(Springfield---jc)  --Lawmakers have two weeks to finish crafting a proposed $39 billion spending plan for the next state budget, which begins July 1.While lawmakers have had session days off and on throughout the year since January, the Fiscal Year 2020 budget isn’t expected to be finalized and sent to the governor until the last minute.Details on the fiscal year 2019 budget only became public last year in a Senate committee hours before it was pushed out of that chamber and into the House. That was with a House and Senate with Democratic majorities and a Republican Governor. Even though Democrats hold the governor’s mansion and have supermajorities in the House and Senate, the new budget could follow the same last-minute trajectory as last year.


(Urbana-jc)  -- You may not want it yet, but Champaign County tax bills will be mailed out soon. Officials with the Champaign County Treasurer’s office say the bills will be mailed out around May 28th. The first due date, once the tax bills are mailed will be 30 days later.



(Paxton--dg)  -- Have you seen the footage online yet for a world record. A Paxton Native set a Guinness World Record over the Weekend. Colton Eichelberger who drives for the Maximum Destruction Monster Truck team based in Paxton jumped seven Monster Jam Trucks at the World Finals in Orlando on Saturday. After the feat, he said it looked like there was room to clear a few more. We’ll have to wait and see if he can improve on the jump.


(Gibson City-jc)  -- City of Gibson City’s Ed Day Skate Park committee will meet tomorrow night. The group will look at their Queen of Hearts fundraiser, garage sale and gun raffle. A look at finances for the proposed park and plans to visit other skate parks are also on the agenda. The Ed Day Skate Park committee meets at 6-30 Thursday evening at the Gibson City, city hall.



(Springfield--jc)  A new instant lottery ticket will benefit police memorials around the state. The “Blue” ticket joins the specialty games, and all the proceeds support memorials honoring fallen officers. House Republican Leader Jim Durkin says some of the money raised will also go towards the costs of bulletproof vests…


House Republican Leader Jim Durkin.


CLARKSVILLE, Ind. (AP) — A historic site in southern Indiana is now part of a new 1,200-mile expansion of the Lewis and Clark Historic Trail. The News and Tribune reports national, state and local leaders gathered Monday at the Falls of the Ohio Interpretive Center in Clarksville to officially recognize the trail's expansion. The expanded recognition includes areas in Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia, and new portions of trail in in Illinois and Missouri.


SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker has joined with state lawmakers in promoting legislation that would increase penalties for drivers who don't slow or change lanes to avoid vehicles on the side of the road. The proposed legislation to strengthen Scott's Law is a reaction to the deaths of two Illinois State Police troopers this year as they performed their duties. The proposal, filed Tuesday, would increase the minimum fine for a first violation of the move-over law to $250 from $100.



(Paxton--jc)  -- The Paxton Area Chamber of Commerce is working on producing a Paxton restaurant brochure that will be distributed regionally.  If your food establishment would like to be included, please either email the chamber office p-a-c-c-director-at-outlook-dot-com or call 379-4655.  The cost for a full color spot is $100 but no charge for chamber members.


(Paxton--jc)  Work on the proposed Streetscape program in the city of Paxton continues to move forward. Paxton Mayor Bill Ingold says an environmental study to a plan to bids and construction are coming together…


Paxton Mayor Bill Ingold.

The entire project needs to be completed by the end of 20-20 in Paxton.


CHICAGO (AP) — Chicago's Lincoln Park Zoo is celebrating the Mother's Day birth of a newborn western lowland gorilla. Zoo officials say the male infant was born at about 2 a.m. Sunday to mother Rollie and father Kwan, who weighs in at more than 400 pounds. The newborn has no name. He'll make his public debut Wednesday when the zoo's Regenstein Center for African Apes reopens. His weight is estimated at 4 to 5 pounds.


(Paxton--jc)  -- Paxton Buckley Loda School board members are expected to name a new high school football coach when they meet tonight in monthly session. An update and approval for some lighting and signage at the new Clara Petersen School, summer projects and school fees for the upcoming school year will also be discussed. The P-B-L school board meets at 6 tonight in the board room at the High School Junior High Complex on Paxton’s west side.


(Springfield--jc)  --Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White’s office is launching a public education campaign on Illinois’ move over law. Reminders will be added to driver’s license and vehicle registration renewal notices and a test question about the move over law will be added to the driver license exam says Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White…



Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White


(Washington--jc)  What are the global supply and demand estimates on U-S corn with China in the mix. U-S-D-A World Ag Outlook Board Chair Seth Meyer looks at the latest numbers….


U-S-D-A World Ag Outlook Board Chair Seth Meyer



(Watseka--jc)  With Spring comes some bridge projects in one area county. Some work is moving forward on several bridges in Ash Grove and Milford townships. New bridges are coming to Danforth, Ashkum and Beaverville townships.


(Springfield--jc)  Budget talks continue in Springfield, and one area Republican says an April surplus shows that no new taxes are needed. 106th District State Representative Tom Bennett of Gibson City says the two sides need to work together with no new tax on things like bags and more…




106th District State Representative Tom Bennett of Gibson City



(Rantoul--jc)  In the second of a three part series, WPXN news takes a look at the A-Trel group and the University of Illinois College of Engineering as they occupy a portion on the former Chanute Air Force Base in the village.  A-Trel stands for Advanced Transportation Research and Engineering Laboratory. The group is a transportation research, educational and test lab located in Rantoul. The village of Rantoul and the of I are proposing to work on autonomous vehicles, testing road surfaces and partner with national and international vehicle companies. The idea is in the idea stage. Rantoul Mayor Chuck Smith says under the proposal, cars would be tested in tunnels, and all types of roads on the closed course…



Rantoul Mayor Chuck Smith.


(Springfield--jc)  --  Following heavy rain and flooding throughout Illinois, Attorney General Kwame Raoul Tuesday warned Illinois residents to be on alert for scammers looking to exploit homeowners and business owners who may be in need of repairs from storm-related damage. Earlier this month, a state disaster proclamation was issued for 34 counties related to flooding, and residents in communities along the Mississippi and Illinois rivers have been asked to prepare for possible evacuations due to floods. Raoul cautioned Illinois residents that scammers often move quickly into communities to take advantage of people with damage to their homes or businesses. Raoul noted these “storm chasers” use the opportunity to pressure people into making quick and often expensive decisions about cleanup and construction work. Raoul also warned residents that scam artists may be operating as insurance adjusters or public adjusters.



(Rantoul--jc)  On Saturday, those with the Rantoul Public Library are having a Vehicle Day from 10am until 2pm. Those attending the event will be able to learn about all types of vehicles. Laser tag, face painting, crafts and food will also be part of the event at the local library


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