(Undated--jc)  --As the summer moves into its hottest days, there is a push to nationalize the effort to prevent parents from leaving kids in hot cars.Leaving a child unattended in a car in Illinois under certain circumstances is a misdemeanor for the first offense. It can be a felony for subsequent offenses.Nearly 20 other states have similar laws of their own. But there is a push to take the issue to Congress.


NAPERVILLE, Ill. (AP) — A survivor of a northern Illinois private plane crash that left one dead says her husband, who piloted the plane, is a hero because of his efforts to prevent the tragedy. Investigators say 70-year-old Raymond Jakubiak of Naperville was flying his 1981 Beech A36 single-engine aircraft from Nashville to the Chicago area when it began experiencing engine problems Friday. The plane caught fire after Jakubiak made an emergency landing in a wheat field near Chebanse in northern Iroquois County.



PEORIA, Ill. (AP) — A prosecutor is telling a federal jury that convicted of a former University of Illinois doctoral student convicted last month in the kidnapping and killing a Chinese scholar deserves the death penalty because the crime was "cold, calculated, cruel and months in the making."



(Springfield--ba) -- A house committee is discussing the removal of more than 200 books from a downstate state prison library. The books were taken out of the Danville correctional center’s education justice project collection…used by inmates taking college courses. The program director…Rebecca Ginsburg with the university of Illinois says the books are a vital part of the curriculum.



Rebecca Ginsburg with the university of Illinois 


(Undated--jc)  -- A fundraiser for veterans is set for Saturday.  The 7th annual Summer Fun Run is sponsored by the Ford County Old-Timers begins at the Urbana V-F-W. The motorcycles will go to Danville, Hoopeston and end in Paxton Saturday afternoon. Anyone wanting to participate have several options says event Spokesperson Tabitha Renfro…



7th Annual Summer Fun Run Spokesperson Tabitha Renfro


(Springfield--jc)  Under a new program in Illinois, the state will be providing financial assistance to independent pharmacies serving Medicaid customers in small communities. The Critical Access Care Pharmacy Program is funded with legislative authority and the first payments have been submitted to the Comptroller's Office for distribution, with payment amounts based on the Medicaid prescriptions that pharmacies fill according to the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services. Executive Director of the Illinois Pharmacists Association Garth Reynolds says the funding does not solve the entire reimbursement problem, but it does provide some financial assistance to pharmacies in the most needed areas in the state.


(Watseka--jc)  -- Iroquois County leaders are set to  support the activity to work towards and with the city of Watseka to establish the Iroquois County River Conservancy District b.  The issue is one this morning at the county board meeting in Watseka. A motion to remove specific wording from the Resolution Opposing the Firearm Owners Identification Card Act is another topic. The Iroquois COunty board meets at 9 this morning in the administrative building in Watseka.



(Gibson City--jc) -- Money for new roads will go to new road projects. That is the way the new law reads for the 45 Billion Dollar Infrastructure program. 106th District State Representative Tom Bennett of Gibson City says that was an important component for supporting the program…



106th District State Representative Tom Bennett of Gibson City


 (Undated--jc)  --While Illinois drivers pay more for gas after lawmakers doubled the state's gas tax and increased vehicle fees to pay for a $45 billion infrastructure plan, federal lawmakers have yet to reach a consensus on how to move forward with a national infrastructure funding plan. The state plan doubled the state’s gas tax and increased vehicle registration and other fees to pay for the $45 billion, six-year state infrastructure plan called “Rebuild Illinois.”Illinois electric vehicle drivers will pay $248 annually for vehicle registration. That's up from $17.50 a year.


(Rantoul--jc)  -- The HUD Action plan and an improvement project for around 340 thousand dollars at the local waste water plant are on the agenda for Rantoul Village leaders when they meet tonight. The monthly study session will also feature a micro loan request  from Kiefer Photography. A tobacco ordinance is another topic for local leaders. The Rantoul Village Board study session comes to order at 6 in the municipal building on Tanner Street


(Springfield--jc)  -- 38 percent of soybeans are rated in good to excellent condition as we hear in the weekly crop report. State Crop Statistician Mark Schleusener says the corn crop is growing fast…



State Crop Statistician Mark Schleusener

Average statewide topsoil moisture is 6 percent short, 66 percent adequate and 28 percent surplus


(Buckley-jc)  You can add the village of Buckley to the list of towns that have aging sewer type system issues. Village leaders are looking at options as the village looks to the future to possibly do a major project, says Buckley Village Mayor Sherry Stachura…



Buckley Village Mayor Sherry Stachura


(Champaign--jc)  -- Parkland College is launching a new program on campus this fall that trains students for entry-level work as I-T help-desk technicians, an initiative supported by Google. Completing the six-credit-hour Google I-T Support Professional course  certifies students to provide entry-level support in just one semester at Parkland College and help fill a growing need. According to Google, Google Help Desk technicians are in-demand with many national corporations, from G-E and Intel to Smucker's and Walmart. The national median wage for I-T support specialists is $52,000, and about 150,000 unfilled  support jobs need to be filled across the U.S. No experience with computers is needed beforehand to start the program. For more information, please contact Cyndia Hinton, program manager 217-351-2414



(Springfield--ba) --Illinois will become less reliant on coal-fired power plants by the end of the year. Under an arrangement with the state, Vistra Energy soon will shut down 40 percent of its eight-facility fleet in central and southern Illinois. Phil Gonet, president of the Illinois Coal Association, said that could cause problems with energy reliability. He said coal can compete with alternative energy if the alternatives were highly subsidized.



(Paxton--jc)  There could be an increase to your water bills  after tonight’s Paxton City Council meeting. Local leaders are set to discuss a one percent increase in the water and sewer rates in Paxton.  A solar ordinance is also a topic for council members this evening. The Council is expected to give their o-k for volunteers with the Paxton Nursery school to ask for donations on downtown street corners on August 23 and August 24. The Paxton City council meeting comes to order at 7pm on the second floor of city hall



(Rantoul--jc)  -- A long time and respected member of the Rantoul Township High School board is stepping down. The Press reports that local businessman Doug Jordahl is stepping down after serving the local school district for just over 22 years. The board is looking to fill the vacancy as soon as possible.



(Gibson City--jc)  Gibson City has a new police officer. He  is Hunter Johnson. Johnson was sworn in last night during the city council meeting.







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