(Springfield--jc)  -- The battle over changing the state constitution to allow a progressive income tax rather than a flat one may be dead on arrival, for now. House Minority Leader Jim Durkin of Western Springs announced Tuesday that 50 of his members are on board with a resolution opposing a tiered income tax structure.  Durkin stood alongside several other Republicans in Springfield Tuesday afternoon, saying that with Illinois’ high property taxes and tough business environment, Illinois’ constitutionally mandated flat tax is one of the only good things the state has going.


(Springfield--jc)  -- A Republican lawmaker who wants to eliminate Algonquin Township in McHenry County is one step closer. State Representative David McSweeney, Republican of Barrington Hills,  says his measure would make it easier for voters in McHenry County to eliminate townships at the ballot box. The bill applies only to the 17 townships in McHenry County. The bill now goes to the full House.



(Springfield--jc)  -- This is national work zone awareness week and motorists are urged to use caution. There are about 52 Hundred work zone crashes in Illinois each year. 29 people were fatally injured in 2017. Illinois Department of Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn says drivers must, do their part…



I-DOT Secretary Randy Blankenhorn. Illinois has tough penalties when it comes to work zones. Speeding is a 375 dollar fine. If you hit a worker, you could be sentenced to 14 years in prison.



(Bloomington-rb) The Circuit Judges of the Eleventh Judicial Circuit of Illinois have elected Circuit Judge Mark Fellheimer to complete the term of Chief Judge Kevin Fitzgerald. The term goes from July to the end of this year. The Chief Judge has general administrative authority over the court and judicial assignments.



(Fisher-rb) Fisher leaders are expected to make a final payment to the Fisher National Bank for the water and wastewater fund when they meet tomorrow night. At Thursday’s meeting at 6-30, trustees will also put money into a savings account for sidewalks and drainage projects.



(Paxton--jc)  -- The American Legion Riders will be collecting donations in Paxton later this month. The efforts will take place between 8am and noon on Saturday April 28th.  Paxton Mayor Bill Ingold says the group is raising dollars for Star Missions…



Paxton Mayor Bill Ingold



(Ludlow--jc)  A solar farm could be coming to northern Champaign county near Ludlow. The Rantoul press reports that the area being considered is a couple miles southwest of Ludlow. A Champaign County zoning board will look at the process when they meet on Thursday.



(Paxton--jc)  The Paxton Buckley Loda school system hall of fame could be larger after tonight’s P-B-L school board meeting. That is one item on the agenda for the meeting at 7 tonight. The board is also expected to hear about the districts school building construction project and look at an asbestos removal project at the high school in Paxton.



(Springfield-rb) Taking daily medication can be a matter of life or death. But, some healthcare providers are taking advantage of that and putting lives in danger. Now, lawmakers are tackling the problem from all angles. One bill would stop insurers from switching drugs offered in a patient's plan. Several healthcare professionals who support the move say "bait and switch" is unfair and unhealthy. They say, when people sign up for healthcare plans, they should get exactly the drugs their bodies need and already rely on. One downfall could be a price hike for employers.



(Undated--jc)  Illinois is celebrating its’ 200th birthday. Here is today’s Bicentennial Minute…




(Springfield--jc)  -- Illinois lawmakers are once again going to debate whether to let schools post public notices online rather than in the local newspaper. The almost annual fight over school transparency comes down to two things: Cost and technology. School leaders say its costs too much to post every public notice in the newspaper. Republican State Representative Dave Severin of Marion says it's time to let school districts embrace the 21st century  . Democrat State Representative Sue Scherer of Decatur, said not every parent or voter has access to the internet, and may not see notices that are posted online.



(Springfield--jc)  --A good Samaritan who breaks open the window of a hot car to save a dog or cat could be arrested or sued for damages in Illinois, but some state lawmakers want to change that.A pending bill would shield a person from potential liability for breaking a window to rescue an animal from a hot car.  Republican State Representative. David Olsen of Downers Grove, says his bill is a common sense measure to protect someone trying to save a pet. The measure now awaits a vote in the Illinois House.



(Rantoul--jc)  Rantoul village board members continue to look at ways to pass a balanced budget. At last night’s monthly meeting, local leaders looked at several proposals to keep jobs and the communities maintenance department. The annual budget is expected to be just shy of 9 million dollars. The board is set to meet next week to pass the annual budget.



(Washington dc--jc)  -- With potential tariffs on U S Soybeans, how do exports from South America affect exports here. U-S-D-A Chief Economist Warren Preston says new soybean crop forecasts  are in…



U-S-D-A Chief Economist Warren Preston.



(Paxton-rb) A groundbreaking ceremony for the construction of a 63-thousand square-foot addition to Clara Peterson Elementary School in Paxton is scheduled for 2 this afternoon . The event is set for the east side of  Clara Peterson school. Those attending include Paxton Buckley Loda school administrators, school board members, teachers and city leaders.


(gifford--jc)  A Coaches versus Cancer event is coming to Gordyville U S A tonight. The event is sold out and organizers want to raise thousands of dollars for the American Cancer Society. Illini Men’s Basketball Coach Brad Underwood and Illini Men’s Baseball Coach Dan Hartlieb are expected guests. The event starts at 4-30 with the auction at 8pm.




(Paxton--jc)  -- More on the visit to Paxton with  Republican Nominee for Attorney General and former Miss USA Erica Harold. Harold was the guest of the Ford County Republican Women’s group last Saturday.  Harold says its important to campaign in this area of the state....



Republican Nominee for Illinois Attorney General Erica Harold of Champaign


(Dewey--jc)  -- The Dewey and Fisher unit of Home Community Education will hold a historic anniversary this coming Monday. The 100th anniversary celebration of the group is set for the Farm Bureau Auditorium in Champaign. Registration begins at 12-45 on Monday afternoon with the program from 1 til 3pm.


(Bloomington--jc)  -- The city of Bloomington is looking at the idea of a new outdoor sports complex. The city council has put 47 thousand dollars into next year’s budget to hire a Florida firm to look into the proposal. The city of Normal and the Bloomington-Normal Convention and Visitors Bureau are also providing money for the study.


(Champaign-rb) A University of Illinois graduate student who allegedly filed false police reports to bilk money out of his credit-card company has been charged with several felonies. 25 year old Shan Zou of Urbana was arraigned Tuesday in Champaign County Circuit Court on six counts of disorderly conduct alleging he filed false police reports.



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