(Collinsville--jc)  -- As trade talks dredge on, Illinois’ senior Republican House member says farmers in his district are pushing for the federal government to move on a deal with Mexico and Canada, but he suspects politics are getting in the way. The agricultural community has been pushing Washington to hammer out a successor to the North American Free Trade Agreement since Trump administration officials said they are seeking a better deal.Southern Illinois Representative. John Shimkus, Republian from Collinsville, toured his district speaking to farmers, who he says are rightly stressed about the poor crop conditions. But they’re also pushing him and others to move forward with the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement. Democrats, Shimkus suggested, are slow-walking the deal because they're reluctant to give Trump any kind of political win.


(Springfield--jc  -- Illinois’ new capital bill contains funding that will address what officials say has been an ongoing problem for years. The capital bill sets aside 80 million dollars to assist mental health facilities all over the state .Mark J. Heyrman, facilitator with the Mental Health Summit and Mental Health America of Illinois, says there has been a lack of community mental health services.With diminishing financial support, state psychiatric hospitals and community facilities were forced to close their doors. One fact is there used to be 33 thousand  state psychiatric hospital beds and now there are 1 thousand 200.


(Provo--jc)  -- Illinois’ governor was in Utah Wednesday. Governor J.B. Pritzker’s office says the freshman state executive attended a series of meetings hosted by the National Governors Association in Salt Lake City. His office says the goal is to advance Illinois’ priorities.



(Buckley--jc)  More activities are being planned for Buckley Lake later this year. The village held a movie night, Fun Day and numerous family and church events already this year. Buckley Mayor Sherry Stachura says ideas are needed for a fall time movie and more…


Buckley Mayor Sherry Stachura



(Chicago--jc)  --Is powerful House Speaker Michael Madigan the target of an FBI investigation into political corruption in Illinois?b The Feds won't say, of course, but it sure feels like he's a person of interest at the least.A series of recent events indicate there's a heckuva lot of smoke around Madigan, if not a full-on raging fire.Madigan's home or offices haven't been raided, but FBI agents executed search warrants at the homes of three of his closest allies in recent months.And on Wednesday, the Chicago Tribune reported that federal agents are investigating $10,000 in checks that lobbyists with Illinois energy giant ComEd sent to one of the Madigan allies whose home was raided recently. 


(Washington--jc)  --In just a few short weeks some major growing areas have gone from oversaturated to dry soils and crop stress. Rod Bain reports…



(Urbana--jc)  Its’ 4-H Day at the Champaign County Fair today. The 4-H Sheep Show, 4-H Rabbit Show 4-H Swine Show and 4-H Goat and 4-H Beef Show are set for this morning. Gates open at 10 at the fairgrounds along Coler Avenue in Urbana. Tom Gordon of Urbana has been a long time fairgoer and is closely tied to the local fair. Gordon says he remembers getting a social security card at the fair in the 1940s…


Urbana resident and Champaign County Fairgoer Tom Gordon

A kids pedal tractor pull begins at 3 this afternoon, The carnival opens at 5 and motor madness motorsports extravaganza begins at 7 tonight. 



(Springfield--jc)   -- More apprenticeship programs will be available at some Illinois Community Colleges thanks to a 4 million dollar federal grant. The money will help around 16 hundred students participate in various programs says Illinois State Community College Board Spokesperson Matt Berry…



I-S-C-C-B Spokesperson Matt Berry

The program will be offered locally at Parkland College in Champaign.



(Gibson City--jc)  -- A hymnfest is set for Gibson City in mid-August. The event takes place at 3pm on August 11th at the Gibson City United Methodist Church. The Gibson Area Music Foundation is sponsoring the hymnfest with Director Milt Kelly, organist Heidi Brown. The event will feature popular hymns and the stories behind them.


CHICAGO (AP) — Public health officials say Illinois is among 24 states affected by a recall of fennel seed products over possible Salmonella contamination.

Mountain Rose Herbs of Eugene, Oregon, is recalling all sizes of its fennel seed, ranging from 4 ounces to 50 pounds. The product was sold online, at retail shops and distributed to vitamin and health food stores in two dozen states. Refunds are available.


(Washington--jc)  ItIt appears that U.S. trade talks with China may be advancing soon from the telephone to the negotiating table. Gary Crawford reports…



(Kankakee--jc)  Kankakee Police are investigating a fatal shooting that occurred along Evergreen Street in the city last night around 6pm.  As police arrived, a man was found shot in the street. Kankakee Crimestoppers are seeking any information about the shooting. Anyone with information is asked to call Kankakee County Crimestoppers at  815-934-7463.


(Rantoul--jc)  Illinois V-F-W Commander and Rantoul resident Brad Gould is busy with his new position this year. Gould was elected as to the top spot last month. Gould says a writing competition and visiting districts in the state to trips to the nation’s capitol are on his job duties…



Illinois V-F-W Commander and Rantoul resident Brad Gould


(Undated--jc)  A lawsuit against a Ford County bed and breakfast operation west of Paxton will proceed. The defense in the case of Timber Creek B and B had asked to dismiss the case, but that was denied in local court on Wednesday. The lawsuit stems from a 20-11 case of penalties imposed for discriminating against a same sex couple from Tuscola. More information is found in the Ford County Record.



(Ashkum--jc)  Those with the Iroquois County Fair, the Ashkum community along with family and friends are mourning the death of a popular local fair president, ag leader, family member and friend today. The visitation for 76 year old Marvin Perzee is set for 2pm to 5pm at the 4-H Building at the Iroquois County Fairgrounds north of Crescent City along Route 49. Perzee was a well respected member of fair community throughout the area, state and nation. He served the local 4-H chapters and the local fair for his lifetime. He will be missed, but always remembered. Perzee’s funeral takes place at 5pm at the fairgrounds. Visitation will continue following the funeral service today. 



(Paxton--jc)  -- Elevator repairs and upgrades will be on the agenda of a Ford County committee in August. The Ford County Public Health Commission has been looking into repairs to the elevators at the courthouse in Paxton for several months. Costs for repairs and what upgrades are expected to be agenda items at the August 13th, 9am meeting in Paxton



(Loda--jc)  The 20-19 Loda Good Ole Days are set for this Friday Saturday and Sunday in the Southern Iroquois County town. Event Spokesperson Alecia Whitcomb says some competitions and music hilite the evening on Friday…



Loda Good Ole Days Spokesperson Alecia Whitcomb



(Gibson City--jc)  -- The Gibson City  Police,Health, Light and Nuisance Committee is set to meet on Monday night at city hall at 7. . The purpose of the meeting will be to discuss new squad car for the police department, reports of complaints about vehicles without current registration, property that is dangerous and presents hazards to the community and other nuisance complaints. The public is invited to the committee meeting to address any concerns.


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