Abuse of any type is a despicable thing no matter who it is directed towards, but a local child abuse advocate wishes more light would be shed towards the children of society who face this unfortunate reality every day.
Executive Director of the Children's Advocacy Center in DeWitt, Livingston and McLean Counties, Judy Brucker, says the coverage of the Harvey Weinstein is most certainly warranted but questions why media coverage isn't as caught up in things that happen to children, especially at a high profile level.
In analyzing the way these stories come out and the victims come forward, Brucker finds a lot of similarities between children and adults.
According to Brucker, the reason kids and adults do not come out with the things they are experiencing is a pretty simple one. She feels if they disclose the things happening to them, it will hurt people around them and even change their immediate situation.
Brucker feels people need to stop putting each other pedestals and realize anyone can abuse any other person, which can be things sometimes hard to do and hard to believe.
Last week, lawmakers and lobbyists in Springfield signed a letter with claims of sexual harassment in Springfield.
State Senator Chapin Rose last week addressed those concerns. He says the veto session will likely see further measures to prevent such things happening in the future.
When asked if Sen. Rose knew of instances of sexual harassment in Illinois politics, would not specify if he did but says it's not just confined to Illinois politics as evidenced by several revelations in the last week to ten days.
Sen. Rose says he won't speculate on if any charges will come of this or of any anonymous reports.
TEMPERATURES ARE BEGINNING TO DROP BUT HARVEST CONTINUES AS WE HEAR IN THE WEEKLY CROP REPORT.
CROP STATISTICIAN MARK SCHLEUSENER SAYS 74 PERCENT OF SORGHUM HAS BEEN HARVESTED AND 76 PERCENT OF WINTER WHEAT PLANTED.
SCHLEUSENER PROVIDES AN UPDATE ON FALL HARVESTING.
74 PERCENT OF SORGHUM HAS BEEN HARVESTED. AVERAGE STATEWIDE TOPSOIL MOISTURE IS NOW RATED AS THREE PERCENT VERY SHORT, 16 PERCENT SHORT, 75 PERCENT ADEQUATE AND SIX PERCENT SURPLUS.
The state’s opioid epidemic showing no signs of slowing down.
There were nearly 2,000 people who died from opioid-related deaths in Illinois in 2016 and those numbers could reach close to 3,000 in the coming years, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health. The agency’s Nirav Shah says they're focusing on prevention efforts.
IDPH has received a federal grant to help combat the epidemic. The $2-million in funding is from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and will be utilized in 18 south-central Illinois rural counties for prevention and education efforts.
THE ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT ON AGING IS OFFERING HELP TO SENIORS AS THEY NAVIGATE THE MEDICARE OPEN ENROLLMENT PERIOD.
YOUR FIRST STEP SHOULD BE REVIEWING YOUR CURRENT PLAN SAYS THE AGENCY’S SANDY LEITH (leeth).
YOU CAN SIT DOWN WITH A SENIOR HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM COUNSELOR AT ONE OF MORE THAN 300 LOCATIONS ACROSS THE STATE SAYS PROGRAM DIRECTOR SANDY LEITH (leeth).
YOU CAN DO THAT ONLINE AT MEDICARE DOT GOV. SENIORS THAT STILL HAVE QUESTIONS SHOULD VISIT THE WEBSITE: ILLINOIS DOT GOV SLASH AGING FOR A LIST OF SITES OFFERING FREE OPEN ENROLLMENT ASSISTANCE. LEITH SAYS EXPERT COUNSELORS WILL BE ON HAND TO HELP GUIDE SENIORS THROUGH THE PROCESS.
OPEN ENROLLMENT FOR THE STATE’S HEALTH INSURANCE MARKETPLACE BEGINS WEDNESDAY…AND THE ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF INSURANCE SAYS THEY’RE OFFERING MORE ASSISTANCE TO CUSTOMERS THIS YEAR.
THE GET COVERED ILLINOIS WEBSITE IS NOW EASIER TO NAVIGATE AND COMPARISON SHOP FOR THE HEALTH PLAN THAT BEST SUITS YOUR NEEDS. INSURANCE DIRECTOR JENNIFER HAMMER SAYS THIS IS FOR ANYONE WHO DOES NOT RECEIVE HEALTH INSURANCE THROUGH THEIR EMPLOYER.
HAMMER ADDS THERE ARE A FEW THINGS TO KEEP IN MIND BESIDES COST.
THERE’S ALSO SEVEN DAY A WEEK PHONE SUPPORT WHERE YOU CAN TALK TO A LICENSED HEALTH INSURANCE AGENT. YOU MUST SELECT A PLAN BY DECEMBER 15TH FOR COVERAGE TO BEGIN JANUARY FIST. VISIT THE WEBSITE: GET COVERED DOT ILLINOIS DOT GOV FOR MORE INFORMATION.
Trick or Treat hours for October 31:
City of Clinton - 5-8 PM.
Lincoln - 5-8 PM
Monticello - 5-7 PM
Heyworth - 5-8:30 PM (rain date Nov. 1)
Trick or treating in Clinton will take place Tuesday from 5 to 8 pm and local authorities hope everyone has a safe and fun evening.
Clinton Police Chief Ben Lowers has some tips for youth heading out Tuesday. He says safety with costumes can keep from the young ones have small accidents that can damper the good time.
While living in a small community has it's perks, the Chief says it is still best to only accept factory wrapped candy and recommends not letting kids eat the candy while they walk around the neighborhoods.
Some downtown Clinton businesses will participate in their annual Halloween activities until usually 5 pm when trick or treating opens in the community.
Former Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn is looking to make a political comeback.
Quinn has confirmed he's entering the log jam race for the Democratic nomination for Illinois Attorney General. Quinn will discuss his quest this week with Cook County Democrats.
He will face competition from six fellow Democrats, including former assistant U.S. attorney Renato Mariotti, who jumped into the race last week. Mariotti, a frequent television commentator, revealed he was entering the race during an appearance on MSNBC.
New gun laws were on the agenda last week as a part of the fall veto session and one local lawmaker believes the debate is a distraction from bigger issues in the state.
The banning of bump stocks in Illinois is the hot topic surrounding the gun debate but Senator Chapin Rose says when someone is insane, they will get what they need for the destruction they intend. He feels efforts would be better served to address mental health.
Rose feels the effort is just an effort to divert the public's attention from the bigger issues in Illinois.
One measure for bump stocks failed last week with another measure being discussed in Springfield.
Governor Bruce Rauner has most likely had his focus on Democrat J.B. Pritzker in his re-election campaign.
Now he faces a hurdle to get to November. State Rep. Jeanne Ives is circulating petitions to challenge Rauner in next year's GOP primary.
Ives told supporters in an email that she is taking the first step towards restoring common sense in Illinois. Ives has tabbed former Quad Cities State Representative Rich Morthland as her running mate.
The legislature is still working on a possible ban on bump stocks. That’s the gun trigger modification that allows a semi automatic gun to act and fire more like a fully automatic one. They were used by the Las Vegas shooter.
The original bill in the House banned more than just bump stocks, but a leaner bill just focused on that one item is being worked on. Where is the Governor on this? When simply asked if he supports a bump stock ban – Bruce Rauner says..
A slimmed down bump stocks bill could come back up during the second half of the veto session.
Halloween parties now are as much for adult s as kids and those older ghosts and ghouls sometimes mix dress up with drinking.
If those are your plans this weekend the Illinois State Police and the Department of Transportation wants you to beware that you better find a sober driver to bring you home.
That’s IDOT’s Kelsea Gurski. Special enforcement activities will be going through the early morning hours of November 1st.
POLICE STATEWIDE ARE STEPPING UP PATROLS FOR THE HALLOWEEN WEEKEND…AND URGE MOTORISTS TO “DRIVE SOBER, OR GET PULLED OVER.”
HALLOWEEN USUALLY INCLUDES LOTS OF PARTIES AND LOTS OF LITTLE KIDS RUNNING AROUND. THAT’S WHY COPS WILL BE ON THE LOOKOUT FOR DRIVERS NOT BEING SAFE SAYS ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION SPOKESPERSON KELSEA GURSKI.
STATE AND LOCAL POLICE WILL BE ON THE LOOKOUT FOR MOTORISTS SPEEDING, NOT WEARING THEIR SEATBELT…AND ESPECIALLY DRUNK DRIVERS SAYS ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION SPOKESPERSON KELSEA GURSKI.
I-DOT IS URGING PEOPLE TO MAKE PLANS FOR TRANSPORTATION OR A DESIGNATED DRIVER IF YOU’RE DRINKING.
THE BEEFED UP ENFORCEMENT WILL RUN THROUGH THE EARLY MORNING HOURS OF NOVEMBER FIRST.
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville is being sued by an organization representing a Republican student group.
Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys representing the College Republicans of SIUE say they hope to get the so-called restrictions of the speech zone that makes up .0013% of campus amended. ADF Senior Counsel Tyson Langhofer says this is about free speech for all.
An SIUE spokesman declined comment, saying the university has not yet been served with the lawsuit, and therefore has not yet had a chance to review it.
HOUSE LAWMAKERS ARE ADVANCING A BILL AIMED AT CLOSING THE GENDER PAY GAP IN ILLINOIS.
THE MEASURE PROHIBITS EMPLOYERS FROM ASKING JOB CANDIDATES FOR THEIR WAGE HISTORY. SUPPORTERS SAY THIS WILL HELP PREVENT LOW SALARIES FROM FOLLOWING WOMEN FROM JOB TO JOB. BUT OPPONENTS, LIKE REPRESENTATIVE JEANNE IVES OF WHEATON WHO SAYS IT’S A BURDEN ON BUSINESSES.
IT’S SPONSORED BY REPRESENTATIVE ANNA MOELLER OF ELGIN SAYS THIS WILL HELP WOMEN, WHO OFTEN MAKE LESS THEN MEN IN THE SAME JOB.
IN HIS VETO MESSAGE THE GOVERNOR SAID HE SUPPORTS THE CONCEPT BUT PREFERRED THE LAW BE MODELED AFTER ONE IN MASSACHUSETTS THAT GIVES COMPANIES A LITTLE MORE LEEWAY. THE HOUSE OVERRODE THAT VETO AND NOW IT’S UP TO THE SENATE TO DO THE SAME.
It’s another overseas trip for Governor Bruce Rauner.
The Republican is off to Israel next week. The trade mission will incorporate officials from the University of Illinois as they go the Middle East to tout developments around the Discovery Partners Institute.
The goal Rauner says is to try and capitalize on the expanding economy of Israel and lead innovators to Illinois.
Every day there is a new threat in the cyber world, but there are certain things you can do to better protect yourself. So says Patti Thompson with the Illinois Emergency Management Agency.
Thompson also recommends strong password protection—using letters, numbers and special characters and staying away from things like kid’s names or birth-dates. The IEMA website is located at “ready.illinois.gov” and has a section on cybersecurity.
The Guardians of the Children will be hosting their annual Halloween party Saturday at the Clinton YMCA.
From noon to 3 pm, there will be food and drinks and games for kids. Additionally there will be a costume contest.
The event is a 417 South Alexander Street in Clinton.
Thanks to the addition of the 3D mammography at Warner Hospital and Health Services in Clinton, the traffic for the service has doubled.
That's the report from CEO Paul Skowron who also attributes the spike to the fact they increased the area and availability for the service at the city owned facility.
Skowron also indicates the excitement for the service continues to build. That is why Skowron believes the success of the service will maintain in the community.
Skowron indicates appointments are available Monday through Friday and half a day on Saturdays.
Many hands make light work and that is the theme for a group of parents who care about the teachers and students of the Clinton School district.
Shalen Adams with the Clinton PTO and hopes to get more parents that care about the district involved to help them in small ways to ease the workload on everyone.
For the PTO, President Nicole Finch says it is a lot of simple things they do to make the teachers feel special and it is something the teachers and school staff really appreciate it.
PTO's and bake sales go hand in hand and Finch indicates they have some talented parents in the organization who have stepped up to provide items to sell.
There are numerous other ways to get involved in the PTO. Visit their Facebook page by searching "Clinton K-5 PTO Community" or email firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also get the volunteer form at Lincoln and Douglass Elementary Schools and at Clinton Elementary School.
A ban on bump stocks and more failed in the Illinois House.
The bill would have made the trigger modification illegal to own and sell in Illinois but the bill would have gone further. Opponents made the case that it was too much, Democrat Jerry Costello says other standard modifications that people use for sport and hobby would have been banned; turning more guns into illegal ones.
The extensive reach of the bill is being reconsidered. And now one with only the bump stock ban is being shopped around the state house.
The Illinois House turned aside efforts to ban bump stocks, a gun modification that allows a user to operate a firearm in nearly automatic fashion. Bump stocks have been in the crosshairs of gun control advocates since the Las Vegas mass shooting. Jacksonville Republican C.D. Davidsmeier described the legislation as rushed and under-researched.
Davidsmeier gives little credence to talk of a bump stock ban making Illinoisans safer.
The bump stocks vote failed 54-48.
The price at the pump should weaken heading into the holiday season.
That prediction from GROWMARK energy expert Harry Cooney. He says prices are strong now, but that will change.
Data from Triple-A Chicago shows Illinois gas prices are currently averaging $2.55 a gallon.
The highest average in the state is in Chicago at $2.85 per gallon with Bloomington-Normal at $2.51. The national average at $2.46 per gallon.
The highest average in the continental U.S. is $3.03 in California.
Lawmakers disagreed with the Governor in the Illinois House over a bill that requires state agencies to report every month how many bills they are holding on to.
Bruce Rauner vetoed the bill early this year but in unanimous fashion the House voted to make it law. The bill and its passage comes as lawmakers and others find out about an essentially an unknown $2.8 billion spent last fiscal year.
The bills were revealed in bond offering the state made to Wall Street. Democrat Rep. David McSweeney says if the bill was already the law then everyone would have known about what apparently only the Governor had been aware of.
The Comptrollers’ website puts the bill backlog currently at $16.4 billion.
After 10 years at the DeWitt County Friendship Center, Executive Director Sissy Legget has announced her retirement.
Leggett has led the center since 2007 and will hand the reigns off in late January.
With the announcement of her retirement, the Center will actively be seeking her replacement. Anyone interested in the position should stop by the Friendship Center at 410 East Main Street in Clinton.
Leggett will be on the WHOW morning show next Friday morning at 8:40 am.
When Warner Hospital and Health Services CEO Paul Skowron came to Clinton three years ago, the reputation of the emergency room was a "band-aid station".
That was a label Skowron did not ignore and instead chose to address. Wednesday morning, Skowron told Regional Radio News the perception of the hospital is changing. He notes they are receiving more positive feedback than ever.
Changing the perception of the emergency room has been an effort centered around the attention to detail. Skowron indicates it starts from the top and works its way down.
While doing little things to improve the image of the hospital, the hospital has also improved it's physical appearance with a remodel of their entry and painting and lighting improvements on the exterior.
Hot and dry summers will often lead to a disease that spreads from small bugs, through the deer population and kills dear in large quantities.
The conditions were right this summer for an outbreak of epizootic hemorrhagic disease, or EHD. According to DNR Sargent, John Williamson, EHD spreads when streams and rivers get low and a dangerous bug is able to hatch it's eggs, get into the system of a deer and ultimately kills it.
Williamson indicates the conditions have been perfect for an EHD outbreak but he's heard only of limited cases.
EHD dehydrates a deer by closing up it's throat through swelling in the tongue. In search of water, deer are often found dead near waterways likes lakes and streams.
If you find a deer dead near water, you're encouraged to contact DNR authorites.
Whether retirement is still 40 years away or 4 months away, Social Security officials are promoting to plan for retirement.
Jack Myers with Social Security says it's never too early to start that process, and the sooner you do, the better off you will be when the time comes.
Unfortunately, sometimes retirement isn't always a relaxing and freed up time for many retirees. Myers says the trends are becoming somewhat alarming.
Myers encourages a visit to socialsecurity.gov for additional retirement resources available, including their mysocialsecurity portal which will provide you with a retirement estimator.
Efforts to ban trigger modifications on firearms moved out of a House committee this week but the NRA says its too broad of a bill. Todd Vandermyde with the NRA notes that many gun owners have made trigger modifications legally and this new bill would outlaw those.
The modifications can increase the rate of fire but he says won’t turn them into machine guns. The bill is mostly targeted at banning the use and sale of bump stocks. That was the tool that the Las Vegas shooter used to modify his guns to shoot faster.
The Illinois State Rifle Association may be involved in negations about some of the bans or changes to gun laws.
Illinois House members spoke with one voice on transparency with a unanimous vote to override Gov. Bruce Rauner’s veto of a bill requiring state agencies to issue monthly reports on bills they forwarded to the Comptrollers office for payment. Comptroller Susana Mendoza was pleased with the bipartisan victory.
Current requirements call for a report once a year. The bill moves over to the Senate for an override vote.
The Department of Children and Family Services is rebooting its privatized child welfare program.
The intact family services program was examined by the Chicago Tribune after a surge of child deaths. The agency revealed at a legislative hearing that the department is taking over some cases that were handed over to contracted nonprofits.
15 children died of abuse or neglect from 2012 to 2016 while their families were enrolled in the Intact family services program. Deaths surged after DCFS privatized the program, which is designed to keep families together when possible.
Senator Dick Durbin had a lot to say about the move by Senate Republicans to repeal mandatory arbitration clauses for banks and financial institutions that prevent class action lawsuits.
After the credit rating company Equifax suffered a massive data breach, Durbin was less than impressed by the company's offer of free credit monitoring because they escaped liability under that agreement.
Equifax has since dropping the binding arbitration demand. Durbin says a broad base of organizations are taking issue with efforts to take away their ability to sue.
About 145 million Americans were impacted by the Equifax data breach.
If you think you might qualify to be a part of the annual Angel Tree program, there is still time to inquire and get registered.
Sue Calvert Directs the annual program and indicates their deadline to get registered is November 17. You can get registered by visiting the school office their child attends.
For this year, Angel Tree officials are simply asking for cash donations. Calvert explains they are simply doing one large shopping event in December at Walmart. The best way to make a donation is take it to First National Bank in Clinton.
December 5, all the families that are approved for the program will be allowed to shop at the Clinton Walmart. Calvert says they have planned for the concerns of misuse in the program and is excited about their plans for this year.
Again, you can stop in to the office of the school your child attends to get more information. You can also email Calvert at email@example.com.
A Logan County non-profit is getting out of the public transportation service.
Community Action has been offering Logan County residents public transportation but in the latest round of strategic planning, Executive Director, Alison Rumler-Gomez indicates they are no longer going to be offering that component, but will continue to offer rides to seniors.
Rumler-Gomez indicates the time consumption was becoming too much for their organization and they felt a change was necessary.
Rumler-Gomez says the agency will continue to offer the service until the end of the year to make it easier on the County.
Will the state of Illinois pony up $100 million to assist the Obama Presidential Center in Jackson Park?
Word around the capitol is that the Speaker of the House and the Senate President could have something up their sleeves during the veto session that got under way today in Springfield. State Representative Bill Mitchell (R-Forsyth) is encouraging taxpayers in the state to contact the Governor’s office and encourage the chief executive to fight against any such proposal in at state that is already bleeding red ink, especially when the Obamas promised 100 percent private funding on the project.
So far Rauner has said that it is “a wonderful honor” for Illinois to be selected as the home of the Obama Presidential Center, but
he’s not sure state could afford to kick in tax dollars to help pay for construction of the site on Chicago’s South Side.
Illinois State Politics could be the latest area to see sunlight when it comes to sexual harassment.
An open letter, signed by 130 individuals including lawmakers and lobbyists, is being distributed around the capitol. It claims sexual harassment runs rampant in the Illinois political scene and like we've seen in Hollywood, the letter writers are urging women and their allies to come forward.
No one is accused by name in the letter, but the letter discusses incidents involving male legislators and a chamber laeader. The letter claims, like Hollywood, Illinois politics has its version of the casting couch.
House Speaker Michael Madigan released a statement.
“Sexual harassment is unacceptable in any workplace. For a number of years, every member of the House has been required to certify that they develop and enforce a sexual harassment policy for their offices and staff. They will continue to do so. However, we can and should do more to ensure no individual is the target of sexual harassment in the Capitol or anywhere else.
“Because harassment thrives in silence, we are continually working to eliminate all forms of harassment from our Statehouse and our legislative offices. With this in mind, we will be advancing legislation that will require everyone—from legislators, to staff, to lobbyists—to complete yearly comprehensive sexual harassment training. We will also be requiring lobbyists develop and submit their own sexual harassment policies, just as legislators currently do.
“I have directed staff to conduct a thorough review of all existing policies related to this issue and to continue identifying further changes that can and should be made.”
Lawmakers introduced a number of bills for the fall veto session that are in response to the mass shooting in Las Vegas.
Many of the bills are focused on banning the sale or possession of bump stocks. A device that can be used to make a semi-automatic gun fire more like an automatic weapon. Democrat Marty Moylan says the bills are a responsible move - not an overreach.
Some of the bills also include an outright ban of assault rifles.
What concerns do Illinois farmers have this fall?
Jeff Adkisson with the Grain and Feed Association of Illinois asked that question in a survey last week.
As of this week, 62-percent of the corn crop has been harvested in Illinois with 77-percent of the Illinois soybean harvest in the bin.
In July, the vote to override Governor Rauner's vetoes of the budget and the state income tax hike, were delayed when someone dumped white powder inside the Capitol.
Several weeks later, Tuesday's the start of the fall veto session was delayed by fire. Secretary of State spokesman Henry Haupt (How-pt) says Capitol Police sprung into action when a blaze broke out in a Senate office.
No one was hurt.
The Farmer City Haunted Forest launched last year with a very strong first year and organizers want to build on that success in 2017.
Director of the Haunted Forest, Angela Testory, indicates their event is centered around a good time for families.
Testory feels their first year was a great success and they hope to build on that this year. She notes they took the advice of those that came last year to improve this year.
The Haunted Forest is this Friday and Saturday in Farmer City. Find them on Facebook to get more information and Testory hopes if you have younger ones that want to take the hay-rack ride without the actors and scares, you can do that during the day on Saturday.
Lincoln High School is exploring stepping into relatively uncharted waters for a school district.
Superintendent Bob Bagby explains they are exploring adding solar panels to the roof of their faciltiy. He says first they need to do some roof work but it will come with significant savings.
The High School would likely go to a 65% capacity of solar energy. Bagby indicates the big win is that there is no cost to the school district.
Bagby also points out he has a colleague that was in Farmington where they started this project. He says the review from their try at solar energy was very successful.
Bagby indicates they have explored the possibility of going 100% solar but isn't sure how that would work. He says space for the solar panels becomes an issue and placing them in places around the property would create an issue of appearance of the property.
DESPITE SOME SCATTERED SHOWERS…PRODUCERS HAD AN AVERAGE OF FIVE DAYS SUITABLE FOR HARVESTING AS WE HEAR IN THE WEEKLY CROP REPORT.
HARVEST PROGRESS CONTINUED THIS PAST WEEK ALTHOUGH BEHIND LAST YEAR’S PACE FOR CORN IN MOST AREAS SAYS CROP STATISTICIAN MARK SCHLEUSENER.
98 PERCENT OF SOYBEANS ARE DROPPING LEAVES AND 77 PERCENT HAS BEEN HARVESTED.
69 PERCENT OF SORGHUM HAS BEEN HARVESTED AND 70 PERCENT OF WINTER WHEAT PLANTED.
AVERAGE STATEWIDE TOPSOIL MOISTURE IS RATED AT EIGHT PERCENT VERY SHORT, 18 PERCENT SHORT, 68 PERCENT ADEQUATE AND SIX PERCENT SURPLUS.
The Governor is officially going to run for reelection. Republican Bruce Rauner launches his campaign this morning with an online video. The two minute commercial shows Rauner riding his Harley Davidson throughout the state of Illinois.
It’s expected to be the most expensive race for Governor ever in the United States. Last election Rauner and then Governor Pat Quinn spent more than a $100 million on the campaign.
It’s hunting season across Illinois and some hunters are bound to encounter wildlife they don’t normally see when they head to the woods.
The Illinois Department of Natural Resources is asking hunters that see a wild animal not native to the state to report the sighting. Doug Dufford is the Wildlife Disease and Invasive Wildlife Program Manager for D-N-R.
Dufford says you can report animal sightings at web dot extension dot illinois dot edu slash wildlife.
Generating energy from the farm will be a topic of conversation in Bloomington next week as the Illinois Farm Bureau hosts a roundtable on the subject.
Eric Rund with Green Flame Energy in Pesotum will participate in the session. He grows a large warm-season Asian grass on his farm that has been studied in the European Union and is now used commercially there for bedding, heat, and electricity generation.
The IFB Roundtable on Renewable Energy is Tuesday, October 31st from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the IAA Board Room at the IFB headquarters in Bloomington.
The event is free and includes a German-style harvest-themed lunch. Other topics to be addressed at the roundtable include bio-digesters from manure along with wind and solar power.
Senator Dick Durbin has unveiled an extensive report recapping what Durbin calls President Trump’s deliberate, year-long effort to undermine the Affordable Care Act.
Durbin hopes bipartisan efforts will undo some of the President's actions on Obamacare...
Durbin says Illinois health care consumers should know that ACA open enrollment starts November 1 and lasts until December 15.
The DeWitt County Board put their Fiscal Year 18 budget on file Thursday night last week Board Chair David Newberg says it is a good budget.
Newberg indicates the levy for the upcoming fiscal year is roughly a one cent increase, or just over a percent increase.
Newberg points this budget, the County is going to be able to address some needs that have been put off for a while. Additionally, they'll be able to start putting money back in savings.
When times were tough, the County would leave positions unfilled when they opened up. Newberg points out this budget starts to fill some of those holes in staffing and also brings county employees pay in line with the area.
Newberg feels really good about this year's budget. He thanks all those that put in hours of work to make the budget a good one for the taxpayers in 2018.
Newberg also points out the Sheriff's Department plans to add patrol officers to his force thanks to efforts to cut back in the past.
The budget is viewable to the public and will remain that away until late November when the Baord will hold a special meeting to approve it and enact it.
The DeWitt County Board recently donated the old time capsule from the old DeWitt County Courthouse to the DeWitt County Museum.
Museum Director Joey Woolridge unveiled the artifacts at a special weekend event. With that event concluded, she plans to put together a special exhibit for their upcoming candlelight tours.
Woolridge indicates she had done some research several years back and was able to trace the time capsule to the DeWitt County Clerk's office and the County last month, officially donated the box to the Museum for their use.
Woolridge credits the County Clerks office for their care of the time capsule for all the years they had it in their possession.
The DeWitt County Museum's candlelight tours kick off the Friday after Thanksgiving to run the Friday before Christmas.
The Governor is being sued by a former business partner and his legal team is doing all it can to keep the details of the lawsuit under wraps.
But Bruce Rauner says he knows little about the legal proceedings and isn’t behind trying to keep the details private.
Rauner’s lawyers are also seeking to dismiss the case. The former business partner Harreld “Kip” Kirkpatrick says the crux of the lawsuit predates Rauner taking office as Governor.
Taxpayer funded abortions and sanctuary city legislation among the items to get attention during the fall veto session. Republican State Rep. Dan Swanson of Alpha is finishing up his first year in office.
The fall veto session runs Tuesday through Thursday of this week and then the second week of November.
Farmers and others that operate semis (SEM-eyes) or other commercial motor vehicles as part of interstate commerce must register their business with the state and pay an annual fee based on the size of their fleet.
Starting the first of next month, those vehicle owners will have 60 days to sign up for what's called the Unified Carrier Registration or U-C-R. Kevin Rund, Illinois Farm Bureau transportation expert, explains some of the pros and cons of the changes;
If you operate a truck or trucks required to have a U-S Department of Transportation number, you'll need a U-C-R. Starting November first, you can go to the Illinois Commerce Commission website at I-C-C-dot-Illinois-dot-gov to comply.
The Clinton Board of Education earlier this week approved the buy and trade of a couple district vehicles.
Superintendent Curt Nettles indicates the drivers education program will be equipped with a new car.
Additionall, the district plans to buy and trade a van for a truck. Nettles indicates that vehicles serves several purposes.
Nettles indicates the van was damaged in a traffic accident, the insurance company totalled the van out and almost $68-hundred will go towards the payment of the vehicle.
First National Bank and Trust in Clinton recently awarded $10-thousand dollars across several small businesses in DeWitt County.
The REV winners were awarded last week. The Buttered Bun was awarded $5,000 to purchase a commercial stove. Triple-M Farms received $3,000 for a delivery truck and Mason Dial of Dial Farms, received $2,000 to add livestock to his growing operation.
It was the first small business competition and was a way to re-invest in the small businesses of the community.
A Quincy veterans home where 12 people died from cases of Legionnaires' disease in recent years, has seen the issue resurface.
There are pair of new cases at the Illinois Veterans Home in Quincy. One victim has died, but state veterans affairs officials believe that was the result of other factors.
Right now the department isn't certain of the cause of the two new cases.
The water at the facility is being tested and officials are keeping close tabs on residents to ensure they don't contract the disease.
It was a pleasant week in central Illinois and State Climotologist Jim Angel indicates we could see some rain later this weekend, ahead of a cool down.
Boil order until further notice. The area is 700 - 900 blocks E. Main to S. Taylor to E. Jefferson to S. George.
Call 217-935-3432 with questions.
The DeWitt County Board followed the lead of about a half-dozen DeWitt County taxing bodies Thursday night when they approved an agreement with Exelon taxes to paid out for the next three years.
DeWitt County Board Chair David Newberg indicates the agreement eliminates a series of appeals dating back to 2011 and sets the EAV up to 2020.
The Clinton Board of Education approved the same agreement Tuesday night of this week.
The NOAA weather prediction center released their outlook for the winter of 2018-19 Thursday morning.
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, or NOAA, Deputy Director of the Climate Prediction Center, Mike Halpert, says conditions are similar to last year at this time but that doesn't mean we're in for another winter with above normal temperatures.
Drought is predicted in the northern plains is predicted for this winter, despite record rains from last year.
Wetter than average conditions are expected in the northern plains while the southern US is expected to be dry. Halpert says right now, Illinois finds itself in an 'equal chance' category for temperatures. He explains there is not enough information available to make a prediction yet.
Adding an FFA program in 2018-19 school year is the goal for a local school district.
Dr. Kristen Kendrick-Weikle is the Superintendent of the Warrensburg-Latham School District and indicates they are seeking an ag teacher for next year with the hope of getting the program off the ground at the same time.
Dr. Kendrick-Weikle points out, with the facilities and resources they have in place, they are hopeful the offerings could go beyond FFA if they make the right hire. She says they are just excited overall about the potential for an FFA program in Warrensburg-Latham.
With agriculture playing an integral part in the lives of their students, Dr. Kendrick-Weikle says it only makes sense this should be an opportunity for their kids.
Warrensburg-Latham schools also recently received a grant from ADM to add an outdoor garden to their high school, which should be a good resource for an FFA class and the program along with their greenhouse.
The University of Illinois is looking for a bigger footprint in Chicago and an announcement today might be the step forward it needs.
The Discovery Partners Institute is a planned facility that will focus on specialized research in big data, food and agriculture and other fields. Situated on land that will be donated along the Chicago River the campus is expected to have 90 faculty and about 2,000 students. U of I System President Tim Killeen says the DPI is going to be a massive project.
U of I System President Tim Killeen says this is the right move at the right time to keep human capital in the state.
Partners include the state, the city of Chicago along with the private institutions University of Chicago and Northwestern.
THE ILLINOIS UNEMPLOYMENT RATE HELD STEADY LAST MONTH…BUT THERE WERE SOME JOB LOSSES.
THE SEPTEMBER JOBLESS RATE CAME IN AT FIVE PERCENT…THE SAME AS AUGUST. STATE DEPARTMENT OF EMPLOYMENT SECURITY SPOKESPERSON BOB GOUGH (goff) SAYS THE STATE SAW SOME GAINS.
GOUGH (goff) SAYS THE STATE LOST MORE THAN 10 THOUSAND JOBS LAST MONTH.
THE NATIONAL UNEMPLOYMENT RATE FOR SEPTEMBER WAS FOUR POINT TWO PERCENT.
Illinois landowners might not have oil fields beneath corn and soybean fields. Still, many opportunities exist to earn some additional cash by generating energy on farms throughout the state. Some officials from Illinois and Minnesota ventured to Germany earlier this year to see the role on-farm power plays in that country's effort to become energy self sufficient, including Minnesota Director of Agriculture Dave Frederickson;
Illinois Farm Bureau plans to host a Renewable Energy Roundtable on Tuesday, October 31st in Bloomington. Frederickson says his state will host the same two days later and worth the time for farmers and others to explore energy-generating opportunities;
The Farm Bureau energy seminar will feature farmers from Germany and Illinois who are generating energy and income on their farms. Contact your county Farm Bureau to find out how to attend the Renewable Energy Roundtable. It will run from 11:30 a-m to 4:30 p-m on the 31st and include an Octoberfest-style lunch.
The IHSA’s biggest night of the year coming up this weekend and a game’s not even being played.
The association’s release of the high school football playoff pairings on Saturday is a highly anticipated event says the IHSA’s Scott Johnson.
The pairings are released shortly after 8 Saturday night. It’s the heaviest traffic night on the IHSA’s website. Johnson estimates more than 200,000 individual users with up to 1-million hits.
At Springfield's Blessed Sacrament School, Mrs. Ketchum's class passed a key test with flying colors. They took part in an earthquake drill, the Great Shake Out Drill, with Illinois Emergency Management Director James Joseph. Students practiced the Drop, Cover and Hold On actions people can take to protect themselves during an earthquake.
While outside of Southern Illinois, the state wouldn't have the kind of earthquake damage that levels buildings, Joseph notes residents in Central and Northern Illinois should be wary of threats within their homes.
The one minute earthquake drill was practiced at 10:19 this (Thursday) morning at schools and workplaces across the state.
This week, Senator Tammy Duckworth placed a hold on two of President Trump’s nominees to lead offices at the EPA – Bill Wehrum and Dr. Michael Dourson – claiming they each have a track record of putting corporate profits ahead of public safety.
Wehrum has been nominated to lead the EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation and Dourson, the EPA’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention. Duckworth is a member of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. She released an op-ed piece claiming Wehrum has opposed the Renewable Fuel Standard, something she says it crucial to Midwestern economies. She says that standard supports more than 4-thousand jobs through biofuels usage and generates more than 5 billion dollars in economic impact.
Duckworth, went on the offense with her voice instead of her pen when it came to Dourson. She pressed Dourson for answers about his past research that Duckworth says claimed petroleum coke (petcoke) is safe.
Duckworth says Dourson’s research on petcoke was used to justify not cleaning up petcoke storage facilities on Chicago's Southeast side, leading to the presence of black dust which has been tied to high asthma rates and respiratory problems.
A boil order is in effect in Clinton for the area near South Madison St from Benton St to Revere Road including Violet Valley and Evans and Stone.
If you have any questions please call 935-3432.
There was a lot of discussion surrounding the choice to allow alochol to be served at the Clintonia Eagle Theater during the Monday night Clinton City Council meeting.
Eagle Theater Owner Eric Gubelman says the theater industry is shifting from movies and popcorn or candy during movies to serving food and beverages and the decision to serve alcohol is in line with that change in the industry.
Commissioner John Wise, who ultimately supported the decision, made his consideration based on what would be best for the theater and if it would help them. Wise says while there is always the considerations for new businesses, they need to do what is best for current businesses.
Commissioner Tom Edmunds, who was the only descending vote from Monday, questioned was the validity of the sale of alcohol with kids in the theaters and limited food options.
Gubelman obliged the request to not serve drinks for those purchasing admissions to G-rated movies. The Council also amended their original version of the ordinance to state that in it.
Gubelman also explained their staff has been and will continue to be extensively trained on the serving of alcohol and the rules that apply. He adds when a person purchases a movie ticket, they are given a wristband and limited to two drinks for the duration of their movie.
Discussion and research has been done on the wages of aides in the Clinton district and Tuesday night at the Clinton Board of Education meeting, that work came to a head when the district released Clinton figures compared to area districts.
Superintendent Curt Nettles presented the Board of Education with figures they gathered in the past month and says Clinton Schools compare well but points to the issue of attracting good aides and retaining them.
Advocate for the aides, Ron Conner, says this discussion boils down to bringing in the best possible candidates and the administration holding them accountable. He's calling for a scale to be established for the aides.
Clinton's highest paid aides did not compare well to other districts and it was pointed out that the retention of aides was not very high. Nettles says if aides are not staying around, for whatever reason, they will not be employed long enough to get salary increases of a long tenured aide elsewhere.
Principal of Jerry Wayne indicates in the interviewing process for aides at the high school, many turn down the opportunity because the pay is not enough.
Nettles says he will do further research, come up with a pay scale and present that to the Board during the spring semester to have scale in place for the next school year. He would like to also have something in place that considers the assignment an aide has.
You can check out the data the district gathered today at by clicking here
Senator Tammy Duckworth is firing back at the President for his comments about what other Presidents haven’t done when it come to contacting family members of fallen soldiers.
President Trump has said that then President Obama didn’t contact gold star family members. Duckworth told MSNBC the statement is false and she personally witnessed Obama meeting and consoling family members.
The President is also fighting back against claims that he told one gold star family that the solider “must have known what he was signing up for.” Trump says on Twitter that part of the conversation was “fabricated”. That solider and 3 others were recently killed in Africa.
The global demand for soybeans should remain strong with most of that interest coming from China. So says trading expert Jim Bower with Bower Trading in Lafayette, Indiana.
And Bower says that’s due to the country’s expansion in turkey, pork, chicken, beef, lobster, catfish and even shrimp production.
Two's company, four's a crowd.
The Democratic race for Illinois Attorney General continues to draw new candidates. Chicago attorney and Chicago Park District Board of Commissioners President Jesse Ruiz has entered the race.
He has worked as a partner at law firm Drinker Biddle & Reath for over 20 years. He also has made an impact in the educational realm, having served as interim CEO of Chicago Public Schools and chairman for the Illinois State Board of Education.
Senator Kwame Raoul, State Rep. Scott Drury, and former chief administrator of the Civilian Office of Police Accountability in Chicago Sharon Fairley are also running on the Democratic ticket.
Republican attorney Erika Harold stands alone so far on the GOP side.
Some members of the Illinois House looking to bring down House Bill 40 before it becomes law. The house will take up House Bill 4114 during the upcoming veto session.
The bill would prevent state tax dollars from funding “elective” abortions. State Representative Avery Bourne of Raymond says the bill is modeled after the federal Hyde Amendment.
Bourne says she’s disappointed the governor chose to sign House Bill 40, but now the legislature can take action to stop it.
The Illinois House is scheduled to reconvene for the fall veto session on Tuesday.
Clinton School and Exelon have reached an agreement on the EAV in light of the recent legislation to keep Exelon in the community for the foreseeable future.
The agreement was approved by the Clinton Board of Education Tuesday night at the monthly Board of Education meeting. Superintendent Curt Nettles indicates the settlement is a five-year agreement.
Additionally, the Board approved a transfer of funds to the district's tort fund. Nettles says the fund should stabilize with decreased legal fees over negotiations with the power plant now in the rear-view window.
Also at the Tuesday night Board of Education meeting:
>>The Board approved the purchase and trade of the district's drivers education vehicle at a cost not to exceed $20-thousand.
>>The Board also approved the purchase of a district delivery truck for $30-thousand. The vehicle will replace the current van.
The state has submitted its bid to land the second world headquarters or HQ2 of Amazon.
The web retailer right now is being courted by every major city in the nation and that includes a bid that centers around Chicago. Amazon is offering the possibility of fifty thousand jobs that pay more than a $100,000 a year.
Governor Bruce Rauner says in the end each one of those Amazon jobs will create another opportunity for employment.
Rauner says the Amazon bid process is wrapping up in a few days and then the state will share more details of what it offered to land HQ2.
Last November, the DeWitt County Substance Abuse Coalition hosted Tim Ryan, a nationally renown speaker at Clinton High School.
The coalition is discussing something similar this year. Secretary of the Substance Abuse Coalition, Pam Schwartz, indicates they are considering a St. Louis area team to bring in and talk with the youth.
Additionally, the Coalition is looking into creating their own version of the 'Hidden in Plain Site' demonstration. It was an exhibit at their Clinton Cares event on the downtown square that shows a teenagers bedroom and shows places they might be hiding drugs.
The substance abuse coalition meets the third Tuesday of each month at 10 am in the Warner Library's Revere Room and is seeking new faces and perspectives. If interested, contact Pam Schwartz at the DeWitt County Sheriff's office for more information.
Illinois has a very rich man as Governor but he’s not nearly as wealthy as a person that’s trying to run against him next November.
Forbes magazine ranks Democrat gubernatorial candidate J.B. Pritzker as 219th richest American, saying he’s worth $3.4 billion. Pritzker is among the richest people in Illinois, but hedge fund manager Ken Griffin is atop the state list.
His personal wealth is pegged at $8.5 billion.
Senator Dick Durbin is giving the Republican tax plan a thumbs down review. He told the Center for Tax and Budget Accountability in Chicago that the GOP proposal would benefit the wealthiest of Americans and leave the paycheck to paycheck crowd picking up the tab.
Durbin offered hard numbers for the impact of the tax changes.
Durbin says there will be 2.6 trillion dollars in tax cuts for corporations over the first decade of the new tax system. Durbin says those tax cuts are made possible by hiking taxes on middle-income families.
Ameren crews responded to roughly 140 customers in Clinton who were without power early Tuesday afternoon.
Ameren officials indicate crews were on scene for a fuse that was blown and hoped to have power restored around 2 pm.
Ameren indicated they would continue to monitor the area for the remainder of the afternoon.
You'll soon be able to enjoy an alcoholic beverage while taking in a move in Clinton.
The Clinton City Council Monday night approved the measure and Clintonia Eagle Theater owner, Eric Gubelman (pictured right addressing the Council) says it would be a two drink max for those with a wristband, a system they have tested at their Streator theater, and has worked there.
A lot has been made of serving alcohol when there are children's movies at the theater and Gubelman says he is very committed to not serving to someone coming for a kids movie.
The Council spend about 45 minutes in discussions with Gubelman about the ins-and-outs of the process and how things would work. John Wise and Dan Ballenger called out some pointed criticism from ex-mayor Carolyn Peters about a letter to the editor that was omitted in print but more pointed in the remarks to Council members about their stance on the issue.
The measure passed 4-1 with Tom Edmunds being the only descending vote. The theater hopes to have everything in place to start serving in time for the holidays.
The annual leaf cleanup season will soon be in full swing and local authorities recently discussed an upcoming busy season across the community.
It's getting close to that time of year when you'll clear your yard of leaves and within a few hours that same yard will look like nothing happened. As the leaf cleanup season approaches, Clinton Police Chief Ben Lowers is reminding Clinton residents it is unlawful to burn leaves within city limits.
When cleaning up leaves in the community, Chief Lowers indicates the City has a yard waste facility on South Cain Street. Additionally, the City has a pick up service that will likely start in November.
The City wide cleanup program breaks the community into five quadrants and can take about a day to get through each one. Chief Lowers implores the public to be patient while crews make their way to your house. Weather can also slow crews when it gets wet.
The open enrollment period is underway for Medicare.
Sissy Leggett is the Executive Director at the DeWitt County Friendship Center senior center in Clinton. She indicates it's a good idea to discuss your plan and any potential changes with Diane Cusey with Community Cares System.
While scam activity remains high, Leggett says this will be a time when seniors will be targeted for additional insurance policies or people posing as a representative from Medicare or the IRS. She stresses, none of those entities will ever contact you over the phone.
When dealing with a potential scam call, hang up and contact the DeWitt County Sheriff's office and they will help guide you through any questions you may have. Leggett says it is still best practice to either not answer those calls or hang up once you know it is a scam.
CROP HARVESTING IS PLUGGING ALONG AS WE HEAR IN THE WEEKLY CROP REPORT.
COOLER TEMPERATURES AND MUCH NEEDED RAIN PREVAILED THIS PAST WEEK. STATE CROP STATISTICIAN BRAD SUMMA SAYS 95 PERCENT OF CORN IS NOW MATURE.
63 PERCENT OF SOYBEANS AND 60 PERCENT OF SORGHUM HAS BEEN HARVESTED…AHEAD OF LAST YEAR AND THE FIVE YEAR AVERAGE.
51 PERCENT OF WINTER WHEAT HAS BEEN PLANTED AND 13 PERCENT EMERGED.
AVERAGE STATEWIDE TOPSOIL MOISTURE IMPROVED TO 12 PERCENT VERY SHORT, 19 PERCENT SHORT, 56 PERCENT ADEQUATE AND 13 PERCENT SURPLUS.
Lawmakers are preparing to return to Springfield next week.
The fall veto session will be underway then and there are a host of issues to address. The state budget will still be one of them and perhaps a capital bill to fund road and other infrastructure projects.
Governor Bruce Rauner says before everyone returns to Springfield he’s happy the four legislative leaders have been meeting to perhaps set an agenda for the end of October.
The House and Senate return on Tuesday October 24 and will continue the veto session through the second week of November.
THIS IS NATIONAL TEEN DRIVER SAFETY WEEK AND SECRETARY OF STATE JESSE WHITE IS NOTING THE SUCCESS OF THE STATE’S GRADUATED DRIVER LICENSING PROGRAM.
SECRETARY WHITE SAYS THE PROGRAM MAKES SURE HIGH SCHOOLERS GET PLENTY OF PRACTICE DRIVING, AND LIMITS TEENS TO JUST ONE FRIEND IN THE CAR ONCE THEY GET THEIR LICENSE.
WHITE STRESSES THE NEED FOR PARENTS TO DISCUSS OTHER DISTRACTED DRIVING DANGERS WITH THEIR TEENS, INCLUDING TEXTING AND TALKING ON THE PHONE.
WHITE SAYS SINCE THE G-D-L REQUIREMENTS TOOK EFFECT IN 2008…TEEN DRIVING DEATHS HAVE DROPPED BY 51 PERCENT.
The Illinois Lottery is recognizing breast cancer awareness month with the re-launch of a scratch off ticket. The Illinois Lottery’s Acting Director Greg Smith says since the Ticket for the Cure’s creation more than 12 million dollars has been raised to support breast cancer programs.
The three dollar scratcher is now for sale at your favorite lotto retailer.
Sen. Dick Durbin, the number two Democrat in the Senate, said in a radio interview Sunday that his party could lose to President Donald Trump in 2020 if they "overdo it" and become too liberal.
The Illinois senator was asked on a local Chicago radio program about comments made by Democratic Rep. Cheri Bustos, which the host characterized as a warning to fellow Democrats that if the party becomes too liberal, they would give Trump another term.
"We need to be balanced," Durbin said on "Connected to Chicago" on WLS-AM on Sunday. "She's right about that. And as downstater like her, I understand she represents a challenging district. We don't give up on our values, but we better be sensitive too that there are people with more moderate views, and people who may disagree with some parts of the Democratic platform as they as they are presented. We've got to be open to that possibility."
"So you could lose it by being too liberal?" asked the host.
"You can," Durbin said. "I think you can overdo it. We have to really appeal to that sensible center. It's a thin stripe now. It used to be a lot wider stripe, but it's an important and determining factor in most elections."
Durbin added that he doesn't count Trump out and that the 2016 election showed that "if you take (Trump) for granted, he'll beat you."
Is it a toy or is it going to impact the bottom line of your operation? Farmers need to answer that question before moving forward with drone technology says GROWMARK’S Agronomy Information Services Sales Manager Brian Henze.
Henze is participating in a drone conference next month, hosted by Heartland Community College and Scott Smigel.
The conference is November 10th at Heartland’s Astroth Community Education Center in Normal. Advance registration is $69. You can register at “heartland.edu”.
AFSCME officials say safety at Illinois Correctional facilities needs some serious correcting. AFSCME, which represents corrections officers, reports inmate attacks on state employees have surged 51 percent since 2015. Two years ago, there were 541 assaults.
AFSCME projects that number will hit 819 based on assaults so far this year. AFSCME Council 31's Anders Lindall believes the expansion of inmates eligible for minimum security accommodations has played a major role.
Lindall says the state had previously maintained strict standards for inmates who were held in minimum security lockups like the facility in the Quad Cities....
Corrections officials say inmates are only transferred to lower-level security prisons when their progress and behavior warrants.
It's getting close to when DeWitt County puts on file their fiscal year 18 budget.
DeWitt County Board Chair David Newberg indicates things look to be in good shape and the Board will have a special meeting later this month to put the budget on file.
Newberg indicates there will be some minor cuts in places but does not anticipate them being anything noticeable.
The DeWitt County Board will meet Thursday of this week.
A DeWitt County non-profit is finding a huge and positive response to a new cooperative program they rolled out earlier this fall.
Community Action's new food pantry coop has been a huge hit and Executive Director Alison Rumler-Gomez indicates the community's response has been overwhelmingly positive as well.
Rumler-Gomez says all the fears they had about the program have quickly been put to rest and the response from the community has been better than expected.
Rumler-Gomez says the program can take 150 and the spaces are quickly going fast so if you are interested in participating, you need to get in touch with Community Action now.
To get more information about the new food pantry program, contact Craig Farnham by calling 217-732-2159 or you can stop by the Community Action office in the Cedar Square subdivision during regular business hours.
Area schools are partnering together to provide a first-hand business learning experience for their seniors in high school and one of those districts is very excited about the opportunity.
Warrensburg-Latham Schools are among the area high schools that hope to have the CEO program up and going by the 2019-2020 school year. Their Superintendent, Dr. Kristen Kendrick-Weikle says it is a great opportunity for their students.
For Dr. Kendrick-Weikle and her staff, the appealing aspect of the CEO program is that it is a community supported opportunity.
The process of getting out in the communities to rally support among businesses. Dr. Kendrick-Weikle points out that the local businesses play an integral part in the startup of it and keeping it going.
Dr. Kendrick-Weikle indicates that students will know ahead of time the setting for the nine-week class. She says a lot of aspects of the program are being investigated and continue to come together.
The U-S Environmental Protection Agency announced stricter measures on the use of a crop herbicide that led to complaints in Illinois and dozens of other states.
E-P-A says it worked with states, land-grant universities, seed and crop protection companies to examine the underlying causes complaints about a soybean crop protection product containing dicamba. The Senior Director of Commodities for the Illinois Farm Bureau, Tamara Nelsen, says the decision allows Illinois farmers and others to have access to the technology;
E-P-A Administrator Scott Pruitt called the actions "...intensive, collaborative efforts..." with states and university scientists working together to find a solution. As of earlier this month, the Illinois Department of Agriculture had received more than 200 dicamba-related complaints.
THE GOVERNOR’S NEW OPIOID PREVENTION AND INTERVENTION TASK FORCE IS KICKING OFF A STATEWIDE LISTENING TOUR.
THE FIRST MEETING WAS HELD THIS WEEK IN CHICAGO…AND THE GROUP HEARD FROM THOSE AFFECTED PERSONALLY BY THE HIGHLY ADDICTIVE DRUGS. FIRST UP WAS AMY MCCORMICK, WHOSE SON OWEN BECAME ADDICTED AFTER AN OUT-PATIENT HAND SURGERY.
DURING THE FIRST HEARING IN CHICAGO, DENNIS PAGACH, AN ADDICT WHO HAS BEEN CLEAN FOR MORE THAN A MONTH NOW STRESSED THE IMPORTANCE OF LOCAL SUPPORT PROGRAMS.
NEARLY TWO THOUSAND PEOPLE DIED OF AN OPIOID OVERDOSE LAST YEAR IN ILLINOIS, AND OFFICIALS SAY THAT NUMBER IS QUICKLY RISING.
NARCAN IS AN ANTIDOTE FOR OPIOID OVERDOSES. OPIOID RELATED DEATHS ARE DRAMATICALLY INCREASING IN ILLINOIS. THE TASK FORCE IS WORKING TO REDUCE THOSE NUMBERS.
Not only will Western Illinois Congresswoman Cheri Bustos face a challenge from Republicans in the 2018 election cycle, but she’s also been appointed by Democrats to help candidates with game planning, specifically in rural areas.
Bustos was one of just 12 Democratic lawmakers last year that won in a district carried by President Trump.
Bustos says she represents rural interests as the only member of Democratic Party leadership from the Midwest.
In the 17th District, three Republican candidates will be running in the March primary—Galesburg businessman Mark Kleine along with Craig Cameron and Jon Schuh.
The Environmental Protection Agency Friday announced new restrictions for dicamba-based herbicides, classifying dicamba as a restricted-use product. The EPA said that only certified pesticide applicators, or people under their supervision, will be allowed to spray dicamba. The EPA also is reducing the maximum wind speed and the hours during each day when dicamba may be sprayed, and will require farmers to keep records proving they’re complying with the product label, according to Reuters. Monsanto says the EPA decision will “ensure farmers have even more success” with dicamba-based herbicides, such as Monsanto’s Roundup Ready Xtend Crop System. Thousands of complaints during this growing season, and many last year, of dicamba drifting to neighboring fields not tolerant to the herbicide, prompted the announcement by the EPA.
It was a wet week in Illinois but State Climotologist Jim Angel says the sun returns as we head into the new week.
Thursday, the U.S. Department of Agriculture released new yield and acreage data in their October World Ag Supply and Demand Report. The agency put the corn yield at 171.8 bushels per acre, up from last month’s 169.9 and lowered the soybean yield to 49.5, last month it was 49.9.
Mike Zuzolo, a Market Analyst with Global Commodity Analytics, talks about the grain trade’s response.
Also in the report Thursday, USDA cut corn planted acres by 500,000 and cut harvested acreage by 400,000. For soybeans, they raised planted acreage by 700,000 acres and harvested acreage by 800,000.
Zuzolo says with the latest market reaction, lines at the elevator may start to get lengthy.
That’s Mike Zuzolo with Global Commodity Analytics.
A former student from Brazil that came to Clinton as a foreign exchange student through Rotary International returned this week.
Pictured right: Baccara with Clinton Rotary's Tom Reddington.
Mariana Baccara came to Clinton from Brazil. She says after she spent time here she has graduated college and has gotten into acting all over Europe.
Baccara speaks fondly of her time spent in Clinton.
She feels without her experience as a foreign exchange student, she would likely not be doing what she is now and has some advice for those considering traveling to another country as a student.
Baccara has re-connected with many friends in Clinton and paid a visit to the high school as well.
The Monticello marching has had a big year and looks to continue their success next week when they head to St. Louis for the Band of America marching championships.
Band Director at Monticello High School, Allison Allender indicates they've had a great deal of success already and look to continue that success as they take on bigger venues in the next several weeks.
Allender says the participation for this year's band is very strong. There's 130 students that are performing a show surrounding the life of Abraham Lincoln.
Allender calls the band one of the best sounding groups they've had in a long time. She credits the students and staff with working hard to get an orchestra sound on the field.
Illinois voters won't make a final decision on their choice for Governor for more than a year, but already two top contenders are dumping millions of dollars of their own wealth into their campaign warchests.
In that high stakes fundraising game, Chicago Alderman Ameya Pawar is saying fold.
After promising early polling numbers, Pawar says he's ending his bid for the Democratic nomination because he doesn't have enough money or resources to mount a successful statewide campaign.
The deer hunting season is here and conservation authorities are reminding hunters of some basic things to keep themselves safe.
DNR Conservation Police Sargent John Williamson notes the archery season is underway and there's plenty of places to get out and hunt.
If you have not been out to hunt yet, Williamson says it is best to get out and get those tree stands checked. He says by this time of the year he's heard or responded to a call of a collapsed tree stand.
Cross-bows are now a legal way to use during the archery season.
The first shotgun season will open before the Thanksgiving weekend.
The Illinois Beef Association is happy with a trend they are seeing. Young people are actually coming back to the farm says the organization’s Jill Johnson.
Johnson is a native of Henry County and grew up on a Galva farm that included Hereford cattle, corn and soybeans.
Senator Dick Durbin is weighing in on President Trump's order on health care, something he says is destabilizing the Affordable Care Act.
Durbin says "“Make no mistake—after spending nine months repeatedly trying and failing to repeal the Affordable Care Act, President Trump is sabotaging America’s health care system and hurting working families to make a political point."
Durbin says the President is using familiar tactics, including instructing federal agencies not to enforce the law, cut the open enrollment period in half, and cancelling television and radio ads that educated people about how to enroll for insurance.
A GOP challenger in Illinois’ 17th Congressional District off to a strong start financially.
Mark Kleine of Galesburg has raised $507,000 since the beginning of his campaign in late August. He says around $400,000 of that has come from within the district and he provided $100,000 of his own money to jump start the effort.
Kleine is the former owner of John Deere implement dealer Kleine Equipment. Democrat Cheri Bustos of Rock Island has held the 17th District Congressional seat since 2013.
The Clinton Junior Football League, or JFL, wrapped up this past weekend.
During the season, the Maroons took part in the Apple and Pork weekend in several capacities to raise money for their season. Coach of the 6th-grade squad, Mike Fulmer indicates they helped at the Homestead's ham and bean stand with the parking near the grounds as well.
With the season wrapped up, Fulmer says the teams were very competitive.
The Apple and Pork weekend funds for the JFL program will go towards new equipment for the youth.
The JFL will bring in around $5000 which covers almost all the expenses they have.
The second Heyworth Haunted Trail is this weekend.
This family-friendly event offers haunted hay-rack rides, activities for youth and food and drinks. Steve Vandiver feels there's something for everybody at their Centennial Park.
The event is a fundraiser for Heyworth Summer baseball leagues. Vandiver says they couldn't make the event a success without their volunteers.
Visit Facebook.com/heyworthhauntedtrail or visit www.heyworthhauntedtrail.com.
With the harvest in full swing in Illinois, deer activity in rural areas has picked up and Illinois authorities are advising motorists use extra caution this time of year.
DNR Conservation Police Sargent John Williamson indicates this is the time of year when deer activity picks up and could causing hazards when driving in rural areas.
In the event of a car/deer accident, the driver of the car does have the option to keep the deer.
In addition to increased deer movement, with farmers continuing the harvest, heavy machinery and slow-moving vehicles will be on roadways for several more weeks. Always slow down and allow those vehicles plenty of space.
GOVERNOR BRUCE RAUNER SAYS HE’S PLANNING MORE OVERSEAS TRADE MISSIONS IN THE COMING MONTHS.
LAST MONTH, THE GOVERNOR WENT TO CHINA AND JAPAN TO FOSTER RELATIONSHIPS WITH OFFICIALS AND BUSINESSES AND SAYS HE WILL NEXT BE HEADING TO ISRAEL IN ABOUT THREE WEEKS.
HE PLANS TO MEET WITH OFFICIALS, BUSINESS LEADERS AND UNIVERSITY HEADS IN HOPES OF EXPANDING OPPORTUNITIES IN ILLINOIS.
GOVERNOR RAUNER SAYS A FEW MONTHS AFTER THAT TRIP, HE WILL TRAVEL TO EUROPE WITH STOPS IN THE UNITED KINGDOM, GERMANY, AND POLAND.
If you filed for an extension on your income taxes for 2016, the next deadline is rapidly approaching. Michael Devine says that penalties will begin after October 16…
Further information available at irs.gov.
Illinois' FFA president enjoying his time in office. Joseph Birrittier (beer-uh-tear) was elected to the position last June and now represents 17,000 FFA members statewide. He doesn't live on a farm.
After his one year term is up in June of 2018, he plans to enroll at the University of Illinois to study agriculture science education.
Illinois Transportation officials are rethinking the layout and role of the state's highway rest areas in the Digital Age.
IDOT's Kelsea Gurski says the agency has posted an online survey seeking public input.
Gurski says the rest stops aren't just a convenience, they're a proactive lifesaver for drowsy drivers and those who would be in their path.
The 20 question survey is available at idot.illinois.gov, is available through Sunday, Oct. 29. IDOT maintains a system of 30 rest areas and 11 welcome centers on highways throughout the state, serving more than 36 million visitors annually.
There's a new entry in the Democratic race for Attorney General. Former federal prosecutor Sharon Fairley has left her post leading Chicago's Civilian Office of Police Accountability to run for the Democratic nomination. Fairley says the A-G's office is no stepping stone for her.
While the Attorney General's office has drawn notice in recent years for tackling consumer driven matters, Fairley says she brings a lot of law and order experience to the table.
Fairley says she'll push back against President Trump's administration on a number of civil rights issues.
As the Clinton football season winds down over the next few weeks, the sports calendar will soon be turning their attention to the basketball season.
Head Coach of the Maroons basketball program, Clay Haurberg says right now there are open gyms happening and there is good buy-in from players that are not involved in a fall sport. He also calls his coaching staff this year the strongest in his 21-years in coaching.
Speaking to the Clinton Rotary Club Tuesday afternoon, Coach Haurberg has been pleased with the progress of the program in his three years in Clinton.
With the season right around the corner, the team has collectively set goals for this year. Coach Haurberg says they have some achievable goals like finish with a winning record and win the Central Illinois Conference.
The Maroons open their season the week of Thanksgiving at the Cerro Gordo High School Turkey Tournament, followed by a road game at Tri-Valley the final Tuesday of November and then the first of December they play their home opener, hosting Maroa-Forsyth.
A Piatt County school district is continuing their investigation of the future of their district's facilities and that process continues tonight.
Monticello Schools Superintendent Dr. Vic Zimmerman indicates tonight is the latest of a series of meetings to discuss what the future of the district's aging buildings holds.
According to Dr. Zimmerman, the new plan eliminates a transition for their elementary students and would create a singular K-3 center.
The new plan would range between $28-$32-million dollars and Dr. Zimmerman indicates they would have to raise taxes to make things happen. That in addition to the sales tax money the district receives.
The next possible referendum date is in the spring of next year and Dr. Zimmerman says it is possible the Board of Education has a plan ready to present to voters by that time.
The warmer weather this fall is playing into the hands of boaters.
That's the report from DNR Conservation Police Officer John Williamson. He indicates with the warmer days there's been a lot of boaters out for some later-than-normal joy rides on the Clinton Lake.
Portions of the lake have closed down this week and Williamson indicates the warm water area of Clinton Lake serves as a refuge for the traveling waterfowl.
Williamson indicates this past Columbus Day weekend was busier than normal with the warmer weather from Sunday and Monday.
THE WARM WEATHER HELPED KEEP HARVEST PROGRESS MOVING ALONG AS WE HEAR IN THE WEEKLY CROP REPORT.
38 PERCENT OF CORN HAS NOW BEEN HARVESTED…BEHIND LAST YEAR’S PACE AND THE FIVE YEAR AVERAGE. CROP STATISTICIAN MARK SCHLEUSENER SAYS 64 PERCENT OF THE CORN CROP IS RATED IN GOOD TO EXCELLENT CONDITION.
63 PERCENT OF THE SOYBEAN CROP IS RATED IN GOOD TO EXCELLENT CONDITION SAYS STATISTICIAN MARK SCHLEUSENER.
50 PERCENT OF SORGHUM HAS BEEN HARVESTED. 30 PERCENT OF WINTER WHEAT HAS BEEN PLANTED AND AVERAGE STATEWIDE TOPSOIL MOISTURE IMPROVED TO 24 PERCENT VERY SHORT, 37 PERCENT SHORT AND 39 PERCENT ADEQUATE.
Gun control is again a topic up for debate in Washington after the Las Vegas mass shooting. But that conversation will be one that does not include the voice of Republican Governor Bruce Rauner. He says his focus includes issues important to the state of Illinois.
Rauner so far will not say if he approves of changing the law that makes bump stocks legal in Illinois.
Illinois Governor Bruce Raner says Comptroller Susana Mendoza's refusal to pay for information technology upgrades does not compute.
As Mendoza continues to address a backlog of billions of dollars in bills, millions for the Governor's computer technology iniative remain on ice but Rauner is calling for Mendoza to end the wait.
Rauner says recent spending decisions by lawmakers make it more important to release the I-T funds.
In the spring, Mendoza suspended 27 million dollars in payments for Rauner's Enterprise Resource Program.
The annual fire truck parade is this week in Clinton.
It's part of Fire Prevention week and Clinton Fire's Blake West says 25-30 trucks from across central Illinois will converge on the Junior High School to take part in the route that ends at the downtown Clinton Square.
The annual parade is attended by a couple-dozen departments from across central Illinois and West feels it is something everyone looks forward to.
A refurbished smokehouse will be on the square as tool to teach youth about fire safety and what to do when a fire may be in your home.
The fire truck parade is set to get underway around 7 pm, originating from Clinton Junior High School. West indicates they expecta larger than normal turnout this year as they've received a lot of early RSVPs.
Giving area residents the opportunity to see what happens in local agriculture beyond corn and soybeans is the goal of the Macon County Farm Bureau next week.
Jennifer Fink with the Macon County Farm Bureau explains their Families on the Farm event is geared toward local families who'd like to learn more about what agriculture in the county looks like.
Fink says there will be a lot of different aspects of agriculture to get to experience.
Fink says the Macon County Farm Bureau is using this event as a way to get information about where their food comes from. Where food comes from is becoming a very popular topic in urban America.
The event is next Wednesday morning where all those attending will meet at the Macon County Farm Bureau office in Decatur at 8:30 am and will tour the final farm before lunch.
While the event is free, Fink is asking those wanting to attend to RSVP by Wednesday of this week. To do so, contact the Macon County Farm Bureau, dial 217-877-2436.
It's a long-delayed homecoming but a Springfield hero is headed home. Army Staff Sgt. Michael Aiello (Ail-Lee-oh) was killed in action in the Netherlands in World War II. He had taken part in Operation Market Garden, the failed attempt to invade Northern Germany. His great grand nephew, Brian Aiellio .is thankful Army efforts to identify him have trudged on.
Sgt. Aiello served in the 401st Glider Infantry Regiment. He and fellow glider and airborne troops were deployed to seize bridges in the Netherlands and hold them until British armored units could reinforce their positions.
Once Sgt. Aiello’s remains arrive in Springfield, he will be buried at Camp Butler National Cemetery in Riverton. There will be a public ceremony at Camp Butler at 10 a.m. Oct. 28.
The renewable fuels industry expressing some reservations with EPA administrator Scott Pruitt. The issue is lowering the renewable fuel standard or RFS.
Bob Dinneen with the Renewable Fuels Association believes President Trump is supportive of ethanol and other biofuels, but that may not be swaying the EPA chief.
Pruitt was confirmed as EPA administrator last February. He formerly served as Oklahoma Attorney General.
Opioid use continues to take lives in the Southern Illinois region, and Madison County is on pace for another record year for heroin deaths.
In 2009, Madison County reported 9 heroin deaths, in 2010 the number doubled. So far in 2017, there are 10 confirmed heroin deaths, another 10 attributed to a combination of heroin and Fentanyl, and 15 solely blamed on Fentanyl.
When prescription overdoses and other drugs are factored in, there are 60 drug-related deaths in Madison County so far in 2017. Madison County Coroner Steve Nonn says the emergence of Fentanyl is disturbing.
He says education efforts appear to be starting to have an impact, as age groups that have heard the message of the dangers of the drug are accounting for fewer deaths.
It’s another endorsement for the gubernatorial campaign of JB Pritzker. The Illinois Democratic County Chairman’s Association voted to endorse the billionaire and Julian Stratton for Governor and Lieutenant Governor.
IDCCA President Doug House says the vote shows that Pritzker has created a strong grassroots campaign that leaves him the best prepared next November.
House says all the candidates are qualified for the job but Pritzker is the best prepared to win a general election.
House says he thinks the top issues in the coming election will be healthcare and creating and supporting jobs.
The second tenant is set to move in this week at the DCRA's Magill Hotel in downtown Clinton.
Becky Adams with the DeWitt County Restoration Association, or DCRA, says Trade Wind Energy is set to move into their space next to Edward Jones, which would be their second tenant in the last 12 months.
Adams indicates it has been a good relationship with Trade Wind the entire time they have been discussing the lease. She explains the DCRA had to take out a mortgage to get them in the building and the energy company stepped up to make sure they could get it and keep it paid.
In addition to establishing a brick and mortar front in the community, Trade Wind Energy is also investing the community through more means than just the wind farms. They have donated to The Vault and several groups locally.
That's Tom Swierczewski, Development Director at Trade Wind Energy, who adds they have land leases already in place and now they just need to get approvals from the County governing bodies.
Trade Wind Energy joins Edward Jones Financial Agent Bryce Starkey in the DRCA's Magill Hotel. The DCRA is continuing their efforts of restoration and will continue to work on getting a developer for the property or find more tenants to provide them with revenue.
The DeWitt County chapter of Beta Sigma Phi sorority is hosting a coat drive most of the month of October.
Bev Jones indicates they are seeking new or gently used coats, hats, and gloves to give to children in need in the community.
The coats are being collected at Clinton IGA, Clinton YMCA, Save A Lot and the Warner Library. The drive is ongoing until October 22 and is distributed through DOVE to local youth in need.
The Scovill Zoo in Decatur will close their doors for the season this week.
Director Ken Frye says they have several animals that need to go in for the winter while others have enclosures in their exhibits.
The next three weekends are the Zoo's annual Boo at the Zoo. Frye indicates they set the stage for a Halloween theme at the zoo with candy to be given away during the event.
Frye says there will be themed nights during the Boo at the Zoo with superheroes and Star Wars characters walking around during certain nights.
Get more information by visiting ScovillZoo.com.
Early harvest returns showing great variability in Illinois. That’s what GROWMARK’s Tim Laatsch is seeing and hearing.
GROWMARK’s David Powell says crop specialists all over the state are telling him the same thing—even narrowed down to individual combine passes.
21-percent of the Illinois corn crop had been harvested as of earlier this week with 30-percent of the soybean crop out of the field.
THIS IS NATIONAL CYBERSECURITY AWARENESS MONTH AND THE ILLINOIS EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY IS STRESSING THE IMPORTANCE OF PROTECTING YOUR INFORMATION.
I-T SECURITY IS A MATTER OF PUBLIC SAFETY, AND EVERYONE MUST DO THEIR PART SAYS I-EMA SPOKESPERSON PATTI THOMPSON.
STEPS YOU CAN TAKE INCLUDE USING STRONG PASSWORDS WITH AT LEAST 10 CHARACTERS INCLUDING UPPER AND LOWER CASE LETTERS, NUMERALS AND SYMBOLS, AS WELL AS NOT OPENING EMAIL ATTACHMENTS FROM SENDERS YOU DON’T KNOW.
THOMPSON SAYS YOU SHOULD START BY MAKING SURE ALL DEVICES ARE PASSWORD PROTECTED.
OTHER STEPS YOU CAN TAKE INCLUDE KEEPING SOFTWARE, ANTI-VIRUS PROGRAMS AND OPERATING SYSTEMS UPDATED AND USING PRIVACY AND SECURITY FEATURES ON YOUR PHONE, EMAIL AND COMPUTER.
Highland Park Mayor Nancy Rotering is jumping into the Democratic field after last month's announcement Lisa Madigan wouldn't seek re-election.
Rotering ran a spirited campaign against Congressman Brad Schneider in the last year's Democratic primary. She landed more than 46 percent of the vote cast.
She won a high profile battle with the NRA as Highland Park enacted an ordinance banning assault weapons and high-capacity magazines.
State Representative Scott Drury and State Senator Kwame Raoul are also in the Democratic field.
Central Illinois got a much needed drink of water this week. University of Illinois Extention's Todd Gleason tells us what to expect this weekend and into next week.....
The Coalition for Bright Futures continues to put together focus groups in DeWitt and surrounding counties to combat underage drinking.
According to Divah Griffin from the Piatt County Mental Health Center, the results so far indicate that some kids think it's okay to drink as long as they don't drive and that others have driven drunk. Eighth graders are likely to get alcohol from their parents, with or without permission and high schoolers through members of the community.
The kids that were surveyed said they drink because there's nothing else to do, while parents were either completely against underage drinking or convinced that there are more pressing matters to attend to.
The focus groups that Bright Futures puts together ask kids which messages and images resonate with them and where they would like to see them.
If you'd like to be a part of the focus group or getting involved in the coalition, you can contact Griffin at (217) 570-0198.
We're still recovering from the 2012 drought and your trees likely need water.
That is the message from University of Illinois Extension small farms educator, Doug Gucker, who indicates your tree could be showing signs of stress.
Gucker says it is a good time to try and get your tree some water and there are a few easy, practical methods to do that.
When using a sprinkler to water the trees, Gucker says a good way to measure how much water you've used is to put a soup can down and when you get two inches in that can, you know how long to run the sprinkler on other trees you may have.
A SUBURBAN STATE LAWMAKER IS PROPOSING AN ASSAULT WEAPONS BAN IN LIGHT OF THE MASS SHOOTING IN LAS VEGAS ON SUNDAY.
REPRESENTATIVE MARTY MOYLAN OF DES PLAINES JUST FILED LEGISLATION OUTLAWING ASSAULT RIFLES AND BUMP STOCKS IN ILLINOIS. HE SAYS IT’S A MATTER OF PUBLIC SAFETY.
MOYLAN OF DES PLAINES TO FILE THE LEGISLATION.
MOYLAN SAYS HE WILL PUSH FOR PASSAGE DURING THE FALL VETO SESSION WHICH BEGINS LATER THIS MONTH.
After the tragedy in Las Vegas, Congressman Rodney Davis wants to see a closer look at laws governing bump stock technology.
Weapons modification was apparently used in the attack on the Vegas strip outdoor concert where 59 were killed and more than 500 were wounded. Bump stocks allow gun users to legally simulate a fully automatic weapon even though fully automatic weapons have been off limits to the general public for the last three decades.
Davis has signed onto a letter to asking the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) to review the law regarding bump stock technology. Davis says he hadn't heard of bump stocks until the Vegas incident. He says there is no place for politics in this debate or knee-jerk reactions, but believes we can have a thoughtful, non-partisan discussion about the facts.
An Illinois man known for honoring the victims of mass shootings around the country installed 58 white crosses on the Las Vegas Strip on Thursday. Greg Zanis drove nearly 2,000 miles from the Chicago area to put up the crosses on a patch of grass near the iconic "Welcome to Las Vegas" sign, not far from the site of the country music festival where the massacre took place on Sunday night.
Due to the rain and wet field conditions, the Luke Bryan concert originally scheduled to be at the Ayers Family Farm in Edinburg has been moved to the Illinois State Fairgrounds in Springfield.
The concert will be on the infield of the grandstands just north of the grandstand at the fairgrounds.
The concert is still scheduled for Friday with the gates opening at 5 and the concert starting at 6.
Western Illinois native Margo Price returns home to open for Chris Stapleton. The concert was Thursday night at the TaxSlayer Center in Moline. Price says Las Vegas will continue to be on the mind of the music industry for many days to come.
Price is a 2001 Aledo High School graduate. Her career took off last year—making appearances on such shows as Conan, Jimmy Fallon and Saturday Night Live.
There is still time to get nominations in for the Wall of Honor for 2018 at Clinton High School.
Principal Jerry Wayne indicates the deadline is fast approaching for the yearly recognition of distinguished alumni that are inducted in January of each year.
The Wall of Honor committee is looking for those that have made a difference in their communities, in the athletic field but Wayne wants those that separate themselves from others.
The Wall of Honor is located just inside the sports entrance at Clinton High School.
To get more information about the Wall of Honor or to get a nominating form, you can visit the district's website at cusd15.org or contact them at 217-935-8321.
Central Illinois is in a moderate drought but Doug Gucker, University of Illinois Extension small farms educator, notes the drought is very limited in a section that spans from Missouri to Illinois and Indiana.
Gucker says the localized drought is not impacting the markets because it isn't widespread.
Gucker says this is going to leave a lot of Illinois farmers wondering why prices aren't reflecting their yield numbers this harvest season.
After receiving a grant to help expand the services, a local non-profit aimed at helping abused children is moving forward with the initiative they are using the money for.
The Children's Advocacy Center provides support of all kinds to children who are victims of both physical and sexual abuse. Their executive director, Judy Brucker says a grant is going to allow them to better help the kids they get in their care.
Brucker says this helps them accomplish the goal of adding therapeutic services, in addition to their crisis intervention services. She says this is similar to a program they piloted in Clinton, which was successful.
The CAC therapist has begun to see patients in their three counties. To get more information, contact the CAC at 309-888-5656. You can also find them on Facebook.
It's National 4-H Week and local students are discussing its impact on them.
Fifth-year 4-H Member Brett Young discusses it's history and why it will continue to remain strong.
Keep it to Regional Radio News for further updates on National 4-H Week in DeWitt County.
More than 200 scientists, farmers and curious onlookers packed a theater on the north side of Chicago for a screening of the documentary entitled, "Food Evolution." The movie takes on critics of crops and other products improved using genetic modification. Artist David Sutherland liked what he saw on the big screen;
Sutherland has switched his stance on GMOs. He co-founded a group known as "March Against Myths," which has taken to Chicago streets in recent years to counter-protest what they call 'junk science' peddled as facts about biotech;
The Illinois Farm Families program, made up of Illinois farm and commodity groups, along with the Chicago chapter of the Institute of Food Technologists, and the Illinois Science Council, sponsored this week's movie screening. The film is expected to be shown on some college campuses and in other cities around the state in the coming weeks and months.
An emotional gathering at HSHS St. John's Hospital in Springfield Tuesday as UFC legend and Hillsboro native Matt Hughes paid a visit, weeks after a car-train accident nearly claimed his life in June.
He and loved ones honored two nurses that played a key role in his recovery. Matt's friend Tony Zucca saluted ICU nurses Ashley Hull and Megan Simpson for their efforts after Hughes was airlifted to the hospital.
Hull and Simpson were honored with the DAISY Award. St. John's isn't commenting on Hughes condition but many were encouraged to see him up and moving around and getting emotional during the ceremony.
Zucca says he has a long road ahead of him.
While Hughes, family, and friends were on hand to hand out awards to the nurses, Hughes received an unexpected honor of his own, receiving the HSHS St. John’s Superhero Award for turning a setback into a comeback.
The exodus continues at the Capitol. Another experienced member of the General Assembly is calling it a career.
Republican State Rep. David Harris of Arlington Heights has decided not to seek another term.
That means half of the Illinois GOP's ten longest serving members won't be on the ballot next year.
Harris joined Democrats in voting for an income tax increase over the summer, ending a multi-year budget stalemate.
That vote made him a target of conservative activist and radio host Dan Proft, who is backing a primary opponent Katie Miller of Mount Prospect.
After another failed healthcare push, the U.S. House is now turning their focus to tax reform, and GOP members have unveiled their framework for how the new tax code may look.
Central Illinois Congressman Rodney Davis says the goal is to make the tax code simpler, and put more money into the pockets of middle income families.
Davis says the proposed tax code would also reduce the corporate tax rate, as well as reducing taxes on small businesses.
Highland Park Mayor Nancy Rotering is jumping into the Democratic field after last month's announcement Lisa Madigan wouldn't seek re-election.
Rotering ran a spirited campaign against Congressman Brad Schneider in the last year's Democratic primary. She landed more than 46 percent of the vote cast.
She won a high profile battle with the NRA as Highland Park enacted an ordinance banning assault weapons and high-capacity magazines.
State Representative Scott Drury and State Senator Kwame Raoul are also in the Democratic field.
The 2017 census of agriculture will soon be mailed to farmers across the country. The census is compiled every five years and provides valuable data for the industry says USDA statistician Mark Schleusner.
The census will be mailed in December and should be completed by February 5th.
The data will be be released by February 2019 in both electronic and printed format.
Robert Pakidis, Boy Scout Troop 142 from Clinton, will be sponsoring a fundraiser breakfast as
part of his Eagle Scout Project.
The breakfast is being held Saturday, October 28th from 7:00 – 11:00 a.m. at the American
Legion Hall at 219 N. Elizabeth St. in Clinton. The breakfast will consist of sausage gravy and biscuits, scrambled eggs, juice, coffee and milk. Prices for tickets are $8 for adults, and $4 for children 6 and under.
Robert’s project is two-fold. First, he will be completing the interior of a trailer (donated by Baum
Chevrolet) for the Clinton Honor Guard. His plans are to build shelving, gun racks, flag holders, etc. The trailer is not only used for funerals, but also honor flights, Memorial Day services, and other events.
The second part of his project, is the fundraiser breakfast which will pay for having decals added to the rear of the trailer.
To purchase tickets in advance, you may call 217-201-8622. They will also be available at the door.
*Article and Photo Credit: the Pakidis'
The Vault in Clinton is continuing their momentum towards opening in 2018.
Director of the vision, Michelle Witzke indicates a flood in the basement from the summer has been fixed and now work continues on at the downtown facility.
Renovation of the inside of the former 'Indecent Xposure' is getting completely gutted and they are focused on getting things just the way they want.
Witzke hopes to have the first level of the facility by February of next year and the lower level complete by June of next year. She is thankful for all those that have helped out to this point.
Funding for The Vault continues to be a positive as well. Witzke indicates they have officially received their non-profit designation and have received several grants in recent months.
The Vault is holding a work day Saturday, October 7. Find The Vault on Facebook or visit thevaultclinton.wixsite.com for more information.
The Clinton Chamber of Commerce Terror on Washington Street Haunted House opens this weekend.
Gabe Goldsmith with the Clinton Chamber of Commerce discussed the opening weekend of one of the biggest draws to DeWitt County.
Admission to the Haunted House is $10.
Contact the Chamber of Commerce at 217-935-3364 or visit clintonhauntedhouse.com for more information.
It's National 4-H week and local 4-H students are highlighting their experiences.
Reed Jostes says you're never too old and it's never too late to join.
Lindsey Holtman indicates she's been in 4-H for eight years and says she's learned several lessons about community service and leadership.
Science enthusiest Adara Meyen calls 4-H the quest of a lifetime.
Tune in this week for more coverage of National 4-H Week on Regional Radio News.
FARMERS HAD PLENTY OF TIME IN THE FIELDS THIS PAST WEEK AS WE HEAR IN THE WEEKLY CROP REPORT.
IT WAS A HOT, DRY WEEK IN ILLINOIS…AND TOPSOIL MOISTURE LEVELS DECLINED TO 36 PERCENT VERY SHORT, 48 PERCENT SHORT AND 16 PERCENT SURPLUS. CROP STATISTICIAN MARK SCHLEUSENER SAYS 21 PERCENT OF CORN HAS BEEN HARVESTED.
30 PERCENT OF SOYBEANS HAVE BEEN HARVESTED.
59 PERCENT OF THE SOYBEAN CROP IS RATED IN GOOD TO EXCELLENT CONDITION. 23 PERCENT OF SORGHUM HAS BEEN HARVESTED AND NINE PERCENT OF WINTER WHEAT PLANTED.
Senator Dick Durbin has weighed in on the tragic events in Las Vegas.
After his colleague Connecticut Democrat Chris Murphy called for an end to what he called legislative indifference, Durbin isn't outlining any specific gun legislation but he believes its a time for action.
Durbin also saluted first responders in his remarks on the Senate Floor...
On Twitter, Durbin said "The notion that there’s no way to prevent gun violence is false—and without action to stop gun attacks, Congress is complicit in them. There’s a tendency in Congress to debate how the latest attack could have been prevented. But what are we doing to prevent the next attack?
Harvest season means it’s once again time to store grain.
GROWMARK’s Randy Houltaus says it’s important to keep the crop from spoiling and then also making sure the product comes out of the bin when it’s time. Among the tips he’s promoting is knowing the proper airflow rate.
Holthaus says once you know the airflow rate, that will help you determine how long to run the fans. And he adds when to run the fans is determined by following Equilibrium Moisture Content charts.
You may have heard the phrase "Will it play in Peoria". Well the works of the Illinois river city's 182nd Airlift Wing are being well received in areas ravaged by recent hurricanes.
Wing Commander Robbie Robertson says it's been a busy time in the weeks since their first C-130 cargo aircraft brought supplies to victims of Hurricane Harvey in Texas.
Robertson says his personnel put a wide array of day jobs aside to help hurricane victims...
Two C-130s delivered items to St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands on Friday. The 182nd is also preparing to send about 15 security-force members to support airfield operations at Jose Aponte De La Torre Airport in Puerto Rico.
Eight members of the 126th Air Refueling Wing at Belleville based Scott Air Force Base arrived in Puerto Rico last month. That unit is providing 24-hour voice and data communication to emergency responders.
A DRUG USED TO COMBAT OPIOID OVERDOSES WILL BE MORE READILY AVAILABLE IN ILLINOIS.
THE ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC HEALTH IS RELEASING A STANDING ORDER FOR NALOXONE…COMMONLY KNOWN AS NARCAN. PREVIOUSLY, A PRESCRIPTION WAS NEEDED, BUT UNDER THE ORDER…TRAINED PHARMACISTS WILL BE ABLE TO DISPENSE THE LIFE SAVING DRUG SAYS PUBLIC HEALTH SPOKESPERSON MELANEY ARNOLD.
ARNOLD SAYS THEY WANT TO MAKE SURE EVERYONE HAS QUICK ACCESS TO THE DRUG THAT CAN SAVE LIVES.
NARCAN HELPS REVERSE THE EFFECTS OF OPIOID OVERDOSES, WHICH ARE OCCURRING MORE FREQUENTLY IN RECENT YEARS.
If you're in violation of City ordinances, it's likely you'll be hearing about it from local authorities.
That was the message from Clinton Police Chief Ben Lowers at the Monday night Clinton City Council meeting after lengthy discussion regarding the lack of cooperation from community residents towards ordinances in place.
The enforcement of ordinances is a renewed focus for Chief Lowers. He says because of excellent compliance in the community, there's been miminal need for much attention to the issues but he admits he would like to see that change.
The Chief emphasizes this is not an effort of revenue generation, but rather to continue the effort to keep the community clean and presentable.
The discussion derives from local residents calls for action on vacant lots and other beautification efforts.
The annual Apple and Pork Festival is helping youth across central Illinois.
The Clinton YMCA's Otter Swim Program is a program that invites youth from across the area to be a part of and each year, their baked potato sales at the Apple and Pork Festival help youth afford the opportunity. Darren Moser indicates the sales help pay for admissions to competitions and for equipment for the kids.
Second year coach Josh Gibson calls it a family atmosphere where they challenge their athletes.
If you're interested in being a part of the Otters swim program, now is the time to join. He indicates the program is open to youth in a wide range of ages.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org to get more information on the program or stop by the Clinton YMCA at 417 South Alexander Street in Clinton. You can also call 217-935-8307.
If you love chili, Taylorville the place to be this weekend. The community’s annual “Chillifest” takes place Saturday and Sunday. Patty Hornbuckle is one of the event’s organizers. She says there will be plenty of happenings throughout the weekend.
Hornbuckle says she expects more than 15,000 people to attend this year’s “Chillifest.”
The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum has devoted much of its time and space this year to sports role in Illinois history.
After launching the Cubs and Cardinals Rivalry exhibit, the Presidential Library is focusing on sports at the grass roots level. The Library's oral history program has teamed up with the Illinois High School Association to capture decades of memories of high school sports and activities like chess, debate and journalism. 54 interviews have been produced so far.
Longtime school administrator volunteer Philip Pogue, who served with Fairbury Prairie Central and Greenville/Bond County among other stops, says local sports is truly local history.
For more information, visit www.presidentlincoln.illinois.gov.
What are the chances of an IHSA state title in video gaming? It’s now a discussion item, but Mercer County High School athletic director Andrew Hofer says it will be a tough sell for districts that are lacking in financial resources.
Last month, the IHSA Board of Directors heard a presentation from IlliniCloud on sports/e-gaming and the involvement of high school students in the activity. The IHSA is now officially tracking member schools with e-sports programs via its Emerging Sport/Activity tracker.
Senator Dick Durbin says the discussion about Puerto Rico needs to shift from President Trump’s war of words or tweets with the Mayor of San Juan to recovery efforts.
Durbin says it’s clear the nation was busy with recovery efforts from Hurricane Harvey and Irma on the mainland.
Durbin says now is not the time for the blame game of politics surrounding emergency responses.
Federal funding for some healthcare programs has expired, including the Children’s Health Insurance Program or CHIP. It covers around 180,000 kids in the state and Congress missed a deadline for reauthorization.
Democratic Senator Dick Durbin says the problem can be fixed but CHIP is at risk of running out of funding in about 6 months.
Meetings are underway on Capitol Hill to work on the problem according to Durbin and he wants to see reauthorization done by the end of the week.
How much will the Trump tax reform plan cost? That’s one of the key questions says Mark Gebhards, the Executive Director of Governmental Affairs for the Illinois Farm Bureau.
Trump’s plan calls for three federal income tax brackets—12 percent, 25-percent and 35-percent, but it’s unclear at this time which incomes will fall into each tax bracket. As for the corporate tax rate, the Trump plan calls for a 15-percent reduction—from 35-percent to 20-percent.
A boil order has been issued in parts of Clinton Monday.
Area is surrounded by Railroad St. to the west, Jefferson St. on the south. George St. on the east, and to Adams St. along the north.
If you have any questions please call 217-935-3432 during business hours.
Regional Radio caught up with the American legion booth during the Apple and Pork weekend.
Tom Reddington indicates that the American Legion owes a lot to the community, veterans, and volunteers for getting their new location set up nearly four years ago.
Reddington adds that the large meeting room in the Legion is named after their mentor, Ernest Thorp, and they will dedicate his portrait and display it in the building.
He adds that the funds from Apple and Pork will go to building improvements and veteran programs through the year. The building is utilized for community organization meetings and celebrations of all kinds.
The American Legion is located at 219 North Elizabeth Street in Clinton and can be reached at (217) 935-5183.
The continued development of Two Doors Down Brew Pub in Clinton is underway.
Joe Sarti, owner of Two Doors Down brewery and Snappers Bar and Grill, indicates that he didn't know the old cleaners was going to be a brew pub when he bought it and then craft beer made its way onto the scene.
Sarti adds that the draw to craft beer and brew pubs is the uniqueness of locally made products. The industry itself is still growing.
He's made some structural and cosmetic improvements to the building and has hopes for a future patio and outdoor area.
There will be another beer tasting the first Saturday in November.
Sarti hopes to start serving next year.
The Fall grant cycle is right around the corner for the Illinois Prairie Community Foundation (IPCF).
According to Michele Evans, IPCF supports different charities in the community by giving grants to non-profits in DeWitt, McLean, Logan and Livingston Counties.
Evans indicates that there are five different areas of grants that are connected to the foundation, but only two of them will be accepting applications from non-profits in the Fall cycle.
The first is Women to Women Giving Circle who will have $40,000 for two grants and they will be focusing on early intervention for mothers and children. They are asking that two non-profits work together to hopefully make a bigger impact on the community.
Youth Engaged in Philanthropy (YEP) will have 10,000 dollars to grant out to a variety of charities that are geared toward youth in the community. In the past, they've given to Read Across Clinton and Fostering Dignity.
The other three grant areas will be up for the Spring grant cycle. They are the General Grants, Arts and Culture Grants, and the Sol Shulman Jewish Education and Life Grants.
The Fall grant cycle starts October 1 and ends October 31.
You can learn more about the grants and IPCF at their website www.ilprairiecf.org.
THE ILLINOIS STUDENT ASSISTANCE COMMISSION IS URGING FAMILIES TO GET THE FREE APPLICATION FOR FEDERAL STUDENT AID FILLED OUT AS SOON AS THEY CAN.
THE FAFSA HELPS DETERMINE IF A STUDENT IS ELIGIBLE FOR FINANCIAL AID...AND IS NOW AVAILABLE FOR THE 2018-2019 SCHOOL YEAR. I-SAC SPOKESPERSON LYNNE BAKER SAYS IT’S A GOOD IDEA TO GET TO WORK ON THAT FORM RIGHT AWAY.
FILLING OUT THE FAFSA CAN BE DAUNTING…BUT HELP IS AVAILABLE. VISIT: ISAC DOT ORG FOR INFORMATION ABOUT WORKSHOPS, FACEBOOK LIVE EVENTS AND OTHER ASSISTANCE.
SEPTEMBER IS WRAPPING UP AS A WARM AND DRY MONTH.
IT LOOKS LIKE THIS MONTH WILL END UP AS THE 20TH WARMEST SEPTEMBER ON RECORD IN ILLINOIS. THE AVERAGE TEMPERATURE HAS BEEN 69 POINT THREE DEGREES…WHICH IS ABOUT THREE DEGREES ABOVE NORMAL SAYS STATE CLIMATOLOGIST JIM ANGEL.
THIS MONTH IS ALSO COMING IN AS THE FIFTH DRIEST SEPTEMBER ON RECORD IN ILLINOIS…WITH AVERAGE STATEWIDE RAINFALL NEARLY TWO AND A HALF INCHES BELOW NORMAL.
ACCORDING TO THE LATEST U-S DROUGHT MONITOR REPORT…NEARLY ALL OF ILLINOIS IS RATED AS “ABNORMALLY DRY.” AREAS OF CENTRAL ILLINOIS ARE CONSIDERED TO BE IN A “MODERATE DROUGHT.”
Illinois State Treasurer Mike Frerichs among those who hope lawmakers in Springfield will override a veto of a bill that would get more money into the hands of state residents.
Governor Bruce Rauner vetoed House Bill 302 which would require insurance companies to pay out benefits to the loved ones of policy holders after they die. Frerichs says there are hundreds of millions of dollars owed to Illinois residents.
The Illinois House and Senate will take up the bill at their veto session scheduled to start in late October.
Organic farming is a rapidly growing segment of U.S. agriculture. Organic vegetables, fruits, and livestock make up the bulk of the entire segment.
However, a new USDA report shows organic field crops are making gains in the number of acres planted and overall value. The National Ag Statistics Service released the numbers showing that U.S. farms and ranches produced $7.6 billion in certified organic commodities in 2016.
That’s up 23 percent over the previous year. The number of certified organic farms also climbed 11 percent higher, coming in at 14,217 last year. The number of certified acres is up 15 percent to five million acres.
Livestock marketed as organic can only consume feeds certified through the USDA’s organic program. That’s helping to drive organic production of corn, soybeans, and hay. The USDA report says about 7,400 farms planted 1.6 million acres of organic field crops and hay last year.
The value of organic field crop sales totaled up to more than $762 million in 2016, more than $100 million dollars higher than in 2015. Organic corn had the most acres planted, totaling almost 214,000 acres last year.