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WPXN Blog

PEORIA, Ill. (AP) — The mother of a 4-year-old boy who died in a house fire has sued a central Illinois village, arguing its fire department's response was inadequate. The lawsuit filed against Bartonville claims its volunteer firefighters took 12 minutes to arrive at the burning house on July 17 and didn't seek immediate help from a Peoria fire station that's about five minutes away. Bartonville's mayor declined to comment.

 

 

URBANA, Ill. (AP) — The University of Illinois is banning all smokeless tobacco products from its main campus in Urbana-Champaign. University officials say the campus no-smoking policy will be extended to products such as chewing tobacco and dissolvable tobacco strips starting next August. The tobacco ban will apply to students, employees and campus visitors, including fans at sporting events. It will cover all university-owned property, indoors and outdoors.

 

(Paxton--ab) Paxton Buckley Loda High School parent teacher conferences are October 24th and October 25th. Contact Kim Goble in the high school office at 217-379-4331 to schedule those appointments with high school teachers.

 

(Springfield--ab) The Illinois Department of Revenue is launching a new, more user-friendly website. Revenue spokesperson Terry Horstman says the revamped site is mobile friendly and easier to navigate.

 

 

Illinois Department of Revenue Spokesperson Terry Horstman

The website is: tax dot illinois dot gov

 

CHICAGO (AP) — Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky was among more than 50 people were cited by police at a Chicago protest calling for higher wages and union rights for fast food workers. The protest by the Illinois Democrat and the others took place Thursday outside fast-food giant McDonald's corporate headquarters. The demonstration is part of the "Fight for $15," a national movement seeking to increase the minimum wage to $15 an hour for fast food, child care, airlines and other workers. The group also wants the right to start unions or join existing ones.

 

(Askum--ab) Illinois State Police (ISP) District 21 Commander, Captain Don Aaron Harsy, announces the ISP will conduct Special Traffic Enforcement Patrols in Kankakee, Iroquois and Ford Counties on November 10, 16, 20, 23, 24 & 25. These STEPs allow the ISP to focus on these fatal four violations which contribute the greatest to traffic crashes and fatalities: Driving Under the Influence (DUI); - Safety Belt and Child Restraint use; Speeding; and Distracted Driving.

 

(Watseka--jc)  Riverside Healthcare in Kankakee and Iroquois Memorial Hospital are discussing merger. The two area hospital has signed a letter of intent to pursue the merger. The process has just started. WPXN news will continue to update this story as it develops.

 

 

(Fisher--jc)  --The Village of Fisher Planning and zoning commission is set to meet next week to discuss special use permits for the construction of community solar gardens. The gardens would be built on the Stalter property just south of Green Street in the village. A public hearing on the issue preceeds the commissions meeting on Wednesday. Officials will also look at rezoning a property in the 400 block of West Division Street from commercial to family residential. The Fisher Planning and Zoning Commission meeting comes to order at 6pm Wednesday October 10th.

 

 

SPRINGFIELD — Recognizing the importance of an industry that employs more than a half million workers in the state, Gov. Bruce Rauner today proclaimed October Manufacturing Month in Illinois.  The governor says manufacturing is at the heart of the Illinois economy. Manufacturing Month events will take place throughout October in Illinois. These events showcase some of the nearly 13,000 manufacturing firms that call Illinois home. October is a time to highlight the benefits of working in the industry and continue to build a talent pipeline that guarantees Illinois remains a leader in manufacturing for years to come. Manufacturing Day will be celebrated nationwide today.

 

(Undated--jc)  -- Illinois is celebrating its 200th anniversary as a state. Here is today’s Bicentennial Minute…

 

 

 A taxpayer-funded nursing home in one of the nation’s highest-taxing counties has amassed tens of millions of dollars in reserves and local officials are now looking to send part of that back to taxpayers.The Valley Hi Nursing Home in McHenry County is actually a taxing district, taking about $40 annually from each property taxpayer there. Not counting federal money it gets for care, the facility has amassed reserves of more than $40 million, enough to run operations for four years.McHenry County, in northern Illinois, has had an annual property tax burden as high as four percent of a home's value, most recently 2.82 percent in 2017, according to ATTOM Data Solutions. That's higher than others around it and among the highest as a ratio of home values in the nation.

 

 

(Springfield--jc)  -- The state owes 24,000 state employees millions of dollars in backpay for failing to pay raises, but Gov. Bruce Rauner's administration is pushing to the limit how much it will have to pay amid a contract dispute with the state's largest public-sector union. The Rauner administration says whether taxpayers are on the hook for more than $400 million to state employees in raises from a contract that expired more than three years ago depends on the ultimate outcome of whether there’s an impasse.The Illinois Labor Relations Board ordered the Rauner administration to issue reports on paying step increases for 24,000 state employees by the first of this month. The raises are based off a contract that expired June 2015, shortly after Rauner took office.

 

(Rantoul--jc)  -- The Rantoul Area Chamber of Commerce  is now opening up the nomination process for our annual awards which will be given out at the R-A-C-C Annual Banquet on November 9th. To receive a nomination form for Citizen of the Year , Volunteer of the Year or Educator of the Year please email d-i-r- at-rantoulchamber-dot-.com  Nomination forms must be received by October 31 by either emailing , mail to : RACC 120 E. Sangamon, Rantoul 61866 or dropping off at the RACC office.

 

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — Four central Illinois residents have been charged in connection with the death of a man last month inside a Springfield hotel. Fifty-three-year-old Michael Trone of Springfield was found dead Sept. 6 in a Sleep Inn after police received a report of unresponsive man in a hotel room. An autopsy later determined Trone was strangled. Sangamon County State's Attorney John Milhiser said Thursday the suspects face first-degree murder and robbery charges.

 

(Buckley--jc)  -- Crusader Hall at Buckley based Christ Lutheran High School is the setting for a meeting later this month for Buckley residents. The purpose of the meeting is a public information meeting about the towns proposed sewer system project. The meeting comes to order at 5 on Thursday October 18.

 

(Washington--jc)  -- Over 80 food and beverage items have been added to a U-S-D-A app designed to help consumers Rod Bain has the story…

 

 

(Rantoul--jc)  The move to a new location for one local auto dealership could be complete by Spring 2019,  Shields AutoMart of Rantoul will be making the move to property just of Route 136 near the Rantoul Super Walmart Store on the villages west side.  The local dealer is putting up a new 27 thousand 800 foot facility. Those driving by the site will see the start of ground prep work for the new building. Weather will determine when the facility will be ready in Spring of 2019.

 

 

 

(Chicago--jc) --  Illinois officially celebrates its 200th anniversary with a Bicentennial gala at the United Center on December 3rd. Bicentennial celebration official Tim Kazurinsky says a huge party is planned for December 3rd in Chicago…

 

 

Bicentennial Celebration official Tim Kazurinsky

Tickets are available to the public.

 

The Immanuel Lutheran Church in Loda is holding a homemade goodies sale and garage sale from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. today and from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday  113 Iroquois Trail at Lake Iroquois. Proceeds from the sale will go to the Ladies speical projects, including Christ Lutheran High School’s student education fund, a church sponsored St. Louis Seminary student fund. Garage sales are taking place today and tomorrow around Lake Iroquois

 

The Paxton IGA is hosting a cookout from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday in the stores parking lot. Funds are being raised for Missions Are Us. It’s pork chop sandwiches, chips and pop on the menu

 

A local Fire Department is having one of its fundraisers this Sunday. The Cissna Park Fire Protection District is having it’s Annual Fried Chicken Dinner  Sunday from 11am-5pm. Please come out to show your support.

 

 

 

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