" the president.
State Senator Chapin Rose (pictured left) and Representative Bill Mitchell (pictured right) were recognized by the DeWitt County Farm Bureau over the weekend.
At the annual Farm Bureau meeting at the DeWitt County Fairgrounds Sunday, the two local lawmakers were awarded with the Friends of Agriculture award. Sen. Rose says that is a great honor for him to receive from people in his district.
Sen. Rose hopes to continue to work closely with the agriculture community and to further support the ag community.
As a part of the meeting, Gene Whitted of Wapella was elected Vice President, replacing Dave Steward of Kenney. Steve Mayfield, Clinton, Mark Nunnery, Clinton, Glenn Reeser, Farmer City, and Brandon Rutledge, Leroy, were each elected to three-year board terms expiring in 2019.
State Representative Bill Mitchell stopped in Clinton during the lunch hour Tuesday afternoon to serve area seniors brats and hot dogs.
The Representative served lunch at the DeWitt County Friendship Center and followed with a question and answer forum. He says generally he hears about the dysfunction in Springfield but DeWitt County seniors want to know about the power plant.
Representative Mitchell says legislation is continuing to be hashed out in Springfield and is hearing Exelon would reconsider their stance if legislation is crafted to be voted on in November.
The Representative served 73 seniors Tuesday afternoon.
A DeWitt County non-profit organization is celebrating a $100-thousand donation from a local resident.
Alison Rumler-Gomez is Executive Director of Community Action and indicates the gift was a complete surprise to her and says it was designated to expand their food pantry program exclusively in DeWitt County.
For now, the agency is exploring any and all options to improve their food pantry program in DeWitt County. Rumler-Gomez indicates that is an area of the agency that they want to improve.
Rumler-Gomez says the $100-thousand gift will likely keep the food bank in DeWitt County open forever as they seek to re-invest it and use to expand their program.
Rumler-Gomez indicates they are going to be researching this very extensively and create some focus groups as well. She indicates it will likely be late spring of 2017 before everything is in place and they are ready to roll out an expansion of their programming.
Over the weekend, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner signed four bills into law promoting hunting among Illinois youth.
The promotion of hunting among Illinois youth emphasizes the importance of hunter safety courses and DNR Conservation Officer John Williamson indicates those classes are going to start picking up as we begin to approach the month of September.
According to Williamson, the courses can be taken online now, leaving minimal time in the classroom. He notes though, if you take the course in the traditional classroom setting, those take place all over central Illinois.
Williamson notes, if you are hunting out of state, most states require having a hunter safety course completed.
For more information on anything Department of Natural Resources, visit Illinois.dnr.gov.
Because of a lack of contact between Congress and the Environmental Protection Agency, Congressman Rodney Davis is supporting legislation that would eliminate funds from going to the Congressional Relations office of the EPA.
Congressman Davis indicates this stems from the EPAs inability to respond to requests for updates on the progress of implementations in the latest farm bill. He calls the agency 'rogue'.
According to Congressman Davis, the Congressional Relations offices are the ones that are the go between for local offices and Congress.
Congressman Davis says it took the EPA four hearings and two and a half years to finally respond. The cuts would total $4.2-million.
IT WAS ANOTHER WET WEEK FOR MANY ILLINOIS CROPS…WITH ABOVE AVERAGE RAINFALL ACROSS MUCH OF THE STATE.
STATE CROP STATISTICIAN MARK SCHLEUSENER SAYS THE STATUS OF THE CORN CROP IS LARGELY UNCHANGED FROM LAST WEEK.
89 PERCENT OF SOYBEANS ARE SETTING PODS…AND TWO PERCENT ARE TURNING COLOR.
AVERAGE STATEWIDE TOPSOIL MOISTURE INCREASED THIS PAST WEEK THANKS TO ALL THE RAIN…AND IS NOW RATED AT ONE PERCENT VERY SHORT…THREE PERCENT SHORT…74 PERCENT ADEQUATE…AND 22 PERCENT SURPLUS.
Changes are coming to the criminal justice system in Illinois.
Governor Bruce Rauner put pen to paper on a set of bills that will perhaps alter the future for kids who run afoul of the law and changes circumstances for older offenders too. Rauner says the justice system need to take all items into account when punishing and reforming.
One new bill will let teenagers who were arrested but not charged with a crime immediate apply for expungement of the record. In the past they needed to wait until they turned 18.
Another bill will require a more detailed review of any pre-sentencing reports to include an explanation if jail time is requested.
DeWitt County Sheriff Jered Shofner says the loss of Exelon would mean painful decisions for his department.
Sheriff Shofner indicates the power plant contributes a great deal to the their yearly budget and it add to the cuts they've made in recent years.
Despite the possibility the plant closes, Sheriff Shofner indicates they maintain a strong relationship with the folks at the power plant and they continue to work with them in the latest ways to keep the plant safe.
According to Sheriff Shofner, there is the possibility personnel could be cut in the event of the loss of the power plant. He indicates that is something he is committed to making a last priority, but so much of their budget goes towards personnel.
Last week, Sheriff Shofner blasted a piece of legislation that would make it much more difficult for law enforcement to keep the public safe from drugged drivers.
He feels there was clearly an effort put into that legislation, he calls it frustrating there was time and effort put into bad legislation but the dysfunction in Springfield can't come together to form good legislation to keep the power plant open.
The proposal for a possible commercial drivers license, or CDL program, was proposed earlier in the year and since that time, Clinton's first year Superintendent has found enough interest that leads him to be optimistic a program could be started at Clinton High School.
Superintendent Curt Nettles indicates a lot of work has gone into this proposal so far and there are a couple of entities that are on board. He points to Heartland Community College and the Bloomington Area Career Center as optimistic parties.
If Clinton was to partner with an entity like Heartland Community College, Nettles indicates those are credited programs through the State of Illinois. He says their requirements might be things a Clinton program should consider.
Nettles indicates right now, the logistics of the course would be a challenge. He says they would first need instructors and then possibly someone to train students in the trucks.
There is no program like the one proposed any where in the state, so Clinton is essentially pioneering this as it continues to unfold.
Nettles indicates this is just in the dialogue stage but says it appears the opportunity is there for a CDL program to be piloted in Clinton.
GOVERNOR BRUCE RAUNER IS SIGNING A FEW BILLS TO GIVE YOUTH IN ILLINOIS MORE OPPORTUNITIES TO HUNT.
GOVERNOR RAUNER SAYS IT’S IMPORTANT TO GET KIDS INTERESTED IN NATURE.
RAUNER SAYS THESE OPPORTUNITIES WILL HELP TEACH KIDS ABOUT NATURE AND WILDLIFE AND CREATE SPECIAL MEMORIES.
ONE NEW LAW EXPANDS THE YOUTH HUNTING AND FISHING PROGRAM TO INCLUDE TRAPPING.
ANOTHER ADDS AN ADDITIONAL WEEKEND TO THE YOUTH TURKEY HUNTING SEASON.
A THIRD BILL ADDS CATFISH TO THE LIST OF AQUATIC LIFE THAT CAN BE TAKEN BY BOWFISHING AND THE FINAL NEW LAW LETS HUNTERS TAKE GAME BIRDS LIKE BOBWHITE QUAIL AND GRAY PARTRIDGE ON PUBLIC HUNTING GROUNDS.
The Illinois State Fair ended its 10 day run on Sunday.
The state’s big party that doubles as a celebration of agriculture was besieged with bad weather this year.
Historic rains hit the fairgrounds on the first Friday of the fair and then continued rains throughout the week hampered efforts to pack the grounds with people.
Veteran fair vendors said this was the worst fair they had for selling items, some said their revenues were off 50 percent from last year.
The Department of Agriculture is waiting to announce attendance, this year they are going to weigh all the tickets to determine how many people attended the fair.
The Warner Hospital and Health Services, formerly the Dr. John Warner Hospital, are undergoing a lot of changes for the good.
That's according to administrators in the hospital. Heather Schofield with the City-owned facility led a focus of group of assessing the hospital's ability of patient care, customer service and many other things. She called it an honor to be a part of the group that consisted of many different departments.
The input of the community was at the forefront of what the employee focus group was all about. Schofield indicates there was outreach along with hearing what their patients had to say.
The general admitting area at the hospital has been remodeled. Schofield explains if you visit their east entrance, you'll notice a more private check in space along with a nicer waiting area that was once their chapel.
With the former chapel space now being a waiting are, Schofield says they have shifted their quiet space to the second floor of the facility.
Warner Hospital and Health Services has upgraded technology and is becoming more active in trying to help address local health concerns as well.
We'll learn more about that next week on Regional Radio News.
Traveling during the summer months is standard in today's world for young athletes, but competing in at a national level normally isn't.
For one Clinton Junior High School student, this summer was spent preparing and competing at a national level in a track and field event.
Kolby Weiss (right) started her 8th grade year this week but her summer was anything but standard. She explains part of her summer was spent in Texas at the nationals for pole vaulting.
Weiss has worked with Clinton High School Pole Vault coach Ken Lovett. Weiss explains originally she watched her older brother pole vault and decided she wanted to try it as well.
Weiss says watching the summer Olympics every night is driving her to find out how good she can go and how good she can be.
As a 7th grader, Weiss placed sixth at the IESA State meet.
This summer at the AAU Junior Olympics, Weiss placed second in Houston, TX.
GOVERNOR BRUCE RAUNER IS SIGNING “GABBY’S LAW”…NAMED AFTER A FIVE YEAR OLD GIRL WHO DIED OF SEPSIS.
GABBY GALBO OF MONTICELLO PASSED AWAY IN 2012 DUE TO UNTREATED SEPSIS. THIS NEW LAW, SPONSORED BY SENATOR CHAPIN ROSE (right) OF CHAMPAIGN, REQUIRES ILLINOIS HOSPITALS TO BE BETTER PREPARED TO RECOGNIZE AND TREAT PATIENTS WITH THE INFECTION.
GABBY’S PARENTS…TONY AND LIZ GALBO…HAVE LOBBIED HARD FOR THE BILL.
SYMPTOMS OF SEPSIS INCLUDE EXTREME PAIN, FEVER, SHIVERING, FEELING SLEEPY AND CONFUSED AND SKIN DISCOLORATION. IT’S THE THIRD LEADING CAUSE OF THE DEATH IN THE U-S.
THE STATE UNEMPLOYMENT RATE DROPPED LAST MONTH.
THE JOBLESS RATE FOR JULY CAME IN AT FIVE POINT EIGHT PERCENT…DOWN FROM SIX POINT TWO PERCENT IN JUNE. ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF EMPLOYMENT SECURITY SPOKESPERSON BOB GOUGH (goff) SAYS 11 THOUSAND 600 JOBS WERE ADDED LAST MONTH.
JOBS WERE LOST IN THE CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY IN JULY.
THE NATIONAL UNEMPLOYMENT RATE FOR JULY CAME IN AT FOUR POINT NINE PERCENT.
Sometimes candidates have a message that isn't as strong as their campaign commercials.
That's not the case for Senator Mark Kirk when it comes to his criticism of opponent Tammy Duckworth on the issue of allowing refugees from war torn Syria.
Kirk's campaign has been targeting Duckworth's call for accepting Syrian refugees in campaign ads since late last year.
A proposal from American Heritage Holdings to build a gun club in rural DeWitt County was suspended Thursday night by the DeWitt County Board.
After a number of testimonies before the Board, Chair of the DeWitt County Land Use Committee, Sue Whitted announced the decision would be suspended and sent back to the zoning board of appeals on a matter of access to the property.
Several residence in the area of the proposed gun club spoke out. Dawn Funderberg claims a gun club near her property would devalue it.
Resident Francis Smith says this isn't a matter of being pro or anti-gun ownership. She feels this infringes on their rights as property owners. She also notes it could interfere with their farming operation.
The issue will go back to the zoning board of appeals for further consideration.
One of central Illinois' most popular performers will be on the square in Clinton Saturday evening.
The Clinton Chamber is pleased to host Matthew Curry on Mr. Lincoln Square Saturday. Chamber Director Marian Brisard indicates Curry has been in Clinton before and returns as a rising performer in the area.
Brisard indicates Curry's performance Saturday night, the recent Brushville concert and the concerts hosted by the City of Clinton are now under the "Music on Main and Center" umbrella. She feels this will make things easier for the community to know what is happening.
Matthew Curry performs this Saturday at 7 pm.
With the new school year upon, one local district is taking steps to bring more technology into their classrooms.
Shortly after the new year, Heyworth schools will introduce technology into their classrooms. Superintendent Dr. Ty Wolf feels adding technology to the classroom will help enhance the learning experience of their students.
For Dr. Wolf, the staff of the district have done their due diligence in preparing for introducing technology into the classroom. He notes teachers have taken part in all sorts of professional development.
According to Dr. Wolf, Google has created many resources aimed at instruction in the classroom and that combined with the resources available to anyone, it makes the possibilities for teachers almost endless.
Dr. Wolf believes technology will make learning more fun for students but it can enhance strategies already used by teachers. He says they plan to introduce their Google Chrome devices a few weeks into the new school year.
Since last Friday, most areas of Illinois have seen a lot rain. The exception being a few areas in west-central Illinois that missed the heaviest rain. Eric Schmidt of Newton, Il based EJS weather says we are well above average for August rainfall.
Last weekends rains were the remnants of a tropical system, the same system responsible for the record flooding in parts of Louisiana. Schmidt says this time of year is peak hurricane season, and these systems occasionally bring heavy rains this far North. Aside from tropical storms, Schmidt expects to see a couple more rain events this month that should take the corn and soybean crop right up to harvest.
Eric Schmidt of EJS weather.
Local train enthusiasts will have the opportunity to go on a unique weekend trip next month. Robert Tabern, Executive Director of the APRHF Rail Rangers, says people will be able to ride inside an Authentic 1955 dome car called “Prairie View”.
The car will make a stop in Mendota for boarding around 4:30pm on Friday, Sept. 9th. But Tabern says you can board it in other cities too.
Tabern adds the ticket price for the Sept. weekend trip includes round trip train fare, two meals, two nights at a hotel in La Plata, Missouri, and a guided tour to take place on Saturday.
The 1955 dome car called the “Prairie View” will stop to pick up passengers in Mendota at around 4:30 Friday Sept. 9th.
If you’d like to be on that train, you can purchase your ticket online at railrangers.org.
Among a few proposed changes to the Clinton School District policy would be a select few district personnel being able to administer opioid overdose drugs.
According to Clinton Schools Superintendent Curt Nettles, the plan would be to allow only the school nurse and school resource officer to have the drug and to administer it.
Nettles indicates the district has another month to get their house in order to have the drug on hand. He says they have to "tread carefully".
Other news from the Tuesday night Clinton Board of Education meeting:
>>Nettles indicates the window of opportunity for a potential CDL program at Clinton High School continues to get wider and wider. We'll have more on that next week on Regional Radio News.
>>The Board of Education recognized eight new school teachers to the different building this year.
>>An increase in substitute teacher pay was approved to bring the district in line with neighboring communities.
Earlier this week on Regional Radio News, DeWitt County Sheriff Jered Shofner indicated law enforcement locally are starting to see the public mixing alcohol consumption with the use of prescription drugs.
In an effort to curb the rising issue of heroin and prescription drug abuse, Congressman Rodney Davis is working on a proposal in the nation's capitol to allow local law enforcement more opportunities to deal with this head on.
According to Congressman Davis, heroin has ravaged local communities in central Illinois. He says the local health officials need proper training and resources to help victims.
Illinois had the 8th most deaths in the country in 2014 from overdose deaths and Congressman Davis points our rural communities have seen a significant increase in opioid deaths and possession arrests.
Sometimes it seems if it weren't for bad luck, the 2016 Illinois State Fair would have no luck at all.
A power outage hit the south end of the Illinois State Fairgrounds, where cleanup continues in areas hard hit by record rain Friday and more downpours Monday.
The outage first appeared at 9:30 Tuesday morning. Troubleshooters continue to check transformers in hopes of finding the cause of the outage.
Some vendors, already dealing with a smaller than usual preview night crowd, record rain Friday and more rain Monday, are fighting to save their products.
Public health officials assisted in the and refrigerators were provided by the Department of Agriculture.
After years of waiting for lawmakers to approve an Illinois State Fair Foundation, private citizens have stepped up and created one.
Governor Bruce Rauner announced on Tuesday that a group called the Illinois Fairgrounds Foundation has come together to start raising money to provide for needed infrastructure improvements on the fair grounds. Rauner notes that this is a private group and they will make
their own decisions on how to raise fund and spend them.
Rauner and Ag Director Raymond Poe both say they support naming rights for buildings on the grounds.
Tuesday was another example of failing infrastructure on the State Fairgrounds. A number of buildings were without power for most of the day.
Traffic fatalities are on the rise in Illinois. Safety and insurance industry experts believe say Illinois traffic fatalities will pass the one thousand mark this year for the first time since 2008.
The combination of higher speeds, more miles driven and an influx of young drivers are seen as aggravating factors in boosting the roadway mortality rate.
At last report, highway fatalities stood at 629 for the year. That's an increase of 50 from last year's total.
The National Safety Council blames the move to the 70 mile per hour speed limit on rural interstates for the increase.
There's a new defection from Illinois' Affordable Care Act health insurance exchange.
Aetna has announced it's leaving next year, increasing concerns about reduced competition. Six companies will remain that sell plans for next year to individuals and families on the Illinois "Obamacare" marketplace.
UnitedHealthcare previously announced it was leaving the exchange. Land of Lincoln Health is shutting down entirely.
Aetna reports higher than expected costs, especially costly specialty drugs, spurred their decision to leave.
Providing support for students who are struggling or would like to have additional support for various subjects is the goal of a new initiative at Clinton High School.
Principal Jerry Wayne will be implementing a new program or period this upcoming school year aimed to give students access to additional support with specific instructors. He says this was something he sought to do when he took the job a little shy of two years ago.
For the students of Clinton High School, Wayne says it's just another opportunity through a busy time for them to get extra opportunities to meet with an instructor in an area of need.
According to Wayne, the advisory period will cut minimally into each class period. He says it's roughly two minutes each period that was taken out to make for for the advisory time.
THERE’S BEEN SOME LOCALIZED FLOODING BUT NO MAJOR CROP DAMAGE AS WE HEAR IN THE WEEKLY CROP REPORT.
STATE CROP STATISTICIAN MARK SCHLEUSENER DETAILS THE CORN CROP PROGRESS.
SCHLEUSENER SAYS SOYBEANS SEEMS TO BE HOLDING UP WELL.
RAINFALL WAS NEARLY AN INCH ABOVE NORMAL THIS PAST WEEK…BOOSTING TOPSOIL MOISTURE LEVELS TO ONE PERCENT VERY SHORT…EIGHT PERCENT SHORT…74 PERCENT ADEQUATE AND 17 PERCENT SURPLUS.
Groups and lawmakers supporting automatic voter registration sound off after Governor Bruce Rauner vetoed the legislation.
Rauner says he's in support of simplifying the registration process but he says the bill needs work and could lead to voter fraud and violate federal law with its current language. Rep. Carol Ammons believes there are other possible motivators for the veto.
The legislation would automatically register Illinoisans to vote when they get a drivers license.
Rauner has also expressed concerns about cost. Representative Ammons hopes an override push is considered during the fall veto session.
On Friday, Task Force Six arrested Pamela L. Mazander, 66, of Maroa, Illinois was arrested on a warrant for the offense of Methamphetamine Conspiracy.
The arrest of Mazander is the latest in a series of arrests from earlier this month where two other suspects were taken into custody in a meth ring that stemmed from DeWitt to Macon County.
On August 2, William E. Mazander, 35, of Maroa, Illinois, and Lori A. Agee, 37, of Clinton, Illinois, were arrested for the offense of Methamphetamine Conspiracy.
Authorities are still seeking the whereabouts for Rebecca L. Justice, 35, of Decatur, Illinois. There is a warrant for her arrest. If anyone knows the whereabouts of this suspect, they are asked to contact their local Police Department.
A Class X felony that carries a possible sentence of not less than 6 years and not more than 30 years in the Illinois Department of Corrections. She posted bond $30,000 / 10% and was released. Maroa Police Department assisted Task Force 6.
No other information will be released at this time.
TF6 is a multi-agency enforcement unit specializing in narcotics enforcement. TF6 is composed of officers from the Clinton Police Department, DeWitt County Sheriff’s Office, McLean County Sheriff’s Office, Illinois State University Police Department, and the Illinois State Police.
The public is reminded that charges are merely accusations and criminal defendants are presumed innocent unless proven guilty. Persons having information regarding illegal drugs are encouraged to contact the TF6 tip line at www.taskforce6.com.
A very nice piece of equipment for the Clinton Fire Department is in need of repairs that are going to be expensive.
Brandon Robinson (right) with the Clinton Fire Department presented the Clinton City Council Monday night with the issue surrounding their custom-made pumper, that needs a new radiator. Robinson indicates it's equipment they use mostly in rural settings.
Cut 1: firepump1 :55 CUE: for that
According Robinson, it will have to sent off for repairs and it could be extensive, and it will be expensive.
Commissioner Dan Ballenger calls the repairs critical and says something has to happen.
>>Clinton Rotary Begins Repayment To City for Rotary Park Contributions
Clinton Rotary member Greg Taylor was on hand to provide the City of Clinton with $8000 as repayment for the contribution made for the recently rejuvenated Rotary Park.
Taylor indicates the payment is this year's reimbursement and says they continue to seek out funding for the final phase of the three phase plan, which seeks to add a walk/bike path around the park.
The first two phases were the renovation/addition of the pickle-ball courts and the remodeling of the playground equipment.
When students return to Clinton Elementary School this week, they'll have a new administrator to get to know.
Sasha Young comes to Clinton from Cowden-Herrick where she will take on her first administrative role as Assistant Principal. Young indicates she taught in junior high and first and fifth grade.
Young is excited about the new role she will have. She indicates watching students, especially young students, being to grasp various concepts was very rewarding.
Becoming an administrator was not a goal for Young when she first got into education but thanks to some guidance from various places, she began to feel like she could handle an administrative role.
Young indicates her perceptions changed about being an administrator. She felt being in an administrative role might remove her completely from the classroom and interacting with students, but she feels like the opportunities for those things are still there.
A bad law and written badly is how one local authority calls the recent decriminalization of marijuana.
According to DeWitt County Sheriff Jered Shofner, the law is going to make cracking down on drugged drivers more of a challenge. He calls the new legislation disappointing.
According to the Sheriff, this is going to complicate a lot of simple things in the judicial system. He hopes lawmakers go back and rework this legislation.
Sheriff Shofner indicates law enforcement is seeing an increase in traffic related impairments. He says they are seeing people combine drugs with alcohol.
Additionally, Sheriff Shofner indicates it can often be difficult to identify someone who is driving drugged. He says that will now create more training requirements for their officers, which means fewer drivers on patrol at times.
In some corners, many believe all is well with state government after the stopgap budget agreement.
State Treasurer Mike Frerichs says the math doesn't add up.
Both sides have to get together to fix Illinois fiscal fuzzy math.
Frerichs says the state has also missed out on millions of dollars from lost investment opportunities that have vanished because of the lack of a full budget.
A massive rain storm hit the Illinois State Fair and fairgoers who parked in one particular part of the grounds have been flooded out.
More than 5 inches of rain fell in a few hours and Doug Turner from Mahomet says he has water up past the steering wheel of multiple vehicles and 4 campers full of water.
Dozens of campers and trucks were submerged. The Illinois State Police report no one was seriously injured in the flash flood.
GOVERNOR BRUCE RAUNER IS SIGNING A NEW LAW THAT KEEPS POLICE AND THEIR K-9 PARTNERS TOGETHER.
SENATOR TOM CULLERTON OF VILLA PARK SPONSORED THE BILL. IT GIVES COPS GET FIRST DIBS ON ADOPTING THEIR FURRY PARTNERS WHEN THE DOG IS RETIRED FROM POLICE SERVICE.
PREVIOUSLY, K-9 COPS WERE CATEGORIZED AS EQUIPMENT UNDER STATE STATUE. THIS NEW LAW WILL ENSURE POLICE OFFICERS CAN ADOPT THEIR FURRY PARTNERS WHEN THE DOG IS RETIRED FROM SERVICE SAYS ILLINOIS STATE POLICE DIRECTOR LEO SCHMITZ.
THE GOVERNOR ALSO SIGNED BILLS DESIGNATING THE SECOND WEEK OF APRIL AS NATIONAL PUBLIC SAFETY TELECOMMUNICATORS’ WEEK AND FURTHER PROTECTING E-M-T’S AND AMBULANCE DRIVERS.
The Illinois State Fair has wrapped up the first weekend of events. And the fair turned out to be a soggy rain soaked mess on Friday night.
More than 6 inches of rain fell on the grounds in about 3 hours causing rain water rush into a portion of Happy Hollow and flood campers and trucks parked there.
But quick responses from the Department of Ag and first responders were a big reason that no one was hurt. Governor Bruce Rauner says he’s spoken to many of the families that lost their belongings will help with any problems with insurance claims.
The grounds dried out some over the weekend but another big rainfall event is predicted today in Springfield. That could further hamper efforts to dry out wet spots around the grounds.
GOVERNOR BRUCE RAUNER SIGNED A PACKAGE OF NEW LAWS BENEFITTING VETERANS AND THEIR FAMILIES AT THE ILLINOIS STATE FAIR SUNDAY.
AT VETERANS DAY AT THE FAIR, GOVERNOR RAUNER PUT PEN TO PAPER IN HOPES OF IMPROVING THE FUTURE OF VETERANS AND HONORING THOSE WHO HAVE BEEN LOST.
ONE OF THE FIVE NEW LAWS ALLOWS VETS TO START THEIR COLLEGE EDUCATION RIGHT AFTER THEIR DISCHARGED, REGARDLESS OF HOW THE CALENDAR YEAR LINES UP SAYS GOVERNOR RAUNER.
ANOTHER LAW SAYS STUDENTS IN GRADES SIXTH THROUGH 12 MAY BE EXCUSED FROM CLASS TO PLAY TAPS AT A MILITARY FUNERAL.
ANOTHER BILL DESIGNATES THE DAY AFTER GOLD STAR MOTHER’S DAY AS GOLD STAR FAMILIES DAY IN ILLINOIS TO HONOR AND COMMEMORATE THE FAMILIES OF FALLEN SOLDIERS.
With a little less than a month to the next concert, the City of Clinton has announced their next act.
Rising star Tara Thompson will perform on Mr. Lincoln Square in downtown Clinton Saturday, September 10.
Thompson has been named a top 10 rising country artist by Rolling Stone.
Her hit songs include Someone To Take Your Place, Jail and Vows.
Modern Cowboyz will open for Thompson.
Learn more about the summer concerts by checking out the Music at Main and Center Facebook page, or find them on Twitter, the handle is @musicclintonil.
Students from across the state will be returning to classes next week as the 2016-17 school year gets underway.
As students return to the classroom, rural communities can expect an increase in youth on the sidewalks and crossing the streets to get to school each day. Clinton Police Officer Mike Bennett says it's imperative motorist be away of students walking and aware of the school zone speed limits.
Clinton Police Chief Ben Lowers indicates school zone speed limits are in effect all day, any day students are in class. Officer Bennett says it doesn't matter if children are present, he says slow down.
Officers Bennett says school bus safety is also imperative. He says motorists need to be aware of stopped buses and if they see the stop sign up and the arm out, they need to stop.
Officer Bennett says it's a good idea for students that might be attending a new school building in Clinton to become familiar with what bus they need to take after school and the pick and drop off locations for the buses near their homes.
Students in Clinton return to school Wednesday, August 17.
A local school district has a tough decision to make Monday whether to go with larger class sizes or use short term borrowing as a means to bring on more teachers.
Superintendent of Maroa-Forsyth Schools Mike Williams indicates the decision is a tough one for the Board of Education because they have a need for a few more teachers but they also would like to avoid short term borrowing.
Williams would like to see the district take out money to get more teachers in the classrooms to ease the class size burden they face.
It is the recommendation of Williams to borrow to get a couple extra teachers into the grade school or to use from their reserves. He indicates between 85 or 90 students at two different grade levels are being divided into three sections whereas the rest of the grade levels are divided into four sections.
If you're headed to the Illinois State Fair, stop by and check out the latest from Social Security.
Jack Myers with Social Security in Springfield indicates they will have their booth in the Illinois Building staffed Monday through Friday with a lot information about the many ways Social Security serves the public.
Throughout the years at the State Fair, Myers indicates the most talked about topic at the State Fair is retirement.
Reaching out to the younger generations has been a focus at the State Fair in recent years and Myers indicates it's all about the retirement talk, and starting that process early.
Social Security will be set up in the Illinois Building throughout the fair.
She’s back at the Illinois State Fair.
The Butter Cow has returned for another year at the fair.
The Showcase cooler that the cow spins around in is a tradition since 1922 but there are changes for this year. The sculptress is new, Sarah Pratt takes over for Sharon BuMann. Pratt’s first creation in Illinois is a 700 pound Jersey Cow.
You may not know that the butter used to make the cow is reused for years. But this new butter was donated. Pratt says that makes it a little more difficult to work with. In all she spent about 65 hours in the cooler creating the cow.
Congressman Rodney Davis is once again beating the drum for those who want to shift dollars devoted to the past Ebola crisis to the newest infectious disease threat, Zika.
The Taylorville Republican says the move of millions would be a no brainer.
The Illinois Department of Public Health reported that there were 46 cases in Illinois last week.
The Illinois State Fair officially opens on Friday but the event’s unofficial kick off has always been Thursday night when the grounds are full after the Twilight Parade.
New State Fair Manger Kevin Gordon says there will be a few changes this year. That includes an increase to the fair admission price of $10 for adults but kids 12 and under are now free.
Gordon says they added lots of little things to the fair for 2016, so many that he may not be able to think of them all at once.
The fair officially opens on Friday with the cutting of a ribbon at the main gate. The fair runs for 10 days ending on Sunday August 21.
It's the little bat company that could. Dinger Bats is based in the small Southeastern Illinois town of Ridgway, in Gallatin County. The town no longer has the popcorn plant that led to it being called the Popcorn Capital of the World, but Dinger is producing bats with pop and that has led stars like Kyle Schwarber of the Cubs to begin using their bats.
Now, former Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow is trying to shift his focus from football to pro baseball, and Dinger is his bat of choice. Dinger managing partner Kyle Drone explains how the former University of Florida quarterback wound up with a Dinger bat in his hands.
Drone says Dinger sales have grown since Schwarber blasted a baseball to the top of the Wrigley Field video board in last year's playoffs.
Drone has made a name for himself on the diamond, taking part in the world's longest baseball game last year. Guiness Book of World Records officials confirmed that game last 70 hours, 9 minutes and 23 seconds. Drone plans to extend that record next year in Sauget, Illinois.
Two motorists are going to recover from injuries sustained after a nasty car crash in rural DeWitt County Tuesday morning.
DeWitt County Sheriff Jered Shofner indicates at approximately 4 am Tuesday morning, two motorists traveling at high rates of speed were essentially involved in a t-bone accident at an intersection in rural DeWitt County. He says it could have been a lot worse than it was.
Sheriff Shofner indicates each time of the year, there seems to always be some sort of hazards when driving in rural areas. He says it comes down to giving yourself a few extra minutes when you're driving.
The accident occured at the Corner of Friends Ceek Road and Airport Road, in southeast DeWitt County.
Kelly Chick, 54, of Argenta was ticketed with failure to yield.
Christopher Crispin, 34, Clinton was eastbound on Airport Road when Chick ran through a yield sign striking Crispin's vehicle.
Both vehicles sustained significant damage and both drivers were transported from the scene.
Sixth graders or those new to Clinton Junior High School can take time Thursday evening to check out the building and become familiar with it's layout for the upcoming school year.
Principal Drew Goebel explains this is a great opportunity for incoming students and new students to find their lockers, become familiar with where their classrooms are at and other things at the Junior High School.
Being available at events like their sixth grade orientation Thursday evening is part of a bigger effort for Goebel to make himself available. He hopes parents will come to him with questions or concerns or suggestions.
The orientation begins at 6 pm.
Goebel says he looks forward to the upcoming school year.
Students return to school in Clinton Wednesday, August 17.
Maroa-Forsyth High School could be looking at starting the school year without a principal.
Principal Scott Adreon resigned at the end of July and now administrators in the district are scrambling to find his replacement before the start of school next Thursday. Superintendent Mike Williams says the situation isn't ideal.
According to Williams, an interim administrator might create some inconsistencies or even not naming someone to the post until mid-year.
Williams indicates he will make a recommendation to the Board of Education at a special meeting Monday.
Williams announced his resignation, effective at the end of the fiscal year, in the spring.
Governor Bruce Rauner has consistently said that he wants Illinois to become a better place to do business. Now a step being taken by an agency will allow people wanting to do business with the state to make that a little easier.
The state is creating on online certification program that eliminates having to fill out actual paper forms. After working online those vendors can then track their progress to approval says state spokesperson Meredith Krantz.
For business looking to work with the state – check out opportunities dot Illinois dot gov.
Emotions ran high in a Chicago federal courtroom as Judge James Zagel ruled former Governor Rod Blagojevich will not have his 14 year federal prison term shortened.
Blagojevich attorney Leonard Goodman said the decision of whether to appeal will be up to Blagojevich. The high court refused to consider Blagojevich's corruption conviction earlier this year.
Former first lady Patty Blagojevich offered her own critique of Zagel's decision.
Blagojevich's brother Robert Blagojevich offered his own critique, comparing the sentence to other corruption related convictions.
Blagojevich was being resentenced after 5 of his 18 corruption convictions were tossed out.
As Zagel announced his ruling, Blagojevich could be seen on screen bowing his head before he collapsed back into his seat. In the courtroom, his two daughters sobbed.
THERE IS A WHOLE NEW AREA TO EXPLORE AT THE ILLINOIS STATE FAIR THIS YEAR.
THE OLD FOOD-O-RAMA SECTION NEAR THE MIDDLE OF THE FAIR IS BEING TURNED INTO THE “BREW GARDEN”…FEATURING CRAFT BEERS SAYS ASSISTANT FAIR MANAGER SHAWN MAYERNICK.
MAYERNICK SAYS THAT INCLUDES GOOSE ISLAND’S TASTING ROOM AND STELLA ARTOIS’ AIRSTREAM TRAILER.
THERE WILL ALSO BE LIVE MUSIC AND THE HYVEE FOOD TRUCK. THE FAIR KICKS OFF THURSDAY EVENING AND RUNS THROUGH SUNDAY, AUGUST 21ST IN SPRINGFIELD.
Leaders from the Quad Cities and Clinton have come together to formulate a letter calling on lawmakers to pass legislation that would allow Exelon power plants to remain open and viable in Illinois.
According to Tim Followell, City Administrator for the City of Clinton, the letter specifically addresses the energy standards in New York, which he calls a road map for Illinois legislation.
Followell indicates there's several leaders of the various entities touched by the possible closures of the Quad Cities and Clinton Exelon Power Plants signed the letter.
Followell says there's not been anything handed down to him that would indicate there has been much progress though he notes Exelon leaders continue to meet with Governor Bruce Rauner, which he feels is encouraging.
Read the entirety of the letter here:
Today, mayors and community leaders across Illinois sent a letter to Illinois’ Governor and legislative leaders urging them to follow New York’s lead in adopting a new energy program that will preserve the economic and environmental benefits of nuclear plants.
Backed by business, labor, and environmental groups, the New York Public Service Commission recently approved a Clean Energy Standard (CES) that includes provisions to value nuclear energy for its low carbon attributes and will help preserve several struggling nuclear plants in upstate New York. Among them, the James A. Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power Plant was slated for closure but now has new life after Exelon announced this morning it is assuming ownership and operation of the facility thanks to the adoption of the landmark CES.
“New York’s Clean Energy Standard is a roadmap for effective policy in Illinois,” said Tim Followell, city administrator of Clinton, Ill. “With 4,200 high-paying jobs and $1.2 billion in economic activity on the line, we need to act now to pass legislation that will preserve our state’s nuclear plants and the economic and environmental benefits that go with them.”
Energy legislation has been introduced in Illinois that would recognize these benefits, but policymakers have failed to act and now two plants, Clinton and Quad Cities, are slated for premature closure. The mayors’ letter states that, “if these plants are allowed to close, it will decimate our tax base, cause local businesses to cut jobs, and force our towns to lose good people.”
“It is disconcerting that our elected officials have failed to pass meaningful legislation for two entire sessions now,” said Cordova Mayor Dean Moyer. “Their inaction comes at a huge cost to Illinois families and communities like mine. None of us can move forward if our elected officials don’t either.”
Without passage of energy legislation, the plants in Clinton and Quad Cities are scheduled to close in 2017 and 2018. The letter concludes with a plea to policymakers, noting that “it is not too late to take action on comprehensive energy legislation and avoid the premature closure of our state’s nuclear plants.”
Ready or not, the start of school is nearly upon us.
With that comes an increase in youth being out during peak travel times of the day and local authorities are hoping motorists will be extra cautious during this upcoming school year.
Officer Mike Bennett of Clinton PD says when kids get back to school in the next week, pedestrians and motorists need to be aware of what is going on around them.
The start of the school year can create some hectic times during the morning commute in some parts of every community. Police Chief Ben Lowers says the first few weeks of school will likely be the most busy as everyone gets back into their morning routine.
Chief Lowers hopes as kids get ready to go back to school, parents will take time to inform school administrators who is be picking their kids up after school. The Chief and Bennett says each school does a great job of keeping track to make sure students are going home with the proper guardians.
There's plenty more safety information for the upcoming school year local authorities have. We'll have more on this later this on Regional Radio News, with most districts set to return to the school in the next week to 10 days.
With the start of school just around the corner, local school officials are breathing much easier with a fully funded education budget in place.
Susan Wilson, Superintendent of Blue Ridge Schools indicates the start of the year might have been more stressful without state funding but she is breathing a sigh of relief know they will be getting state money.
According to Wilson, the general state aid formula is being fully funded but the formula is from levels of almost a decade ago. She says the formula isn't working because of inflation.
Wilson believes until the state works out what they have to spend compared to what they have committed to spend, schools might find they won't be getting everything they're being promised.
District leadership had begun to plan what it would be like should the state not come through with a budget. Wilson says they could have made it through an entire year without a budget with the reserves they have, but the planning for the second year and beyond.
She calls the budget being passed a big relief.
Congressman Rodney Davis remains in Donald Trump's corner when it comes to Trump's bid for the White House.
The Taylorville Republican says Trump needs to focus on issues and develop skin like an alligator.
Despite expressing concerns about Trump's recent performance and controversies, Davis continues to support Trump as the party's nominee.
GOOD WEATHER CONTINUES TO GIVE ILLINOIS CROPS A BOOST AS WE HEAR IN THE WEEKLY CROP REPORT.
PRODUCERS HAVE BEEN REPORTING TIMELY RAIN SHOWERS THAT ARE HELPING OUT FIELDS. STATE CROP STATISTICIAN BRAD SUMMA SAYS 91 PERCENT OF SOYBEANS ARE BLOOMING AND 68 PERCENT ARE SETTING PODS.
60 PERCENT OF CORN IS IN THE DOUGH STAGE AND SIX PERCENT IS IN THE DENT STAGE.
92 PERCENT OF OATS HAVE BEEN HARVESTED AND THE THIRD CUTTING OF ALFALFA IS NOW 16 PERCENT COMPLETE.
AVERAGE STATEWIDE TOPSOIL MOISTURE STANDS AT ONE PERCENT VERY SHORT…SIX PERCENT SHORT…85 PERCENT ADEQUATE…AND EIGHT PERCENT SURPLUS.
The Children's Advocacy Center, which serves DeWitt, McLean and Livingston Counties, recently was the recipient of a specially trained dog that will soon be able to accompany children into court.
Judy Brucker is the Executive Director of the CAC, and explains the black lab, Joch, has been with them for a little while now, though he is not yet joining kids through the judicial process. She says right now he remains in the office, out of the public eye.
Service dogs are a proven help for children who have been through sexual abuse and can help keep them calm in the court room. Brucker also notes, having a service dog for these types of cases is a growing trend across the country.
Brucker indicates Joch is still in the middle of protocol to get introduced to his work place. She says Joch will have an overnight handler and a daytime handler.
Brucker explains Joch spent the first two years of his life in a special training in St. Louis that specializes in training dogs for abuse victims and agencies like the Children's Advocacy Centers.
A residential gas leak shut down approximately a four block radius in central Clinton Friday evening.
At approximately 4:45 pm Friday afternoon, authorities were called to the corner of Quincy and White Street for a natural gas leak. Fire officials indicate road construction crew hit the gas line. It was a residential line and no evacuations were issued though residents were notified.
Clinton Fire along with Clinton Police, Kenney Fire Crews and EMS officials were on scene for approximately three hours.
Ameren had things fixed by 7:30 pm Friday night.
An approximate four block radius around Quincy and White Streets were blocked for crews to work.
No injuries were reported.
US Congressman Rodney Davis, US Congressman Darin LaHood along with State Representative Dan Brady will be hosting a special senior services seminar this week in Normal.
Congressman Davis explains the three lawmakers will at the Normal Township Activity and Recreation Area Thursday from 9:30 am to 11:30 am with local, state and federal resources will be on hand providing information to seniors about local resources.
Vendors include AARP, Bloomington and Normal Police Departments, the Comptroller, VA, Secretary of State and State Treasurers offices along with Medicare, Connect Transit adn Advocate Bromenn. Davis says this is something that has been popular in the past.
The Illinois Attorney General's office, Medicare and Social Security will make presentations as a part of the event.
It is free and open to the public. Again it is Thursday from 9:30 am to 11:30 am at the Normal Normal Township Activity and Recreation Center at 600 East Willow Street in Normal.
Questions about the event can be directed to Congressman Davis' office by calling 309-252-8834.
A Lawsuit is being filed against the state of Illinois claiming the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment is being violated by the same day voter registration law.
Illinois' Liberty Justice Center senior Attorney Jacob Huebert says the lawsuit is necessary because only counties with more than 100-thousand residents are required to accept voter registration on election day.
Huebert says the lawsuit is necessary because only counties with more than 100-thousand residents are required to accept voter registration on election day.
Huebert says the law should be struck down because it violates the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment. He would like to see same day voter registration in all of Illinois' counties to make the law fair.
Summertime blood donations are always important and the Central Illinois Community Blood Center says that one pint can save a life.
The warmer months typically result in a slowdown of donations because people are out of their routines or traveling for vacation.
Tara Matheson with the blood center says don’t forget to donate. They need all types but universal donors are always in short supply.
If you are looking for a blood drive to help out at Blood Center Impact dot org lists nationwide donation spots.
It's Kids Day at the Clinton YMCA this Saturday.
The YMCA is welcoming the community out for a free event Saturday from 10 am to 1 pm with a loaded three hours of free fun.
Clinton Police, Clinton Fire, and DeWitt County EMS will be on hand to talk with area youth and allow them the opportunity to check out their vehicles.
Free face painting, prizes from a duck pond and a balloon artist will be on hand along with an arts and crafts area with the Warner Library.
Dr. Stephanie Cluver and Dr. Ryan Connelly will be performing posture checks with area students along with ways to properly carry backpacks with the school year right around the corner.
Fun exercises and healthy eating tips will be provided by Nurse Practitioner Sara O'Brien.
Pieces of you photography will have a photo booth at the Y as well.
It's a free event Saturday from 10 am to 1 pm at the Clinton YMCA at 417 South Alexander Street.
Music, food, and various forms of entertainment will help a local zoo continue to improve their mission.
The Scovill Zoo in Decatur is hosting their annual gala later this month and Director Ken Frye indicates the theme is 'Key West'. They will have live entertainment, cold adult beverages and different entertainment like you find in Key West.
The Scovill Zoo's recent penguin exhibit was the result of past successful gala's and Frye indicates they do have their sites set on a new exhibit if they can continue to get the great support they've received in the past.
According to Fye, the gala allows guests to tour the zoo in a setting they may not otherwise get to. He's says it's a casual event with food and drinks and entertainment, but the uniqueness of it comes with various animal encounters.
The Zoorific Gala is Saturday, August 27 at 5 pm.
For tickets or more information, contact the Scovill Zoo at 217-421-7435 or the Decatur Park District at 217-422-5911.
llinois is facing many potholes in regards to transportation.
Taxpayers and other stakeholders are questioning road repairs and allocation of transportation funds. The primary solution would be more money towards the project but Illinois Farm Bureau Senior Director of Government Kevin Rund says it is not that easy.
Digging into transportation funds doesn’t help either. $6.4 billion has been diverted for other purposes throughout the state. Illinois has also been unable to match up funds for road repairs making them risk losing federal resources. To combat this issue, Rund says voters will have the opportunity to put a stop to it.
The latest covered farm vehicles legislation signed by Governor Bruce Rauner allows a commercial driver license (CDL) exempt for farm semi-truck operators. Not a significant change for Illinois farmers as they have had an exemption in place for the CDL under “farm vehicle driver” for the past 23 years. The only difference being the 150 mile limitation that is lifted within Illinois state lines under the covered farm vehicles regulations.
On Tuesday, August 2, 2016, as a result of a Task Force 6 (TF6) investigation initiated in DeWitt County and led into Macon County, William E. Mazander, 35, of Maroa, Illinois, and Lori A. Agee, 37, of Clinton, Illinois, were arrested for the offense of Methamphetamine Conspiracy, a Class X felony. William E. Maznader is incarcerated in the DeWitt County jail on $50,000 / 10 percent bond and Lori A. Agee is incarcerated in the DeWitt County jail on $30,000 / 10 percent bond. If convicted, a Class X felony carries a possible sentence of not less than 6 years and not more than 30 years in the Illinois Department of Corrections.
Arrest warrants for methamphetamine Conspiracy have been issued for two other suspects. They are Amanda M. Mazander, 35, of Maroa, Illinois and Rebecca L. Justice, 35, of Decatur, Illinois. If anyone knows the whereabouts of these suspects, they are asked to contact their local Police Department.
DeWitt County Sheriff Jered Shofner indicates TF6 is a multi-agency enforcement unit specializing in narcotics enforcement. TF6 is composed of officers from the Clinton Police Department, DeWitt County Sheriff’s Office, McLean County Sheriff’s Office, Illinois State University Police Department, and the Illinois State Police.
According to Sheriff Shofner, the manufacturing of meth is not only dangerous to the users, but it can also be hazardous to the public.
Sheriff Shofner also points out the production and use of meth has spiked in recent years after a downturn.
The public is reminded that charges are merely accusations and criminal defendants are presumed innocent unless proven guilty.
Persons having information regarding illegal drugs are encouraged to contact the TF6 tip line at www.taskforce6.com.
Local authorities are all for the latest gaming craze, Pokemon Go.
Officer Mike Bennett with Clinton PD says Pokemon Go is a great thing. It's getting kids and families out spending time outside and together.
While Officer Bennett appreciates the goals of Pokemon Go and the impacts it's having on people, he hopes those out playing will be mindful of where they are going while they are playing.
Clinton Police Chief Ben Lowers enjoys that the game is bringing people and families together and feels it allows youth a happy-medium of time on their electronics and time outside.
The Illinois Chamber of Commerce sees some progress when it comes to the Illinois economy but the level of recovery may well depend on your zip code. Chamber President and CEO Todd Maisch (Maysh) says recovery has been somewhat uneven.
Maisch says the chamber was hopeful Governor Bruce Rauner's business friendly turnaround agenda would have gained more traction by now, but they remain hopeful for continued economic improvement.
Area school leaders continue to sing the praises of the removal of PARCC testing from the high school level.
Heyworth Schools Superintendent Dr. Ty Wolf says it should be a great thing not having to administer the PARCC tests at the high school level anymore. He explains, the SAT becomes the entrance exam for college bound students.
Dr. Wolf explains it is the goal of the district in Heyworth to show a year's growth in a year's time. He feels Heyworth is excelling at that and believes the ACT or SAT tests will be a way of showing that readiness for post-high school.
Dr. Wolf feels the rolling out of new technology in their classrooms this fall will be another way for students to continue to strive for excellence in the classroom.
We'll have more on the technology introduction in the Heyworth district next week on Regional Radio News.
THE ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES IS ANNOUNCING RULES FOR THE STATE’S FIRST BOBCAT HUNTING SEASON IN 40 YEARS.
THE BOBCAT HUNTING SEASON WILL RUN FROM NOVEMBER 10TH THROUGH JANUARY 31ST. D-N-R SPOKESPERSON CHRIS YOUNG SAYS TRAPPING WILL BE ALLOWED NOVEMBER FIFTH THROUGH JANUARY 20TH IN THE NORTHERN ZONE AND NOVEMBER 10TH THROUGH JANUARY 25TH IN THE SOUTHERN ZONE.
YOUNG SAYS HUNTERS CAN ONLY TAKE ONE BOBCAT.
YOUNG RECOMMENDS CHECKING OUT ALL THE BOBCAT HUNTING RULES ONLINE AT DNR DOT ILLINOIS DOT GOV.
The boil order that was in effect in Clinton has been lifted.
The Clinton Fire Department recently made the expedition 600 miles away to return a piece of history to a Pennsylvania town.
Picture Right: Clinton Fire Chief David Dallas (left) with Johstown Fire Chief Anthony Kovacic (right)
Clinton Police Fire David Dallas along with Commissioner Dan Ballenger took a bell to Johnstown, PA, the site of a tragic flood in the late 1800's that was at the time, the largest disaster for civilian casualties.
Chief Dallas says it was a humbling experience for them as they were treated very well by leaders in Johnstown.
A catastrophic flood in 1889 devastated the community along the Conemaugh River. Johnstown, PA, about 66 miles east of Pittsburgh, was devastated to a broken dam in 1889 after torrential rains. The flood killed over 22-hundred people in the town and was considered at the time, the largest loss of civilian life. The 1900 Galveston Hurricane and September 11 terrorist attacks are the two bigger catastrophes of loss of civilian life in American history.
In the aftermath of the devastation, Chief Dallas indicates the Clinton community rallied to raise money to send to the Johnstown Fire Department and provide help. In return, a bell was given to the CFD department and they returned it this past weekend.
Area school leaders are praising the decision by the Illinois School Board to eliminate PARCC testing from the high school level.
Lincoln High School Superintendent Robert Bagby says the changes from the state are almost constant and while he's in favor of the PARCC tests going away at the high school level, he wants to see some consistency from the State.
Bagby says testing is something he is not a big proponent of testing students. He explains teachers need to be the ones responsible for assessing progress of students.
Lincoln High School is it's own district, and other schools in the community and Logan County feed into the district.
Bagby says that makes him having an opinion on PARCC remaining in the lowers levels difficult because he has been at the high school level for just short of a decade as he has a limited knowledge of the testing at the lower levels.
AFTER A WET JULY…IT LOOKS LIKE AUGUST MIGHT BRING MORE OF THE SAME FOR ILLINOIS.
STATE CLIMATOLOGIST JIM ANGEL SAYS FORECASTERS ARE CALLING FOR INCREASED CHANCES OF RAIN THIS MONTH.
ANGEL SAYS IT’S RARE FOR ILLINOIS TO HAVE BOTH WETTER AND WARMER THAN NORMAL CONDITIONS DURING THE SUMMER.
Illinois Farm Bureau will be showing up early to the state fair with activities planned for all families.
In a tent located near the junior livestock barn and show ring, Illinois Farm Bureau promotions specialist Chelsi Riordan [REAR-DEN] says the goal is to engage with the future.
Staff will hand out free t-shirts with the Illinois Farm Bureau, 4-H and FFA logos. Fair goers will also have the opportunity to take a picture and tag Illinois Farm Bureau on Instagram to win a pair of sunglasses. Riordan says these are just some of the items needed for a fun and safe time at the fair.
Find Illinois Farm Bureau on the state fairgrounds in Springfield August 10 and 11 next to the Junior Livestock Building.
There are more details on the deadly chain reaction wreck on I-55 in Logan County that claimed the lives of two children, but several questions remain.
The work zone crash near Atlanta claimed the lives of children, whose ages were 2 and 4.
Another child is in critical condition after being airlifted to Peoria.
The driver of the van carrying the children, 40-year-old David Rock of Chicago, is in fair condition.
His van was struck from behind by the semi driven by 24-year-old Taven Webster of Purcell, Missouri.
Charges are pending.
Over 800 were estimated at this weekend's Brushville concert on the downtown Clinton Square.
City leaders Monday night praised the work of Snappers for hosting a great event and Commissioner Nan Crang thanked the community and those that came out for being an attentive audience.
Clinton Police Chief Ben Lowers indicates there were no problems from their end of things and he too was impressed by the cleanup effort that took place following the event.
City officials give Commissioner Crang credit for her efforts to get the concerts on the square going this summer and the success they have experienced so far.
With the PARCC tests being done away with at the high school level and local school administrators are praising the Illinois School Board's decision.
Most administrators say they were surprised this decision was made and most are pleased with it. Dr. Vic Zimmerman, Superintendent of Monticello Schools, falls in line with some of his colleagues in central Illinois and says high school students will only take the SAT.
The lower levels will continue to be take the PARCC tests. Dr. Zimmerman says the PARCC tests come with several challenges, from technology to altering standards.
Dr. Zimmerman says the district utilizes a couple different assessments. He calls them a good measure of how their students are doing in comparison to students around the state and country.
WARM TEMPERATURES AND WELL-TIMED RAIN KEPT ILLINOIS CROPS IN GOOD CONDITION OVER THE PAST WEEK.
77 PERCENT OF THE SOYBEAN CROP IS RATED IN GOOD TO EXCELLENT CONDITION…WITH 85 PERCENT NOW BLOOMING AND 51 PERCENT SETTING PODS. STATE CROP STATISTICIAN MARK SCHLEUSENER SAYS 97 PERCENT OF CORN IS NOW SILKING.
SCHLEUSENER SAYS 85 PERCENT OF SOYBEANS ARE NOW BLOOMING.
13 PERCENT OF SORGHUM IS TURNING COLOR AND 66 PERCENT OF OATS HAVE BEEN HARVESTED.
AVERAGE STATEWIDE TOPSOIL MOISTURE INCREASED SLIGHTLY TO ONE PERCENT VERY SHORT…FIVE PERCENT SHORT…84 PERCENT ADEQUATE AND 10 PERCENT SURPLUS.
Secretary of State Jesse White has good news for the Postal Service. His office is once again sending out reminders for license plate renewals.
White is hoping to cut the $450,000 (450 thousand) dollar monthly cost of sending out reminders. His office is drafting legislation that would allow the Secretary of State's Office to sell advertising space on the mailings.
He also hopes more people opt out of the snail mail reminders.
Motorists can switch to email notification at cyberdriveillinois.com.
LAST MONTH WAS THE THIRD WETTEST JULY ON RECORD IN ILLINOIS.
STATEWIDE AVERAGE RAINFALL CAME IN AT SEVEN POINT ONE INCHES IN JULY SAYS STATE CLIMATOLOGIST JIM ANGEL.
ANGEL SAYS MOST AREAS GOT ABOUT FIVE INCHES OF RAINFALL.
AREAS WITH THE HIGHEST RAIN TOTALS INCLUDE CARBONDALE, DOWNERS GROVE, ROSICLARE AND GODFREY. THE STATEWIDE AVERAGE TEMPERATURE IN JULY WAS NEARLY 76 DEGREES…WHICH IS ABOUT NORMAL FOR THIS TIME OF YEAR.
Heading into August, the crop looks good but the prices not so much due to the weather.
AgriVisor Senior Market Analyst Dale Durchholz says the forecast predicts warmer temperatures and above normal moisture through August. However, he says farmers need to reflect on the growing season as a whole looking into harvest.
Durchholz says he is conducting a preliminary report on yields ahead of the USDA report.
Durchholz estimates that soybeans will average around 47.
It’s been cheaper to fill your tank up this year than last and that trend looks to continue.
GasBuddy.com says that the state’s average gas prices have backed off another 1.4 cents a gallon this week.
Statewide averages are about 50 cents less than this time last year and about 25 cents less than last month.
A tragic crash on I-55 in Logan County, midway between Bloomington and Springfield.
Two children are dead and two others have suffered serious injuries after a six vehicle pileup Sunday afternoon on Northbound I-55 near the Atlanta exit.
State Police investigators say the chain reaction crash was started by a semi driven by a Missouri man. The semi crashed into the back of a van driven by a Chicago man. That van then hit four other vehicles.
The children killed were in that van.
Their ages have not been released. The two other victims injured were airlifted from the scene.
The crash closed that stretch of the interstate for six hours.
Stemming from an issue last winter at the Clinton Lake Marina, the DeWitt County Board is continuing an effort to keep improving the break water for boaters. Board Chair David Newberg says they are focused on completing the south side.
The project started out as seemingly simple, however, Newberg indicates upon further investigating, the project became a little bigger than first thought.
Newberg estimates the final project total could reach around $250-thousand. He says they also considered going with all new break water equipment, but that far too expensive.
The water will be going off on Jefferson Street at 8:30 am.
The range is from Jackson Street to 605 West Jefferson.
Once the water is back on there will be a boil order.
Questions can be directed to 935-3432 during normal business hours.
Lawmakers heard a big sigh of relief last month as school administrators in unison exhaled as the state passed a full year of funding.
For Heyworth Schools Superintendent, Dr. Ty Wolf, the district had begun to prepare the community for what it would be like if the state didn't pass a budget. He says the belief was they could make it through the year without state funding thanks to their reserves.
While the state has committed to funding education, the levels of funding date back almost a decade. Dr. Wolf says that does have an impact on their district because they don't have a large sales tax base and the poverty levels for their area are relatively low.
Dr. Wolf is skeptical the state will actually follow through. He says when it comes down to it, the State has more commitments than there is money to go around.
Dr. Wolf indicates the district is planning on state aid money being in the budget, but they are planning on their mandates being at around 50-percent funded.
The Zika virus is now being spread by mosquito’s in the United States.
The Centers for Disease Control says that there 1600 cases in the US and the first mosquito to human transmission recently occurred in Florida. Zika is still a long way away from Illinois but other viruses like West Nile are in the state.
The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency wants to eliminate place where those biting bugs locate. Kim Biggs with IEPA says getting rid of used tires can make a big difference.
To address problems areas first, the IEPA will collect tires from southern Illinois because that is where the first mosquitos with Zika or West Nile are expected to be found.
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