SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — Gov. Bruce Rauner has rebuffed borrowing billions of dollars to pay long-overdue state bills. The Republican rejected calls Monday from Democratic Comptroller Susana Mendoza and Treasurer Michael Frerichs. They both urged Rauner to sell up to $6 billion in bonds to pay off a chunk of a $14.4 billion backlog of bills. He told reporters in Chicago that "more borrowing on top of the spending behavior of the state government is not an optimal answer."



(Springfield-jm) -- Illinois Farm Fields got a break from the heat as we hear in the weekly crop report. Temperatures were cooler than normal this past week, and nearly six days were suitable for fieldwork. Statistician Steve Maliszewski says 97 percent of corn is now silking…



Crop Statistician Steve Maliszewski. 94 percent of soybeans are blooming and 70 percent are setting pods. 64 percent of the soybean crop is in good to excellent condition. Average statewide topsoil moisture is rated at nine percent very short, 25 percent short, 64 percent adequate and two percent surplus.



(Iroquois County-jm) -- Two Iroquois County men have been formally indicted in separate incidents. An Iroquois County grand jury indicted 24-year-old Shane Weber on two counts of aggravated battery following an incident outside Dutchmaster Bar in Buckley in July. The grand jury also indicted 41-year-Robert Wroblewski of Watseka for felony theft of equipment from Watseka Chrysler.



(Rantoul-jm) -- Several of the schools in the Rantoul City Schools district are receiving upgrades this summer. Superintendent Michelle Ramage talks about the work being done…



Rantoul City Schools Superintendent Michelle Ramage.



(Paxton-jm) -- The speed limit on E. Summer Street in the city of Paxton could be lowered tonight if the city council approves a proposal. The proposal calls for lowering the speed limit on Summer Street near Memorial Field and by Coady Park. Council members will also be asked to revise the fine for impoundment of dogs and penalties and consider approving a bid for sludge removal. The Paxton City Council meeting gets underway at 7 p.m.



(Buckley-jm) -- August is here and that means back it’s back to school time for area students. Christ Lutheran High School in Buckley is gearing up for the start of the school year says Executive Director Sandy Spitz…



Christ Lutheran High School Executive Director Sandy Spitz.



(Urbana-jm) -- A Ludlow man’s bond is set at $500,000 after Rantoul police found 456 grams of meth in his car. 42-year-old Shawndale Cowell was charged with two felonies, possession of meth with intent to deliver and possession of meth between 400 and 900 grams. Cowell was also wanted on an outstanding warrant in Georgia for being a felon with a firearm. If convicted of possession with intent to deliver he faces 12 to 50 years in prison. If convicted of possession between 400 and 900 grams he faces 8 to 40 years in prison. A pretrial hearing is set for September 5th.



(Springfield-jm) -- Yesterday was Purple Heart Day in Illinois and the State Department of Veterans’ Affairs is recognizing all recipients. During a special ceremony at the state capitol, Military Order of the Purple Heart Hayes-Krell Chapter’s Joe Schaler explained the origins of the medal. It was first established by General George Washington in 1782, and initially called the badge of merit…


Military Order of the Purple Heart Hayes-Krell Chapter’s Joe Schaler. The medal has evolved over time and is now awarded to soldiers killed or wounded by serving. State Veterans’ Affairs Director Erica Jeffries spoke at the event and thanked those who have received the honor and all who have served.



(Springfield-jm) -- Governor Bruce Rauner is signing a new law requiring state employees to take cyber security training. Most state workers have already gone through the program, which is taken online and will be administered annually. Governor Rauner says it’s important because employees are the state first line of defense…

Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner. The training covers topics such as identity theft, computer viruses and preventing data breaches.


(Undated-jm) -- A Chicago man has been indicted on felony drug charges in Iroquois County after police say he hid the drugs inside of him and made him ill. 44-year-old Angelo Hamilton was traveling on a Greyhound bus from St. Louis to Chicago when he became ill. Emergency personnel were called and that was when the drugs were discovered.


(Loda-jm) -- An area golf course is reminding people about a special promotion they have going on. Lakeview Country Club in Loda continues to offer their punch passes says Course Superintendent Doug McCoy…

Lakeview Country Club Course Superintendent Doug McCoy.


(Rantoul-jm) -- Rantoul Village leaders are expected to approve a contract with a company to tear down the old Rantoul motel. Village trustees will be asked to approve the contract with Owens Excavating at a cost of $39,250 to demolish the former Rantoul Motel along Route 45. They will also be asked to approve a change order for the water tower project at a cost of $48,125 and consider a micro loan request for $10,000. The Rantoul Village Board meeting gets underway at 6:30 p.m.


(Vermilion County-jm) -- Crops are still feeling the effects of the spring rains that left some farmers replanting. Vermilion County Farm Bureau Manager Tom Fricke provides a crop update for his area…

Vermilion County Farm Bureau Manager Tom Fricke.


(Iroquois County-jm) -- Gilman police continue to ask the public for assistance in finding a missing teenager. Police have been looking for Diamond Kohl for several weeks. Gilman Police say on July 28th, a camera captured a black car parking in from Boondock’s Bar and a white male in his 20’s exit the vehicle. A short time later the male and a female, positively identified as Kohl, were seen leaving the area heading northbound on N. Central Street. Anyone with information is asked to call Gilman police.


(Washington-jm) -- Young and beginning farmers will soon have access to help and advice on running their businesses. Gary Crawford reports…


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